CFP GSA 2015
Thirty-Ninth Annual Conference: October 1-4, 2015 in Washington, D.C.
Rebels, Radicals, and Renées: literary and historical female figures at political extremes.
The media frenzy surrounding the trial of Beate Zschäpe for her participation in right wing racially motivated murders points to the common perception of female terrorists or extremists as anomalous. Although women’s political role in society has expanded far beyond exclusively mothering future citizens and soldiers, violence against the state by women appears both more radical and shocking compared to similar acts by men. Whether one considers the RAF, the neo-Nazi scene or Islamic fundamentalism, the media is particularly intrigued by female participants in violent, fundamentalist or anti-democratic groups. Society seems to have a difficult time reconciling its understanding of women as nurturing with the kinds of activities extremist groups engage like bombings, kidnappings and murder. Yet the presence of women in many extremist movements, from Rosa Luxemburg to Ulrike Meinhoff, calls this perception into question. This panel will explore ways in which depictions of politically motivated violence is gendered. Topics may include, but are not limited to:
· NSU Mord-Serie and Beate Zschäpe
· Neo Nazi-Scene
· Female collaborators in National Socialism
· Anti-nuclear campaigns and eco-radicalism
· The “Black Block” and die Autonomen
· Islamic Fundamentalism in Germany
· Fictional representations of female extremists
We are most interested in panels that problematize the role of gender in discussions of extremist women. How central is gender to the depiction of the perpetrator and the effect of the extremist acts involved?
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