This weeks recommendation!
May 18th-21st, Uppsala University is holding a four day conference on Feminist Phenomenology and Medicin.
As a part of my present course at Uni, we are required to attend atleast four out of the 16 discussions on the articles presented.
Though I find the topic interesting, because of my very booked schedual, I probably won't attend to more than four or five. Today, I saw three of the speakers: Linda Fisher, Abby Wilkerson and Lanei Rodemeyer. It was pretty fascinating, though Wilkersons article, or perhaps topic, is a more correct word here) was the one that I felt most intrigued by.
Afterwards I also got to talk to two other of the guests, Marja-Liisa Honkasalo, who actually complimented me on my questions and recommended me some good reads, and Nikki Sullivan, who flew in all the way from Australia, who told me about the (for me) un-usual subject of her studies, queer dis(orientation) and the alienation of one from ones own body, and how this otherness manifests in the will to rid oneself of ones own physical appandeges, like arms and legs (what I consider self-mutilation), and the taboo around such a state.
As mentioned - fascinating!
Though the thing that gets me the most, is that someone has been sabotaging this conference. Sure, I get that the topic is controversial, but the response has been ridiculous.
About two weeks ago, the Center for Gender Studies at Uppsala University, put up big posters around Campus, to spread the word about the conference. Within a day, every single poster was gone. it was strange, but unfortunate. Yet, the next day, new posters were hung. And within a day, all were gone.
In the end, posters and flyers were hung up during 7-10 days. The University cleaning staff was informed about not taking down anything. The other departments put up flyers in support. And yet, except for posters put up behind locked glass cases, every single one was taken down within a day from being put up. For almost two weeks.
I just can't see who would be so angry, and have so much time on their hands, to spend two weeks of their lifes just to keep this up. What is wrong with them? What is it that is so provocative about gender studies (in Sweden!!), or about phenomenology? Or is it that they dislike the use of medicin in research on queer body images, or illness experience, or intersex and biomedicin?
It is sad, because even though it might not be in everyones field of interest, I'm sure there are people out there who would have liked seeing some of this, as there always is.