WSQ, Call for Papers: Special Issue
Elena L. Cohen, Graduate Center CUNY
Melissa M. Forbis, Stony Brook University SUNY
Deepti Misri, University of Colorado, Boulder
Saadia Toor, College of Staten Island CUNY
One way of telling the story of feminism is to tell it as a story of protest: protest against, protest for, protest within. In this issue, we invite contributors to reflect on the histories, presents, and futures of protest through a feminist lens.
The current moment is often hailed as “the age of protest,” one in which the recent women’s marches, originating in the US but soon spreading globally, were seen to be a culmination. Such declarations, however, depend on a very particular notion of what counts as protest, and indeed feminist protest, often reifying the global North as an originary site of feminist protest; or disregarding movements that do not explicitly foreground gender or women as their primary agenda.
We contend that popular “age of protest” narratives risk obscuring other key moments and sites of long standing protest, particularly when led by racialized or otherwise minoritized populations. The rich histories of centuries of protest by working class and poor women, immigrant women, women of color, and anticolonial, indigenous and transnational feminists still remain understudied. And yet, it is difficult to deny that globally, protest has been revitalized by mass participation on a larger scope than has been seen in the almost two decades since massive protests spawned global networks that came to be known as the alterglobalization movement. Such protests have been diverse in issues and tactics - from the revolutions of the Arab Spring, to the ceaseless protests in Kashmir against Indian occupation, to the anti-rape protests in India, to the #niunamas and anti-femicide movements in Latin America, to the Women’s Marches, BlackLivesMatter movement, Dalit women’s self-respect marches, Idle No More and the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline in the US and Canada, to name only a select few of a plethora of protests globally that have thrown up key questions for feminism. Beyond the streets, the digital domain has been a lively site of protest and organizing, particularly in zones where the presence of protesting bodies on the streets may be met with deadly violence. We invite our contributors to think broadly and critically about the relationship between feminism and protest as one that emerges from multiple and overlapping locations and communities, on and beyond space of “the streets.”
What counts as protest? What counts as successful protest? Can feminism be seen as a history of protests, or itself a kind of protest? What makes a protest feminist? What have been the forms of protest favored by gender and sexual minorities? In what ways have the historical acts of protest that are excluded from feminism’s official narratives shaped the context for protest today? What role do gendered, racialized and ableist stereotypes play in shaping the image of the iconic protester in any given protest? Whose bodies are always already terrorists, rather than protestors? When and how, in protest, do sex, sexiness and sexuality come to the fore? What is the place of allies and solidarity? In what ways have recent protests not explicitly on gender issues amplified our understanding of feminism as multiple (or plural)?
We welcome submissions that are interdisciplinary and span the humanities and social sciences. We solicit papers that are theoretical, conceptual and/or empirical on a wide range of topics relating to protest, including but not limited to the following:
● Historical amnesia, whitewashing and colonization of protests initiated by people of color
● Indigeneity, settler colonialism and decolonization
● Queer, trans and crip perspectives on protest
● Racial politics of protest
● Respectability politics
● Forms and sites of protest
● Affective relations around and within protest
● Technology and social media in/as protest
● Storytelling and literary narratives
● Visual art and other cultural representations
● Performative and theatricalized modes of protest
● Gendered bodies as a site or tactic of protest
● The politics of silence and/or visibility in protests
● Disability justice and protest
● Radical love and radical hope
● Violence and self-defense in protests
● Criminalization, surveillance, and policing of protest
● Cooptation and corporatisation of protest
● Gender and right-wing protests
● The politics of transnational protests
● Survival as protest
● The aftermath of protest
● The relationship between protest and community organizing
● Protest and the politics of purity
● Call-out and call-in culture
Scholarly articles and inquiries should be sent to guest issue editors Deepti Misri, Melissa M. Forbis, Elena L. Cohen and Saadia Toor at WSQProtestIssue@gmail.com. We will give priority consideration to submissions received by September 15, 2017. Please send complete articles, not abstracts. Submissions should not exceed 6,360 words (including un-embedded notes and works cited) and should comply with the formatting guidelines at http://www.feministpress.org/submission-guidelines/.
Poetry submissions should be sent to WSQ’s poetry editor Patricia Smith at WSQpoetry@gmail.com by September 15, 2017. Please review previous issues of WSQ to see what type of submissions we prefer before submitting poems. Please note that poetry submissions may be held for six months or longer. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable if the poetry editor is notified immediately of acceptance elsewhere. We do not accept work that has been previously published. Please paste poetry submissions into the body of the e-mail along with all contact information.
Fiction, essay, and memoir submissions should be sent to WSQ's fiction/nonfiction editor, Asali Solomon, at WSQCreativeProse@gmail.com by September 15, 2017. Please review previous issues of WSQ to see what type of submissions we prefer before submitting prose. Please note that prose submissions may be held for six months or longer. Simultaneous submissions are acceptable if the prose editor is notified immediately of acceptance elsewhere. We do not accept work that has been previously published. Please provide all contact information in the body of the e-mail.