Book title: Autoethnography of ‘Plural Feminisms’: Narrativising Resistance as Everyday Praxis
Publisher: Publishing Interest from Routledge and Zed Books
- Sohini Chatterjee, University of Western Ontario (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Po-Han Lee, National Taiwan University (email@example.com)
Autoethnography of ‘Plural Feminisms’ seeks reflexive and critical essays by feminist thinkers, scholars, writers, and activists to understand and archive how we encounter and engage with feminisms while enacting resistance in our everyday lives owing to our divergent positionalities.
By narrativising reflections that resonate with Sara Ahmed’s (2017) politics provoked in Living a Feminist Life, we consider the significance of documenting and rethinking the relational processes through which we become who we are – in terms of our identities, experiential knowledge, and subversive enactments. Also sympathetic to and resonant with Catriona Mcleod’s (2006) call for recognising radical plural feminisms, in this edited volume, we aim to explore feminism in its plural form where multiple resistance strategies are emphasised with the help of a conceptual framework that enacts ‘both/and’ function rather than ‘either/or’ with the awareness that ‘feminist political practice becomes a matter of alliances rather than one of unity around a universally shared interest.’ (Mcleod 2006: 378) This inclusive, coalitional framework allows us to explore the following questions:
- How do we become acquainted with feminisms?
- How do we put our feminisms into quotidian practice?
- How do we traverse various journeys and un/learn through them?
- What defines the ‘political’ and what means ‘resistance’ to us?
- How do structures hinderour being and becoming and how do we confront structures?
- How are we shaped by the contradictions and ambivalences that we encounter everyday?
- How do we build communities and kinship networks against violence and precarityso as to give meaning to not only the specificities of our contexts but also those that hold significance beyond our location?
In order to open up possibilities for transnational feminist narratives to emerge, this volume, uses autoethnography as a feminist method to interrogate our evolving relationship with our identities and contexts. We also deploy different feminist strategies – Mary McLeod Bethune’s ‘intellectual activism’ (Edghill-Walden et al., 2018), María Lugones’s (1987) world-travelling, Rosi Braidotti’s (2011) emphasis on feminist multiplicity, and Cynthia Enloe’s (2004) ‘feminist curiosity’ – that require us to not only unlearn and re-world our feminist selves and epistemologies but also be ‘constantly vigilant and reflective in terms of self, other, context, process, assumptions and theory’. (Mcleod 2006: 382) We believe that such critical and creative engagement makes autoethnography possible.
In Autoethnography as Feminist Method: Sensitising the Feminist ‘I’, Elizabeth Ettore posits that autoethnography requires the autoethnographer to be rigorously self-aware of the complex relationships between one’s socially coded categories and the enforced differences embedded in different power relations, while being mindful that ‘the power of these accounts rests on an author’s ability to use personal hopes, fears, and investments to provide complex and engaging descriptions of cultural life’ (Ellis and Adams 2014: 261).We are aware of marginalised identities and knowledges that cannot be simplified and subsumed under a singular model of analysis and therefore encourage contributors to engage with intersections of differences as they reveal themselves to authors. We welcome analytic, interpretive, evocative, critical, impressionist, and collaborative autoethnographies.
The collection intends to understand how the extraordinary and the mundane have informed our feminist thought, identities, praxis, pedagogies and the myriad ways in which they have brought us to feminism—propelling us to explore, expand, challenge and revolutionise it. The book also aims to explore how feminists negotiate with and subvert power in myriad ways, and how we contribute to gender and sexual politics while navigating our histories, cultural realities, socio-economic specificities, and politico-militarised contexts.
To be more specific, we are interested in exploring how the identities of different autoethnographers/authors are evolving through their contextualized feminist praxis and are being continually shaped by their politics. We also ask these questions: How does our marginalisation inform our politics? How does our politics inform our agency? How do we problematise and interrogate our daily lives through the lens of identity as process rather than a stable category? How have our understanding of feminism evolved and transformed and how do we engage with feminisms because of it? What are the in/visible ways in which we encounter and embrace feminisms?
The editors of this volume are South and East Asian queer feminist academics who work on gender and sexualities. We believe narrativising the ordinary and the quotidian is a form of feminist praxis; and by doing so we can author our stories, and acknowledge our histories of oppression and dissidence that can be archived, told and shared to bring communities into being.
The deadline for submission of chapter abstracts is 30 March, 2021. Each proposal should include: the title, an abstract of 300 words, along with your name, affiliation, and email address.
Our project has obtained great interest from the editors of both Routledge and Zed Books, who are willing to pursue this project with us. We aim to select potential contributions by the end of April and will be in touch with you then about the submission of chapters.