Writing about Caribbean Gender and Social Justice (UWI / ACWWS)

The Institute for Gender and Development Studies, Regional Coordinating Office at The University of the West Indies, Mona, in collaboration with the Association of Caribbean Women Writers & Scholars (ACWWS) will host the virtual conference “Writing about Caribbean Gender and Social Justice,” to take place via Zoom, on Friday, January 15 and Saturday, January 16, 2021. [There will be a Special COVID-19 Discount Registration for this conference.] The deadline to submit abstracts has been extended to November 20, 2020.

Summary: In the past five years, freedom of movement has been an issue around the world. The COVID-19 pandemic brought the world as we once knew it to a standstill; African Americans and their allies around the world took to the streets to protest police violence and their inability to circulate in public spaces in the same ways as their white-skinned neighbors. The US president attempted to implement a Muslim Ban on travel into the States, build a vast wall on that nation’s southwest border, and puts children in cages. UK deportations and immigration policies that require proof of financial solvency, implemented before the health crisis, curtailed travel on numerous fronts. In no less frightening ways, the #MeToo / #NiUnaMenos movements continue to reveal how vulnerable women have been when moving about the workplace.

This conference seeks to have participants explore how women from the Caribbean are impacted by social injustices, and how they write about these experiences. The work to be addressed at the conference will cover a wide array of genres: poetry, novels, plays, and short stories, but also calls for activist engagement, public policy, medical discourses, blogs, and social media posts. In addition to traditional scholarly abstracts, we invite panels with a creative writer and a literary critic in conversation about a given work.

The ACWWS Conference is a biennial event, bringing together creative writers, academics, researchers, students and the general public to critically reflect on the writing and scholarship of Caribbean/diaspora women.

Guide for Conference Presenters: The deadline to submit abstracts of 300 words or less is November 20, 2020. Papers will be presented online. We welcome proposals for panels in any of the languages of the Caribbean (e.g. French, Kreyol, English, Dutch, Papamiento, Spanish), although we may not be able to accommodate translation. Reading time should not exceed 15 minutes. We will also accept proposals for creative writing readings; please note your proposed genre. Reading time should not exceed 10 minutes. Please email your abstract as a Word document or PDF to acwwsexecutive@gmail.com, along with your name, title, mailing address, email address, and institution.

Important Dates:

  • Deadline for submission: November 20, 2020
  • Notification of Acceptance: December 5, 2020

For any enquiries regarding the programme, please contact Dr. Aza Weir-Soley at weirsole@fiu.edu, or Professor Opal Palmer-Adisa at opal.adisa@uwimona.edu.jm.

[Image above: Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons “Untitled,” 1999; MoMA.]

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