Third Annual New Scholarship in Citizenship Studies Conference: “Gender and Citizenship” with Dr. Hortense J. Spillers
The Center for the Study of Citizenship at Wayne State University announces its third annual New Scholarship Conference in Citizenship Studies. The conference will be held on March 24, 2006 with a workshop for presenters on March 25, and will focus on the Center’s theme for this academic year: “Gender and Citizenship.” To explore this theme, the Center is considering questions such as: In what manner is citizenship a gendered concept? Should citizenship be equal or differentiated with respect to gender? How can tensions between gender identity and identity group loyalty be resolved? How does gender influence civic participation, political activism and expressions of nationalism?
The Center for the Study of Citizenship’s third Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence, Hortense J. Spillers, the Frederick J. Whiton Professor of English at Cornell University, will serve as the keynote speaker and commentator at the conference. Professor Spillers’ work has focused on the relationships between race and gender in African American and American literature. She is best known for her race-centered revision of psychoanalytic theory and for her subtle account of the relationships between race and gender. Her collection of essays, Black, White, and in Color: Essays on American Literature and Culture, published by the University of Chicago Press in 1993, spans her work from the early 1980s, in which she pioneered a poststructuralist approach to African American literature, and extends through her turn to cultural studies in the 1990s. These pieces, which display her passionate commitment to reading as a fundamentally political act, contain powerful readings of individual authors and address such issues as the effect of migration on the black cultural experience and the African American sermon.
The Conference will give junior faculty and advanced graduate students the opportunity to present their own work in citizenship studies. Please submit a one-page abstract of a paper proposal and a one-page c.v. to Marc Kruman, Director, Center for the Study of Citizenship, Wayne State University at M.Kruman@wayne.edu by October 15. Proposals are welcome from scholars in all disciplines. A faculty committee will review each application and announce its decisions by November 15. Among the topics you might consider are those relating to aspects of Professor Spillers’ work as well as subjects such as: gendered and multicultural citizenship, challenges to understanding gender construction including transgender identity, gender-specific activist movements, popular media messages of citizenship and gender, the relationship of gender to membership within identity groups (based on ethnic, religious, racial, sexual orientation, political, or other differences), and gender-based variances in immigration and migration practices and policies.
Unfortunately, the Center for the Study of Citizenship is unable to defray the cost of travel.
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