CFP: “Gender and the Politics of Shame” (Hypatia special issue)

Gender & the Politics of Shame
Volume 33, Issue 3, 2018
Guest Editor: Clara Fischer
Deadline for submission: December 1, 2016

Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy seeks contributions for a special issue on “Gender and the Politics of Shame.” Significant advances in recent years in the development of shame theory make this issue especially timely. The issue will evince unprecedented feminist scholarly interest in affect and the politics of emotion. Shame has been theorized as a particularly gendered emotion, given women’s frequent inability to act as authors of shaming narratives in patriarchal societies. This special issue on the gendered politics of shame interrogates the relationship between gender, shame, and power. It examines how the politics of shame comes to be enacted against a variety of normatively transgressive bodies and subjectivities, and how shame informs the construction, inter alia, of gendered, racialized, and classed Others. Inversely, “Gender and the Politics of Shame” asks how Others respond to their construction as shameful. How have feminists subverted shaming narratives, or indeed, performed a politics of shame in the service of liberatory projects?

Just as shame itself is often contested as either a negative or productive experience, so the politics of shame may invoke a diversity of conceptualizations that conflict with each other. “Gender and the Politics of Shame” invites such competing and varied theorizations, and asks feminist scholars from philosophy, other disciplines, and those doing interdisciplinary work, to present new and promising ways of thinking about the gendered politics of shame. Contributions from disability studies, critical race theory, queer studies, transnational and postcolonial feminism are particularly welcomed. Articles may cover the following themes:

  • Shame and theories of emotion/affect: how can the recent “turn to affect” help us to reconceptualize or advance theorizations of shame? What contribution have canonical expositions of shame made to feminist scholarship and how might these relate to contemporary critical thought on the gendered politics of shame? Which theoretical models of shame are most convincing and conducive to feminist political projects?
  • Shame and subjectivity: what is the relationship between shame and subjectivity? Is shame necessarily debilitating or is it an emotion that contributes productively to human and/or animal development?
  • Shame and related emotions (disgust, embarrassment, guilt, pride): what is the relationship between shame and other emotions/affects, particularly the self-conscious emotions? How can we distinguish between closely related feeling-states such as guilt and shame or disgust and shame? How is shame best understood ontologically?
  • Body shame and disability: how are certain bodies constructed as shameful? How do norms of (gendered) embodiment and ablebodiedness inform the politics of shame? How have critical disability theorists conceptualized shame?
  • Racialized shame: how is the politics of shame racialized? Which racist and gendered tropes does the politics of shame engage? How has racialized shaming underpinned and sustained colonial and imperialist systems?
  • Queer shame: what is the relationship between heteronormativity and shame? What role have heteronormative state policies and cultural sanctions played in the performance of the politics of shame? How have queer theorists advanced theorizations of shame in recent years?
  • Classed shame: what is the relationship between economic inequality and shame? Has the shaming of classed Others intensified in light of the global financial crisis and related, recent events? How is poverty construed as shameful?
  • Shame and activism/subversion: how do shamed constituencies deal with shame? What strategies have been developed to counter shaming narratives? How do activists draw on shame to highlight and remedy injustices committed by the state?
  • Shame and political institutions/systems: what role does the state play in performing the gendered politics of shame? How do its institutions produce shaming narratives? Are institutionalized Others particularly subject to a politics of shame?
  • Shame and humiliation: what is the difference between shaming and humiliating? Are shamed Others also humiliated Others?
  • Shame and aesthetics: what role does the aesthetic countering of shame (evinced, for example, by ‘black is beautiful’) play in liberatory politics? How are shameful Others constructed in art? How do feminist artists engage shame and the gendered politic of shame?

Deadline for submission: December 1, 2016

Papers should be no more than 8000 words, inclusive of notes and bibliography, prepared for anonymous review, and accompanied by an abstract of no more than 200 words. In addition to articles, submissions to the Musings section are encouraged. These should not exceed 3,000 words, including footnotes and references. All submissions will be externally reviewed. For details, please see Hypatia’s submission guidelines: http://hypatiaphilosophy.org/Editorial/submission_guidelines.html

Please submit your paper to: https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/hypa

When you submit, make sure to select “Politics of Shame” as your manuscript type, and also send an email to the guest editor, Clara Fischer, at clara.fischer@ucd.ie indicating the title of the paper you have submitted.

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