The present global political moment seems to give license and free reign to xenophobia, misogyny, racism, and increasingly open discrimination and disdain for those who fall outside narrow definitions of national identity and belonging. This session will critically explore the role of feminist geography in this uncertain time, with the goal of fostering discussion, reflection, and perhaps individual clarity regarding agendas for feminist geographic scholarship. This session will complement the session proposed by Sara Smith and Banu Gökarıksel (“Strategy session: Teaching against the global turn to the right”) by focusing on scholarship rather than on teaching. Instead of a traditional paper session, like the strategy session for teaching, this session will be organized to encourage discussion and deliberation by not only panelists, but audience members as well, in order to organize, strategize, and build capacity for feminist scholarship which responds to this global turn to the right.

Questions the discussion might consider include:

  • How is feminist geography uniquely positioned to contribute to critical analyses and understandings of this era and its projects? In what ways is it not?
  • What do and can feminist geographic understandings of gender, race, inequality, ability, and other categories of identity/difference contribute to academic work and activism in this area? How can feminist geography contribute to contesting spaces of hate, and fostering spaces of resistance?
  • How does / can / should this global turn to the right influence our research agendas? Our research methodologies?
  • What alliances and coalitions can and should feminist geographers pursue to foster critical objectives and projects – within and outside geography, within academia, and outside academia?
  • How can we think about translating our scholarship for broader audiences, outside of geography and outside of academic? How can we engage in public scholarship? What tools and strategies exist for doing this?
  • What cautions should we keep in mind? How can we recognize our blindspots?
  • What can we learn from critical consideration of geography’s past and present participation in projects of imperialism and oppression? In this era of overt white supremacy, what should practitioners of a discipline in which people of color have historically been marginalized keep in mind?
  • As we confront a changing, challenging social and political landscape in both our scholarship and personal lives, what tools can help us deal with emotional exhaustion?

If you are interested in participating, please email Nancy Hiemstra, nancy.hiemstra@stonybrook.edu, and Risa Whitson, whitson@ohio.edu, by January 16 with a brief explanation of how you would like to contribute.

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