CFP: Negotiating Gender: New Perspectives on Asian American Literary Studies (6/30/05; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Wenxin Li
contact email: 

Negotiating Gender: New Perspectives on Asian American Literary Studies

This proposed collection of essays intends to tackle a fundamental issue in
Asian American literary studies—the gender gap, i.e. a fission roughly
along gender lines in Asian American thinking and articulation about ethnic
identity. Ever since the early 1970s, Asian American feminists and
nationalists have been engaged in a heated exchange on the roles of gender,
race, and culture in the formation of an Asian American identity, with
gender being the defining element. While the debate has invigorated Asian
American critical discourse, the prolonged warring atmosphere has also
divided Asian American community.

In recent years, scholars such as King-Kok Cheung, Sau-ling Wong, and Jinqi
Ling have sought to move beyond gender opposition in Asian American
thinking and practice. This move is in line with critical developments in
recent gender and race theories, masculinity studies, and queer studies.
While we are aware of the pitfalls of "essentialized ethnicity" in Judith
Butler's and bell hook's sense, we are also eager for the possibility of
negotiations toward a "coalitional politics." We would like to see essays
that explore new perspectives on Asian American self-definition and
identity in the spirit of gender reconciliation rather than gender
opposition. Possible sub-areas of interest may include but not limited to:

Gender and the politics of being Asian American

Asian American masculinity and femininity

Feminization and emasculation of Asian American men

Asian American transgender identities

Representations of Asian American sexuality in mainstream American

Globalization, migration, and Asian American sexuality
Race, gender, sexuality and Asian American self-portraiture

Potential contributors are invited to submit completed essays as Word
attachments by June 30, 2005 to both Professor Wenxin Li (
and Professor Chingyen Sawatsky ( Queries and
questions are welcome. Selected essays may also form an MLA special
session in December.

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Received on Thu Jan 13 2005 - 23:12:31 EST