Fisher Center Predoctoral Fellowship

In keeping with the Fisher Center's mission of supporting research and dialogue about gender through curricular, programmatic, and scholarly projects, the Fisher Center Steering Committee announces a call for applications for our 2013-2014 Fisher Center Predoctoral Fellowship. We seek dissertation scholars and advanced candidates for the MFA whose work critically engages the terms of our theme, Our Bodies, Ourselves? We are especially interested in candidates who would contribute to the diversity of the campus.


Over forty years ago, the Boston Women's Health Book Collective published Our Bodies, Ourselves, a landmark of feminist organization and knowledge production with respect to women's health and sexuality. While this project has expanded considerably since its initial publication in 1971, we are intrigued by its early DIY (do-it-yourself) spirit and its commitment to enriching the common good through access to information. Our Bodies, Ourselves evokes the collective excitement of women conducting their own research on their bodies, the culture of autonomous political organization, and the audacity of sexualities that exceed normalizing constraints.

What would the intentions motivating the initial project generate today? In 2013-2014, the Fisher Center will expand on the enmeshments of self-care, embodied knowledge, and political commitment motivating Our Bodies, Ourselves. We want to channel its spirit to ask where and who we are now with respect to political organizing and embodied knowledge. Thus, we are less interested in looking at our bodies, ourselves than we are in treating Our Bodies, Ourselves as a critical lens, a point of reference, and an analytical framework for further discussion.

Recent scholarship within and across a broad array of disciplines and fields has multiplied the questions that emerge at the intersection of care, knowledge, and organization. Work on biotechnologies of reproduction, practices of risk management, and techniques of population control has shown the multiple and uneven ways that norms of gender, race, and ability become mapped through the capture and calculation of the body's capacities. Investigations into cultural practices of care, intimacy, and affection have opened up our understandings of social relations, self-knowledge, and collective reproduction. Studies of health, nutrition, disease, birth, childhood, aging, and death reveal not only the impact of systemic inequality but also the ongoing influence of modes of state and economic power insofar as injunctions to health enfold bodies into regimes of surveillance and discipline. Meditations on technologies, affects, brains, genes, epistemologies, and environments have called into question assumptions regarding the closed or bounded nature of bodies, demonstrating the uneasiness of the conjunction of body to self.

The Fisher Center Steering Committee is interested in projects, then, that position bodies and embodiment as sites of problems of care, knowledge, and organization. We aim to put together a highly interdisciplinary research seminar and encourage applications from groups as well as individuals.


The fellowship offers an opportunity to gain experience teaching in private liberal arts institutions while completing dissertation work, and carries a stipend of $35,000.00. Fellows will teach one course per semester, attend Fisher Center lectures and meetings, present one colloquium, and conduct some administrative duties associated with the Visiting Scholars program. Additionally, the Pre-Doctoral Fellow will receive a $4,000 research stipend through her/his participation as a member of the Fisher Center Research Group. This group is comprised of interdisciplinary scholars who meet regularly to discuss the Fisher Center Research Theme: Our Bodies, Ourselves?


Pre-Doctoral candidates nearing completion of the dissertation and MFA candidates who have completed their coursework must submit a one-page description of scholarship, a short statement on teaching interests, up-to-date curriculum vitae, three letters of reference, and a writing sample (e.g., chapter of dissertation), and, for MFA candidates, a supplemental video or portfolio if relevant. Screening of applications will begin on March 25, 2013 and will continue until the position is filled.  Completed applications should be sent to: Jodi Dean, Director, The Fisher Center for the Study of Women and Men, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY 14456. Information on the Center can be found on our web site: http://www.hws.edu/academics/fisher_center

Hobart and William Smith Colleges are committed to attracting and supporting faculty and staff that fully represent the racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity of the nation and actively seek applications from under-represented groups. The Colleges do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, marital status, national origin, age, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression or any other protected status.

Hobart and William Smith Colleges are a highly selective residential liberal arts institution located in a small, diverse city in the Finger Lakes region of New York State.  With an enrollment of approximately 2,200, the Colleges offer 62 majors and minors from which students choose two areas of concentration, one of which must be an interdisciplinary program.  Creative and extensive programs of international study and public service are also at the core of the Colleges’ mission.