Introducing Feminist Frictions
Suzanna Danuta Walters, Editor in Chief
I am excited to introduce a new Signs initiative: Feminist Frictions: Key Concepts and Controversies. Part of our broader open-access effort—the Feminist Public Intellectuals Project, which includes Short Takes: Provocations on Public Feminism and Ask a Feminist—Feminist Frictions features essays by prominent feminist scholars engaging a key concept or debate. Most assuredly not designed as encyclopedia entries, these pieces instead are potentially controversial “white papers” that offer a nuanced and edgy take on a key issue circulating in the feminist definitional landscape. Feminist Frictions will stir up as it elaborates. In addition, each Feminist Frictions piece will be accompanied by an expansive multimedia Digital Archive that provides links and bibliographic information (including podcasts, filmographies, YouTube links, and TV clips, as well as more traditional books and articles) that speak to the concept in question.
We are thrilled to have prominent legal theorist Janet Halley start us off with some thoughts on the hotly debated issue of consent, campus sexual assault, and more particularly, the remedies sought through Title IX and affirmative consent (or “yes mean yes”) strategies. Halley’s take is sure to provoke debate and strong feelings. It does for us here at Signs. But we believe that controversial opinions and robust debate are the heart of critical feminist scholarship and thus at the core of Signs’ mission. So it is with great pleasure that I welcome you to Feminist Frictions and invite you to continue the conversation in the months to come.
The Move to Affirmative Consent
Digital Archive: Affirmative Consent
This digital archive extends the themes of Halley’s essay to examine debates around affirmative consent policies and feminist theorizing about the concept of consent in the law and in culture. It collects links to essays, videos, podcasts, and other resources. While far from exhaustive, we hope it will be of use to teachers, students, and anyone interested in issues of consent. If you know of any useful resources on the topic of consent that are not currently included, we invite you to email the journal office.
Special thanks to Jack Gronau, Laura Hartmann, Lauren Kuryloski, Victoria Papa, and Firuzeh Shokooh Valle for their research and help organizing this digital archive, and to Olivia Poulin and Amy Stahl for their help in assembling it.