Disrupting the (Gendered) Form: A PGR Workshop Facilitating Transformative Imaginations
- Society of Legal Scholars
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Gender and Law at Durham, supported by funding from the Society of Legal Scholars and Durham Centre for Academic Development will convene an in-person workshop at Durham University on Friday 17 June 2022 aimed at disrupting forms that limit our ability to imagine a transformative future. We adopt ‘Disrupting the (Gendered) Form’ as both the substantive theme of the workshop, and a praxis upon which to organise the format of sessions.
Workshop Aim and Structure
The organisers of the workshop believe that the academic environment places a skewed emphasis on self-sustainability, individualised production, and personal expertise over the merits of collaborative knowledge production. Practically, this culture feeds into the inaccessibility of academia across multiple intersectional lines of marginalisation. To both counter this individualistic ethos, and in acknowledgement of the often-isolating nature of postgraduate research, the workshop hopes to facilitate ethical, fruitful, vulnerable, and joyful interactions with other PGRs and recent graduates. The workshop also aims to foster a PGR community across disciplines, as the structuring of academia tends to limit our ability to draw connections with postgraduate researchers outside our own fields of study.
With the aim of facilitating this collaborative knowledge production, participants will be placed into small peer groups (effectively a roundtable) with whom they will undertake the following activities:
- Struggle street parties: within thematic groups, each participant will provide feedback and reflections on research struggles experienced by their peers. All participants will have access to their group members’ research ambiguity or conundrum prior to the event date to allow for preparation.
- Creating what could be: all participants will work together to imagine an ideal future for within their thematic group using a non-traditional and creative method of meaning creation. These creations will be presented at the end of the session to the wider workshop group.
We look to welcome PGR students from across any discipline undertaking research directed at disrupting the forms that constrain us from thinking about gender and gender-based issues. Understanding both gender and ‘disrupting the form’ broadly, we encourage applications from those researching themes that include, but are not restricted to, the following:
- Thinking about gender beyond the binary;
- Technology platforms and gender;
- The limited imagination of public gender-based discourse;
- Coloniality and gender;
- Privilege in feminism and the invisibility of intersectional identities;
- Fore fronting joy to counter the fetishization of oppression and suffering;
- Non-traditional modes of sense-making around gender;
- Gender, feminism, misogyny and masculinities;
- Complicating gender, heteronormativity, and monogamy;
- Critiquing gendered victimhood in the spaces of sex work, poverty, and/or global politics.
Participants are invited to submit a 250-word bio and an extended abstract (word limit: 1000 words) outlining your research ambiguity or conundrum. Ambiguities or conundrums could include (this is a non-exhaustive list):
- Ambiguity around locating literature or theoretical frameworks;
- Ambiguity regarding a specific literature, methodology, or theoretical framework;
- Ambiguity around how to articulate a position;
- Ambiguity around how to connect positions in an argument;
- Ambiguity around data collection and analysis;
- Concerns around framing and reception of chosen approach;
- An ethical conundrum regarding the use of specific literature and/or methodological approach;
- A conundrum about how to clearly articulate a position to avoid misinterpretation;
In the event we receive more submission than places available, ambiguities and conundrums that are broad enough to invite wide comment will be prioritised.
The deadline for submission will be 31 of March 2022 via online application form. All participants will receive an invitation no later than 31 May 2022.
We have secured funding for all participants travelling to the event from outside of Durham (within UK). This includes reasonable transport costs as well as accommodation.
Accommodation will be organised centrally by the conference organisers; if you have any accessibility requirements, please let us know on the application form so that we can ensure they are met.
Additional funding (up to £150 per person) to cover childcare is also available.
Lastly, in recognition of the role clothing plays in reinforcing gender norms the conference will expressly adopt a “wear whatever the f*** you want” dress code. This could include your favourite loud shirt, your most comfortable hoodie, glittery eyeshadow, no makeup, clothing that shows off your favourite tattoo… whatever you would ideally wear if there were no unspoken expectations about how one should dress in an academic setting. The organisers firmly believe that traditional, Eurocentric standards of professionalism are arbitrary and exclusionary, as our clothing, body modification, hairstyle, and general appearance has no bearing on our academic work. In fact, we wish to create a space where we can encounter individuals in the way they wish to be encountered. If you are still feeling unsure about what is ok, please get in touch.
April 14, 2022, 11:00pm BST
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