Events and Conferences

Seminar: Theorising bisexuality, Dr. Surya Monro, Thursday 5th June, 1pm, Sheffield University

This event isn’t specifically addressing ‘disability’ but we thought it might be interesting to some of you:

Theorising bisexuality, Dr. Surya Monro (University of Huddersfield)

Thursday 5th June, 1pm, Boardroom, The Interdisciplinary Centre of the Social Sciences (ICOSS), Sheffield University

The formation of Western categories of gay/straight, and the identities politics which are predicated on this formation, have largely erased bisexuality. This erasure is evident in both scholarly and community discourses, although in recent years in the UK there have been increasingly successful attempts to include bisexuals alongside lesbians, gays and trans people under the ‘LGBT’ acronym. Whilst bisexual people have become (arguably) more socially visible, there remains a large gap in contemporary sex/gender scholarship around bisexuality. This talk aims to begin to map out the territory, building on the existing work of scholars working mostly within sociology and cultural studies. The talk discusses possible directions for analysis, including interationaism, poststructuralism, queer theory and trans theory. It suggests that a materialist analysis is important in understanding the lived experiences of bisexual people, in keeping with a broader materialist turn within the social sciences. The talk draws on empirical material from research conducted in the UK.

 

DRF News

Reminder: A Week of ‘Disability’ Events (May, 2014: Sheffield, UK)

If you are in/around Sheffield next week and are into ‘disability’, you are certainly in for a treat. There are 3 events (detailed below) which might just take your fancy. Info below.

Event 1: the next (and final for this academic year) DRF seminar

Date/Time: Wednesday, 7th May 2014 (10.30am-12.30pm)

Slot 1:  Joshua Sawiuk (Univ. of Leeds, UK): The Importance of the Social Life for Disabled Students in Higher Education

Slot 2: Charlotte Jones (Univ. of Sheffield, UK): Intersex and/as Disability: Exploring the tensions between identity, medicalisation and social justice

Venue: The seminar will be held in Room 10110 (first floor) of the Arundel Building, 122 Charles Street, City Campus, Sheffield Hallam University, S1 1WB.  For a map of City Campus click here.

To offer to present in 2014-2015 seminars or for more detailed access information please contact: Rebecca Mallett: r.mallett@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 4669 or Jenny Slater: j.slater@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 6691.

Event 2: Symposium: Disability and Austerity: Pan-national Reflections

Date/Time: Thursday, 8th May 2014 (2pm-5pm)

Venue: University of Sheffield – Education Building, Room 1.02.

Event 3: Gender and Disability: Asking Difficult Questions

Date: Saturday, 10th May 2014

Venue: University of Sheffield- Humanities Research Institute (HRI), 34 Gell Street, Sheffield, S3 7QY.

DRF News

Event: Sexuality Summer School 2014 (26th-30th May: Manchester, UK) @SSS_Manchester

Event: Sexuality Summer School 2014 – 3 Public Lectures (free and all welcome)

Dates: 26th – 30th May 2014

Programme: please find detailed below.

  • Monday 26 May – 12pm-2pm: Professor Jasbir Puar (Rutgers) ‘A Body with New Organs: Becoming Trans, Becoming Disabled’

Venue: Manchester Museum, Oxford Rd, Kanaris LT (1st Floor)

In this paper Puar historically situates the most current intersectional flavors of the day, “trans” and “disabled,” through their emergence as the latest newcomers to the intersectional fray.  She looks at how their parallel yet rarely intersecting epistemological constructs—both come into being, or becoming, in the early 90s in the academy as well as in broader political terms and movements—require exceptionalizing both the trans body and the disabled body in order to convert the debility of a non-normative body into a form of social and cultural capacity, whether located in state recognition, identity politic formations, market economies, the medical industrial complex, or subject positioning.

  • Tuesday 27 May 4pm-6pm: Professor Valerie Traub (University of Michigan and Simon Visiting Professor, Manchester) ‘Anatomy, Cartography, and the Prehistory of Normality’

Venue: John Casken Lecture Theatre, Martin Harris Centre, Oxford Rd, University of Manchester. Sponsored by EAC, SEXGEN and Pride. Followed by wine reception at Contact Theatre.

During the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, European cartographers and anatomists developed novel strategies for representing the diversity of human bodies in their atlases of the world and its inhabitants. Tracking their implicit taxonomies of gender, sexuality, race, and class, Valerie Traub speculates on the effects of their strategies on the historical emergence of the concept of “the normal.”

  • Thursday 29 May – 5pm-7om: Public Lecture by Professor Mary Bryson (University of British Columbia) and Chase Joynt (Chicago) ‘ Biopolitics Under the Skin: Relating Cancer Narratives – An Archive of the ‘Talking Dead’?’

Venue: John Casken Lecture Theatre, Martin Harris Centre, University of Manchester. Followed by wine reception at Kro.

This talk situates the Cancer’s Margins project (www.lgbtcancer.ca) and its preliminary findings in an overview of feminist, postcolonial, and queer biopolitical scholarship. concerning anatomy, pathographies, embodiment, chronicity and new analytic modes of technomaterialism that have foregrounded and articulated complex and discontinuous assemblages that twist, warp and reimagine modernity’s bedrock binaries, including ‘alive<>dead’, ‘real <>fiction’, ‘subject<>object’, ‘now<>then’ and so on. This lecture will engage with the opportunity, and perhaps, the obligation, to think critically about the move to delimit historically, and as a gesture to an entirely different futurity, the time when a biopolitics of embodied humanism was organized in a relation of explicit politicization.

 

The Sexuality Summer School is sponsored this year by the Faculty of Humanities; Cornerhouse; Contact; Manchester Pride; Screen; Science, Stroke, Art 2014; and SEXGEN.

For more information about the Sexuality Summer School, including details of previous events, go to sexualitysummerschool.wordpress.com, email us and get on the mailing list at sexualitysummerschool@gmail.com, find Sexuality Summer School on Facebook or tweet us @SSS_Manchester.

Disability Studies and..., Events and Conferences

Call for Ideas: Gender and Disability: Asking Difficult Questions (10th May 2014, Sheffield, UK)

Announcing Gender and Disability: Asking Difficult Questions

Saturday 10th May 2014, Interdisciplinary Centre of the Social Sciences (ICOSS), University of Sheffield

We’re calling for activists, artists, academics and practitioners to get involved in a day of discussions on the theme of gender and dis/ability. We welcome ideas for the sharing of skills and stories, art, performances, poetry, workshops, round-table discussions, papers and presentations.

The event aims to create a space for conversations and debate between communities who share an interest in gender and disability.

Some ideas for topics/themes:

(Dis)ableism, discrimination, exclusion and (in)accessibility
‘Abnormal’, ‘Normal’ and Normalcy
Activism and protest (disability, feminist, LGBT, ‘race’, queer)
Austerity/welfare cuts
Body image, fetishisation, and the medicalization of bodies and minds
Desire, Sexuality, intimacy and relationships
Freakery, the abject and the politics of disgust
Health and Illness
Identities and identity politics
Life-course and ageing
Mental health and mad pride
Post-humanism
Queer and crip histories
Sex, sex educators and sex workers

Send us your ideas (around 200 words or half a page of bullet points) by 24th February 2014 to gender.disability@shef.ac.uk.

This will be a free event. Food will be available to buy at the venue. We want to make this event as accessible as possible, to inform us of any particular access requirements please email gender.disability@shef.ac.uk by 19th April 2014. For further information please contact gender.disability@shef.ac.uk. To book a place please go to: http://genderanddisability.wordpress.com.

Twitter: @GenDisability

An event hosted by the Disability Research Forum, Sheffield Hallam University and the Gender Research Network, University of Sheffield

Please distribute widely! Link to flyer here: Gender And Disability Call for Ideas

DRF News

Event: ‘Researching Disabled People’s Sexual Lives: Some Reflections’ (3rd Dec 2013: Toronto, Canada)

The New College Disability Studies Speaker Series presents…

Researching Disabled People’s Sexual Lives: Some Reflections

A Lecture by Dr. Kirsty Liddiard (Ethel Louise Armstrong Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Disability Studies, Ryerson University, Canada)

Tuesday, December 3rd 2013 (1pm-3pm)

OISE, 2nd Floor Room 2212, 252 Bloor St. West, Above St. George Subway, Toronto, Canada.

Biography: Kirsty Liddiard is currently the Ethel Louise Armstrong Postdoctoral Fellow within the School of Disability Studies, Ryerson University, Toronto, where she lectures and teaches on a range of disability issues. Kirsty was awarded with a PhD in Sociology in April 2013 from the University of Warwick, UK. Her work critically explores the intersections of disability, gender, and sexuality in dis/ableist cultures.

Description of talk: In this talk, I offer a reflexive account of the processes, politics, problems, practicalities and pleasures of storying disabled people’s sexual lives for the purposes of sociological research. Drawing upon a doctoral study which explored disabled people’s lived experiences of sex, intimacy and sexuality through their own sexual stories, I consider how my identity, subjectivity and embodiment – in this case, a white, British, young, heterosexual, disabled, cisgendered woman with congenital and (dependent upon the context) visible impairment – was interwoven within and through the research methodology; most explicitly, as an interlocutor and co-constructor of informants’ sexual stories. Given the paucity of reflexive research in this area, a number of reflexive dilemmas are identified. These dilemmas make valuable methodological contributions to qualitative sociology, disability studies scholarship and research, and current knowledges of the emotional work of qualitative researchers (Dickinson-Smith et al 2009).

Event information:

  • Light snacks and refreshments will be provided
  • ASL interpretation is booked
  • This building is wheelchair accessible
  • The closest accessible subway station is St. George Subway Station, Bedford Road exit
  •  Although we cannot guarantee an absolute scent free space, we ask attendees to refrain from wearing scents to this event

THIS EVENT IS FREE

For accessibility or additional information, please contact: uoftdisabilitylistserve@gmail.com

 

DRF News

CFP: 1st Global Conference: Sexuality and Disability (May 2014: Portugal)

Event: 1st Global Conference: Sexuality and Disability

Dates: Tuesday 6th May – Thursday 8th May 2014

Place: Lisbon, Portugal

Call For Presentations:

“Sexuality is an integral part of the personality of everyone: man, woman and child; it is a basic need and aspect of being human that cannot be separated from other aspects life.” (World Health Organisation)

Statistics suggest that over 50 percent of disabled people do not have a sex life, which is not surprising given the fact that disabled people are too often considered as non-sexual or asexual. Recent television programmes shown in the UK have attempted to document the sex and love lives of the disabled, The Undateables and Sex on Wheels (both Channel 4 TV). While such programmes can be seen as progressive in terms of acknowledging that disabled people want and/or have sex lives, moving away from the popular perception of disabled people as asexual, they also perpetuate the medical model of disability in which disability is constructed in sympathetic terms and portrayed in a voyeuristic fashion: disability as object of festishistic scopophilia. While social issue cinema continues to evoke sympathy rather than challenge conventions, horror cinema constructs disability not only as sexualised but often as monstrous abnormality linked with criminality. Images of disability may aim at evoking disgust through the construction of the discourse of abjection. In addition, the sex lives of the disabled are too often ignored within the arena of disability politics itself.

This conference seeks to challenge popular conceptions and perceptions of sexuality and disability. In addition to academic papers, we are particularly interested in opening up a space for the discussion of personal experiences of disability and sexuality and the role of sex workers, community programs and the work of sex educators. Inter-disciplinary and cross-disciplinary perspectives are sought on sexuality and disability, including cross-cultural
and transcultural perspectives. Non-traditional presentations are encouraged including workshops, performances and round table discussions.

Papers, presentations, workshops and pre-formed panels are also invited on any of the following themes:

1. Representations of Disability and Sexuality

– Visual images – painting, photography, advertising

– Moving images – television, film, video, theatre, performance art

– Music and disability – music videos, groups, artists

– Narratives of disability – poetry, biography, autobiography, fiction and non-fiction

2. Desire and Disability

– The fetishization of disability

– Normative/Non-normative desires

– Voyeurism and disability

– Eroticism and disability

– Disability and the politics of disgust

– Dating and disability

3. Gender and Disability

– Feminism and disability politics

– Femininity and Masculinity and disability

– Gender, class and disability

– Body image and disability

4. Sexualities of Disability

– queer, trans, and other non-normative sexualities

– disabilities and sexualities

– aging and sexuality

– appropriate versus inappropriate expressions of sexuality

5. Difference and Disability

– Visible/invisible disabilities

– Intellectual disabilities

– Mental health issues including depression

– Ethnicity, sexuality and disability

6. Sex Work and Disability

– Sex educators

– Sex workers

– Community programs

– State run programs

7. Law, Ethics, the State and Disability

– Eugenics and state stationed sterilisation

– Legislation, disability and sexuality

– Ethics, desire and disability

– Cultural conceptions of disability and sexuality

– Sexual abuse and disability

Presentations will also be considered on any related theme.

In order to support and encourage interdisciplinarity engagement, it is our intention to create the possibility of starting dialogues between the parallel events running during this conference. Delegates are welcome to attend up to two sessions in each of the concurrent conferences. We also propose to produce cross-over sessions between two and possibly all three groups – and we welcome proposals which deal with the relationship between the experience of prison, and/or responsible and ethical living and/or disability and sexuality.

What to send: 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 6th December 2013 If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 14th March 2014. 300 word abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to both Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word or RTF formats with the following information and in this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in programme, c)
email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract, f) up to 10 keywords.

E-mails should be entitled: SD1 Abstract Submission.

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs:
Colette Balmain: cb@inter-disciplinary.net<mailto:cb@inter-disciplinary.net and Rob Fisher: sd1@inter-disciplinary.net<mailto:sd1@inter-disciplinary.net

The conference is part of the Gender and Sexuality programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and
exciting. All papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s). All publications from the
conference will require editors, to be chosen from interested delegates from the conference.

For further details of the conference, please visit: http://www.inter-disciplinary.net/critical-issues/gender-and-sexuality/sexuality-and-disability/call-for-presentations/

DRF News

CFP: Sexualities Special Issue ‘Intellectual Disability and Sexuality: On the Agenda?’

Papers are called for that consider…

Issues relating to intellectual disability regarding sex, childrearing and intimacy are considered contentious at the best of times. This is often couched in discourses of danger, risk and protection. But it is clear that intellectually disabled people have been subject to physical and sexual abuse, excluded and marginalised from relationships and sex education, struggled with their own health and wellbeing and represented as ‘less than human’ and therefore lack capacity to make decisions about their own sexuality. In addition, all of the above have an impact upon everyday life, family members and carers. The lack of sexual and physical autonomy is further compounded in social discourse as in the case where a British mother defended her right, before the courts, to have her young disabled daughters’ womb removed. Conversely, attention has also been drawn to young disabled people and their sexual activity or sexuality in a positive and proactive light. The Family Planning Association (fpa) in the UK dedicated their Sexual Health Week in August 2008, to campaign for the rights of disabled people to have sex and relationships. With these tensions and dilemmas in mind it makes sense to dedicate a special issue to intellectual disability.

If you would like to contribute an original article based on empirical, theoretical or policy research in the areas of intellectual disability regarding: sexuality and rights, intimacy, sexual health, sex and education, sex work, abuse/violence, same sex relationships, gender, dating, mothering and so on please send a 300 word abstract to me (details below) with a working title before 30th September 2013.

The final papers will be 6-7000 maximum. Other innovative shorter pieces, commentary, or response pieces will also be considered if deemed appropriate in this issue. All papers will be anonymously peer reviewed and go through the usual academic rigour. Please contact me with abstract, title, and/or questions. 

Dr Chrissie Rogers: c.rogers3@aston.ac.uk Languages and Social Sciences, Aston University (Birmingham, UK)

Children, Familes and Young People, Disability Studies and..., Events and Conferences

Reminder of the next DRF themed seminar: Youth and Disability, Wednesday 9th Jan, 12-2

A reminder that the next DRF seminar will be on Wednesday 9th January 2013 12pm-2pm in Arundel 10111.The theme of this seminar is ‘Youth and Disability’.

Slot 1: Jenny Slater (Department of Education, Childhood and Inclusion, Sheffield Hallam University, UK): “You’re not, I mean… I know you’re not, but I have to ask, you’re not… sexually active, are you?” Youth, disability, sexuality.

Abstract:

The quote I use to frame this paper comes out of my PhD research with young disabled people. It captures the troubled and troubling response that Molly, a young disabled woman, received from a doctor when requesting the contraceptive pill on sporting grounds. Furthermore, it illustrates the dangerous tying of disability to a discourse of asexuality; a discourse which works to sustain the positioning of disabled people’s bodies as a) childlike (Hall, 2011), b) asexual (Garland-Thomson, 2002; Liddiard, 2012), and c) the property of others, to be subject to intervention (Barton, 1993; McCarthy, 1998). For young disabled people, particularly young women, this is dangerous. In this paper I share more stories from my fieldwork in order to work through messy discourses of youth, disability and sexuality.  I use these stories to question Disability Studies and, to a lesser extent, popular media normalisation of issues concerning disability, disabled youth, gender and sexuality, stressing the importance of transdisciplinary conversation.

Slot 2: Ezekiel Isanda Oweya: (Centre for Rehabilitation Studies, University of Cape Town, South Africa): Experiences of African disabled youth living in rural Rift Valley to find and sustain livelihoods

 

Venue: The seminar will be held in the Arundel Building, 122 Charles Street, City Campus, Sheffield Hallam University, S1 1WB.  For a map of City Campus click here.

If you, or anybody you know, would like to present at a DRF seminar please do get in touch.  Alternatively, let us know if there is an issue/article/book you’d like to facilitate a round table discussion on.

Even if you do not intend to present, feel free to come along, listen and share your thoughts.   For lunchtime slots, please feel free to bring your own food and drink.

We aim to be accessible and have produced some guidelines of which we would like presenters to be mindful – these can be accessed here: Accessible Presenting

To offer to present, facilitate a discussion or for more detailed access information please contact: Rebecca Mallett: r.mallett@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 4669 or Jenny Slater: j.slater@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 6691.

DRF News

Third Keynote Title and Abstract Announced for Theorising Normalcy and the Mundane: 3rd International Conference (Chester, UK: June 2012)

Proving that good things come in threes… we are pleased to announce the details of our third keynote for Theorising Normalcy and the Mundane: 3rd International Conference at the University of Chester (June 26th-27th 2012).

Margrit Shildrick (Professor of Gender and Knowledge Production, Linkoping University, Sweden) will be discussing….

Title: Celebrating Crip Pleasure: The Somatechnics of Disability and Desire

Abstract: In this presentation, I intend to address pleasure and desire in the disabled body in relation to somatechnics in which embodiment is always technologised. The focus will primarily be on sexuality, but also on other bodily engagements.

As one aspect of biotechnology, prostheses have long been in term use as compensatory technologies that stand in for some putative lack or deficiency that is supposedly the mark of anomalous embodiment. More recently, however, the emphasis has firmly switched to enhancement and supplement, and it is that more productive trajectory that I shall pursue. My argument is that in the era of postmodernity, the disabled body specifically can raise acute questions about the always ambivalent relationship between embodied subjects, pleasure and biotechnology. Desire is no longer focussed on the replication of a more or less acceptable model of normative practices but on a highly productive alternative that inevitably queers the meaning of sexuality itself.

For Further Details on the conference, including registration – please click here