The History of Feminism Network’s Very Own Call for Papers – ‘Feminism and History: Rethinking women’s movements since 1800’

‘Feminism and History: Rethinking women’s movements since 1800’  

15 November 2008, Bishopsgate Institute, London. 

Organizers: History of Feminism Network

Sponsors: Bishopsgate Institute, Raphael Samuel Centre (UEL), Department of Politics at Goldsmiths, University of London, Department of History at Goldsmiths, University of London 

This one-day conference will explore the relationship between writing feminist history and the history of feminism. It aims, on the one hand, to generate an historical perspective on the rise of women’s, gender and feminist history within the context of the Women’s Liberation movement in the 1970s and 80s. On the other, it hopes to act as a forum in which new approaches to the history of feminism can be discussed and developed. Focusing on women’s ideas and struggles since 1800, we aim to develop new insights into both the history of feminism as a social, cultural and intellectual movement; and the past and present writing of feminist historiography.  

Postgraduate students and early career academics working on any area of the history of women’s movements during this period are invited to submit papers which might fruitfully engage, but are not limited to, some of the following themes:

  • How do we define the ‘feminist’ past when we write its history and who can we legitimately identify as ‘feminists’?
  • How has the fracturing of both the category of ‘woman’ and the feminist movement impacted upon the writing of feminist history?
  • Is a commitment to feminist politics still necessary in order to write the history of women and their struggles?
  • How has entry into the academic mainstream shaped feminist history?
  • How might women today go about recording and writing the histories of their own movements and struggles for liberation?
  • What does it mean to be a feminist historian today?

The conference will open with a keynote address from Professor Barbara Taylor (UEL) and will close with a round table discussion between Dr. Lucy Bland (London Metropolitan), Dr. Lucy Delap (Cambridge), Dr. Kathryn Gleadle (Oxford), and Dr. Margaretta Jolly (Sussex) around the question: ‘Is there a future for feminist history?’. 

Amongst those chairing the parallel sessions will be Professor June Purvis and Professor Sally Alexander

It is envisaged that the conference will result in a publication. 

Please send a 300 word abstract to history.feminism@googlemail.com by 1 April 2008.

Notification of acceptance will be given before 1 May 2008. 

Conference organizers: Marc Calvini-Lefebvre (Goldsmiths), Esme Cleall (UCL), Angela Grainger (London Metropolitan), Daniel Grey (Roehampton), Dr Naomi Hetherington (Roehampton) & Laura Schwartz (UEL).   

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