CFP: "Women Inventing the 1950s," Special Issue of Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal (2/1/10)

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Jennifer Barker/Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal
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"Women Inventing the 1950s," Special Issue of Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal (2/1/10; journal)

The 1950s were a time of stark contrasts and contradictions. The decade was defined by disillusionment and idealism, constraint and expansion, and the simultaneous post-war re-building and re-assessment of traditional values and roles. While the 1950s are now a half a century behind us, the ideas and struggles of that time continue to influence us today, and merit continued re-evaluation. Women in the 1950s served as subjects, and often passive objects, in the construction of images of femininity. Such representations were fraught with tension concerning changes in women's public, intellectual, and sexual roles. Yet women in the 1950s were also active participants in the creation of the ideologies and forms that shaped that decade. Women artists, writers, designers, entertainers, filmmakers, scientists, professionals, social critics and activists, many of whom remain under-examined, produced work that uniquely engaged life and art in a Cold War culture. What were their specific contributions and innovations? What challenges did they face in the process of (re)-inventing society, art, themselves? What are the artistic, political and cultural legacies of women in the 1950s?

This special issue of Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal seeks contributions that examine the inventions of women in the 1950s from a variety of perspectives and disciplines, including literature, art and architecture, film, history, the social sciences and cultural studies. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

Women Writing the 1950s (Novelists, Poets, Essayists)

Women Artists and Architects

Women Photographing the 1950s

American Politics and Gender

Women and McCarthyism

Hollywood Blacklist and Gender

Women and Ideologies of the Nuclear Family

Gender and the Beats

Gender, Race and Civil Rights

Women and Convenience Technologies

Toys and Gender

Women and Science (-fiction)

Women and Domestic Economies

Femme Fatales in Film Noir

Women and the Atom Bomb

Women, Psychoanalysis, and Society

Falsies: Glamour, Fashion, and Design

Women and Experimental Film

Women 'n' Rock 'n' Roll

Please send a 300-500 word abstract (or completed manuscript) with a brief c.v. by February 1, 2010 to Jennifer Barker and Kirstin Ellsworth at or Completed manuscripts will be solicited for May 30, 2010. Book and film reviews related to the topic are also welcome.

Each completed manuscript must be accompanied by a statement that it has not been published elsewhere and that it has not been submitted simultaneously for publication elsewhere. All manuscripts must be formatted according to MLA guidelines. Essays should be approximately 25 pages in length. Authors should also supply a shortened version of the title for a running head, not exceeding 50 character spaces, an abstract of approximately 100 words, the author's affiliation and location. Each submitted article must contain author's mailing address, telephone number, e-mail, and a short biographical paragraph.