In several weeks the Department of Sociology and Work Science at the University of Gothenburg will be hosting the international conference on gendered conditions for refugees during and after refuge. The main goal of the event is to discuss refugee issue from a gender and security perspective. The point of departure is the fact that the majority of refugees in Sweden are men and therefore, gender lenses seem to be crucial in order to properly analyse and understand the situation that we are currently dealing with. However, the conference will go beyond the single -track analysis of the intersections between masculinity, migration and security and will offer a platform for multidimensional discussions and analysis of the issue. Moreover, it will prompt the knowledge exchange between academics, practitioners and policy makers. Continue reading
In June 2017 the Nordic Association for Research on Men and Masculinities (NFMM), that I’m a member of, together with the Centre for Feminist Studies (CFS) at Örebro University, Sweden, will organise an international, interdisciplinary conference on men, masculinities, politics, policy and praxis. The aim of this event “to foster interdisciplinary dialogues between those researching and engaged in political or policy activism around men and masculinities, across different nations, with a view to establishing international collaborations between researchers and practitioners globally.” The Örebro conference will be the third conference ogranised by NFMM that I’m planning to attend. Two previous events held in Oslo and Reykjavik in 2012 and 2014, respectively, were actually the best men and masculinities events that I’ve had a pleasure to take part in so far and therefore, I strongly recommend 2017 conference to all of you interested in critical men and masculinities studies. More details regarding the conference are available here.
Intersectionality and intersectional theories are currently some of the most important and influential theoretical, methodological and pedagogical approaches within sociology and other social sciences, especially in their critical approach. According to the most common understanding, intersectionality is not only a theory but most of all an analytical tool that “(…) provides a framework for explaining how social divisions of race, gender, age, and citizenship status, among others, positions people differently in the world, especially in relation to global social inequality” (Hill Collins & Bilge 2016: 15). Therefore, teaching sociology students how to use this tool seems to be a very important task. However, because understanding the entire spectrum of the intersectional approach is rather complex, and even among experienced researchers some misunderstandings and simplifications occur (Naples 2009), teaching intersectionality to undergraduate and graduate students can be both beneficial and challenging and strongly depends on a) teacher expertise and auto-reflexivity, and b) the composition of the student group and the level of heterogeneity. Continue reading
In the last several weeks Göteborgs – Posten, one of the most popular daily newspapers in my city, has become a platform where the issue of the increasing number of male refugees coming to/staying in Sweden has been raised. As a feminist scholar researching men and masculinity issues for almost a decade, I couldn’t be happier to observe this type of gender-sensitive discussion being conducted in one of the leading Gothenburg newspapers. However, as the problem analysed is extremely complex, and the intersections between masculinities, migration processes and violence play a crucial role in it, further discussion should be elaborated and it cannot be limited to the presentation of contradictory statements from social researchers, which is happening at the moment. Continue reading