Gender, Activism, and Political Theory in COVID Times

October 28, 2021 - October 29, 2021
Queen's University, Belfast

Belfast
United Kingdom

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Keynote speakers:

CUNY Graduate Center
CUNY Graduate Center

Organisers:

Queen's University, Belfast
Queen's University, Belfast

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Gender, Activism, and Political Theory in Covid Times

The current crisis precipitated by SARS-CoV-2 has highlighted and exacerbated gender inequalities ranging from disparities in caring responsibilities to gendered job losses in particular industries and sectors. 

While such gender inequalities have been noted and are currently being researched, this conference asks what mobilisations - both from the left and from the right - have taken place in response to the outbreak of the virus and its attendant social and economic fallout. What role has gender played in such mobilisations? What political theorisations have underpinned such mobilisations? And what potential do political action and theory hold to redress or exacerbate gender inequalities in Covid times?

We now invite conference delegates to address these questions under the broad theme of “gender, activism, and political theory in Covid times” by submitting abstracts of not more than 500 words. Abstracts may engage, but need not be limited to, the following questions:

⁃ How have feminists engaged in activism during Covid times? 

⁃ What challenges have they faced (e.g. challenges posed by lockdowns, funding restrictions, restrictions on time in light of caring responsibilities)? 

⁃ On the other hand, have there been opportunities presented by the Covid context that feminists have been able to usefully exploit? 

⁃ How have methods of feminist activism changed during Covid times and what impact has this had on achieving feminist ends?

⁃ How have feminists conceptualised the Covid context and what theoretical resources have been developed to underpin  activism? What oppositional repertoires and frames have been utilised to highlight gender inequalities during Covid times?

⁃ How have members of the public, policy makers, and other social movement actors been engaged by feminists during Covid times and what policy changes have been or will be achieved? 

⁃ Conversely, how have right wing movements mobilised during Covid times? What role has gender played in such mobilisations?

⁃ What challenges and/or opportunities have right-wing activists faced in their mobilisations?

⁃ What methods have they adopted during Covid times and what political theorisations, frames and oppositional repertoires have they engaged? 

⁃ What has been the response to such right-wing mobilisations, and what might this tell us about the future of right-wing movements more generally?

⁃ How might activists and theorists shape the policy response to the Covid crisis, and what might “recovery” look like (to left and right-wing actors alike)?

Abstracts are invited from a variety of (inter)disciplinary perspectives (such as gender studies, politics, philosophy, sociology, cultural studies, critical disability studies, and law), engaging questions not just of gender, but also of class, race, and other intersectional categories. We also welcome submissions ranging across sectors, including from academia and civil society. 

** We are delighted to confirm that our keynote speaker for this event is Prof. Carol Gould (The Graduate Centre, CUNY) – further details from here: https://www.gc.cuny.edu/Page-Elements/Academics-Research-Centers-Initiatives/Doctoral-Programs/Philosophy/Faculty-Bios/Carol-Gould **

Please send abstracts by 1st August 2021 to [email protected] and [email protected]

Delegates will be informed of abstract acceptance by the end of August. The conference will take place on 28th and 29th October 2021. Please note that this will be a fully virtual event.

We look forward to your submissions!

Conference organisers:

Clara Fischer

Suzanne Whitten

Supported by the Political Theory Group, School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy, and Politics, 

Queen’s University Belfast

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October 29, 2021, 11:00pm BST

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Cambridge University

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