2013-2014 Call for Papers


Gendered Space & Queer Alternatives

19th Annual Women’s and Gender Studies Conference
January 30, 2014 – February 1, 2014

As so aptly put by Daphne Spain in her landmark work Gendered Space, “Gendered spaces provide the concrete, everyday-life grounding for the production, reproduction, and transformation of status differences” (233). The ways in which the spaces are ascribed to masculine and feminine gender roles cause hierarchies to be reinforced and make moving across boundaries difficult. For example, common pop culture portrayals of American families in the middle of the 20th century restrict females to domestic tasks and males to tasks outside the home.

While gendered spaces reinforce and cement gendered hierarchies, queer spaces exist as a liberated middle ground between them, offering relief from the restrictions of mainstream spatial arrangements.

This call for papers invites explorations of the ways in which our society is divided into gendered spaces, as well as the queer alternatives that are created when these divisions are broken, violated, adapted, altered, and subverted.


Possible topics may include but need not be limited to:

●       An examination of the evolution of the “separate spheres” dichotomy in Western society 212;in which men work in the public sector while women are restricted to the home, housekeeping, and child-rearing—through literary or cultural analysis, sociological surveys, etc.

●       A look at subcultural communities that offer unique, queer alternatives to hegemonic social spaces. For example, gay districts within large cities, the Occupy movement, or virtual communities that transgress societal gender expectations (Tumblr, fandoms, Grindr, etc.).

●       Analysis of cultural artifacts (books, film, music, etc.) as they pertain to gendered space and queer alternatives. As examples, an analysis of gender & space in Orange is the New Black, the upstairs/downstairs dynamic in Downton Abbey, the portrayal of women in Mad Men

●       Theoretical perspectives which examine how a feminist or queer framework might lead to unique modes of knowledge and being within the confines of social space

●       A look at how gender i s constructed and carried out within interior spaces such as the home, office, etc.

●       Examination of a graphic work that might complicate or problematize traditional narrative storytelling through the queering of mis-en-page (the composition of a visual work in terms of space and form) and spatial arrangements.

●       Cross-cultural analyses comparing variations of gendered space

●       Creative nonfiction dealing with personal experiences w ithin and outside the bounds of traditional heteronormative gendered spaces, including experiences with queering those bounds.


Abstracts are due by November 15th , 2013 at 5:00 PM. Please submit abstracts in a PDF or Word document to wgstconference@truman.edu, along with your name, contact information, and the dates and times that you will be unavailable to present. Updates about the conference will be posted at http://wgstconference.truman.edu.

Sorry, Comments are closed.