CFP: Queer Bioethics and Biopolitics

Submission deadline: May 15, 2017

Topic areas


Society of Queer Studies in Finland’s peer-reviewed journal SQSJ invites submissions under the theme


“i am a limitless series of natural disasters and all of these disasters have been unnaturally repressed.” ― Kathy Acker: Pussy, the King of Pirates (1996)

Drawing on Michel Foucault’s work on biopolitics or its further theorizations (e.g. Giorgio Agamben, Michael Hardt & Antonio Negri, Achille Mbembe or Dominique Memmi), biopolitical analysis is today used for diverse purposes across disciplines. It has been latterly evoked to encompass several contemporary social phenomena and ways of control. For example, the analytical uses of biopolitics include interrogations of biotechnological transformation, neoliberalism, new modes of capitalism and different forms of political violence. Critical, queer biopolitical approaches (e.g. Mel Y. Chen, Jin Haritaworn & Riley Snorton, Jasbir Puar, Dean Spade) have pivotally revealed the configurations of sexual, racial, and able-bodied normalities into economic and national ideologies. Further queer inquiries into bioethics and biopolitics are needed to queer biomedicine and biotechnologies. A methodology for raging against these machines is queer bioethics. Queer bioethics challenges mainstream normalities by focusing on issues related to lesbian, gay, bi, trans, queer or intersex people, such as gender reassignment processes and treatment for trans people. Another example is what is called sex affirmation in mainstream bioethics regarding intersex infants, or investigating same-sex couples’ access to assisted reproduction technology. A queer bioethical framework renders legal and medical practices of gender and sexuality troubling, to critical scrutiny, invested in interrupting their reproduction as bioethical norms or status quo. To its pioneers Lance Wahlert and Autumn Fiester, queer bioethics is first and foremost a moral theory: it aims not only to name but also to correct bioethical misconceptions turned into injustices of gender and sexuality.

SQSJ welcomes theoretical, methodological, or empirical submissions for queering bioethics and biopolitics, tackling current and gripping questions of the fields from a queer angle. Suitable themes and research questions include, but are not limited to, the following

- Reconfiguring or challenging biopolitics

- Conflicts or connections of bioethics and biopolitics

- Biopolitics/bioethics in a specific globalizing/geopolitical/cultural context

- Biopolitics/bioethics of (human) reproduction

- Queer bioethics/biopolitics of synthetic biology

- Atypical/non-normative/potential bodies

- Queer biotechnologies and biofutures

- Intersectionality in queer bioethics and biopolitics

- Queer bioethics and biopolitics in posthumanist ethics (e.g. cyborg politics, climate justice)

Please note that we only accept article manuscripts, not abstracts. All submissions need to be made via the SQSJ submissions portal. Submissions can be in English, Finnish or Swedish. Deadline for submissions is May 15th, 2017. In addition to articles, we warmly encourage discussions, essays, reviews and artistic renderings on queer bioethics and biopolitics.

On questions about queer bioethics and biopolitics, please do not hesitate to contact the editors Lotta Kähkönen (lotkah(a) or Tiia Sudenkaarne (tiijun(a) On questions about the submissions portal and other technical assistance, contact subeditor Annu Suvanto (annu.suvanto(a) Notifications of acceptance will be sent by the end May. For a successful editorial process, please note that revision requests to all submissions are common.

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