Foundational Questions in Gender and Sexuality Research

Research group attends NORA Conference 2019

SKOK's research group will lead panels and participate at the NORA conference on Iceland in May 2019.

Framside av NORA-konferansen
NORA-conference 2019

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SKOK researchers will lead the following panels: 


Feminist practices are often renewed in times of crises. This interdisciplinary panel, consisting of three related papers, investigates the meaning and creative potentialities of crisis as a state of both emergency and change: How do we understand crises? How does crises have the potential to bring about change? We argue that these questions are of paramount importance for feminist theory and practice today. Thus the panel addresses core issues in strand 7, with a special emphasis on the question “What can be learned from the legacies of feminist creativity and resistance?” We link creativity to acts of narration, whether on the level of feminist critiques of politics/bureaucracy, in everyday practices or in aesthetic practices. These various acts of narration open up to diverse modes of feminist resistance. What are the true potentialities of change in each of them? And what can they tell us about ideologies, about structures of thought and action, i.e. the distribution of the sensible (Jacques Ranciere), in contemporary society and in various discourses on crises? Of special importance is the concept of the (sexed) body: To what extent can we say that a body is in crisis, whether it is trapped in a critical situation or in itself signifying a crisis? What is the relationship between this body and change? Can the (sexed) body in itself harbor changes, whether on the practical level or in the way we perceive of larger political issues. The various papers in the panel address these questions from the respective vantage points of the migrant body in waiting, the pregnant body and the raped body.

Panel discussion will be led by Associate professor at SKOK Kari Jegerstedt, and ph.d candidates Kari Anne K. Drangsland and Noor Jdid.


This roundtable discussion will address the core assumption in strand 7, that ”new conceptions and inscriptions of the political, ethical and epistemic subject are urgently needed in times of natural, humanitarian, and military crises.” Noting that crisis is not a neutral term but highly ideological, circulating widely in contemporary humanitarian discourse, we ask to whom, what, and when the term crisis speaks and what effects the situatedness of ”crisis” has for the conception of the subject. Humanitarian discourse risks introducing a split between the subject and the object of crisis: is there a feminist ”we” in/of crisis or does the term crisis, in humanitarian discourse, always refer to the ”other”, i.e. the poor, the migrant, the victim of war.  Moreover, to the extent that crisis might refer both to ”us” and ”them”, is the term crisis conceived in the same way for both ”groups”? As Henrik Vigh has argued, ”crisis is normally conceived of as an isolated period of time in which our lives are shattered. (…) Yet, for a great many people around the world crisis is endemic rather than episodic and cannot be delineated as an aberrant moment of chaos or a period of decisive change” (ref.). We believe that it is paramount to think through these different localities and temporalities of crisis in order to think how change (can) occur(s). Who are the political, ethical and epistemic subjects that need to be reconceptionalized; from where can this reconceptionalization take place; how can feminist theory be part of such a reconceptionalization if, indeed, such a reconceptualization is at all needed? Creativity and resistance – whether located in the artistic, the political, the academic, or the everyday field – can spring forth from all axes in a power hierarchy. Can intersectional feminism – as a critical as well as an affirmative collective endeavor – help us to navigate in this highly complex terrain of power and difference? And to what extent can cross-disciplinary gender research shed new light on the interconnectivities of crisis and change?

The panel consists of social anthropologist and professor in gender studies Christine Jacobsen, sociologist and professor of gender studies Randi Gressgård, Miriam Ticktin Associate Professor of Anthropology at The New School for Social Researchand social anthropologist Dr. Margit Ystanes.

The discussion will be lead by social anthropologist and human geographer Dr. Marry-Anne Karlsen.