Proposal for a Trans Hack Feminist Manifesto!

Proposal for a TransHackFeminist Manifesto!

The TransH@ckFeminist (THF!) convergence, organised in collaboration with Calafou/etc (eclectic tech carnival), will be held in Calafou (Spain) from From August 4-11. THF! is a gathering of intersectional feminists, queer and trans people of all genders interested in better understanding, using and ultimately developing free and liberating technologies for social dissent, as an alternative to the corporatisation of technologies and the digital world. As part of the THF!, we will organise a session on writing a TransHackFeminist Manifesto.

Manifestos are a signal of their time, place, space and affect they create (Colman 2010). It is a form of narrative that can be produced by and for a broad spectrum of people in attempt to converge and inspire action. The Communist Manifesto written by Marx and Hengels in 1848 inspired activists, researchers and citizens alike for centuries and decades to come! Adbuster’s* call for 20,000 people to “flood into lower Manhattan, set up tents, kitchens, peaceful barricades and Occupy Wall Street for a few months” (Adbusters, 2011) closely ressembles the form of a Manifesto.

In the technological world particularly, Manifestos have been written by feminists and hackers. Donna Haraway ‘A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century‘ is such a well-known example. Cyberfeminists inspired by Haraway took up the manifesto format to come up with the Cyberfeminist Manifesto for the 21st Century (1991). More recently engineers who crafted the Critical Engineering Manifesto a manifesto presented at 30C3 (the 30th edition of the Computer Chaos Congress) to reimagine engineering.

What is proposed in this workshop is to draft a TransHackFeminist Manifesto!. We will collectively think about the content of our TransHackFeminist manifesto. What does it mean to be or act in a TransHackFeminist way? What are the principles that support TransHackFeminism? What do we understand when we use the words Trans, Hack and Feminism together? Trans as a noun: being a transgendered person, being in a trans, Trans as a verb meaning interrogating, crossing, fusing. Hack, hacker or hacking can be imagined as limiting and/or controversial depending on the cultural forces at play. The verb to Hack is about curiosity, it’s about re-purposing gender, technology, life. And where does feminism fits into this constellation. The TransHackFeminist manifesto will try to shed light on the relationship between feminism, trans and hack.

The goal of the workshop is to come up with a manifesto that embodies TransHackFeminism to inspire and ignite more gathering like the THF! and to position oneself on the spectrum.

The workshop will be held 1 hour per day from August 4 until August 10th.

*It’s important to realise that Adbuster’s call was reinforcing a momentum for occupying spaces that was already happening in Tunisia, Egypt, Spain, Greece, the USA, among others.

CfP for Special Issue on Feminism and (Un)Hacking

Journal of Peer Production (JoPP)

CfP for Special Issue on Feminism and (Un)Hacking

Editors: Shaowen Bardzell, Lilly Nguyen, Sophie Toupin

There has been a recent growth in interest in feminist approaches to practices like hacking, tinkering, geeking and making. What started off as an interest in furthering representations of women in the technical fields of computer science and engineering, often along the lines of liberal feminism, has now grown into social, cultural, and political analyses of gendered modes of social reproduction, expertise, and work, among others. Practices of hacking, tinkering, geeking, and making have been criticized for their overtly masculinist approaches, often anchored in the Euro-American techno-centers of Silicon Valley and Cambridge that have created a culture of entrepreneurial heroism and a certain understanding of technopolitical liberation, or around the German Chaos Computer Club (CCC).

With this special issue of the Journal of Peer Production, we hope to delve more deeply into these critiques to imagine new forms of feminist technical praxis that redefine these practices and/or open up new ones. How can we problematize hacking, tinkering, geeking and making through feminist theories and epistemologies? How do these practices, in fact, change when we begin to consider them through a feminist prism? Can we envision new horizons of practice and possibility through a feminist critique?

In this call, we understand feminist perspectives to be pluralistic, including intersectional, trans, genderqueer, and race-sensitive viewpoints that are committed to the central principles of feminism–agency, fulfillment, empowerment, diversity, and social justice.  We refer to the term hacking with a full understanding of its histories and limitations. That said, we use it provisionally to provoke, stimulate, and reimagine new possibilities for technical feminist practice. Hacking, as a form of subjectivity and a mode of techno-political engagement, has recently emerged as a site of intense debate, being equally lauded as a political ethos of freedom and slandered as an elitist form of expertise. These fervid economic and political ideals have been challenged and at times come under attack becausethey not only displace women and genderqueer within these technological communities but, more importantly, because they displace gendered forms of reflection and engagement.

Drawing on a growing community of feminist scholarship and practices, we hope to build on this momentum to invite submissions that reconceptualize the relationship between feminism and hacking. We aim to highlight feminist hackers, makers and geeks not only as new communities of experts, but as new modes of engagement and novel theoretical developments. In turn, with this special issue, we hope to challenge both concepts of feminism and hacking to ask several questions. How can feminist approaches to hacking open up new possibilities for technopolitics? Historically, hacking discourses center on political and labor aesthetics of creation, disruption, and transgression. How can feminist theories of political economy push technopolitical imaginaries towards alternate ideals of reproduction, care, and maintenance? Conversely, we also ask hownotions of hacking can open up new possibilities for feminist epistemologies and modes of engagement?

We seek scholarly articles and commentaries that address any of the following themes and beyond. We are also interested in portraits, understood broadly, of feminist hackers, makers and geeks that help us better understand feminist hacker, maker and geek culture. We also solicit experimental formats such as photo essays or other media that address the special issue themes.

  • What is distinctive about feminist hacking or hackers?  How does feminist hacking practices help create a distinct feminist hacking culture?
  • Why are feminist hacking practices emerging? Which constellation of factors help the emergence of such practices?
  • What do we know about the feminist hacker spectrum? i.e. what are the differences among feminist hacking practices and how can we make sense of these distinctions?
  • What tensions in hacking and/or in hacker practices and culture(s) come to the fore when feminist, anti-patriarchal, anti-racist, anti-capitalist and/or anti-oppression perspectives are taken?
  • What does feminist hacker ethic(s) entail?
  • What kind of social imaginaries are emerging with feminist hacking and hackers?
  • What kinds of hacking are taking place beyond the Euro-American tradition?

Submission abstracts of 300-500 words due by September 8, 2014, and should be sent to

All peer reviewed papers will be reviewed according to Journal of Peer Production guidelines; see​

Full papers and materials (peer reviewed​ papers around 8,000 words and testimonies, self-portraits and experimental formats up to 4,000 words) are due by January 31st, 2015 for review.