*EXTENDED DEADLINE* Fluid Constructs: Breaking the Limits of Gendered Spaces
Examining time and space as anything but concrete and singular, Elizabeth Grosz states that they “are in some sense correlated with representations of the subject” (99). Such a conception associates spatio-temporal location with subjectivity, and to some extent, embodiment and corporeality. Space becomes about more than physical conceptualizations—such as land, location, or locality, or more specifically Earth, land, nation, city, or home—and comes to include broader, more metaphorical, notions such as the space within body and mind, as well as narrative space. This idea entails a multiplicity and fluctuation of space, the limits of which can expand or contract around a variety of themes, perceptions, and peoples, and involves a rethinking or reshaping of space, one that reframes more rigid boundaries and borders. A more fluid understanding of the places we dwell (upon) can provide peoples with a sense of belonging, of rootedness, given that individuals have the agency to displace and replace prescriptive delimitations, but can also engender uncertainty since instability can govern such reworkings. Accordingly, there exists an interdependent relationship between space and identity, as both inform each other’s limits or lack thereof.
Continuing on the path of fluid representations, Judith Butler states in Gender Trouble that gender is a social construct that involves a spectrum of expressions rather than a simplistic binary. As such, the determinism of biological sex, gender expressions and identities, and desire clearly falters in its lack of complexity and its enforced rigidity, which signifies a refusal of oppressive normativity. It is the intersection of these two representational concepts that The Harbour seeks to explore in its latest issue. In thinking of the borders - metaphorical or physical - that we are witness to in every aspect of our lives and beings, we ask the question: how are those real and imagined limits broken, reshaped, and reapplied? Specifically, in what ways does the idea or perception of a spectrum of gender and sexuality alter seemingly stable concepts (those with once clearly established borders)? Beyond the ideological or identitarian, papers are also encouraged to question the nature of literary genres, artistic categorizations, forms, etc. In the broadly-defined and infinitely various spaces (national, digital, ideological, etc.) that we inhabit, how does gender and sexuality change or get changed? What are the effects of such fluidity on conceptions of said dynamic and multi-perspectival representations of space?
The Harbour invites submissions concerning this topic of no more than 4500 words by May 1, 2021. Subjects can include (but are not limited to) literary and cultural criticism, postcolonialism, media studies, gender studies, queer studies, diasporas and locality, spatial theory, geocriticism, geofeminism, indigenous studies, humanities, and social sciences. Possible topics include identity and identity politics, indigeneity, cognitive mapping, deconstructionism, etc.
Please send your application through our submission form (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScC7klCEuADslgL-m4-JQral1LVOy6A...).
Butler, Judith. Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. Routledge, 1999.
Grosz, Elizabeth. Space, Time, and Perversion. Routledge, 1995.