Call for Proposals: Lesbian Earth
The Journal of Lesbian Studies
Proposals due May 1, 2023. Full manuscripts due October 1, 2023
Sabine LeBel, University of New Brunswick, slebel [at] unb.ca
Chandra Laborde, University of California Berkeley, chandra_laborde [at] berkeley.edu
At the intersection of feminism and ecology, ecofeminism has recognized that the liberation of all women from patriarchal oppressive structures will not be fully effected without the liberation of nature. This bond between women and nature is not new, it has been experienced in different times, cultures, and geographies, and revisited during second-wave feminism in the West. Although sometimes this connection was essentialist, for some lesbians the identification with the land was not biological but spiritual, romantic, and erotic. The understanding of the planet’s identity shifted from “Mother Earth” to becoming a sister, a lover, the Goddess. This passion for the more-than-human aligns with contemporary discourses explored in queer and trans ecology, ecosexuality, and new materialism, where the agency of nature goes one step further into the lesbian embrace.
If queer ecologies work to expose the homophobia, transphobia, and misogyny that underpins the Western “Mother Earth” trope, then how might we imagine a lesbian Earth? Amidst the catastrophic effects of climate change we are already experiencing, this topic opens alternative structures of power relationality that can reconfigure our sociality with the forces of nature and the land into non-extractive, non-capitalist, and nonhierarchical futures.
We seek essays from a range of disciplines, including history, literature, Indigenous Knowledge, STS, critical race, cultural studies, and political ecology; and a range of approaches, including art, activist, and academic approaches.
Possible themes and inquiries to address:
- Lesbian Worldmaking: What kinds of worldmaking become possible if the relationship with a lesbian earth was taken seriously? How can memories of lesbian arcadia be helpful to imagine practical ways of living that are both fulfilling and non-destructive?
- Lesbian Science Fiction: What can we learn from previous experiments of lesbian science fiction in which women-only communities have developed special connections with the earth? How might we learn from queer Afrofuturist and Indigenous Futurist texts?
- Lesbian Ecologies: What do previous studies on empathy and lesbian genius loci bring into the contemporary understanding of the agency of nature and its animacy? What can a new understanding of lesbian ecologies reveal when lesbian dynamics are taken into our relationship with nature?
- Lesbian Futurities: How can the concepts of lesbian land, lesbian earth, and lesbian planet be mobilized so that they can alter the current white supremacist, patriarchal, capitalist, heteronormative society? What kind of feminist environmental futurity become accessible?
We welcome essays from any disciplinary perspective, of up to 5,500 words. We also encourage submissions of short, public-facing, and/or experimental articles, as well as visual art and poetry. Please send your 250-500 word proposal to Sabine LeBel (slebel [at] unb.ca) and Chandra Laborde (chandra_laborde [at] berkeley.edu) by May 1, 2023 and full manuscripts are due by October 1, 2023.
The Journal of Lesbian Studies is a peer-reviewed journal published by Taylor and Francis.