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31 January 2015

Calls for Papers from Demeter Press (Indigenous Pregnancy, Mothers, Daughters, Social Media, Sons, Ambivalence, Immigrants)

There are a bunch of CFPs from Demeter Press, so I am posting just a summary of the calls with links back to the Demeter Press site with the full details. Warning, all links are PDFs. Good luck!

Indigenous Experiences of Pregnancy and Birth [PDF]
Editors: Dr. Jaime Cidro and Dr. Hannah Tait Neufeld
Deadline for Abstracts: March 15, 2015

In North America Indigenous Peoples are diverse in the way they embrace their traditional institutions and cultural practices surrounding pregnancy and birth. Traditional midwifery, culture, customs, understandings and meanings surrounding pregnancy and birth are grounded in distinct epistemologies and worldviews that have sustained women and their families since time immemorial. Biomedical antenatal care practices in North America remain virtually unchanged from the original models developed in Europe in the early twentieth century. New technologies and diagnostic techniques have been added, yet standardized procedures are adhered to because of their association with lower mortality rates. Rates of maternal mortality are significantly lower in Canada than less affluent countries, however, inequalities exist. Indigenous women experience disproportionately high rates of high-risk pregnancies, associated with elevated rates of maternal mortality. First Nation and Inuit women are more likely to experience complicated labours and preterm births, with infant mortality rates almost 2 to 4 times higher than the general population. It is widely recognized that these circumstances are exacerbated by inadequate access to health and social services as a direct result of colonization, including structural barriers, restrictive and oppressive policies, and complex social determinants of health. Years of colonization have impacted the degree to which women have choice in the place and ways they deliver their babies, and who is included in their birthing experience. Culturally appropriate models of prenatal and birthing care are important components in Indigenous health sovereignty and self-determination.

Mothers and Daughters [PDF]
Editors: Dannabang Kuwabong,
Janet MacLennan, and Dorsía Smith Silva
Deadline for Abstracts: April 30, 2015

This anthology will explore the multifaceted connections between mothers and daughters. We welcome submissions that analyze new fields of inquiry in this area, examining discourses about mothers and daughters through academic writing, narrative essays, and creative work. We specifically encourage offerings that address the identity and experiences of mothers and daughters from within an interdisciplinary framework, which includes cultural, biological, socio-political, relational and historical perspectives. Therefore the uniqueness of this collection revolves around a fluidity in blending not just work from across academic disciplines, but also the forms in which this work is presented: academic inquiry and critique as well as creative and narrative explorations.

Taking the Village Online: Mothers, Motherhood, and Social Media [PDF]
Editors: Lorin Basden Arnold and Betty Ann Martin
Deadline for Abstracts: June 1, 2015

The rise of social media has changed how we understand and enact relationships across our lives, including motherhood. The meanings and practices of mothering have been significantly impacted by the availability of online mother groups (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) as well as internet resources intended to 'enhance' and inform maternal experience and self-concept (ex. pinterest, YouTube). The village that now contributes to the mothering experience has grown exponentially, granting mothers access to interactional partners and knowledges never before available. This volume of works will explore the impact of social media forms on our cultural understandings of motherhood and the ways that we communicate about the experience and practice of mothering.

Mothers and Sons [PDF]
Editors: Besi Brillian Muhonja and
Wanda Thomas Bernard
Deadline for Abstracts: April 30, 2015

Conceptual and empirical research and scholarship as well as creative works tend to primarily contemplate parental interactions and influence in same sex generational dyads: mother-daughter or father-son. This consideration of parenting assumes gendered parental legacy. This anthology, which engages the cross-sex parent child paring, invites submissions in the form of academic writing, narrative essays, book reviews and creative work from across the disciplines that explore the idea of 'mothers and sons' across cultures, polities, and temporal spaces as a cultural, biological, socio-political, psychological, relational and historical identity, relationship, experience, philosophy, and practice.

Maternal Ambivalence [PDF]
Editors: Dr. Tanya Cassidy, Dr. Susan Hogan & Dr. Sarah LaChance Adams
Deadline for Abstracts: September 1, 2015

This anthology will examine the diverse and complex experiences of maternal ambivalence from a range of disciplinary perspectives. Most simply, maternal ambivalence can be described as the simultaneous and contradictory emotional responses of mothers toward their children: love and hate, anger and tenderness, pity and cruelty, satisfaction and rage. Mothers often feel as though their own desires are directed against themselves when they are in opposition to their children's needs and wishes. When one's beloved child cries in despair at one's departure, one may both want and not want to leave. When the mother simultaneously desires intimacy and distance in relation to her child, when she feels the impulses to both harm and protect, to both abandon and nurture, this is when maternal ambivalence is at its perplexing height.

Immigrant/Refugee Mothers [PDF]
Editors: Helen Vallianatos and
Anna Kuroczycka Schultes
Deadline for Abstracts: March 15, 2015

The experiences of mothers who are immigrants or refugees vary across time and space. Immigrant scholars have long discussed potential factors that impact the immigrant experience, such as contexts of reception, racialization, economic marginalization, language use, and cultural identity, among others (Portes and Rumbaut, 2001; Telles and Ortiz 2008). In this edited volume, we wish to explore how and why immigrant/refugees mothers' experiences differ due to the challenges posed by the migration process, but also what commonalities underline immigrant/refugee mothers' lived experiences. How are the lives of immigrant mothers dependent on cultural, environmental and socio-economic circumstances? Papers may look at how mothers' perceptions of gender roles be influenced by migration and the host culture, what everyday mothering means to immigrant/refugee women, their families, and communities, and what challenges immigrant/refugee mothers face. We would also like papers that investigate how refugee mothers' issues may differ from immigrant mothers. The collection will focus on ethnographic (research based), theoretical and creative submissions.

13 January 2015

From Durango, Mexico to Mayor of Chicago?

Jesus "Chuy" Garcia was ready to enjoy his first uncontested election. He had a few good books picked out that had been taunting him. Then he want to visit his friend Karen Lewis after her surgery. She greeted him with, "Sit down. You need to run." Lewis ran down all the reasons he was the best person to run for mayor of Chicago. And with that Chuy went home to discuss the idea with his wife. Her response?

HELL YES!

A few months and thousands of signatures later, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia is building a coalition of community people who want to work together to make Chicago a better place to live, learn and do business.

When I heard Chuy was jumping into the race I was excited. I had never met him, but I had followed his last campaign to become a Cook County commissioner. He seemed to be the exact type of politician so many people, myself included, wish where were more of. Chuy appears to have always fought for his community and with integrity.

That is why I said yes when I was asked to join a list of over 100 Latino leaders to endorse Chuy. Being at the Latino Leader event was exhilarating. The campaign office was filled with energy. Supporters spoke about Chuy's commitment to Chicago, to supporting neighborhood schools, to real comprehensive immigration reform and being part of a people's movement. Chuy spoke of being the Latino candidate who would work to empower the Latino community. As I shook his hand I mentioned that my dad is also from the state of Durango, Mexico. He lit up and smiled.

Later that day I reported to my dad and we had a great conversation about their homestate's penchant for mustaches and supporting our familia. My dad and I don't talk about a lot of things outside of his granddaughter and sports, but I can see us having a lot of talk about over the next few weeks.

On Sunday I attended a coffee where Chuy came to answer questions. I have been to enough of these events that I space out during "safe neighborhoods" and "strong schools" talk. When perked me up was how he brought up coalition building among community organizations. Chuy lamented the tragedy of community groups feeling that they are in competition because of limited foundation and government grants. He also impressed me with his response to a woman's question about her perceived distrust that African-Americans have of him. Essentially he discussed how discrimination against African-American workers and the hiring of immigrant workers has built a tension between the communities as some believe we need to fight over the same piece of pie. Chuy wants everyone to benefit from the whole pie.

I like that idea. This will require a lot of work, including policy changes, but to start, we need someone who will champion them. I really believe that person is Jesus "Chuy" Garcia.

This campaign has national ramifications, so if you cannot vote for Chuy, please consider contributing to his campaign. $50 or $5,000 will make a difference!

11 January 2015

EVENT: Chicago Women's Mayoral Forum


Chicago Has A Women’s Agenda –
Where Do Mayoral Candidates Stand On It?

Hear What The Leading Candidates Have To Say at the

CHICAGO WOMEN’S MAYORAL FORUM

Saturday, January 24 | 2pm to 5pm
Chicago Temple | 77 West Washington St

Featuring:

Mayor Rahm Emanuel
Alderman Robert Fioretti
Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia
Willie Wilson

Moderator: Cheryl Corley, NPR Correspondent


Brought together by:

American Association of University Women (AAUW) | Broadcast Ministers of Chicago | Chicago Area Women’s History Council | Chicago Metropolitan Battered Women’s Network | Chicago Women Take Action | Coalition of Labor Union Women | Democratic Women of the South Suburbs | EarthHeart Foundation | Girlfriends Group | Girls in the Game | Girls on the Run | GlobalGirl Media | HotHouse | Independent Voters of Illinois Independent Precinct Organization (IVI-IPO) | Jobs For Justice | Mujeres Latinas en Acción | National Council of Jewish Women Chicago North Shore Section | National Rainbow PUSH Coalition | Planned Parenthood | Rape Victim Advocates | The Voices and Faces Project | Younger Women’s Task Force

06 January 2015

#365FeminstSelfie End of Year Honors


Congrats y'all! We won a few end of the year honors!

First Colorlines named me as one of their 14 Women of Color Who Rocked 2014. Then Blogher named me one of their 2014 Women of the Year.

Yes, I do consider these OUR honors because, without all of you, there's no way that this project could be recognized. I had an idea, I put it out into the world and YOU respond without apology! Ok, some of you did apologize to your friends & families to prepare them for a year of awesome, but that's ok.

So take a bow, #365FeministSelfie. We kicked ass last year. Not to mention Mayim Bialik took a liking to us!

02 January 2015

Help Send "Locked Down, Locked Out" to Women in Prison

Maya Schenwar's book, Locked Down, Locked Out: Why Prison Doesn't Work and How We Can Do Better, has been lauded around feminist and progressive media:

Alice Kim at Truth Out:
Deftly weaving her own personal experiences with her sister’s incarceration alongside the stories of prisoners who she has been writing to over the last eight years, Schenwar illustrates the devastating effects of prisons on those who are incarcerated, their families, and our communities. With her book, she not only offers a searing analysis of the prison industrial complex but also possibilities for creating alternatives to mass incarceration.
Sarah Macaraeg from The Toast:
...Maya’s book, filled with the voices of her incarcerated pen pals—one of whom is Maya’s own beloved sister, Kayla. Woven together with her family’s experience facing the formidable hurdles likewise faced by millions as they try to remain connected to a locked-down loved one, Maya’s analysis of our “prison nation” is that of a system rooted in the dehumanization of people of color, particularly Black people. Her assertion that “prison doesn’t work” does not revolve around wrongful convictions, nor does her challenge that “we can do better” point towards mild reforms. Instead her book demands we wrestle with questions posed by indictments and non-indictments alike. What would truly provide healing and safety for our society?
Eleanor J. Bader at RH Reality Check:
Well-versed in the ins-and-outs of the system, Locked Down, Locked Out offers an accessible, easily readable account of the ways the system dehumanizes prisoners, making reentry into the outside world difficult for many. By merging her sister’s story with a broader, investigative report, Schenwar humanizes those we dub “offenders” and assesses how we, as a society, can do better. Rather than depressing, the book is ultimately an inspiring call to action.
I personally have not read the book yet (you gotta see my to-read-book pile, yikes!), but I know Maya and her work enough to know that this book will be an amazing read, especially to those who are currently incarcerated.That is why I was excited to here that the Chicago Women's Book Project has offered to send out copies of Locked Down, Locked Out to people in prison. This will be a demonstration that people on the outside are thinking about and supporting them.

Here is how you can help send a copy to women who are in prison and want to read this book. Just purchase the book from any online retailer [Powells | IndieBound] and have them ship it to

c/o RFUMC
4511 N. Hermitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60640

Disclaimer: Purchasing from Powells or IndieBound using the links above benefits Viva la Feminista. Feel free to purchase Maya's book from any retailer of your choosing. 

Disclaimer

This blog is my personal blog and is not reflective of my employer or what I do for them.

What I'm Currently Reading

I Thought It Was Just Me: Women Reclaiming Power and Courage in a Culture of Shame
The South Side: A Portrait of Chicago and American Segregation
Gabi, a Girl in Pieces


Veronica's favorite books »
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