Intersectionality as our Shared Future: Responses to Patricia Hill Collins’ Intersectionality as Critical Social Theory (2019)

Zalfa FeghaliMMUe

Chair: Zalfa Feghali (University of Leicester)

This roundtable offers responses to Patricia Hill Collins’ Intersectionality as Critical Social Theory (2019). Intersectionality gives us a vocabulary to have conversations about our overlapping privileges and oppressions; as Collins puts it, “intersectionality stands in a meeting place of its own making” and its implications are “far reaching” (41). Working with Collins’ book as a starting point, the Journal of American Studies seeks to spark reflective conversations about the role of intersectionality within and outside “English”, including postcolonial studies, American and Canadian Studies, and Caribbean Studies, especially in relation to how intersectionality as both theory and practice can help shape the future of our fields.

Topics we may cover over the course of the 75-minute roundtable may include (and are certainly not limited to):

  • Teaching intersectionality. How do we connect this to our aspirations to inclusive curricula?
  • In what ways can we use intersectionality to reflect on our positions within (and outside) UK Higher Education?
  • Class and academia;
  • Intersectionality and the BME attainment/award gap;
  • Intersectionality, academic precarity, and neoliberal HE;
  • Intersectionality in our research;
  • Intersectionality and work around impact, outreach, and knowledge exchange.

Envisioned as a roundtable conversation, this panel will not offer formal papers beyond brief responses from speakers at the start of the session (20 minutes total) before opening up to become a q&a and broader discussion session. We hope that this format will encourage a lively conversation with the audience so that we can all engage deeply with Collins’ book while reflecting on the theory and praxis of intersectionality in our work, lives, and working lives.

Zalfa Feghali is Lecturer in American Literature at the University of Leicester, where she works on contemporary North American cultural studies, border studies, and protest writing. She is author of Crossing Borders and Queering Citizenship (Manchester UP), co-editor of the forthcoming Routledge Companion to Gender and Borderlands, and Associate Editor of the Journal of American Studies.

Rachel Gregory Fox is Lecturer in World Literature at Queen Mary, University of London, where she teaches modules on postcolonial literature and Middle Eastern writing. Her first monograph on the representational politics of Afghan, Iranian, and Pakistani women in contemporary literary and visual media is under contract with Routledge. She is also co-editing Post-Millennial Palestine: Memory, Literature, Resistance with Dr Ahmad Qabaha, which is under contract with Liverpool University Press.

Leighan Renaud is a lecturer at the New College for the Humanities where she teaches English Literature. She recently completed her PhD at the University of Leicester where she explored representations of matrifocality in contemporary Anglophone Caribbean fiction.

Gillian Roberts is Associate Professor in North American Cultural Studies at the University of Nottingham. Her current research focuses on postcolonial film adaptations. She is the author of Prizing Literature (U of Toronto P) and Discrepant Parallels (McGill-Queen’s UP) and editor of Parallel Encounters (with David Stirrup, Wilfrid Laurier UP) and Reading between the Borderlines (McGill-Queen’s UP).

Hannah Spruce is an AHRC Midlands3Cities doctoral student in English at the University of Leicester. Her research explores psychopathy narratives in contemporary Canadian and U.S. women’s writing. She is the former Managing Editor of the Journal of Languages, Texts, and Society and her research has been published in Estudios Irlandeses.

Sun 11:30 am - 12:45 pm