Futures of Feminist and Queer Solidarities: Connectivity, Materiality, and Mobility in a Digitalized World
University of Gothenburg, Sweden
Starting from a set of troubling questions on the futures of feminist and queer solidarities, this online conference seeks to explore, historicize and rethink the ways in which solidarity, connectivity, materiality, and mobility have been shaped in various constellations of feminist and queer movements and scholarship. The organizers invite contributions that further theorize these dynamics in order to disrupt colonialisms and capitalisms, and their variant manifestations through ecocide, militarism, authoritarianisms, precarization, violence, and inequality. Of particular interest are the explorations of feminist and queer solidarities through the framework of transnationally entangled presents and histories to further theorize the various ways in which connectivities, materialities, and mobilities occur. With this conference we seek to influence future agendas for building solidarities, liveabilities, memories, communities and spaces/places in a shared world.
Confirmed keynote speakers
Aristea Fotopoulou KRI Innovation Fellow/AHRC Leadership Fellow, the University of Brighton, UK
Adi Kuntsman Senior Lecturer in Digital Politics, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK
Confirmed plenary roundtable participants
Ericka Johnson Professor in Gender Studies, Linköping University, Sweden
Lisa Nakamura Gwendolyn Calvert Baker Collegiate Professor,
Director of the Digital Studies Institute, University of Michigan, US
Tiara Roxanne Dr. in Philosophy and Digital Humanities, DeZIM Institut, Germany
Carrie Smith Professor in Modern Languages and Cultural Studies, University of Alberta, Canada
Jenny Sundén Professor in Gender Studies, Södertörn University, Sweden
Futures of Feminist and Queer Solidarities is an explorative conference in a small format. Across the three days of the conference, all presentations will take place through an online platform with no offline activities and no necessity to travel. The platform will open two weeks before the conference and participants will be invited to read and comment on each other’s extended abstracts on the online platform. Paper presentations can be pre-recorded and uploaded to the platform or presented live online. Please note that each presentation should not be longer than 15 minutes. A chat space will be open for questions and comments to the presenters.
Given that digital technologies have significantly reshaped the conditions for collective action in the past decade (Nordenson 2017, Tuzcu 2016; Mislán and Dache-Gerbino 2018), this conference wants to further explore and theorize how certain gendered, sexualized, racialized, and classed collectives and solidarities materialize or dissolve differentially via digital platforms (Tufekci 2015). We want to critically examine the performative ways by which digital materiality is shaped through persistent tropes of machine neutrality and virtual immateriality in this field of practice and research, and invite papers that unsettle such assumptions (Eubanks 2018; Buolamwini 2018; Kinsley 2014). We recognize that the use of digital technologies is a key tool for connectivity and resistance across the globe. However, inspired by the ideas of de-growth in various justice movements (Muraca 2012; Mellor 2019), we ask how such connectivities can evolve into visions of future feminist and queer solidarities, particularly when the materiality of digital communication inflicts environmental damage and perpetuates green forms of colonialism.
In this conference, we aim to bridge critical conversations on feminist and queer solidarities with struggles around environmental justice and sustainability in the context of a digitalized world. We embark with a set of questions that aim to interrogate critically the materialities of digital technologies and new types of inequalities and social injustices that the digital world stimulates. We ask: How can we build solidarities that challenge green colonialism in a digital age? How can we think of de-growth from the perspective of feminist, indigenous and queer of colour critiques of dispossession, extraction and dislocation, and by drawing on historical theorizations of feminist and queer futures? Could de-growth be a platform from which to challenge the universalizing agendas of homonationalisms and global feminisms; can it be a response to the environmental and humanitarian crises of neoliberal capitalism? Who has the privilege to engage in or disengage from social networks? Who can and cannot withdraw from frequent travels in order to be environmentally friendly and sustainable? Who can afford human contacts and who, on the contrary, is deemed to (digital) isolation for either relying on or doing work for the depersonalized support of new technologies?
This conference seeks to tackle these questions not only by theorizing solidarity in the era of digitalization but also suggesting new ways of academic exchanges through its format. Arranging this event in digital space, the organizers attempt to counter some of the environmentally detrimental consequences of neoliberal capitalism and incite awareness of the ways we can scale down and use less resources. Simultaneously, this conference seeks to challenge the techno-fix legacy of sustainability discourse by questioning the idea of the digital as the solution to climate crisis.
Conference organizers are interested in reflective/diffractive approaches and theoretical and methodological explorations related to the themes of the conference. Of particular interest are the explorations of feminist and queer solidarities, connectivities, materialities, and mobilities from the framework of entangled presents and histories. Possible topics might include, but are not limited to:
- Social justice and sustainability in the era of green capitalism
- Climate justice and translocal solidarities
- Feminist and queer solidarities in a digitalized world
- (Re-)thinking feminist and queer futures through the digital
- Limits and possibilities of digital solidarity
- Digital technologies and old and new types of inequalities
- Conceptualizing degrowth: How can we create ground-up responses to climate crisis led by aggressive capitalism? How can we (re-)think degrowth from a feminist perspective?
- Queering degrowth
- Materialities, algorithmic (un)fairness and digital platforms
- Historicizing the Anthropocene in the context of global capitalism and coloniality
- Dispossession, extraction or dislocation in digital times
- Critical approaches to digital solutionism
- Global migration and diasporas in digital context
- Digital technologies, connectivities and transnational communities
Abstracts should not be longer than 250 words. Submit your abstract with a short bio (60-80 words) to firstname.lastname@example.org at latest by May 30, 2020. Please note that accepted participants will be asked to submit an extended abstract of 500-800 words four weeks before the conference.
Abstract submission deadline: May 30, 2020
Abstract acceptance date: Mid-June
Extended abstract submission deadline: September 2, 2020
Conference platform opens: September 16, 2020
Please email inquiries to: email@example.com
Extended abstracts should be submitted four weeks before the conference (September 2, 2020). Two weeks before the conference (September 16, 2020), the extended abstracts will be uploaded to the online platform to receive feedback from conference participants.
The conference organizers will seek to take into account different time zones when preparing the program. Should sessions be scheduled in late evenings or early mornings, we ask for your understanding. If you have any concerns or questions please contact us on email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Due to the explorative and online format of the conference, there is a limited number of places available. Acceptance letters will be sent out in mid-June.
The conference is organized by: Selin Çağatay, Mia Liinason, Lena Martinsson and Olga Sasunkevich, in collaboration with TechnAct: Transformations of Struggle Research Clusterand the Spaces of Resistance Project, at the University of Gothenburg.