Please see below a call for papers for an edited book entitled ‘Feminist Beginnings: Being an Early Career Feminist Academic in a Changing Academy’, to be edited by Dr Rachel Thwaites and Dr Amy Godoy-Pressland. Please circulate around your networks.
In a fast-changing higher education academy, where marketisation is increasingly becoming the dominant model, the pressures on academics seem great, while the need to ‘play the game’ to succeed has never been more important. Within this context, entering the academy as an early career academic presents many challenges, as well as possibilities. Moving from the relative autonomy, and often bubble of safety, of the PhD into teaching or research contracts where there may be less flexibility and freedom within the institutional hierarchy, can be a real step change. Early career academics also frequently face the prospect of working on fixed term contracts, with little security and no certain prospect of advancement, while constantly looking for the next contract.
Being a feminist early career academic adds a further layer; how does one maintain one’s feminist identity and politics within what has traditionally been a very male-dominated institution where few women reach the most senior positions? Moreover the ethos of the marketising university where students are sometimes viewed as ‘customers’, may sit uneasily with a politics of equality for all. Feminist values and practice can provide a means of working through the challenges, but may also bring complications. As feminist researchers and teachers ourselves, we feel the impact of trying to live out a feminist politics provides another set of priorities which affect the way one thinks about the everyday and overarching experience of an academic career. This political outlook can lead to transformative events, but can also raise difficulties when in a non-feminist department or a research climate which does not take gender seriously.
This edited volume will thus explore the early years of an academic career from a feminist perspective and should appeal to students and academics at all stages of their careers. We therefore welcome contributions which provide findings from research studies, theory pieces, and experiential/personal pieces. The format of these is open to some interpretation and we will accept pieces of up to 3000 words for a personal piece and up to 8000 words for a theory/research paper on themes including, but not limited to:
* Being a feminist in higher education
* Moving from a women’s/gender studies centre into the wider academic community
* Maintaining your feminist identity
* Feminism in the curriculum and in the classroom
* Negotiating the academic hierarchy as an early career feminist
* Building a feminist support network
* The academic ‘lifestyle’: how to be an ‘academic’
We define ‘early career’ as those within five years of having been awarded their PhD and ‘higher education’ as any university setting. We are actively seeking contributions which will provide a wide international perspective, however they must be written in English.
Deadline for Abstracts: 5th December 2014 (decision to be made by 6th February 2015)
Provisional date for full article: 7th September 2015
Critical Realism, Gender and Feminism: Special Issue of the Journal of Critical Realism (15:5, 2016)
Email Enquiries to: lena.gunnarsson at oru.se
Submit online at: http://www.editorialmanager.com/rea/
An increasing number of gender scholars have become familiar with critical realism, finding it a robust alternative to the poststructuralist perspectives that currently dominate gender studies and feminism. This trend has coincided with an increased interest among feminist theorists in the issues of ontology, materiality and nature, which have always been at the heart of critical realist interventions. However, despite these thematic alignments, and despite the fact that both critical realism and feminist theory are inherently critical-emancipatory, the critical realist approach continues to occupy a marginal role within both feminist and gender studies debates. Concurrently, the field of critical realism is decidedly ‘masculine’ in nature, both in the sense that men dominate the field, and in terms of the issues with which critical realists have most commonly concerned themselves. Recent critical realist feminist work, the International Association of Critical Realism’s adoption of a proactive policy to enhance the representation of women in its organs and activities, and the growing critical realist preoccupation (particularly in Bhaskar’s philosophy of metaReality) with historically ‘feminine’ topics such as love, mark a potential shift away from these unfortunate trends.
In order to encourage the development of this emerging field of critical realist feminism and gender studies, as well as critical exchanges between the respective branches of critical realism (including dialectical critical realism and metaRealism) and feminist theory/gender studies, we are happy to invite submissions for a special issue of Journal of Critical Realism on Critical Realism, Gender and Feminism. We welcome not only contributions that draw on critical realism in studying gender relations and/or engaging with feminist concerns but also critiques of critical realism from feminist or gender-based points of view.
Topics of interest include, but are by no means limited to, the following:
- Critical realism and poststructuralist feminism/gender studies
- Critical realism and socialist/eco/radical/black/postcolonial feminism
- Critical realism and the ontological/materialist/naturalistic turn in feminist theory
- Critical realism and intersectionality
- Critical realism, metaRealism, love and gender
- Critiques/auto-critiques of existing critical realist work from a feminist/gender studies perspective
- Feminist epistemology, standpoint theory and critical realism
- Critical realism and feminist critiques of (social) science
- Examinations/critiques of feminist taboos on realism, nature and causality
- Critical realism and post-feminist culture
- Critical realism, dialectics and feminist deconstruction
- Revitalizing the explanatory feminist tradition: what is patriarchy?
- Critical realism and sexuality
- Critical realism and queer studies
- Critical realism and men/masculinity studies
- Critical realism, sex and gender identity
- Critical realism and gendered/sexual violence
- Critical realism, feminism, gender studies and war/conflict
- Critical realism and feminist ethics
- Critical realism and pornography
- Critical realism and feminist methods/methodology
- Agency, gender and critical realism
- Critical realism and feminist activism/politics
- Feminism, gender studies, critical realism and other realisms (Barad’s agential realism, post-positivist realism etc.)
- Critical realism as underlabourer for applied work in feminism/gender studies
- Critical realism, interdisciplinarity, gender and feminism
- Feminist spirituality and metaRealism
- Critical realism and feminist economics
Instructions for authors
Papers should be no more than 8,000 words (not inclusive of references). In all other respects, our instructions for authors apply. Please consult these at www.maneyonline.com/ifa/rea or use one of our recently published articles as a guide in setting out your work. Articles (as distinct from pieces for our Perspective and Debate sections) will be subject to external peer review.
Submissions need not be exclusively concerned with critical realism or its critique, but should relate their arguments in some significant way to critical realism. For instance, the main focus of an article could be Karen Barad’s feminist appropriation of Bohr’s agential realism, but it should include consideration of critical realism.
- October 1, 2015: deadline for first drafts
- February 26, 2016: reviewers’ reports and editors’ decision provided
- May 23, 2016: deadline for final drafts
- June 30, 2016: final copy due with the publisher
- October 2016: publication of the special issue online and print
Enquiries and submissions
Please send any enquiries to lena.gunnarsson at oru.se Please upload articles for peer review to our online system, http://www.editorialmanager.com/rea/default.asp. When uploading you will be asked if your paper is for a themed issue. Please answer ‘Yes, the special issue on Critical Realism, Gender and Feminism’. If your paper is accepted but not included in the special issue, it will appear in a subsequent issue. Please send any other material for the special issue to lena.gunnarsson at oru.se.
About the Journal
Journal of Critical Realism is the journal of the International Association for Critical Realism (IACR), established in 1997 to foster the discussion, propagation and development of critical realist approaches to understanding and changing the world. It provides a forum for scholars wishing to promote realist emancipatory philosophy, social theory and science on an interdisciplinary and international basis, and for those who wish to engage with such an approach.