[CFP] Gender and Ability, Technology and Sound

This cross-disciplinary symposium examines the intersections of listening and ability as it relates to issues of gender and technology. Devoted to the dissemination of new unpublished research and exciting interdisciplinary encounters, the symposium will bring together leading scholars from the sciences and humanities as well as community activists to discuss political, cultural, and historical issues at the nexus of listening and ability.

The symposium will consist of invited keynote lectures, seminars, and papers sessions by leading scholars in the fields of psychology, science and technology studies (STS), and the humanities. Dr. Sandra Trehub and Dr. Mara Mills will present keynote lectures on their work in psychology and ability-technology studies, with follow up discussions planned throughout the conference. Dr. Carol Stabile will chair a panel on the challenges faced by women in the sciences and STS. There will also be a series of paper presentations with respondents from among University of Oregon’s leading faculty in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.We welcome research from a broad range of perspectives, including neurobiology, developmental psychology, music therapy, ethnomusicology, linguistics, anthropology, music perception and cognition, language acquisition, cognitive neuroscience. We interpret these fields widely, and invite scholars who engage in dialog with these fields – regardless of the discipline with which they self-identify.

Scholars of deafness like Mara Mills argue that hearing and voicing have functioned as key modes for defining and discriminating human sociality in such a way that leaves Deaf and hearing-impaired individuals on the margins of the social world. Doubtlessly, technology has played a central role both in re-inscribing and ameliorating this audist and phonocentric world. This conference invites researchers, scholars, and/or activists to participate in a conversation regarding how we think about deaf/Deaf issues historically, technologically, and futuristically. Further, we invite engaged intellectuals to combine the issues of ability and sound with other paradigms of activism and theory, such as anti-colonialism, anti-racism, and/or feminist issues.

Papers are invited that report empirical and theoretical research addressing these topics and expanding our knowledge of these intersecting fields. Researchers interested in presenting a paper should submit a 500 word abstract by  February 11, 2013 detailing 1) the main findings or argument of their papers, and b) their potential to contribute to broad conversations in the sciences and humanities around gender, technology, listening, and ability (please visit the symposium website for more details). Abstracts should be submitted to jmendoz4 .AT. uoregon.edu

Submissions will be reviewed anonymously by symposium organizers Jenny Mendoza and Bryce Peake in consultation with leading scholars in their fields. Selected papers from this event will also be submitted as part of a proposed issue on gender, sound, technology, and ability for Ada: A Journal of Gender, New Media, and Technology. In its first issue, Ada received over 30,000 downloads, and we look forward to expanding the exciting conversations regarding gender, new media, and technology occurring there.

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