Call for abstracts for the session ‘Geographies of Youth, Gender and Ethnicity’ to be held as part of the 2011 Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG). The conference will take place in Seattle on April 12th-16th 2011. This session is co-sponsored by the Geographical Perspective on Women (GPOW) Speciality Group and the Ethnic Geography Speciality Group (EGSG).
Geographers’ analyses of socio-spatial performances of gender and ethnicity are at an exciting and dynamic stage. More than ever before, scholars and practitioners realise the necessity for the examination of social and structural phenomena through critical feminist and decolonial lenses. The growth of Chicana, Black and Asian feminist studies within Geography, for example, is testament to the interconnectedness of gendered and ethnic experiences. Recent scholarship on the geographies of youth has shed light on the unique ways that young people create fluid identities in relation to the spaces they inhabit. In this area, an extensive exploration of the intersections of gendered and ethnic identifications among young people is very welcome. Young people today have a grand plethora of identity possibilities available to them, perhaps more so than their parents’ generation, because of their increasingly global and networked existences.
So, what kinds of identities do young people want, choose or feel pressured to embody? How do ethnic background, group allegiances, or physical appearance effect the types of relationships that young people enter into? How do young people utilise, subvert, and sub/consciously manipulate gendered and ethnic expectations of themselves? How do adults and other members of society treat or react to young people based on their gender or ethnicity? What funds of knowledge and networks of power can young people gain access to dependent on their positionality?
This panel seeks to encourage discussion of how scholars can infuse feminist, ethnic and youth geographies with a sense of each other. Theoretical and primary research-based papers are invited that explore the various positionalities of youth today. Themes may include but are not limited to;
• Young Global Bodies in Local Spaces
• Dynamic, Fluid or Hybrid Identities
• National Identity, Immigration, Legal status
• Racism, Ethnic-group Labels, Spatial and Psychological Segregation or Integration
• Construction of, Adherence to, or Rejection of Gender Role Expectations
• Ideas of, and Places within, the ‘Family’
• Social Group Affiliation and Ideas of Community
• Religious Identities and Gender Roles
• Institutional Spaces, Home Spaces, Street Spaces
• Access to and Expectations of Education
• Notions of Safety and Violence – Safe Spaces and Dangerous Spaces as Gendered
• Socio-economic Status and the Ability to Consume
• Global Digital Media and the Internet, Social-networking
• Fashion, Peer-policing, ‘Keeping up Appearances’
• Teen Bodies, Sexuality, Desire, Intimacy, Sexual health
People interested in presenting in this session should submit a 300-word abstract to the session organizer, Caitlin O’Neill Gutierrez, no later than 15th October 2010. Please ensure the abstracts meet the AAG submission and presentation requirements (purpose, methods and conclusion of research). Email Caitlin with any questions, and she’ll be happy to help!
Caitlin O’Neill Gutierrez
Department of Geography
University College London (UCL)
26 Bedford Way
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