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Radical Negativity: Interrogating productive possibilities for negative states of being

Friday 13 June 2014
Goldsmiths, University of London
Conference Keynote: Lisa Blackman, Professor in Media and Communications, Goldsmiths

Supported by the Centre for Feminist Research, Department of Media and Communications, and the Centre for Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths.

Website: http://radicalnegativity.com

Proposals are due by Friday 14 February 2014

More recent feminist and queer scholarship has begun to productively address the dark aspects of human subjectivity perceived to have a detrimental impact on the self-constituting practices of the positive self, such as shame, trauma, unhappiness, loss, pain, and melancholia, and reconceptualise them not only as integral to the process of subject formation, but critical and productive affective states in which to engage political action.

This interdisciplinary conference addresses the ways in which feminist and queer research may be informed by embracing philosophical oppositions, the ‘negative double’ of the positive value. The conference will interrogate what can be learned from interventions focused on the interconnections between the negative and human agency, and how such a frame can inform ideas of feminist and queer practice.

Borrowing from Eve Sedgwick, this conference proposes that forms of the negative are “not distinctly ‘toxic’ parts of a group or individual identity that can be excised; they are instead integral to and residual in the processes by which identity itself is formed. They are available for the work of metamorphosis, reframing, refiguration, transfiguration, affective and symbolic loading and deformation (Sedgwick and Frank, 2003, p.63).”

If, like Sedgwick, we take up this challenge to valorise negative states of being as key conditions both for the production of meaning and being and as organising principles of identity, then we hope explorations into such states may provide the potential to open up new possibilities for politics and connection.

We invite papers and panel proposals that explore how negative states and conditions of being such as unhappiness, irresponsibility, passivity, vulnerability, failure, shame, hesitancy, pain, dispossession, rage, madness and depression may provide loci from which action and political engagement can arise.

Submission Guidelines

Please submit paper abstracts of 300-500 words along with a short biography of 100 words.

Panel proposals should include a 300-word description along with accompanying paper abstracts for the panel of 300-500 words. Please provide a short 100-word biography for each presenter.

Email submissions to: radicalnegativity@gmail.com by Friday 14 February 2014.

Colloquium: Heteronormativity and health in education and practice

 

Sexual orientation and gender identity are social determinants of health for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people, as homophobia and heteronormativity persist as prejudices in society.

South Africa’s health system faces unique challenges: a quadruple burden of disease, a significant loss of health workers to other countries, challenges in health management, as well as the social context of high levels of poverty and unemployment, and a large HIV epidemic. All of these factors warrant an investigation into the health of LGBTI people specific to the South African context, to take into account the intersections of marginalised sexual and gender identities with other forms of discrimination and social exclusion. In the recent years, national health programming has included certain LGBTI identities into key policies such as the National Strategic Plan on HIV, TB and STIs. However, LGBTI people face numerous challenges in accessing health care, ranging from discrimination at the hands of health care workers to a lack of LGBTI-specific health information and resources. Initiatives that address heteronormativity in health care provision, as well as in health worker education, are urgently needed.

Aim

The aim of this colloquium is to create a platform for South African academics, civil society representatives, community representatives and practitioners to share and discuss their work and experiences in challenging heteronormativity in the South African health system.

To this end, the colloquium aims to achieve the following objectives:

  1. To identify and share existing research on health care needs for sexual minorities in South Africa, and present strategies to address these needs.
  2. To explore the impact of heteronormativity in health service delivery and in health education at higher education institutions.
  3. To demonstrate best practice, tools and methodologies in learning and teaching about non-normative sexualities and challenging heteronormativity at Higher Education Institutions and in the health system, and to identify areas for future research.
  1. To develop an agenda for socially responsive research through partnerships with LGBTI organisations to inform research, education and practice within the health sciences, and to create a network of researchers, civil society representatives and health care practitioners.

 

Format of contributions

The colloquium will consist of research presentations and interactive skills-building workshops. Paper presenters will have 15 mins for presentation, followed by a 5 minute Q&A session. Workshops will be 90 mins long, and cater for a maximum of 15 participants. Both formats will address one (or more) of the themes identified below. Ideally, the workshop sessions will provide more practical aspects to complement the theoretical paper presentations.

Presenters of papers should share findings from empirical research that address one (or more) of the themes identified below. Paper abstracts should be 300 words long, and follow the format of scientific abstracts (introduction – methodology – findings – discussion).

Interactive workshop sessions are meant to allow colloquium participants to enhance their skills in addressing heteronormativity in the health sciences. These could range from strategies to visibilise heteronormativity in institutional settings, to practical skills for teaching and facilitating. Abstracts for interactive workshop sessions should be 500 words long and specify the following: rationale/ background – aim – format – target audience.

Please submit your abstract by 31st March 2014, via email to heteronormativity.conference@gmail.com.

 

Themes

  1. Impact of heteronormativity on health and health care
  2. Strategies to address institutionalized heteronormativity in health care education and the health services
  3. Engaging health care workers around heteronormativity
  4. Heteronormativity in health care worker professional education
  5. Heteronormativity in patient health education and health prevention messaging

Papers that don’t address these specific themes but contribute to advancing the overall colloquium objectives are also welcome.

 

Contributors

With this colloquium, we aim to create a space for dialogue and collaboration between academic institutions, civil society organisations, government representatives, and health care practitioners. The focus of this colloquium is on work around heteronormativity and health in South Africa, and we encourage contributors to share practice-related aspects of their work.

The colloquium will have space for 35 participants. Preference will be given to presenters of workshops and papers. If you would like to attend without presenting, please contact us and explain

–          Why you would like to attend,

–          How it will benefit your work, and

–          How you would share the conference outcomes with your network(s).

People who identify as non-heteronormative are especially encouraged to apply.

 

Registration cost

Registration for the colloquium will be free of charge. We will not be able to provide financial support for travel to or accommodation in Cape Town, but we will provide information on affordable accommodation near the colloquium venue.

 

Deadlines and notifications

31st March 2014: Deadline for abstract submission for individual presentations and workshops

18th April 2014: Notification about acceptance

1st May – 31st July 2014: Registration (this is required for accepted presenters and workshop facilitators)

15/ 16th August 2014: Colloquium in Cape Town

 

For more information and conference updates, please visit our website: www.health-normativity.co.za, or email our conference email address (heteronormativity.conference@gmail.com).

 

We are looking forward to receiving your contributions!

 

Dr Alexandra Muller & Dr Chris Colvin

School of Public Health and Family Medicine

University of Cape Town

alexandra.muller@uct.ac.za

Sexuality Summer School 26 – 30 May: Queer Anatomies

Registration for the Sexuality Summer School is open to all PhD and Masters students and will go live on 14 February 2014 at estore.manchester.ac.uk. The number of students is limited to 35 so book early to avoid disappointment. Price: £70 (early bird, until 14 March) / £80 (regular). Includes some food / refreshments and tickets to public events at Contact and the Cornerhouse.

The Sexuality Summer School is a five-day event for postgraduates, organized by the Centre for the Study of Sexuality and Culture (CSSC) at the University of Manchester since 2008. The Sexuality Summer School brings together postgraduates, researchers and international scholars, and also artists and filmmakers, to facilitate dialogue and discussions that speak to contemporary debates in queer and feminist sexuality studies, with a particular emphasis on the interdisciplinary study of culture. In 2014, our focus will be on cultural theories and histories of anatomy.

The Sexuality Summer School includes public events (see below for details) with Jaspir Puar (Rutgers), Jim Hubbard (director, United in Anger), Richard Dyer (Kings), Valerie Traub (Michigan), Peggy Shaw and Lois Weaver (Split Britches), Mary Bryson (British Columbia) and Chase Joynt (Chicago). The Summer School will also include workshops with Claudia Castañeda<http://www.emerson.edu/academics/departments/liberal-arts-interdisciplinary-studies/faculty> (Emerson), with Erika Alm<http://www.kultur.gu.se/english/contact/All_staff/erika-alm/> and Kajsa Widegren<http://www.kultur.gu.se/english/contact/All_staff/Kajsa_Widegren/> (Gender Studies, Gothenburg) and members of CSSC at the University of Manchester, including: Jackie Stacey<http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/Jackie.stacey/>, Monica Pearl<http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/monica.pearl/>, David Alderson<http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/david.alderson/> and Laura Doan<http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/Laura.doan/>.

The Sexuality Summer School is sponsored this year by the University of Manchester Faculty of Humanities; Cornerhouse; Contact; Screen; Science, Stroke, Art 2014; and SEXGEN.

For more information about the Sexuality Summer School, including details of previous events, go to sexualitysummerschool.wordpress.com<http://sexualitysummerschool.wordpress.com>, email us and get on the mailing list at sexualitysummerschool@gmail.com<mailto:sexualitysummerschool@gmail.com>, find Sexuality Summer School<https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sexuality-Summer-School/179195025807?ref=ts&fref=ts> on Facebook or tweet us @SSS_Manchester<https://twitter.com/SSS_Manchester>.

SSS 2014 Public Events (open to everyone):

Monday 26 May – 12-2 – lunchtime public lecture: Professor Jasbir Puar<http://womens-studies.rutgers.edu/faculty/core-faculty/143-jasbir-puar> (Rutgers)

Monday 26 May – 6-8 – film screening at Cornerhouse: United in Anger: A History of ACT UP<http://www.unitedinanger.com> (2012) followed by Q&A with director Jim Hubbard<http://www.unitedinanger.com/the-producers/>, Professor Richard Dyer<http://www.kcl.ac.uk/artshums/depts/filmstudies/people/acad/dyer/index.aspx> (Kings) and Dr. Monica Pearl<http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/monica.pearl/research> (Manchester). Co-sponsored by Screen<http://screen.oxfordjournals.org>

Tuesday 27 May – 4-6 – public lecture: Professor Valerie Traub<http://www.lsa.umich.edu/women/people/ci.traubvalerie_ci.detail> (Michigan and Simon Visiting Professorship, Manchester). Co-sponsored by SEXGEN northern network<http://sexgennorthernnetwork.wordpress.com>

Tuesday 27 May – 7.30-9.30 – workshop at Contact: Peggy Shaw<http://splitbritches.wordpress.com/about/peggy-shaw/> and Lois Weaver<http://splitbritches.wordpress.com/about/lois-weaver/> in Green Screening: A Conversational Workshop<http://contactmcr.com/whats-on/12873-split-britches-ruff/> (to book: http://contactmcr.com/whats-on/12873-split-britches-ruff/)

Wednesday 28 May – 8-10 – evening performance at Contact: Peggy Shaw<http://splitbritches.wordpress.com/about/peggy-shaw/> in her new show: RUFF<http://splitbritches.wordpress.com/2012/11/13/peggy-shaw-to-perform-an-excerpt-from-new-show-ruff/> followed by ‘Ask the Doctor: Q&A’ (sponsored by Science, Stroke, Art 2014<http://www.stroke.org.uk/strokemonth> as part of Action on Stroke Month<http://www.stroke.org.uk/strokemonth>) (to book: http://contactmcr.com/whats-on/12873-split-britches-ruff/)

Thursday 29 May – 5-7 – public lecture: Professor Mary Bryson<http://www.grsj.arts.ubc.ca/faculty2/mary-k-bryson/> (University of British Columbia) and Chase Joynt<http://chasejoynt.com> (Chicago) on Cancer’s Margins<http://www.lgbtcancer.ca>

The Other Foundation (tOF) is an African trust dedicated to advancing human rights in Southern Africa, with a particular focus on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. Our primary purpose is to expand resources available to defend and advance the rights and well-being of LGBTI people in the Southern African region. We do this by working both as a grant-maker and a fundraiser.

The Atlantic Philanthropies has provided a generous start-up grant over a five-year period to cover all operational costs, subject to tOF being able to raise additional funds from other sources.

The OTHER Foundation has decided to extend the deadline on the call for proposals (see below) and peer reviewers. This is due to the level of interest in the call and the time constraints on applying caused by the Christmas and New Year holidays.

The deadline has now been extended to Monday, 10 February 2014

If you have already submitted an application could you please e-mail Khosi.Xaba@theotherfoundation.org, to ensure that we have your application.You can also use this address for any queries you may have on the application process.

MORE INFO: http://theotherfoundation.org/

“When I tell people I am gender non binary trans* femme, I first feel overwhelmed because that is a lot of words, and then confused because I don’t understand how a group of words that I not so long ago discovered in a language that isn’t my own can dictate so much in my life. I was initially thrilled to have a phrase to describe who I am after years of not being able to define myself. These days however, I have been feeling a disconnect with the terminology available to describe my gender to the ways in which I live my life, per my gender. Frankly, I do not even think about my gender that much, it is more of an evolving spiral of production and reproduction as opposed to a set-in-stone definition– And that is very exciting. “

 

http://www.originalplumbing.com/index.php/society-culture/travel/item/621-my-gender-in-the-face-of-colonialism-a-quest