The Art of Resistance: Interdependencies and Co-Becoming

deadline for submissions: 
July 31, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Sibeal Network

The Art of Resistance: Interdependencies and Co-Becoming

University College Dublin, 17 & 18 November 2017

I am a lesbian woman of Color whose children eat regularly because I work in a university. If their full bellies make me fail to recognize my commonality with a woman of Color whose children do not eat because she cannot find work, or who has no children because her insides are rotted from home abortions and sterilization; if I fail to recognize the lesbian who chooses not to have children, the woman who remains closeted because her homophobic community is her only life support, the woman who chooses silence instead of another death, the woman who is terrified lest my anger trigger the explosion of hers; if I fail to recognize them as other faces of myself, then I am contributing not only to each of their oppressions but also to my own, and the anger which stands between us then must be used for clarity and mutual empowerment, not for evasion by guilt or for further separation. I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own. And I am not free as long as one person of Color remains chained. Nor is anyone of you.

Audre Lorde, The Uses of Anger: Women Responding to Racism, 1981


…if we take seriously the inability to choose with whom we cohabit the earth, then there is a limit to choice, a kind of constitutive unfreedom that defines who we are and even, normatively, who we must be.  It is true we cohabit with others we do not choose, but that certainly establishes a certain amount of aggression and hostility in the midst of that cohabitation.  Indeed, is there not a kind of agonism, if not antagonism, we need to consider in the midst of that plurality?  If we think of cohabitation only as a political goal, but not as a condition of social existence, then we fail to understand not just the agonism implied by unchosen cohabitation, but the longing, the dependency, the constraint, the possibilities for encroachment, impingement and displacement.  If this is a cohabitation of living beings, then we have to think about life as it crosses the human and nonhuman divide.  And, as embodied creatures, we would have to think about questions of need, hunger, and shelter as crucial to this plurality; in other words, plurality would have to be thought as a certain kind of material interdependency such that being able to live and being exposed to death are also, in part, at stake in this social condition.

Judith Butler, Parting Ways, 2012


As we enter our 11th year Sibéal asks us all to Reflect and Resist.  What is resistance?  What are feminist forms of resistance?  Are we living within a culture of cruelty, uninformed, petty and spiteful?  What can we do with anger and grief?  Another world is possible, one in which we learn within freedoms bounded by unfreedom, our common need for sustenance, shelter and care.  We ask for considerations on what social existence is, what creativity means within our current forms of unchosen cohabitation.  We call for celebrations of embodied life and all the joy, pain, longing, grief, love, rage, anger and calm that we live through and alongside.  We call on your stories and memories and the stories and memories of your mothers, grandmothers and ancestors.  Another world is possible, please come join us in thinking it through, in enacting it, it’s whisper, cry, laugh and shout.


Themes might include but need not be limited to the following:

  • The Art of Resistance

  • Memory and Trauma

  • Co-becoming: Philosophical Reflections

  • Embodiment: Gender and Emotion

  • Gender Performativity

  • Transforming Genders

  • Decolonising Spaces

  • Intersectionality and Resistance

  • Spirit and Sustenance

  • Migration and Gender

  • Medical identities, medicalized bodies


  • Institutions in flux

  • Gender and Work

  • Feminism(s)

  • Masculinities

  • Gender and Sexuality

  • Literatures of Resistance

  • Hi(stories) of resistance

  • Sociology, History, History of Art, Theatre, Popular Culture, Music, Law, Politics, Anthropology


We will be hosting a major workshop on Diversity in STEM on Saturday, November 18th as part of the conference. More details to follow.  

The Art of Resistance: University College Dublin, November 17th & 18th 2017

Please send abstracts to before 5pm, July 31st 2017