Destroying the joint and dying of shame? A geography of revitalised feminism in social media and beyond

Jessica Mclean*, Sophia Maalsen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Has feminist geography really lost all relevance? This paper examines what the revitalisation of interest in feminist thought and practice, especially in Australia, means for geography. We illuminate the trajectory of the feminist revitalisation in new media and beyond through developing a spatial analysis influenced by Rose and Fincher. Notions of paradoxical space and issue publics inform this reading of two pivotal moments in the feminist revitalisation: first, the creation of Destroy the Joint, a campaign launched and maintained in Facebook and Twitter spaces; and second, the Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard's speech against sexism and misogyny in Parliament in October 2012. Both these moments, coming from political and public spaces, received worldwide interest, and we critically examine the context and ramifications of these instances while situating the institutional processes surrounding them within the growing feminist revitalisation. In so doing, we argue that these Australian-based cases indicate a growing feminist movement that is open and multiply focused, connecting personal politics to public campaigning, and achieving material impacts. We conclude that developing a feminist geography of new media is a challenging task, as these spaces circumvent and renegotiate traditional spatial dimensions - including scale and place - through their dynamic networks. It is, nevertheless, a task worth doing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-256
Number of pages14
JournalGeographical Research
Volume51
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013

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