2020 Call for Proposals
2020 NWSA Annual Conference Call for Proposals
The Poetics, Politics, and Praxis of Transnational Feminisms

Download the full CFP
Proposal submissions accepted February 1 - 28, 2020

banner image of 2019 NWSA annual conference titled, Protest, Justice, and Transnational Organizing


Find directions for submitting a proposal here.

The 2020 NWSA conference theme, “The Poetics, Politics, and Praxis of Transnational Feminisms,” seeks to open up conversation about the evolution of transnational feminisms. Rooted in the pioneering scholarship of Jacqui Alexander, Inderpal Grewal, Caren Kaplan, and Chandra Talpade Mohanty, among others, transnational feminism has been a subject of feminist study, theorizing, and discourse for decades. It has contributed immensely to decentering Western, especially US, scholarship and generated new forms of anti-racist, anti-imperialist, and decolonial feminist praxis and epistemologies that cross national boundaries.

The intention of this call is to revisit the linear narratives that accompany gender and feminist studies which circumscribe the emergence and definition of transnational feminism as well as erase the long history of Black transnational feminisms. It also seeks to affirm the particular discourses within transnational feminisms that have been deepened by analyses of class, culture, religion, ethnicity, race, and caste. This is a critical historical moment to foreground the global context and to consider what a systemic, materialist, anti-racist transnational feminist analysis can offer.

Transnational feminism converges and is in tension with other discourses of liberation. The theme aims to foreground scholarship and praxis that seek to bring transnational feminisms into deeper engagement with indigenous feminisms, intersectionality, radical Black feminisms, postcolonial feminisms, queer theory, ecofeminisms, disability studies, transgender studies, theoretical developments of anti-blackness and racial capitalism, neoliberalism, and neocolonialism/postcolonialism. These discourses of liberation both engage with and look beyond the state.

NWSA welcomes proposals that lift up the many peoples who are obscured by, have been excised by, or have not been recognized as being part of, the transnational feminist dialogue, such as religious and racialized minorities, refugees, and queer communities. This call invites proposals from and about those individuals and communities who, although rarely identified as “national” representatives, often illuminate better how the structures of power operate. The theory and practice of transnational feminism can provide crucial insights and tools that help us to imagine new ways of living.

Participants are invited to interrogate: Who has been unaccounted for in both the history and present iterations of theoretical discourses of transnational feminisms? How can we fully analyze the inequalities that animate the local/situated/historically specific and simultaneously develop practices of mutual support and collective engagement? How can we offer alternatives to the geographical construct of the Global North/Global South in ways that foreground the complex hierarchies within both of these locations but that also attend to the ongoing imperial aggression against the Global South? What are the multiple manifestations of transnationalism? How has transnational feminist praxis diverged from theoretical discourse? How is transnational feminism expressed and represented in art, music, culture, and digital spaces? How can transnational feminist poetics, politics, and praxis help us work towards alternatives to the militarized, extractivist capitalism that is wreaking havoc with human and non-human life in ruthlessly unequal ways? What possibilities do the “poetics” offer for pushing the boundaries of theoretical constructs?

2020 Conference Co-Chairs
Premilla Nadasen, Barnard College, NWSA President
Dána-Ain Davis, Graduate Center, Conference Co-Chair
Robyn Spencer, Lehman College, Conference Co-Chair

2020 Review Chairs
Emma Amador, University of Connecticut
Monica Casper, University of Arizona
LeConte Dill, New York University
Xin Huang, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Zenzele Isoke, University of Minnesota
Annie Menzel, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Nadine Naber, University of Illinois at Chicago
Margaret Noodin, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee
Margo Okazawa-Rey, San Francisco State University
J.T. Roane, Arizona State University
Red Washburn, CUNY Kingsborough
Erica Williams, Spelman College



Proposal submission site will open on February 1, 2020
Download the full CFP

General Conference Session Submission Formats

PANELS
Panels provide an opportunity for examining specific problems or topics from a variety of perspectives given that they include 3-4 participants and 1 moderator. Panels may present alternative solutions, interpretations, or contrasting points of view on a specified subject or in relation to a common theme. Panel members are expected to prepare papers addressing central questions described in the proposal.

ROUNDTABLES
Roundtables include 1 moderator and 4-6 presenters who make brief, informal remarks about a specific idea or project. They allow for extensive discussion and audience participation.

WORKSHOPS
Workshops provide an opportunity to exchange information or work on a common problem, project, or shared interest. Workshops are typically experientially oriented, grounded in some sort of women’s and gender studies research agenda, and include brief presentations that allow adequate time for reflective discussion and interaction.

INDIVIDUAL PAPERS
Individual paper proposals are submitted individually and arranged into sessions by the Proposal Review Committee. In paper sessions, authors present 10-12-minute papers followed by audience discussion. A typical structure for a session with four papers allows approximately 5 minutes for the moderator to introduce the session, 10 minutes for each presenter, and 30 minutes for discussion. IMPORTANT: Due to meeting room space constraints, individual paper submissions are frequently converted into poster sessions. NWSA strongly encourages presenters who wish to deliver traditional papers to organize complete panels with colleagues.

POSTERS
Poster proposals present research or analysis on a topic by combining graphics and text on a 4’x8’ board. The poster is available during an assigned session time in order to interact on a one-on-one basis with the attendees viewing the poster. A well-planned poster communicates its message in a visually and textually powerful way, allowing the attendee to grasp the information quickly.

General Conference Special Session Formats

AUTHORS MEET CRITICS
Authors Meet Critics (AMC) sessions are designed to bring authors of recent, cutting-edge books, deemed to be important contributions to the field of women’s, gender, and sexuality studies, together with discussants chosen to provide a variety of viewpoints.

Three or four such sessions will be included in the program. NWSA members are invited to nominate books published between 2014 and 2019. Both single- authored books and edited collections that are the result of collaborative engagement among the contributors will be considered. Only current NWSA members may submit nominations, including self-nominations; nominations by presses will not be accepted. Members of the 2020 program committee will review the nominations and make selection decisions.

Once the AMC proposal submission is complete, NWSA Staff will contact the session organizer to confirm the proposed discussants will be available if the AMC proposal is accepted.

Nomination deadline for Authors Meet Critics Sessions: February 28, 2020

LIGHTNING SESSIONS
Lightning sessions consist of quick, powerful, and provocative 5-minute presentations on the presenters’ research connected to the conference theme. A session will consist of 6 to 8 presenters and 1 non-presenting timekeeper. Presenters will speak for 5-minutes about their research and hold a discussion session at the end. Only full-formed sessions will be considered.

SPONSORED SESSIONS
Sponsored Sessions may be submitted by NWSA constituent groups on topics of interest to group members and NWSA members as a whole. To submit a sponsored session for consideration, please choose Sponsored Panel, Sponsored Roundtable or Sponsored Workshop in the online submission system. This will ensure the session is correctly identified in the program, if accepted. One sponsored session per constituent group will be offered space in the conference program if submissions are received by the proposal deadline, proposals meet review criteria, and proposals are accepted by reviewers.

Pre-Conference Workshops
NWSA will host different pre-conference sessions for interested attendees. Please see the pre-conference information page for more information about the PAD Pre-Conference, WCC Pre-Conference, WoCLP, and NWSA Pre-Conference Institutes.

Accept/decline notifications will be sent to the email used in the proposal process by May 8, 2020. Please save your accept/decline email notification.