Great cook and mother dies

after also doing some kick-ass rocket science. For a related spoof obit of Einstein see here.

I’m totally down with criticising the obit, obvs. However, one of the critics argues that writing about women scientists should pass the Finkbeiner test:

To pass the Finkbeiner test, the story cannot mention
The fact that she’s a woman
Her husband’s job
Her child care arrangements
How she nurtures her underlings
How she was taken aback by the competitiveness in her field
How she’s such a role model for other women
How she’s the “first woman to…”

And I’m not sure I like this test. It is in fact important to know that X was the first woman to do something. And women trying to imagine themselves into her role may well benefit from learning about her childcare arrangements and her husband’s job. And showing that a rocket scientist can also be woman who cooks stroganoff can really help to break down stereotypical associations. So I feel a little torn.

(Thanks, J-Bro and Mr Jender!)

From The Dark Side – Black Feminisms CFP

Black Feminisms cfp image 3
From The Dark Side – Black Feminisms
Inaugural issue of Comment S’en Sortir ?

Click here for full length CFP (PDF file)

In France,”féminisme noir” refers first of all to the importation and translation of the Black feminist tradition, with its politics and theoretical toolbox. However, the transatlantic circulation and reception of these tools deploy different Black feminist issues here.
Translations have affected and overwhelmed the economy of Black feminism. They have reinvented this tradition and de-centered our own long-established theoretical frameworks. Black feminism is a legacy that questions and sets us in motion; however, this legacy meets our own legacies transmitted by our social movements, our thoughts, and our mothers’/sisters’/partners’ struggles in the territories that have been literally erased by mainland France. What about this overseas feminism? Between legacy and fantasy, oblivion and reconstruction, return of the repressed or restoration of a “truth”: Black feminism must be approached from the perspective of a political temporality that is non-linear, split-up, and constellar.

We inherit an approach: our task is to investigate and question our societies as they are held and divided by racist, sexist, and capitalist power relations. The reception of Black feminism has led to a reflection about our social location and our positioning, about our individual and collective imperial history, about the sexual and gendered dimensions of racist and migration policies. In the French political context of a racist offensive led in the name of so-called feminism, those questionings have reconfigured the cartography of feminist research and feminist movements. While actuating a return of the colonial repressed, they divided feminists along new splits such as “queer” and “indigenous”, “secular” and “submissive”, “black” and “white”, but also “deep black” and “high yellow”. Because of these polemics, our bodies, our complexions, our clothes, our places of birth and residence, our sexualities, our religions and our languages have acquired new empowering or disempowering qualities, thus legitimizing or delegitimizing our discourses. We have sometimes put on our “objectionable skins” (Roberte Horth) as a way of becoming audible, with the danger of racializing both our adversaries and our traditional allies by rendering them “white”. Thus, we were trapped in the “master’s house” (Audre Lorde), within its racist delimitations.
We have sometimes masked our complexions in order to widen our coalitions, exposing ourselves to the risk of becoming invisible.

Given these aporias, we are committed to carrying on the deconstruction of the dichotomies imposed by the “white solipsism”
(Adrienne Rich) in feminist thought. We are committed to exhuming repressed, buried and ignored feminisms that contest this white solipsism.

Authors are invited to submit articles exploring the feminist movements committed against slavery, colonialism, imperialism, and racism, providing evidence of the multiple historical, geographical, and political origins of Black feminisms. We are looking for articles that index and study the tactics and strategies actuated by feminists under the pressure of racism: how do they shift, foil, invert, split, or stave in the color lines? How do they smash racialized relationships and categories such as “Muslim”, “Asian”, “oriental”, “veiled”, “Roma”, “Arab”, “African”, “immigrant”, etc., as well as and their corollaries, “European”, “occidental”, “secular”, “French”, and what does such a smashing imply? It is a matter of multiplying the legacies of obscure, masked, veiled, and darkened feminisms, such as those of Solitude, Fathma N’Soumer, Awa Thiam, Julia Cooper, Emma Goldman, and the Nardal sisters. It is a matter of analyzing the processes of dominations, resistances, and migrations that color or discolor, retract or magnify the location of possible solidarities.

This inaugural issue of Comment S’en Sortir ? entitled “FromThe Dark Side” aims to build walkways and bridges (Cherrie Moraga and Gloria Anzaldùa), alliances and coalitions; it aims to draw upon Black feminisms’ theoretical and political tools that allow us to thwart the oppositions, hierarchies, splits, and aporias that impoverish our experience and condemn our struggles.

– Deadline for submitting proposals: April 15, 2013
Acceptance decisions will be communicated by April 30, 2013
– Deadline for sending complete articles: July 30, 2013
Definitive acceptance: September 15, 2013
– Publication: October 2013
– Contact:
Authors’ guidelines