Table Topics: Can Cool Little Boys Wear Skirts? Gender, Parenthood and Sexuality (Sabine Grenz)
To ask the question of whether a boy can wear skirt is related to the two-sex concept prevalent in the West. Moreover, the question particularly arises, when we assume sex to be somehow ‘natural’. By wondering about this we relay on assumed clarities about what it means to a boy and a girl. In our assumptions we tend to forget that also norms like wearing skirts and trousers are socially constructed and historically developed. Hence, they can change. Can we change those now? Can we work on more liberal clothes orders than we already have? What would we have to do?
On the table I would like to discuss the historicity of sex and gender as well as our modern constructions of femininity and masculinity that allow certain clothes and seemingly forbid others. By doing this, I will draw on works of historians as well as social scientists.
Sabine Grenz is acting professor at the Göttingen Diversity Research Institute. She holds a degrees in education, sociology, psychology and gender studies from the University of Cologne and the London School of Economis and a PHD from the Humboldt University in Berlin. In 2014 she completed her habilitation thesis on the constructions of femininity in women’s diaries of the Second World War and has since taught at several universities in Europe. Currently, she focuses in her research on the connection between knowledge production and gender in the form of gendered discourses of meanings of life, while she maintains involved in leading positions of national and international research clusters, such as the U4 network.