Rewriting Trauma & Visibility: Motherwork, Pregnancy, and Birth
APRIL 5-6 2019
Calling all sociologists, women’s, sexuality, and gender scholars, masculinity studies scholars, birth-workers, doctors, maternal psychologists, motherhood and fatherhood scholars, artists, performers: This conference call for papers focuses on uncovering, naming and rewriting traumas of motherwork, pregnancy and birth. We especially aim to make visible those topics related to (dis)abilities and other marginalized positionalities, relying on Patricia Hill Collins’ conceptualization of motherwork as mothering that is designed for the survival and success of the next generation in the context of oppression. We recognize traumas in multiple forms, originating before, during, and after pregnancy and birth and throughout motherhood, contextualized by the intersectional identities of those traumatized. We encourage presenters to unpack the sociocultural domain and the medicalized environment within which traumas often occur, embracing and analyzing meaning-making, as Barbara Katz Rothman and others would have us do, in the areas of maternal health and well-being.
We intend the conference to serve as a site of resistance as we reframe and reconstruct the landscape of embodied trauma within motherwork, pregnancy and birth and the ongoing labor of mothers and caregivers everywhere. We recognize the scale, variance, and duration of birth-related and illness-related trauma and hope to support and empower those who most need it.
Topics of interest include but are not limited to:
- Intersectional identities as the context of motherwork, pregnancy and birth traumas
- Motherwork, pregnancy and birthing with (dis-)abilities, illness, and children with special needs
- Biomedical and cultural discourses of motherwork, pregnancy, and birth, including issues related to fertility treatment, gender identity, and intersex
Normative constructions of gender in motherwork, pregnancy and birthing
- Child and maternal psychology interventions, alternative therapies, and results
- Breastfeeding ambivalence, obstacles, and outcomes
- Future wombs, including transplants, artificial constructions, cloning, and surrogacy
- Art as healing and activism as a visible resistance
Embodied resistance to socially constructed proscriptions and conventions about motherwork, pregnancy, and birth, especially as contextualized within marginalized positionalities
- High-risk pregnancies, pregnancy-related illnesses, and birthing complications
- Cesarean Section, Episiotomy and other Obstetric Violence
- Stillbirths or Therapeutic Terminations
Individuals conducting research, making art, working in the hospital or alternative birth settings, and presentations by mothers, family members, and students as well as auto-ethnograpic perspectives are welcome.
All submissions for this conference should be considered for submission to the Journal of Mother Studies (JourMS), an academic, peer-reviewed journal devoted to Mother Studies. You may also submit for the conference only if you wish. Abstracts must include a title and 50-150 words for individual papers, panels, and other submission types (e.g. performance, media, music). Go to MOMmuseum.org and look for the “Conference Submissions” tab or submit a word doc. to info@MOMmuseum.org by Dec. 1
The international MOM Conference is an annual event that features research, scholarship, and creative collaboration in the area of Mother Studies. Each year, the academic committee organizes university experiences that are interdisciplinary and highlight scholarship in the area of reproductive justice, maternal health, feminist theory, gender studies, literature, and the arts. The conference is organized through the Museum Of Motherhood (M.O.M.) and has partnered with multiple institutions throughout the years (2005-present), including Manhattan College, USF Tampa, Marymount Manhattan College, Columbia, ProCreate Project, Mamapalooza, and ARM now renamed MIRCI to name a few.
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Annual Academic Conference Organizing Committee in New York City:
For questions e-mail queries to the anyone on the conference organizing committee:
Joy Rose – Founding Director, Museum of Motherhood, New York, NY, US [MOMmuseum@gmail.com]
Laura Tropp – Associate Professor and Chair, Communication Arts, Marymount Manhattan College, New York, NY, US. [email@example.com]
Lynn Kuechle – Coordinator, Taylor Nursing Institute for Family and Society, Minnesota State University, Mankato, Minnesota, US [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Aurelie Athan – Ph.D. is a full-time lecturer and MA Program Coordinator in Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University [Athan@exchange.tc.columbia.edu]
Roksana Badruddoja – Assistant Professor, Sociology, Manhattan College, Riverdale/Bronx, NY, US. [email@example.com]
Lynda Ross – Associate Professor, Women’s and Gender Studies, Chair, Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies, Athabasca University, CA [firstname.lastname@example.org}
Amber Blair – Part-time Faculty, Sociology & Anthropology, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA, US [email@example.com]
Joy Baum – Adjunct Faculty; Arts In Education Teacher Training at Queens College, CUNY, NY [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Gina Wong – Athabasca University, CA [email@example.com]