May 2022: Online Workshop series on anti-gender politics and pedagogies of populism in Central and Eastern Europe

April 20, 2022

In recent years, social movements and political campaigns challenging women’s rights and LGBTQ+ equality have mobilized publics across the globe, from West Africa to Central and Eastern Europe, South Asia to North America. Even as some countries have witnessed an expansion of reproductive rights, marriage equality, and the legal recognition of transgender people, in many others these rights have been substantially weakened, diminished, or outright withdrawn. As commentators and academics have explored, “anti-gender” and “anti-LGBTQ+” movements often reach beyond national borders and draw upon shared strategic and material resources. Rather than consider such movements as independent national(ist) “backlashes,” this series of workshops seeks to explore their connections historically and geographically, as regional expressions of a well-connected and well-funded conservative coalition. And yet, these campaigns are not monolithic; while their actors may share similar goals, considerable differences can be observed in their political, cultural, and religious backgrounds.

Bringing together leading academics from across the social sciences, this workshop series asks: how did these movements come together, why, and to what extent are they in fact unified? Who are their central actors? Do they share a vision of the past, present, and future? What is their global appeal and why do they seem to be succeeding?

This workshop series takes up these questions from three perspectives -- exploring them historically, transnationally, and pedagogically -- in order to illuminate the development of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics and to think collectively about how to teach our present moment. Importantly, this workshop series endeavors to situate such movements, so far largely discussed through regional contexts, within a broader global comparative.

Workshop #1. Anti-Gender and Anti-LGBTQ+ Politics in Central and Eastern Europe: Historical Continuities, Transnational Connections, Contested Futures

This workshop examines anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ movements in Central and Eastern Europe within the broader context of 20th-century political and social developments. Should we understand the contemporary anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ movement in the region as a product of late state socialist gender politics, post-socialist anti-imperialist discourses, a conservative reaction to liberalism’s post-2008 crisis, or something else altogether?

Panelists:
Éva Fodor, Professor of Gender Studies, Central European University
Alissa Klots, Assistant Professor of History, University of Pittsburgh
Elżbieta Korolczuk, Associate Professor in Sociology, Södertörn University
Jill Massino, Associate Professor of History, University of North Carolina–Charlotte

Moderated by:
Susan Gal, Mae & Sidney G. Metzl Distinguished Service Professor of Anthropology, Linguistics, and of Social Sciences in the College, University of Chicago

Date: Friday, May 13, 2022
Time: 11AM-12:30PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Register here
For more information, follow this link

Workshop #2. Pedagogies of Populism and Anti-Gender Politics in Central and Eastern Europe

This collaborative discussion raises pedagogical concerns surrounding contemporary anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics. Programs in gender studies, gender history, and sex education face increasing attacks in Europe and in the United States. How can we as pedagogues, drawing upon our various disciplinary backgrounds, address the rise of anti-gender and anti-LGBTQ+ politics with our students?

Panelists:
Maria Bucur, John W. Hill Chair of East European History and Professor, Indiana University
Janet Johnson, Professor of Political Science, Brooklyn College, City University of New York
Elżbieta Korolczuk, Associate Professor in Sociology, Södertörn University

Moderated by:
Tara Zahra, Homer J. Livingston Professor of East European History and the College, University of Chicago

Date: Friday, May 20, 2022
Time: 10AM-12PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Register here
For more information, follow this link

Events sponsored by: Center for East European/Russian and Eurasian Studies; Center for Latin American Studies; Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality; Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory; Department of History (University of Chicago); Global Studies (University of Chicago); Pozen Family Center for Human Rights; and the Transnational Approaches to Modern Europe Workshop.

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