CfP: Women in Transnational Movements in the Long 20th Century (GENESIS Special Issue); DL: 30.06.09

“Women in Transnational Movements in the Long 20th Century”
GENESIS, co-edited by Elisabetta Bini and Arnaldo Testi

The Italian historical journal „Genesis: Rivista della Società Italiana delle Storiche“ will devote one of its next issues to transnational women’s movements in the long 20th Century, from the last third of the 19th Century to the present.
The issue aims at analyzing the transnational dimension in its full, radical meaning. We are interested in exploring the specific forms of action, discourse and language which were allowed or generated by the “trans/national” dimension, as an autonomous terrain of cultural production, not as an area of interaction and mediation among pre-determined national passions and interests (“inter/national”). To the usual suspects — suffragist and feminist organizations — we add professional and business all-female associations as well as “separate” or mixed-gender pacifist groups, benevolent and charity societies, “moral” and family reformers, advocates of new reproductive politics and policies, queer and transgender groups.
Questions to be addressed might include:

  • How did the languages of women’s transnational activism change vis-a-vis their national activisms? Were there more or less constraints, more or less opportunities for freedom and experimentation?
  • How did the cultural and/or racial hegemony of the Northern European and English-speaking nations shape the language of the early transnational movements? And how did colonial, anti-colonial and post-colonial practices impact the scope, direction and internal structure of any given movement or organization?
  • How and to what extent did women’s language and practices change when the same women happened to work in separate, all-female organizations and, at the same or later time, in mixed-gender organizations sharing the same
  • purpose? Or when women’s separate organizations interacted with international institutions such as the League of Nations, the United Nations, or other regional organizations?
  • Are the periodization cleavages familiar to historians of transnational women’s movements adequate to construct a meaningful framework for our understanding of the past? Should we accept such cleavages (World War Two,
  • First- and Second-Wave Feminism) or should we re-discuss them?

Interested parties should send a 1-page proposal, along with a 2-page CV, by June 30, 2009, to Elisabetta Bini ( and Arnaldo Testi ( Successful applicants will be expected to email their articles by January 31, 2010.

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