Theoretical-methodological Seminar on “Gender, Feminism and Spatiality”, organized by TRYSPACES Mexico Student Alliance.3 August 2018
On August 1st and 2nd 2018, the TRYSPACES Student Alliance of Mexico City organized the Theoretical-Methodological Seminar on “Gender, Feminism and Spatiality” at the Geography Institute of the UNAM. The objectives of the Seminar were: to enhance the research work of students based on gender perspectives, feminist theory and space as analytical tools for the case studies; and to identify feminist methodologies as tools for urban analysis.
On the first day of the Seminar, we were accompanied by the Collective “Geobrujas-Community of women Geographers”, who developed a body mapping workshop. This feminist cartographic tool allowed us to share and discuss our work within TRYSPACES. Thus, we recognized ourselves as a research team, we identified our common points and some of our differences, difficulties of ethnographic and research work, and our expectations and interests.
On the second day, we invited the broader community of students and young people interested to discuss with three researchers who are working on feminist and gender issues in urban spaces. We had the participation of Paula Soto, who presented her paper entitled “Gender of place and place of gender: towards a feminist methodology of urban space”. Then, Rodrigo Parrini presented “Micropolitics of space: sexualities, regulations and (de)territorializations”. Finally, Olivia Tena presented the talk “Definition of gender issues and the conditions for collective construction in feminist research”.
The interventions allowed us to learn about research developed with an emphasis on gender and spatiality. Thanks to this, it was possible to consider the challenges involved in having a gender and/or feminist perspective; to pay attention and investigate the relationship between urban space and gender; and, to question the invisible or normalized in the public spaces in which we transit. Consequently, the Seminar questioned socio-spatial inequalities, urban space regulation and movements in different conditions in regard to gender power relations, their temporary and transitory arrangements.
During the Seminar, we could see that gender and feminist methodologies contribute to the study of going people’s actions in the city. From the dialogue with our guests, we realized that expressions such as play, joy, carnival, and daily living can be studied and questioned in order to complexity our gazes in public space, on the street, and towards social subjects.
Thus, the Seminar was important to promote within TRYSPACES feminist and gender sensitivities to issues that are not always seem as relevant and bring reflexivity that enriches the social practice of people and academic exercises. In addition, the Seminar was a space of encounter and work for the members of the Student Alliance, its realization allowed us to share personal reflections around topics such as public action, transgression and gender.
Finally, we must emphasize that the Seminar was possible thanks to the collective work of those who are part of the Tryspaces Mexico Student Alliance, and the participation of young students and our guests. A special thanks to them.