Despite a critique in global feminist circles of the hegemony of “Western” feminism, and despite the fact that some feminist journals have self-consciously sought to broaden who they include, the reality of academic publishing continues to reproduce the predominance of Anglophone journals with editors and editorial board members largely based in the global North. Journal content often reflects the priorities and understandings of these editors, and knowledge produced in the South is rarely showcased in such journals. However, there are today various feminist journals that are based in the global South and that have become important repositories for feminist knowledge produced outside the North.
Based on the study of 15 feminist journals, this working paper elaborates a social cartography of feminist academic journals that seek to serve as a site for transboundary feminist reflection and knowledge production.
By taking feminist journals as spatialities, Juliana Santos de Carvalho – PhD student in International Relations and Political Science at the Graduate Institute and PhD Affiliate with the Gender Centre – and Carolina Oliveira Beghelli explore how feminist journal editors create, maintain, and imagine spaces of feminist knowledge production and dissemination in their embodied and locally constructed environments.
The paper focuses on how these journals reflect and apply decolonial critique and praxis to their work, recognising, however, that this process is plural, fallible, and heavily dependent on the contexts and limitations of each editorial team and on the constraints brought by the norms of academic knowledge production and dissemination. Despite the tension between being a feminist journal and still striving for academic legitimation, prestige, and resources, the editorial teams demonstrated an active preoccupation with creating spaces for subversion within the system through specific practices. The journals also shared problems related to language, translation, and travelling, the most common concern being the relationship between local languages and English as the academic lingua franca.
Santos de Carvalho, Juliana and Carolina Oliveira Beghelli. 2021. Everyday decolonialities of feminist publishing: A social cartography. Working Paper 14 | 2021. Geneva: Gender Centre, The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.
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