CfP: History of Puberty (Event: SSHA, 11/2020, Washington); by: 13.03.2020

46th Annual Meeting of the Social Science History Association (SSHA) (Web): Women, Gender & Sexuality Network (WGS)

Venue: Washington, DC
Time: 19.-22.11.2020
Proposals by: 13.03.2020

The SSHA is the leading interdisciplinary association for historical research in the US. The topic of the annual meeting in 2020 is on „Politics, Society, and the Economy: the Past and Today“.

Call for papers for a panel on the „History of Puberty“

For many girls and boys, puberty is coming earlier than ever before, with studies showing that, on average, puberty is now starting for girls at around 10 years old – at least five years earlier than a century ago.

The idea that particularly girls are reaching „sexual adolescence“ earlier than ever before is nothing new – for decades, researchers have been disconcerted about girls‘ entering puberty „too early“. While puberty is problematised as precocious in the case of cis-girls, the practice of delaying puberty in gender variant and trans children is discussed controversially as well.

What is puberty in different places and times? What is the age of puberty in different times and places? When and how is puberty understood as a rite of passage? as the beginning of the gendered self? of the sexual self? When and why are discourses of puberty stressing gender differences? Since when is puberty seen to be defined by hormones? by environmental causes? by socialization? by medicine and/or psychology? How is puberty related to categories such as adolescence, tween, and teen?

The organizers are looking for papers on the history and historicity of puberty, with a strong interest in intersectional approaches in:

  • History of medicine and science / STS
  • Gender history and gender studies
  • Child and youth studies
  • Trans studies
  • Sexuality studies
  • Environmental studies
  • (Pop)Cultural studies
  • Read more and source (Web)