Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies

Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies
School of Sociology and Social Policy
Social Sciences Building
Leeds, LS2 9JT
UK

Tel: +44 (0) 113 343 3770
Fax: +44 (0) 113 343 4415
gender-studies@leeds.ac.uk

Events

Seminar: ‘Anyone can edit’, not everyone does: Wikipedia and the gender gap

On 15th March 2017, 12:00-13:30, Dr Heather Ford will discuss her research on Wikipedia and gender.

‘Anyone can edit’, not everyone does: Wikipedia and the gender gap

Feminist STS has long established that science’s provenance as a male domain continues to define what counts as knowledge and expertise. Wikipedia, arguably one of the most powerful sources of information today, was initially lauded as providing the opportunity to rebuild knowledge institutions by providing greater representation of multiple groups. However, less than ten percent of Wikipedia editors are women. At one level, this imbalance in contributions and therefore content is yet another case of the masculine culture of technoscience. This is an important argument and, in this talk, I examine the empirical research that highlights these issues. My main objective, however, is to extend current accounts by demonstrating that Wikipedia’s infrastructure introduces new and less visible sources of gender disparity. In sum, my aim here is to present a consolidated analysis of the gendering of Wikipedia.

Time and Location Details

15th March 2017

12:00 – 13:30
Room 12.21 and 12.25,
Social Sciences Building,
University of Leeds,
Leeds,
LS2 9JT.
This event is free to attend and no booking is required.

This entry was posted in Events.

Seminar: Dr Rosemary Lucy Hill – Persuasive Data: the use of data and visualisation in abortion campaigning

On 1st March 2017, 12:00-13:30, Dr Rosemary Lucy Hill will discuss her research on abortion-related data visualisations in campaigning contexts.

Persuasive Data: the use of data and visualisation in abortion campaigning

Data visualisation has been argued to have the power to ‘change the world’, implicitly for the better, but when it comes to abortion, both sides make moral claims to ‘good’. Visualisation conventions of clean lines and shapes simplify data, lending them a rhetoric of neutrality, as if the data is the whole story. It is imperative, therefore, to examine how data visualisations are used to shape women’s lives. This article draws on the findings of the small Persuasive Data. Google Image Scraper was used to locate abortion-related visualisations circulating online. The images, their web locations, and data use were social semiotically analysed to understand their visual rhetoric and political use. Anti-abortion groups are more likely to use data visualisation than pro-choice groups, thereby simplifying the issue and mobilising the rhetoric of neutrality. I argue that data visualisations are being used as a hindrance to women’s access to abortion, and that the critique of such visualisations needs to come from feminists. I extend discussions of how data is often reified as objective, by showing how the rhetoric of objectivity within data visualisation conventions is harnessed to do work in the world that is potentially very damaging to women’s rights.

Time and Location Details

1st March 2017

12:00 – 13:30
Room 12.21 and 12.25,
Social Sciences Building,
University of Leeds,
Leeds,
LS2 9JT.
This event is free to attend and no booking is required.

 

This entry was posted in Events.

Seminar: Dr Clarissa Smith – Talking about pornography in everyday life: what can be learned from talking to audiences?

On 22nd February 2017, 12:00 – 13:30, Professor Clarissa Smith (Sunderland) will be speaking in the School of Sociology and Social Policy:

Talking about pornography in everyday life: what can be learned from talking to audiences?

Despite the heat of debates about pornography – its meanings and impacts – we still know very little about the quotidian consumption of porn. In this presentation Clarissa will draw on findings from a complex online questionnaire into the meanings and pleasures of pornography, which garnered more than 5,000 responses.  The data suggests that pornographic materials have intricate meanings in respondents’ everyday lives and multiple significances for their senses of themselves as sexual subjects.

Time and Location Details

22nd February 2017

12:00 – 13:30

Room 12.21 and 12.25,
Social Sciences Building,
University of Leeds,
Leeds,
LS2 9JT.
This event is free to attend and no booking is required.

This entry was posted in Events.

Dr John Mercer: Seeing is believing: ‘Saturated’ Masculinity and Gay Pornography

Date: 28 January 2015, 5.00pm
Location: Room 12.21 and 12.25 Social Sciences Building

Gay pornography, either in print or onscreen, remains a controversial as well as a significantly under-researched area of cultural production. It is a complicated and often contradictory genre that exploits, subverts, celebrates, plays with and calls into question the ways in which masculinity is constructed and what contemporary masculinity might mean. Given that the internet has resulted in an exponential growth in the sheer volume as well as the range of gay porn available to audiences and greatly enhanced access to this material, the need for a sustained exploration of gay pornography and its modes of representation becomes ever more pressing. With this in mind I am now writing a book that explores and situates the rhetorical strategies and iconography of contemporary gay pornography and discusses the paradigm of masculinities that it presents. This presentation will discuss the challenges that studying gay pornography presents for researchers in British universities and will identify some of the issues that all researchers in the field have to consider.

My work in the field over the last 15 years has aimed to illustrate that gay pornography offers plural models of masculinity that are more various and nuanced than they might seem. I argue that gay porn illustrates a contemporary ‘saturated’ masculinity. Ranging from an analysis of ‘mainstream’ gay pornography to the marginal, from glossy professionalism to the artisanal and amateur, the paradox that lies at the heart of gay porn is that it is at points both subversive and normative; undermining orthodoxies of masculine representation at the same time as producing new norms of gay sexual conduct and sexual performance.

John Mercer is Reader in Gender and Sexuality at the Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research. He is the leader of the Screen Cultures research cluster and runs the MA in Screen Studies.

His research interests include film and television genres, celebrity and stardom, the pornography debate, the sexualisation of contemporary media culture and contemporary cultural theory. He is the author (with Martin Shingler) of Melodrama: Genre Style Sensibility and a monograph on Rock Hudson due to be published by the BFI in 2015. John is co-editor of the Journal of Gender Studies, one of the editorial founders of Porn Studies and reviews editor for this new journal. He is also a member of the editorial board of Cine-Excess (and the guest editor of the inaugural issue), editorial board member of Sexualities and is a peer reviewer and guest editor for Celebrity Studies.

This entry was posted in CIGS Seminar Series 2014-15, Events.

Prof. Yvette Taylor: Creating Citizens, Constructing Religion, Configuring Gender

citizens-religion-genderDate: 03 December 2014, 5.00pm
Location: Room 12.21 and 12.25 Social Sciences Building

This paper presents a case-study exploration of Christianity and sexuality in the lives of young lesbians in the UK, drawing upon a larger ESRC funded grant ‘Making Space for Queer Identifying Religious Youth’. Religion matters as a personal and political force, but secularizing trends arguably obscure its influence on the complex convergence and intersection of personal, political, familial, and institutional realms (Brierley, 2006; Heelas and Woodhead, 2005).

While the question of homosexuality has been a central focus in much discussion, highlighting around the presumed discontinuity between sexual identity and Christian identity (O’Brien, 2004), there is still a gap in terms of locating first-hand narratives of self-identified young queer Christians. Rather than assuming that these are separate and divergent paths (Wilcox, 2000), this paper explores intersectional convergences and divergences, illustrating how religious participation can convey (de)legitimation within family, community and society. Such (de)legitimation is revealed in unpacking scripts of inclusion and exclusion (Taylor and Snowdon, 2014), which are (re)circulated via hetero-homo normative ideals, and perpetuated and contested in the context of intersectional Equalities legislation.

Here, I examine the highly gendered and heteronormative ‘role models’, ‘mentors’ and (familial) mediations experienced by young lesbian Christians, as intersecting public–private domains in the production of queer religious subjectivity and dis-identification.

This entry was posted in CIGS Seminar Series 2014-15, Events.

sexgen Seminar 6: Body Image and Gender in Neoliberal Times

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Thursday October 30th 2014, 4.00-6.00pm

Bowland North, Seminar Room 10, Lancaster University

Public Lecture by Prof. Rosalind Gill: ‘Love Your Body and Hate It’

Roundtable discussion with Prof. Gill, Dr Celia Roberts, Dr Debra Ferreday and Dr Imogen Tyler: ‘Young Women and Body Image in Neoliberal Times’

For more details, see the event page on the sexgen website

This entry was posted in Events, sexgen Seminar Series.

Dr Jacqui Gabb from the Open University: Enduring Love? Relationship work and practices of intimacy in long-term couple relationships

Date: 15 October 2014, 4.00pm
Location: Room 12.25, Social Sciences Building

Using a rich palette of qualitative methods and a large scale online survey, the Enduring Love? project has been studying how couples experience, understand and sustain long-term relationships in contemporary Britain, paying particular attention to the ways in which gender, parenthood and generation shape experience.

In this presentation, I will explore the relationship work that couples do and how this serves to sustain their long-term relationships. Relationship work here is more than the drudgeries of domesticity. It offers couples the opportunity to embrace their relationship – through the pleasures of physical closeness; and to nurture their relationship – emotionally, practically, and symbolically through practices of togetherness which carve out shared time and create couple memories.

Focusing attention on the everyday practices that couples do and the material conditions which shape these personal lives, our conceptualisation of relationship work thus inculcates ideas of work and capital whilst keeping a keen eye on the intensity of emotions. Across the dataset, it was the personal meanings of relationship work that were valued more than their cultural reference points. Commercialised celebrations like Valentine’s Day or grandiose romantic displays from Interflora and/or the ‘guilty’ petrol station bunch of flowers were less fondly received than small acts of kindness. Knowing gestures and familiar relationship practices demonstrated intimate depth of understanding and investment in the long-term couple relationship.

This entry was posted in CIGS Seminar Series 2014-15, Events.

Vinegar Valentine’s with Bird la Bird

Date: 14 February 2014, 5.30pm
Location: Mine, Leeds University Union

Bird la Bird straddles comedy and performance art, exploring couple culture, austerity, adoption, terrorism, Catholicism, class, feminism and queer femininity.

£2.00 in advance from leedstickets.com and on the door. Wheelchair access

This entry was posted in Events.

Prof. Jasbir Puar – CIGS Annual Lecture. Affective Politics: States of Debility and Capacity

Date: 14 May 2014, 5.30pm
Location: The Great Woodhouse room, University House

Derived from her new forthcoming monograph, Affective Politics: States of Debility and Capacity, which takes up questions of disability in the context of theories of bodily assemblages and affectivity that trouble intersectional identity frames, this talk elaborates an ethos of conviviality.

Conviviality is an anti-reproductive challenge to biopolitics that seeks to dissassemble the relations between capacitated and debilitated bodies, arguing for more porous corporeal and political engagements within and across geopolitical spaces wrought through notions of the impersonal and futurity.

This entry was posted in CIGS Annual Lecture, Events.

Professor Catherine Roach – Happily Ever After: Gender and Romance Narratives in Popular Culture

Date: 26 February 2014, 5.00pm
Location: Seminar Room, Beech Grove House

In this interactive talk, Professor Catherine Roach presents a chapter from her forthcoming book Happily Ever After: The Romance Narrative in Popular Culture.  This romance narrative is perhaps the most powerful and omnipresent narrative in modern Western culture and functions, indeed, as an imperative for how to live the good life: Find your one true love and live happily ever after.  She introduces the parameters of her project as a performative ethnography in which she writes, as an academic, about how this romance narrative functions while she also writes, as a delighted newbie novelist, works of mainstream romantic fiction.

For this seminar, she tries to unravel the “conundrum of erotic love” in terms of notions of freedom and bondage, examining this conundrum in high art literature but focusing particularly on the top-publishing genre of popular romantic fiction.  The African-American romance novel Indigo provides a framework for this discussion: Can you become a slave for love?  What makes romance empowering, feminist, and freeing?  What does it mean for a man to be “pussy-whipped” by love?  How do today’s romantic novels constitute a massive cultural fantasy space—largely gendered—for the exploration of these questions?

This entry was posted in CIGS Seminar Series 2013-14, Events.

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