Update: this has been postponed because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
New dates TBC (sometime in summer 2020).
English-language symposium at ICU on "Feminist/Queer Utopias & Dystopias: Alternative Worlds Imagined Through Non-Normative Desires and Bodies"
Recent years have been witnessing an increase in the number of popular cultural works that present themselves as feminist or queer. Curiously enough, many of these works are set in alternative utopian or dystopian worlds.
Even more interesting is the fact that queer and feminist representations in these genres seem to be respectively coagulating around two separate poles: queer representations tend to be the locus of utopian hope, rather than dystopian despair, as seen for instance in Sense8 (2015-2018), or the two Black Mirror episodes “San Junipero” (2016) and “Striking Vipers” (2019); while representations of feminist issues within alternative worlds tend to be set in dystopian rather than utopian frameworks, with The Handmaid’s Tale (2017-) being a prominent example.
This raises some important questions: Is the inclusion of queer issues as utopian horizon merely the result of market-oriented image politics and political correctness? Or do these utopian representations of queer issues offer us new ways of imagining alternative, better futures? If so, how? And for whom? How do dystopian representations of feminist issues correspond to the present reality of intersectional feminist politics?
Addressing these questions, this symposium aims to critically reflect on how feminist/queer perspectives intersect with utopian and dystopian imagination in recent works of popular fiction.
International Conference Room, Kiyoshi Togasaki Memorial Dialogue House, International Christian University
English with Japanese translation.
Free / open to all; no registration required.
Tokyo Humanities - Events
Upcoming humanities-related events in Tokyo.