FINLAND - WHY GENDER? SEMINAR 2009
CALL FOR SESSIONS
Call for Sessions: Deadline 30th November 2008
Why Gender? University of Jyväskylä, Finland - 9th-10th of October 2009
The two-day international conference entitled "Why Gender?" aims to bring together both Finnish and international scholars from a number of different disciplines to participate in intellectual discussion regarding future directions gender theory could take. The conference is conceived as a starting point for future networking on this topic. The continued importance of gender as a social category in the late modern world prompts us to ask the oft-forgotten question: why? As researchers in the humanities whose studies are firmly grounded in empirical data, we are primarily concerned with how gender is theorized within our disciplines, as well as how gender researchers can both draw upon and contribute to theories in areas outside the humanities, for example social studies. The conference organizers would like to see more theoretical work on gender, this most elusive of social divisions, which combines the insights made within women's studies, men's studies, feminist studies, queer studies, and the anthropological study of gender.
The organizer of the conference is the project “Strategic Practices: Hidden Histories of Gender in Finland 1880–2005”, funded by the Academy of Finland’s research programme Power in Finland. We are a multidisciplinary team of seven researchers (ethnologists, historians and folklorists) from University of Jyväskylä and University of Helsinki. The project director is Prof. Laura Stark from the Department of History and Ethnology, University of Jyväskylä.
In our view, current theories of gender which assume women’s universal inequality and male dominance in social life take as their point of departure that which actually needs to be investigated, including hierarchies and use of power within women’s groups and within men’s groups. Even after several decades of valuable work uncovering the socially-constructed nature of gender, we are still not questioning deeply enough our basic assumptions regarding the inevitability of gender. The conference will consist of lectures by keynote speakers and thematic sessions.
The keynote speakers are: Dr Wendy Cealey Harrison, University of Greenwich, UK, author of e.g. “Beyond Sex and Gender” (2002)
Prof. Jeff Hearn, Svenska handelshögskolan, author of e.g. “Men in the Public Eye. The Construction and Deconstruction of Public Men and Public Patriarchies” (1992) and “The Violences of Men. How Men Talk About and How Agencies Respond to Men's Violence to Women” (1998)
Dr. Sally Hines, University of Leeds, UK, author of e.g. “TransForming Gender: Transgender Practices of Identity, Intimacy and Care” (2006)
Guideline for session organizers
The abstracts of the proposed sessions should be in English, not exceeding 250 words. The abstract should include the title of the session and the names of the organizer(s). Deadline for session abstracts is 30 November 2008. Send the abstract as an .doc or .rtf file to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com . The accepted sessions will be announced in December 2008. The call for papers will be announced in January 2009.
The sessions might, for example, focus on following themes (but are by no means limited to these):
- Intertwining of gender, sexuality and power
- The practice and performativity of gender - Intersectionality
- What sorts of social phenomena reinforce the significance of gender and what weaken it
- What kind of discourses legitimate gender - Definitions and micro-mechanisms of patriarchy
- Rethinking nature vs. nurture: new ways to redefine and understand the complex and multiple connections between what we call biology and culture
- What is this social distinction we call gender really about and why does it exist and persist?
Pasi Saarimäki - firstname.lastname@example.org
Heli Niskanen - email@example.com
More information about the conference and our project:
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