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Gendered Island Futures: Generational perspectives on motherhood and change in the Faroe Islands

Motherhood and the experiences of motherhood have been at the forefront of public debate and literature in Denmark in recent years. At the same time, researchers are asking new questions about how relationships between the nations of the Danish Realm and former colonies have shaped power and gender perceptions in, for example, Greenland and the Virgin Islands. The Faroe Islands are not represented in this field, which is a problem, as issues of motherhood and gender have been at the center of major social transformations on the islands since the 1950s. Most recently, this has emerged in debates about the restrictive legislation on abortion and about the formal recognition of same-sex parents.

Gendered Island Futures explores previously unexplored perspectives on motherhood and social change in the Faroe Islands. We examine motherhood from different gendered perspectives, but also from three different generational perspectives. The project develops what we call a generational approach to motherhood and social change by interviewing interconnected lives across generations, combined with participants' own archives such as photo albums, social media, or home videos. In addition, we also see our generational approach as research that generates new perspectives on gender and motherhood in the Faroe Islands. We do this through experimental digital interventions and in a radio podcast in collaboration with the Faroese KVF. In this way, the project provides a better understanding of how island life shapes gender and motherhood and, in turn, how motherhood shapes both biological and socio-cultural futures in the Faroe Islands.

Gendered Island Futures is generously funded by the Danish Research Council through a Sapere Aude Starting Grant and led by Nanna Schneiderman. The project runs from 2023-2026. Read more about the project here, and  read more about the project team, and what we are reading by following the links on the right.


Nanna Schneidermann

Associate Professor School of Culture and Society - Department of Anthropology