Monday, April 11, 2011

Cfp: "Feminist Challenges or Feminist Rhetorics? Locations, Scholarship, and Discourse," Eighth Biennial Conference on Feminisms and Rhetorics, Coalition of Women Scholars in the History of Rhetoric and Composition, University of Minnesota, Mankato, October 12-15, 2011.

The conference committee is strongly interdisciplinary and therefore our theme seeks to recognize the spaces between disciplines and communities. The conference theme is meant to acknowledge the academic and socio-discursive spaces that feminisms, and rhetorics on or about feminisms, inhabit. Major political, religious and social leaders have recently discussed feminism, including the Dalai Lama, but the discussion seems to revolve around cultural or essentialized discourses of feminism.

This spotlight on feminism is, of course, not new, and they ways feminism is engaged in public discourse is much different than that of academic discourse. However, in Rhetoric and Composition, we have seen many significant publications lately focusing on what it means to be a woman in the field, how to be a successful woman in the field, and the connections between feminist theory and feminist pedagogy.

We seek proposals that speak to the challenges and diversities of feminist rhetoric and discourse, in public and private life, in the academy, and in the media. We welcome proposals on topics that significantly engage disciplines other than Rhetoric and Composition, and that have consequences for communities located outside of the academy.

Questions to consider include:

What are the discourses of feminism?
Where are they located?
What does feminist scholarship look like in the 21st century? What is the politic of feminist scholarship?
How does feminist inquiry impact our understanding of scholarship?
What are the challenges faced by feminists inside and outside of the academy? Where do we find feminist rhetorics?
How do we understand the function of feminist rhetoric?
How has interdisciplinarity impacted the feminist agenda?
How do we understand the politics of inclusion in 21st century feminism?
How might we add to Joanna Russ’ invective: “She wrote it, BUT.?”

In the past few years, women have made, yet again, publicly recognized strides in breaking through a variety of glass ceilings, however, current events in places like Arizona, illustrate the necessity of a renewed feminist politic. The recursive nature of feminism is not new, and is, in fact, embodied in the rhetorical struggle for place in dominant discourse.


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