#UsToo: Intersectional Approaches to Subversion and Resistance

deadline for submissions: 
February 13, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
University of North Carolina, Greensboro EGSA 2019 Graduate Conference
contact email: 

UNCG’s EGSA 2019 Graduate Conference

#UsToo: Intersectional Approaches to Subversion and Resistance

March 23, 2019

Subversion and resistance have become two main preoccupations for our current Western society, where social media movements like #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter are empowering some who have routinely been silenced in a variety of ways to “speak out” against their oppressors. Throughout the recent history of civilizations, dominant racial, sexed/gendered, linguistic, and religious power structures have discouraged and/or impeded oppressed peoples from speaking out; nevertheless, they have persisted.

These peoples’ calls for justice are found all throughout the pages of our global history, from speeches and treatises, to literature, arts, diaries, and film. Beyond a cataloguing of these rhetors’ and authors’ calls—sometimes demands—for change, this CFP is interested in intersectional readings of acts of subversion and resistance, especially those that complicate our understandings of what subversion and resistance look like, and how exactly these rhetors and authors maneuvered around their particular societies to perform such courageous acts. By intersectional, we refer to the confluence of race, sex, gender expression, ableism, class, and other categories of difference, and how the experience of oppression—and consequently, of resistance—becomes multi-layered.

We are looking for presentations that explore subversion and resistance through rhetoric, literature, history, performance art, etc. in both contemporary and historical settings.  What does resistance look like? How is resistance portrayed throughout history?  Who gets to participate in it? What makes resistance and protest successful or unsuccessful? How can we continue to expand how we study and talk about resistance? As scholars, we want to celebrate those who resist and remember those who were not able to, as we explore the various ways that resistance is a subversive embodied experience—from writing to protesting and everything in between the pen and the street.


Possible approaches include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • The effects of social media on resistance movements and subversion
  • Can a genre encourage resistance? Consider how film—i.e. the superhero film—makes statements about resistance.
  • Digital methods of resistance (social media, blogs, online platforms)
  • Resistance beyond the heavily-mediated #MeToo and #BlackLivesMatter movements (other social media campaigns that resist dominant power structures, but have not received media attention)
  • Other literary and rhetorical strategies that have allowed peoples to perform resistance (diaries, letters, travel writing, autobiographies, etc.)
  • Ecological resistance movements and/or animal rights campaigns
  • Gender identity and gender expression as embodiment, as performance, as resistance; non-binary approaches
  • Disability Studies: What are the effects of limiting and charged labels (i.e. disabled, handicapped, etc.) on the orientation of non-abled bodies? How have rhetors and authors pushed back against this terminology? What possibilities for resisting these terms do they provide instead?
  • A historical analysis of resistance methods, or a discussion of how understandings of resistance have shifted throughout history. What hasn’t changed? What possibilities are available to facilitate changes?
  • Does Higher Education promote or discourage resistance? How can educators resist the adoption of colonizing pedagogies?
  • What’s at stake when teaching resistance movements in the college classroom?
  • Depictions of resistance in current media, including television and film


Specific Submission Directives

Please submit a 250-300 word abstract and a 100-word brief biographical blurb by Wednesday, February 13, 2019. Email your CFP with the title “EGSA Conference Proposal” to dppinto@uncg.edu