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UPDATE-CFP: Women’s Experiences of Justice (10/7/06; collection)
The co-editors of (Re)Interpretations: The Shapes of Justice in Women’s Experience, to be published by Cambridge Scholars Press, Ltd. in late 2007, seek scholars interested in contributing a chapter. The book, which will show how women create justice or resist injustice through (re)interpretations of traditional structures, is divided into five sections that represent patriarchal authority and power: Language, Religion, Medicine, War, and Sex Trafficking.
Papers should be relatively jargon-free, accessible to a general audience interested in issues of justice for women, but they should also be well-grounded in scholarly research. A multicultural approach is encouraged to cover issues in both the first and the third worlds.
Descriptions of the five sections follow. Each section has suggested topics, but please do not limit yourself.
We construct our world through language, but language is also considered a “man-made” symbolic order of reality that shapes our perceptions. If it reflects men’s reality, does it exclude women’s reality? What are the limiting and liberating powers of language? What paradigms are created through language? How do women translate and interpret these paradigms? How do women resist being silenced or insist on being heard when others are doing the translating?
The three monotheistic religions, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, form the bedrock of Western culture and patriarchy, and religious institutions are often blamed for continued oppression and disempowerment of women. Trenchant feminist critiques of these religions generally advocate an either/or view: accept the teachings or abandon the religion altogether. This binary view neglects to account for alternative views that suggest organized religion might be a site for liberation struggles. In other words, feminism and religion are not necessarily irreconcilable. The chapters in this section will raise questions about how women can reclaim authority and advocate for a more just world through religion and religious institutions.
The medical field, dominated by male professionals, is fraught with political and class struggles with significant consequences. Who claims authority in medical issues? How is that authority established? Given that medical practitioners today are often the ones who determine sterility or fertility, life or death, sanity and insanity, how do women negotiate the power struggles? In what ways are medical and related institutions (pharmacology, insurance) responsible for the unfair treatment of women, either through lack of intervention or through intervention that labels women in specific and unjust ways? How are women building on feminists’ work in the 1970s to reclaim their power and offer alternative, women-centered medical knowledge?
The interrelationships of war and social injustice are blatantly obvious, but what is perhaps less obvious, particularly in the current state of world affairs, is how military might still relies on patriarchal ideologies in order to function. The glorification of heroism and sacrifice and the eroticization of violence both devalue women’s roles in the military and diminish their sufferings and exploitation. However, women’s traditional relegation to service and domestic roles does not necessarily make them innocent. In other words, are women victims of war? Historical bystanders? Or are they, too, implicated in the injustice of war? This section explores questions about who is affected in war and how one’s gender both contributes to and compromises the “justness” of war.
This section will explore definitions of trafficking: Who gets trafficked and why? How and why are women and children cast as illegal aliens that must be returned to their home countries rather than as victims of crime that need safe houses, legal and physical protection from their abusers? What are the issues involved in prosecuting traffickers? What are the economic and social considerations, including the effects of war and poverty?
500 word proposals are due by October 7, 2006 with a commitment to have full papers completed by March 3, 2007.
Please send your proposals, with a short biography, to Lisa Dresdner at Ldresdner_at_ncc.commnet.edu or to Laurel Peterson at LPeterson_at_ncc.commnet.edu.
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or write Jennifer Higginbotham: higginbj_at_english.upenn.edu
Received on Thu Oct 05 2006 - 01:17:22 EDT