CfP: Special issue Thirdspace: Audacity of Hope? DL: 15.09.09

The editors of ‚thirdspace: a journal of feminist theory and culture‘ invite submissions for our forthcoming issue, „Audacity of Hope?“ We are seeking submissions that critically engage with the notion of hope as it was used by a diverse assortment of constituents in the 2008 American presidential election. As a key theme in Barack Obama’s campaign (and his book ‚Audacity of Hope‘), the term evokes the possibility of transformational change. How does this version/vision of hope frame debates about gender and equity issues, struggles for equality and the recognition of difference? To what extent has the ‚hope‘ agenda impacted on politics, policy and popular media during Obama’s presidency to date? This issue invites contributions that consider:

  • Obama’s first months as president and the hope and/or reality of social change; the catchphrase ‚yes we can‘ and its appropriation, as well as what it might mean in terms of gender, race, sexuality and other parameters of difference; that controversial Ms. cover and discussions of Obama as a ‚feminist savior‘.
  • the global currency of Obama’s hope rhetoric (i.e. Cairo speech); hope for policy and social change around issues such as abortion (the possibility or desirability of a „Common Ground“ approach, the global gag rule), health care, economic equality; the hope of LGBTQ people in the Obama campaign and subsequent disillusionment (i.e. Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and the brief defending DOMA);
  • the opposite of hope: despair, disillusionment, cynicism; critical responses to the USA’s embrace of hope and its global implications;
  • the significance of gender and race in the presidential race and subsequently (such as the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor and the media’s response to it, Obama’s handling of information about sexual abuse by members of the U.S. military);
  • media coverage of the election in terms of constructions of gender, race and sexuality (Obama, as well as John McCain, Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin);
  • the merchandising of the image of Obama and his family, including the gender and racial implications of ’selling‘ Michelle Obama as First Lady, the marketing of products associated with Sasha and Malia Obama,
  • etc. and links to gender/difference.

We welcome submissions from a wide range of disciplinary and geographical perspectives. Submissions from researchers working within, or among, the disciplines of geography, sociology, literature, area studies, cultural studies, film/media studies, art, history, education, law, and women’s/gender studies are particularly encouraged.
We accept the submission of work from scholars of any rank or affiliation, and encourage submissions from emerging feminist scholars, including graduate students.
All submissions to the journal must be submitted electronically through our online submission process. All submissions are peer-reviewed by established, senior feminist scholars. For more information on our publishing policies see:
To submit: Please follow our online submission process at
** Deadline: September 15, 2009 **
For more information, please contact us at

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