Thinking Transoceanic Justice...

deadline for submissions: 
February 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
2018 NWSA--National Women's Studies Association Conference
contact email: 

NWSA--National Women's Studies Association Conference in Atlanta, GA Nov. 8-11 2018


The recent “oceanic turn” in literary and cultural studies calls attention to the ocean as a critical space where living beings and inanimate objects converge to form networks of interrelations. This ecological understanding of the ocean is, however, intertwined with the ambivalent power relations generated by colonial/imperial interests in claiming resources and territories of oceans and islands. Consider, for example, how the US empire colonizes Hawai’i and Guam to establish military practices that are detrimental to local Indigenous cultures and ecosystems, or how multinational corporations dominate Paupa New Guinea’s logging and mining markets while exploiting  the bodies of local laborers. Oceans and islands thus constitute a space where environmental injustice is entangled with colonial/imperial domination and capitalist exploitation, demanding an urgent call for (re)articulating a feminist vision of justice.

In this panel, we take the ocean and island as critical sites for producing feminist visions of justice. What does it mean to imagine feminist visions of justice through an ecological and/or  decolonial lens? How can we theorize a vision of oceanic freedom and justice that is applicable to both the human and nonhuman? How can the knowledges produced by new materialisms, feminist science studies, Indigenous studies, and transpacific studies help us develop a politics of caring for for oceanic beings, objects, and islanders?  We welcome papers that engage with these and other, related questions, particularly as they are connected to the emerging field of transpacific studies and its engagement with oceanic geography, embodiment, optics, and/or affect. Please submit your abstract (under 100 words) to Yi-Ting Chang ( or Miriam Gonzales ( by Feb. 15, 2018.