Comparative analyses of host cities in media event contexts
Edited by Joel Gwynne
Download the Call for Papers
In her discussion of transnational feminist movements, Chilla Bulbeck has noted a tendency within dominant feminist discourse to perceive second-wave feminism as a distinctly Western form of political citizenship (Bulbeck 1998). This assumption has been, at least in part, perpetuated by feminist activism within Asian societies for, as Mina Roces asserts, throughout most of the twentieth-century Asian women activists have “disliked the word ‘feminism’”, associating the term with a vision of ‘Western feminism’ “caricatured as aggressively individualistic, anti-male, anti-children, and therefore anti-family” (1). Yet, any polarization of ‘Western’ and ‘Asian’ feminisms is highly problematic and reductive, for second-wave feminism in Anglo-American contexts had a significant impact on transnational feminist movements and their domestic operation within non-Western societies. Critical attention has been paid to the aftermath of second-wave feminism in contemporary Asian societies - particularly in terms of the current state of twenty-first century feminist activism (Mackie 2003; Molony 2010) - yet with the exception of a handful of articles there has been scarce attention paid to Asia’s articulation of postfeminist discourses within popular culture (Lazar 2011). The paucity of critical discussion on postfeminist Asia is largely due to the positioning of postfeminism by Western academics in racially and culturally specific ways that are limited by an ’overwhelming focus on white, heterosexual, middle-class women’ (Projansky, 68). While it would be a mistake to position postfeminism as a cultural sensibility that occurs in any society across the globe, it is perhaps accurate to suggest that it more commonly occurs in economically prosperous neoliberal societies, regardless of the geographical location of these nations. Postfeminism is, after all, strongly implicated in neoliberal governance and citizenship, and should be understood as imbricated with global neoliberal ideologies that affirm not only the individualistic values of late-capitalist culture, but also position feminism as having no place in democratic and ostensibly egalitarian societies.
It is crucial to begin considering the more discursive impact of globalized postfeminist Western discourses on non-Western societies, and to map the movements of postfeminist culture within them. This special issue of Interactions: Studies in Communication and Culture invites papers that address the following questions and concerns:
• What does contemporary visual culture (film, television, animation, art, and advertising) in Asian societies suggest about the relationship between neoliberalism and feminist activism?
• To what extent does visual culture in Asia pursue and appropriate the dominant Western discourses of postfeminism, namely:
• a pathological preoccupation with the body
• an emphasis on self-surveillance, monitoring and discipline
• the presentation of women as active and desiring subjects
• an emphasis on individualism, choice and empowerment in conflict with traditional ‘Confucian’ values
• the dominance of the makeover paradigm
• the entanglement of feminist and anti-feminist sensibilities
• the increasing sexualisation of Asian cultures
• the destabilization of masculinity and an emphasis on the re-masculinization of contemporary man
Abstracts of 300 words to be sent to the Guest Editor, Joel Gwynne (firstname.lastname@example.org) by November 31st 2012.
Interactions recognises the interdisciplinary nature of the fields of media, communication and cultural studies and we therefore encourage diverse themes, subjects, contexts and approaches; empirical, theoretical and historical. Our objective is to engage readers and contributors from different parts of the world in a critical debate on the myriad interconnections and interactions between communication, culture and society at the outset of the twenty first century.
It is our intention to encourage the development of the widest possible scholarly community, both in terms of geographical location and intellectual scope and we will publish leading articles from both established scholars and those at the beginning of their careers.
Particular interests include, but are not limited to, work related to Popular Culture, Media Audiences, Political Economy, Political Communication, Media Institutions and Practices, Promotional Culture, New Media, Migration and Diasporic Studies.
Call for papers
We are looking for contributions from those at the beginning of their career as well as from established scholars and researchers. Articles shouldbe between 6000-8000 words in length. Book reviews are also welcome. Particular interests include, but are not limited to work on:
- Popular Culture; Media Practices and Institutions; Audiences
- Political Economy; Promotional Culture, New Media.
- Political Communication, Migration and Diasporic Studies.