The Netherlands Research School of Gender Studies in cooperation with her partners organises the twenty first round of the DOING GENDER Lecture Series. These lectures stress the importance of doing gender work combined with an active involvement in the practice of gender theory and research. Key is the notion of doing gender: what is the state of the art definition of gender? How do contemporary scholars and activists utilise this definition?
Doing Gender: The New Audacity
This talk will introduce the research for Jennifer Cooke's forthcoming monograph, Contemporary Feminist Life-writing: The New Audacity. This book is the first to identify and analyse the ‘new audacity’ of recent feminist writings from life. Characterised by boldness in both style and content, willingness to explore difficult and disturbing experiences, the refusal of victimhood, and a lack of respect for traditional genre boundaries, new audacity writing takes risks with its author’s and others’ reputations, and even, on occasion, with the law. The book analyses how they write about women’s self-authorship, trans experiences, struggles with mental illness, sexual violence and rape, and the desire for sexual submission. Cooke engages with recent feminist and gender scholarship, providing discussions of vulnerability, victimhood, authenticity, trauma, and affect.
Jennifer Cooke is Senior Lecturer in English at Loughborough University and chair of the Gendered Lives Research Group. She has recently completed her monograph, Contemporary Feminist Life-writing: The New Audacity and is the editor of New Feminist Studies: Twenty-first-century Critical Interventions (both forthcoming with Cambridge University Press). Previous publications include editing Scenes of Intimacy: Reading, Writing and Theorizing Contemporary Literature (Bloomsbury Academic, 2013) and a special issue of Textual Practice on challenging intimacies and psychoanalysis (September 2013), and authorship of Legacies of Plague in Literature, Theory, and Film (Palgrave, 2009).