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July 2014, Week 1


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maureen ryan <[log in to unmask]>
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Fri, 4 Jul 2014 12:24:22 -0500
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*CFP: Problematizing Postfeminism *

*(SCMS 2015, Montreal, March 25-29, 2015)*

*Panel Convenors: Jessalynn Keller (Middlesex University London) and
Maureen Ryan (Northwestern University)*

Over the past decade feminist media studies scholars have described popular
media culture as indicative of a “postfeminist sensibility” (Gill 2007),
characterized by a disavowal of feminist politics (McRobbie 2009) and the
dominance of neoliberal discourses that promote individualism, success in
the capitalist marketplace, heterosexual romance, and consumer citizenship
to women and girls. According to this scholarship, these postfeminist media
texts are pervasive and far-reaching, ranging from “chick flicks” (Negra
2009; McRobbie 2009) and makeover television (Weber 2009) to celebrity
brands (Winch 2013) and self-made YouTube personalities (Banet-Weiser

However, over the past two years feminist politics have become increasingly
prevalent within popular media cultures, complicating the logic that
feminism is in retreat. This visibility can been mapped across a range of
media texts; Beyonce’s 2013 self-titled album, Lena Dunham’s HBO television
hit Girls, and Tavi Gevinson’s website Rookie are only a few examples.
Indeed, the mainstreaming of discussions of gender and feminism across
media further highlights this shift, with media coverage of rape culture
and online misogyny, the #YesAllWomen campaign, and the lack of strong
female film characters producing public discourse that transversed
mainstream and alternative media. Postfeminism falls short of adequately
accounting for these complicated politics, as well as the internal dynamics
of various forms of feminisms currently visible across media culture.

In this panel, we ask: What might these media texts that explicitly engage
with feminism suggest about femininity, feminist politics, and the work of
media studies scholars?  Where does postfeminism fall short in its attempts
to diagnose popular media culture? How might media texts function as a
useful lens to better understand emerging feminisms?

We are seeking papers that historicize, interrogate, and/or
problematize postfeminism
as the dominant framework with which to understand gender politics within
our current media culture. In particular, we are interested in papers that
attempt to suggest new modes of feminist media analysis at both the
theoretical and empirical levels.

Papers may address but are not limited to the following topics:

*Representations of feminisms

*Feminism, capitalism, neoliberalism and media industries

*Historicizing feminism and post-feminism in media texts

*Digital feminisms, including campaigns such as #YesAllWomen and

* Mediated responses to rape culture and other feminist issues

* Feminist celebrities and celebrity media cultures

* The production of feminist connectivities and solidarities through media

*Feminism in irony, disavowal, and/or other negative affects

Please submit an abstract between 250-400 words and a brief bio to
Jessalynn Keller ([log in to unmask]) and Maureen Ryan (
[log in to unmask]) by Monday, July 21st. Successful
submissions will be notified by Monday, July 28th.

Maureen E Ryan
Screen Cultures Program
Department of Radio/Television/Film
Northwestern University

Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite