'Feminist Engagements with Austerity'
It was a pleasure to be involved in the ‘Feminist Engagements with Austerity’ conference held at Bristol University last week. Attended by a range of representatives from around the world, the conversations were both intimate and far-reaching.
I presented my research on foodbanking in the Valleys of south Wales. Specifically, my talk focused on the emotional geographies that accompany both representations and lived experiences of foodbanking. Stigmatising accounts such as those seen recently in The Daily Mail take on a life of their own, percolating into the lifeworlds of those who rely upon the service to find subsistence. However, those who volunteer and work at foodbanks do not simply accept these emotional geographies of shame, but instead attempt to build more hopeful, caring and welcoming spaces. Because of this, we must consider foodbanks as striving to achieve more than just straightforward provisioning of subsistence: they also accomplish interventions through nebulous and nuanced forms of care that are far more significant than the distribution of food alone.