Program for 2017 FRN Symposium – ‘Feminist Interventions, Feminist Impacts’ 

The Feminist Research Network (FRN) is holding a symposium – ‘Feminist Interventions, Feminist Impacts’  – to showcase the feminist-inspired research of UOW scholars and those external to the university from 25th to 26th September 2017, held in Building 19’s LHA Research Hub (19.2072).

Panels include: ‘First Nations Feminism’, ‘Violence against Women and Violent Women’, ‘Contesting Gendered Emotions’, ‘Milk Culture: Feminist Resonances Across Lives in the Dairy Industry’, along with a HDR session on how feminism has inspired UOW HDR research.

In addition to panel discussions, the symposium features a photographic exhibition ‘Locating Chinese Women: Historical Mobility between China and Australia’, and a film screening on ‘Intersectionality on Film’.

FRN is also proudly collaborating with Wollongong Writers Festival to host a public event with Ellen Van Neerven and Clementine Ford at UOW on 25 September from 5pm.

The 2017 FRN Symposium is a FREE event, but please Register for catering by 22 September.

 Click ‘download’ below to download the program.

If you have any questions or require more information please contact Kai Soh: krs354@uowmail.edu.au

Clementine Ford and Ellen van Neerven @ FRN!

Clementine Ford and Ellen van Neerven are coming to the University of Wollongong as part of the 2017 Feminist Research Network (FRN) Symposium – ‘Feminist Interventions, Feminist Impacts’!

These passionate activists will also be appearing at a public event for Wollongong Writers Festival as part of a residency series funded by UOW.

UOW Event: ‘Feminist Interventions, Feminist Impacts’, Monday 25th September, 5-7pm, UOW, Bld 20.4.              

 [UOW Staff & Students FREE but REGISTER for catering here by 22 Sept: RSVP]

 The Wollongong Writers Festival is also holding a Festival event featuring Celementine Ford and Ellen van Neerven on Tuesday 26th September, from 6-7.30pm

Festival Event: ‘Writing and Living as a Political Act’, Featuring: Winnie Dunn with Clementine Ford & Ellen van Neerven, Tuesday 26th September, 6-7.30pm, Wollongong Art Gallery, 46 Burelli St.           

 [COST $25: Bookings: http://www.wollongongwritersfestival.com/events-2/]

Report [November 2016] – ‘Gender & Colonialism’ Panel

Report – FRN-sponsored ‘Gender & Colonialism: New Directions’ Panel at the Colonial Formations Conference organised by UOW’s Colonial and Settler Studies Network (CASS)

 

In collaboration with CASS, FRN sponsored a panel at the recent Colonial Formations international conference. Over 100 people registered to attend the conference. The panel was designed to showcase some of the newest research being carried out by scholars in the field of gender history and colonialism.

 

Assoc. Prof. Jane Haggis acted as Chair for the panel. Her insights were particularly astute given her vast experience and renown as a scholar of gender and colonialism. She was particularly keen to point out that the papers in the panel were connected by their varied ways of demonstrating how colonised subjects, even though they attempted to open up spaces in which to express their reaction to the colonising process, were restricted by the boundaries imposed on them by the colonisers – many of those restrictions being gendered.

 

Assoc. Prof. Liz Conor concluded what was a stimulating panel by delivering an impassioned and rigorous critique of the racist depictions of Aboriginal women by the Australian cartoonist, Eric Jolliffe.

 

Liz is an ARC Future Fellow at La Trobe University. She is the author of Skin Deep: Settler Impressions of Aboriginal Women [UWAP, 2016] and The Spectacular Modern Woman: Feminine Visibility in the 1920s [Indiana University Press, 2004]. She is the editor of Aboriginal History, a columnist at New Matilda, and has published widely in academic and mainstream press on gender, race and representation.

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Her paper, ‘The Comic Misadventures of Eric Jolliffe’s Witchetty’s Tribe’, was inspired by the fact that, in 1980, cartoonist Eric Jolliffe was the subject of a Federal Anti-Discrimination Board case over a cartoon published in the Permanent Building Association’s monthly magazine, Corroboree. The cartoon depicted a voluptuous young woman wearing only a bra on her bottom and was captioned ‘It’s a white man’s garment she got from the missionary’s wife’. Jolliffe’s ‘mates’ had jumped to his defense, including A.P Elkin and Ted Egan, but Jolliffe stopped drawing his Witchetty’s Tribe characters. Jolliffe’s Aboriginal characters were interspersed with portraits, and anecdotally they were enjoyed by Aboriginal and well as white readers in the Northern Territory. Jolliffe claimed to have a photo of an Aboriginal audience at an Aboriginal Olympic Games in Arnhem Land admiring and enjoying the same cartoon within an exhibition of his Saltbush Bill and Witchetty’s Tribe cartoons. He had imagined his ‘very accurate’ depictions of tribal living countered the denigrating cartoons of drunken ragged fringe-dwellers that featured in the interwar magazines he drew for including The Bulletin, Smith’s Weekly, Pix and The Sun. While his humor worked from the incongruity of traditionally-living people mouthing white domestic platitudes about fashion, parenting and even anthropology it 14 sometimes pilloried the later rather than the former. This paper will situate Jolliffe’s cartoons in the assimilation era and argue the romanticism Jolliffe attached to the ‘tribal hunter’ and his revival of the ‘Native Belle’ and ‘Piccaninny’ types expressed settler ambivalence about the loss of a particularly masculine ‘outback’ circulating print culture postwar. Within this bush nostalgia ‘tribal’ Indigenous Australians were cast as emblematic of an outback authenticity which in this instance came to clash with the cultural activism of Aboriginal activists demanding self-determination. [Liz’s conference abstract.]

 

Gender & Colonialism: New Directions

[UOW Feminist Research Network sponsored panel]

Chair: Jane Haggis

Sharon Crozier-De Rosa: The Anti-Colonial Irish Women: Constructing a feminist ethics of violence

Sibyl Adam: Colonial Affects: Emotion and Space in Indian Women’s Travel Writing about Edwardian London

Jessica Hinchy: Gender, sexuality and province-centric colonial governance in north India

Liz Conor: The Comic Misadventures of Eric Jolliffe’s Witchetty’s Tribe

 

Sharon Crozier-De Rosa

Report [October 2016] – ‘Decolonizing Gender’

On 4 October Professor Emerita Raewyn Connell gave a wonderful  FRN seminar, ‘Decolonizing Gender: Settler Colonialism & Gender History’.

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It was a topic close to many researchers’ interests and was made more lively by Raewyn’s use of scholars and activists to highlight the arguments.  Her discussion of the coloniality of knowledge showed that Western knowledge has long been imperial knowledge.  Thus the foundations of knowledge-getting reinforce colonial knowledge formation and are reproduced via the  fundamental bases of theory, method, and intellectual authority.   This has happened not just in colonial powers but also in colonised societies.  In turn, power inequalities are strengthened and enhanced.   In the modern globalised world, such inequalities are further embedded in the expansion of  transnational capitalism and neoliberal hegemony.

 

The seminar  was attended by 20+ academics from LHA, Business and Social Science, as well as a good number of HDR students.  Raewyn was very generous with her time and spent nearly two hours talking to staff and students.

 

More can be found about Raewyn on @raewynconnell AND www.raewynconnell.net

 

The references for the seminar were:

RWC 2015 Meeting at the Edge of Fear: Theory on a World Scale, Feminist Theory, 16, 1, pp.49-66

RWC 2014 Rethinking Gender from the South, Feminist Studies, 40, 3, pp. 518-539

RWC 2-14 Margin becoming Centre: for a world-centred rethinking of masculinities, NORMA: International Journal for Masculinity Studies, 9, 4, pp. 217-231

 

Di Kelly

Report – ‘Pitching Feminism without Compromising Feminism’ Workshop

Report [October 2016] – ‘Pitching Feminism without Compromising Feminism: A Workshop on Writing for the Media as a Feminist Academic’
Led by Dr Michelle Smith (Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University)

 

On 19th October, the Feminist Research Network hosted ‘Pitching Feminism without Compromising Feminism: A Workshop on Writing for the Media as a Feminist Academic’.

 

The workshop was informative and interactive as participants worked through how they would pitch their ideas to various media for feminist-inspired opinion pieces. This involved, for example, workshopping the titles they would use to draw in a wide and not necessarily feminist readership – all the while not abandoning or compromising their academic or feminist credentials. It was a fun and creative, yet intellectually challenging and productive process!

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The writing workshop was inspired by the idea that feminist discourse has been increasingly visible in the media. Popular feminist writers like Clementine Ford, Celeste Liddle, Laurie Penny, and Lindy West are well known for their contributions to major newspapers, radio and television interviews, as well as their own books. Yet, this proliferation of feminist media prompts the question: What role can feminist academics play in this expanded—and yet often extremely hostile— space for feminist writing for the general public?

 

The workshop was led by Deakin University academic and feminist columnist for The Conversation, Dr Michelle Smith. Michelle shared her experiences of writing opinion pieces for a range of publications from major daily newspapers, such as The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, to online sites such as The Guardian and The Drum.

m-smith3

Michelle was incredibly generous as she spent the first part of the workshop sharing with participants how she came to be such a prolific writer outside the usual sphere of academic publishing. She also talked about some of the challenges involved in choosing to write for the media, such as finding the time to write while fulfilling the requirements of an academic position and reacting to public feedback, including what are, unfortunately frequent, occurrences of anti-feminist backlash.

 

The second and more substantial part of the workshop involved participants working together to produce pitches for their articles. We worked on how to produce pitches that would lead to articles that were “print-worthy” and shareable but still robustly feminist and informed by our shared background as trained academics.

 

We also worked on something that made many of us understandably uncomfortable, namely, how to abandon footnotes and complex theory, but to instead seize the opportunity to convey unfamiliar ideas to a wide audience!

 

Feedback from the session was great! I, for one, was inspired to pitch an article on the upcoming US elections to the Conversation. My pitch was accepted and my piece – ‘What’s gender solidarity got to do with it? Woman shaming and Hillary Clinton’ – was published in The Conversation on 8 November 2016:

https://theconversation.com/whats-gender-solidarity-got-to-do-with-it-woman-shaming-and-hillary-clinton-68325

 

As Michelle had outlined, feminist academics have the opportunity of disseminating feminist-inspired research well beyond the confines of academia. And, one of the really positive aspects of this pathway is that this research tends to reach audiences that are much larger and more varied than the usual audiences of scholarly articles or book chapters. Within the space of one day, for example, my Hillary Clinton piece – which expanded on my research into the history of gendered forms of shame and shaming – was accessed by nearly 5000 readers. I would hazard a guess that this is a far greater number of readers than my usual scholarly articles achieve!

 

Sharon Crozier-De Rosa
NB: Dr Michelle Smith is an academic at Deakin University, feminist columnist for The Conversation and contributor on feminism, literature and popular culture for a variety of media outlets including The Age, Washington Post, New Statesman, The Drum, and sbs.com.au. Some of her 2016 Conversation articles include: ‘‘Not fit to be president’: Hillary Clinton and our problem with older women’; ‘From scolds to “talking underwater”: Policing women’s voices’; ‘Meg Ryan’s face and the historical battleground of ageing’; ‘Friday essay: the ugly history of cosmetic surgery’; ‘No, you’re not ‘hardwired’ to stare at women’s breasts’; and, ‘Witches both mad and bad: a loaded word with an ugly history’. See http://theconversation.com/profiles/michelle-smith-128​

Report – ‘Reading the Colonial Girl’

Report [October 2016] – ‘Reading the Colonial Girl: The Transnational Feminine Ideal in Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Print Culture, 1840-1940’

 

Presented by Dr Michelle Smith (Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University)

 

The ‘Reading the Colonial Girl’ seminar was hosted jointly by the Feminist Research Network and the Colonial and Settler Studies Network and was well-attended by staff from Schools across the Faculty.

 

After leading a fabulous workshop on pitching feminism for the media without compromising academic or feminist integrity, Michelle Smith resorted to a more traditional form of disseminating academic research when she presented a fascinating paper that was drawn from her ARC Postdoctoral Fellowship – ‘From Colonial to Modern: Transnational Girlhood in Australian, Canadian and New Zealand Print Cultures, 1840-1940’ – that she undertook with Prof. Clare Bradford and Dr Kristine Moruzi.

 

Michelle argued that the most insightful way to understand what kind of beliefs a culture holds about its women is to examine the expectations and ideals it professes for the next generation. Girls, she asserted, are a locus for a culture’s hopes and fears for the future. There is significant literature on constructing the 19th century English girl. However, as Michelle outlined, there is not a lot of scholarship existing on how this model of femininity was circulated to girl readers around the British Empire.

 

She used the talk to conclude that a transnational girl subject emerged from white settler colonies like Canada, Australia, and New Zealand that demonstrated their imperial connections to England, while also redefining them. In effect, an imagined community’ of empire girlhood emerged from girls’ print culture.

 

However, Michelle also used the seminar to look at the ways in which race complicated literary attempts to fashion transnational and national femininities by analysing Aboriginal, Maori, and First Nations femininities that were often problematically incorporated into girls’ print culture. She explored how indigenous femininities were categorised differently from those of non-indigenous girls in fiction.

 

In what was a jam-packed one day visit to UOW, Michelle managed to provide fascinating insights into feminist research via traditional and non-traditional platforms!

 

Sharon Crozier-De Rosa

 

NB: Dr Michelle Smith is an Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University (‘Beautiful Girls: Consumer Culture in British Literature and Magazines, 1850-1914’). In 2013, she completed an ARC Postdoctoral Fellowship (‘From Colonial to Modern: Transnational Girlhood in Australian, Canadian and New Zealand Print Cultures, 1840-1940’ with Prof. Clare Bradford and Dr Kristine Moruzi). She has published: Empire in British Girls’ Literature and Culture: Imperial Girls, 1880-1915 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) (winner of 2012 European Society for the Study of English’s Book Award); with Kristine Moruzi, she is editor of Colonial Girlhood in Literature, Culture and History, 1840-1950 (2014) and a six-volume anthology of girls’ school stories for Routledge’s ‘History of Feminism’ series, Girls’ School Stories, 1749-1929 (2013). She has written articles about topics including feminism, literature and popular culture for The Age, Washington Post, New Statesman, The Drum, and sbs.com.au and is the literature columnist for The Conversation. She maintains a blog at: http://www.girlsliterature.com.au/

Raewyn Connell Seminar (4 Oct)

October 4 Research Hub 19.2072 12.30 – 2.30

Emerita Professor Raewyn Connell
“Decolonizing Gender”

Feminist Research Network Seminar
Attached is a video of Raewyn giving a public lecture at LSE in 2015 on this topic:
http://richmedia.lse.ac.uk/publiclecturesandevents/20150518_1830_decolonisingGender.mp
In this smaller seminar, Raewyn would like to raise some general questions that cannot not be covered in the large public lecture.
Light refreshments will be available. Please RSVP Di Kelly di@uow.edu.au

Talk: ‘Reading the Colonial Girl’ (19 Oct)

You are invited to a seminar hosted by the Feminist Research Network and the Colonial Settler Studies Network

‘Reading the Colonial Girl: The Transnational Feminine Ideal in Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Print Culture, 1840-1940’

Presented by Dr Michelle Smith (Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University)

Date: Wednesday 19th October 2016
Time: 4.30 – 6.00 pm
Location: LHA Research Hub, Building 19, Room 2072
RSVP: By Wednesday 12th October to Sharon Crozier-De Rosa sharoncd@uow.edu.au

If we truly want to know what kinds of beliefs a culture holds about its women, the most insightful way to find out is to examine the expectations and ideals it professes for the next generation. Girls are a locus for a culture’s hopes and fears for the future. There is significant literature on constructing the 19th century English girl, but not on how this model of femininity was circulated to girl readers around the British Empire. In this paper, I suggest that a transnational girl subject emerges from white settler colonies like Canada, Australia, and New Zealand that demonstrated their imperial connections to England, while also redefining them. I look at the ‘imagined community’ of empire girlhood emerging from girls’ print culture. However, I also examine the ways in which race complicates literary attempts to fashion transnational and national femininities through the analysis of Aboriginal, Maori, and First Nations femininities that were often problematically incorporated into girls’ print culture. I will show how indigenous femininities are categorised differently from those of non-indigenous girls in fiction.

Dr Michelle Smith is an Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University (‘Beautiful Girls: Consumer Culture in British Literature and Magazines, 1850-1914’). In 2013, she completed an ARC Postdoctoral Fellowship (‘From Colonial to Modern: Transnational Girlhood in Australian, Canadian and New Zealand Print Cultures, 1840-1940’ with Prof. Clare Bradford and Dr Kristine Moruzi). She has published: Empire in British Girls’ Literature and Culture: Imperial Girls, 1880-1915 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011) (winner of 2012 European Society for the Study of English’s Book Award); with Kristine Moruzi, she is editor of Colonial Girlhood in Literature, Culture and History, 1840-1950 (2014) and a six-volume anthology of girls’ school stories for Routledge’s ‘History of Feminism’ series, Girls’ School Stories, 1749-1929 (2013). She has written articles about topics including feminism, literature and popular culture for The Age, Washington Post, New Statesman, The Drum, and sbs.com.au and is the literature columnist for The Conversation. She maintains a blog at: http://www.girlsliterature.com.au/

frn_cass_talk

Workshop on Media Writing (19 Oct)

The Feminist Research Network invites you to
Pitching Feminism without Compromising Feminism:
A Workshop on Writing for the Media as a Feminist Academic
Dr Michelle Smith (Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellow, Deakin University)

Date: Wednesday 19th October 2016
Time: 12 – 3 pm (lunch included)
Location: LHA Research Hub, Building 19, Room 2072
RSVP: By Wednesday 12th October for catering purposes Sharon Crozier-De Rosa sharoncd@uow.edu.au

Feminist discourse has never been more visible in the media. Popular feminist writers like Clementine Ford, Celeste Liddle, Laurie Penny, and Lindy West are well known for their contributions to major newspapers, radio and television interviews, as well as their own books. What role can feminist academics play in this expanded—and yet often extremely hostile— space for feminist writing for the general public?

Deakin University academic and feminist columnist for The Conversation, Dr Michelle Smith will share her experiences of writing opinion pieces for a range of publications from major daily newspapers, such as The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, to online sites such as The Guardian and The Drum. She will discuss the differences between scholarly writing and writing for the media and the challenges posed by writing about feminist topics, in particular. She will guide participants through the process of writing for the media from the initial idea and pitch through to dealing with the repercussions of your writing if your piece goes viral.

In the second half of the workshop, we will work on several tasks that are essential for writing for the popular media, including the following:
– Pitching your topic to an editor
How to make feminist topics “print-worthy” and shareable without compromising your feminism.
– Reframing your writing
How to abandon footnotes and complex theory, but seize the opportunity to convey unfamiliar ideas to a wide audience.
– Crafting your bio note and media persona
What does an academic feminist look like? How to frame your academic identity and prepare for media interviews.

Dr Michelle Smith is an academic at Deakin University, feminist columnist for The Conversation and contributor on feminism, literature and popular culture for a variety of media outlets including The Age, Washington Post, New Statesman, The Drum, and sbs.com.au. Some of her 2016 Conversation articles include: ‘‘Not fit to be president’: Hillary Clinton and our problem with older women’; ‘From scolds to “talking underwater”: Policing women’s voices’; ‘Meg Ryan’s face and the historical battleground of ageing’; ‘Friday essay: the ugly history of cosmetic surgery’; ‘No, you’re not ‘hardwired’ to stare at women’s breasts’; and, ‘Witches both mad and bad: a loaded word with an ugly history’. See http://theconversation.com/profiles/michelle-smith-128​

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