RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2016

RGS-IBG Logo

195 VEXING THE NEXUS: FEMINIST INTERVENTIONS (2): Researching the ‘domestic nexus’
Affiliation Gender and Feminist Geographies Research Group
Convenor(s) Sherilyn MacGregor (The University of Manchester, UK)
Sarah Marie Hall (The University of Manchester, UK)
Alison Browne (The University of Manchester, UK)
Helen Holmes (The University of Manchester, UK)
Chair(s) Sherilyn MacGregor (The University of Manchester, UK)
Timetable Thursday 01 September 2016, Session 2 (11:10 - 12:50)
Session abstract Relational and intersectional thinking are longstanding foundations of feminist theorizing in geography, politics, and other disciplines. So too is the adoption of a ‘hermeneutic of suspicion’ in the face of academic trends that claim newness while ignoring intellectual debts and antecedents. Building on Allouche et al’s criticisms of the nexus approach as being a ‘(re)discovery by experts working in silos of what practising farmers and fishers already knew’ (2014:23), our purpose in this session is to deploy feminist insights to trouble nexus thinking. Much of what appears in the nexus literature seems both comfortably familiar and strangely blind to gender analysis, as is the case with theory and research in sustainable consumption and production more broadly. While theories of practice have made considerable progress in moving forwards debates in this area beyond the realm of individual consumer agency, we contend that the baby may have been thrown out with the proverbial bathwater. In focusing on practices themselves, we lose sight not only of individuals, but entire axes of difference along which practices vary in their performance and consequently in their reproduction. The starting point for this session is that gender is an important cross-cutting dimension of the water-energy-food (WEF) nexus. Asking questions about whose labour makes WEF available as resources, and in what locations, inevitably leads to analyses of feminized roles, women’s bodies and domestic spaces (e.g., kitchens, larders and laundries). Yet social practices, corporealities, and materialities are largely absent from nexus thinking. This 2 part session will consist of a traditional paper session, and then a ‘kitchen table’ discussion to give critical consideration of the knowledges and practices of those whose feminized labour is at the centre of a ‘domestic nexus’. This will be a ‘participant-led topic choice and discussion’-type roundtable, which will follow on from the themes and questions raised in paper session (session 1). There will be five to six small group ‘kitchen-table’ discussions facilitated by the paper givers from session 1. The overarching questions are: ‘How does feminist research on the domestic nexus challenge the dominant discourse of nexus thinking?’ and ‘How do we and should we research the domestic nexus?’ Participants will also be encouraged to pursue other questions that are of interest to them. All participants will be invited to discuss ideas stemming from own work and disciplinary backgrounds as well as to network with colleagues with similar research interests. The session will be introduced and facilitated by the session chair.
Linked Sessions VEXING THE NEXUS: FEMINIST INTERVENTIONS (1): Vexing the nexus: feminist interventions in nexus thinking
Contact the conference organisers to request a change to session or paper details: AC2016@rgs.org
Researching the 'domestic nexus'
Sherilyn MacGregor (The University of Manchester, UK)
This will be a 'participant-led topic choice and discussion'-type roundtable, which will follow on from the themes and questions raised in paper session (session 1). There will be five to six small group 'kitchen-table' discussions facilitated by the paper givers from session 1. The overarching questions are: 'How does feminist research on the domestic nexus challenge the dominant discourse of nexus thinking?' and 'How do we and should we research the domestic nexus?' Participants will also be encouraged to pursue other questions that are of interest to them. All participants will be invited to discuss ideas stemming from own work and disciplinary backgrounds as well as to network with colleagues with similar research interests. The session will be introduced and facilitated by the session chair.