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Feminist, queer, and poscolonial subjectivities in contemporary art

Subjectivités féministes, queer et postcoloniales en art contemporain

History in motion

Une histoire en mouvements

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Published on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 by Céline Guilleux

Summary

Since their explosion at the end of the 1960s, the historical feminist struggles have irrigated both artistic practices and theories through fertile circulations. The conference will consider the artwork through the lens of the relationships between artistic and intellectual experiences, between language and representations, and between text and image, from the 1980s until today, thus examining the resonances and circulations between the most challenging feminist, queer, and postcolonial theories, writings, and artistic practices at a global scale.

Announcement

Argument

Since their explosion at the end of the 1960s, the historical feminist struggles have irrigated both artistic practices and theories through fertile circulations. On one hand, by deconstructing discourses, images and ideologies that are shaping gender oppression in art, academic feminism has developed a new historiography. On the other hand, artists have drawn on these stimulating intellectual debates in order to raise identity politics issues.

The conference will consider the artwork through the lens of the relationships between artistic and intellectual experiences, between language and representations, and between text and image, from the 1980s until today. This approach aims to go beyond the hegemonic discourses that render the diversity of subjectivities invisible by addressing contemporary art issues questioning them. From this perspective, this conference will examine the resonances and circulations between the most challenging feminist, queer, and postcolonial theories, writings, and artistic practices at a global scale. By focusing on a transdisciplinary approach including visual arts, performance and literature, the conference will emphasize on the multiplicity of viewpoints.

Within a global world in which contemporary art has turned into a transnational space, feminism, acting at the intersections of gender, postcolonial, and queer studies, must challenge the Eurocentric bias of the theoretical and criticism paradigms. Defined as “knowledge without power” by Trinh T. Minh-ha, seen as a reconfiguration of the frontiers between bodies and discourses and as a shift, both personal and conceptual, by Teresa de Lauretis, or as a theory in the flesh by Cherríe Moraga, feminism encourages the decentralization, and the opening of friction spaces.

From this plurality of worlds, fragmented, contradictory and plural identities emerge, invalidating a supposedly universal subject of feminism, and thus becoming transversal, transgressive and transfeminist subjectivities. To express these subjectivities, and to raise the “we” and the “I” from the subaltern subjects, feminists investigate languages and knowledge, history and autobiography, representation and auto-representation, reclaiming their bodies through performance, happening, and dance, and redefining themselves through visual strategies, thereby irrespective of the frontiers erected between the disciplines, thus opening a wide project of deconstruction and re-creation.

Proposals can address, but are not limited to, the following topics:

Temporalities and histories

  • History as a space of deconstruction of gender, race, class, and sexuality oppressions, and as a space of production of new narratives (from History to historieS)
  • Re-readings and reinventions, mythologies, and fictionalizations
  • Revision of myths and modernity traditions
  • Counter-colonial, decolonial narratives

Feminist, postcolonial, queer, and subaltern poetics / deconstructions of language

  • Political semiology: liberating and reinventing through language
  • Feminist, queer, and postcolonial reconstructions of language: textual processes, syntactical strategies, renewal of grammar and vocabulary
  • The experimental language practices, bilingualism, linguistic hybridization phenomena (creoles, spanglish, border languages, etc.)

Circulations between theories and practices

  • Thinking and creation: exchanges between artists and theorists
  • Contributions by artists to feminist, queer, and postcolonial theories: regimes of representation, analysis of the spectator’s position, subversion of the identities and gender performativity, etc.
  • Resonances and shifts between politic consciousness, conceptualization and feminist artistic expressions

Some bibliographical landmarks

Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza, San Francisco, Spinster/Aunt Lutte, 1987.

Fabienne Dumont (ed.), La Rébellion du Deuxième Sexe – L’histoire de l’art au crible des théories féministes anglo-américaines (1970-2000), Dijon, Les Presses du réel, 2011.

Catherine de Zegher, Women's Work is Never Done: an Anthology, Gand, AsaMER, 2014.

Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Feminism without Borders: Decolonizing Theory, Practicing Solidarity, Durham, Duke University Press, 2003.

Namascar Shaktini (ed.), On Monique Wittig: Theoretical, Political, and Literary Essays, Chicago, University of Illinois Press, 2005.

Miriam Solá, Elena Urko (ed.), Transfeminismos: epistemes, fricciones y flujos, Tafalla, Txalaparta Argitaletxea, 2014.

Submission procedure

Please send an abstract of 300 to 500 words (excluding references) and a short biography to subjectivitesfeministes@gmail.com. Both documents should be in English or French and include full name of the participant with current affiliation and full contact details.

Submission deadline: 15th December 2014

Notification: mid-January 2015

 

Scientific direction

Elvan Zabunyan (Université européenne de Bretagne/Rennes 2)

Scientific committee

  • Fabienne Dumont (ERBA Quimper)
  • Christine Bard (Université d’Angers)
  • Griselda Pollock (University of Leeds)
  • Trinh T. Minh-ha (University of California, Berkeley)
  • Elvan Zabunyan (Université européenne de Bretagne/Rennes 2)

Organizing committee

  • Marie-laure Allain Bonilla, Émilie Blanc, Johanna Renard
  • Elvan Zabunyan
  • Laurence Bouvet-Lévêque, Nelly Brégeault, Isabelle Perreaudeau (cellule recherche de l’UFR Arts, Lettres, Communication, Université Rennes 2)

Places

  • Université Rennes 2, Campus Villejean
    Rennes, France (35)

Date(s)

  • Monday, December 15, 2014

Keywords

  • féminisme, gender studies, postcolonial studies, queer studies, transféminisme

Contact(s)

  • Johanna Renard
    courriel : colloqueaffects [at] gmail [dot] com

Information source

  • Johanna Renard
    courriel : colloqueaffects [at] gmail [dot] com

To cite this announcement

« Feminist, queer, and poscolonial subjectivities in contemporary art », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Tuesday, November 25, 2014, https://calenda.org/306571

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