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Feminism in Motion 2022 Event Recap & Pictures

Feminism in Motion logo

Thank you to everyone who came out to our fourth annual Feminism in Motion celebration! See below for a digitized version of the program, scans of some of the feminist doodles that our attendees created during the event presentations and rich discussions, and pictures from the day’s festivities.



2022 FeMo Picture Gallery


T.E.A. with WGS: The Stare and the Slap: Embodiment, Disability, and Pedagogy on the Public Stage

TEA: Embodiment & Disability Pedagogy

This Teaching to Engage and Activate (T.E.A.), open to faculty and students, takes on “the gaze” as performed at the Oscars when Will Smith infamously slapped Chris Rock, who had just made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s diagnosis of alopecia. We will use embodied pedagogy to begin with the “stare,” the moment of Chris Rock calling out a black woman with a non-normative body and think through what this means for intersections of race, gender, and disability. Then we move, again using some theater exercises, to “the slap,” again examining it in terms of gender, violence, race and, of course, performance. This TEA will open up WGS faculty and students to using embodied pedagogy and disability studies as valuable teaching and learning tools.

Every Body Deserves Lovin’ Yoga Class

Kennae Miller Yoga Class

WGS students are hosting a body positive event, Every Body Deserves Lovin’ Yoga Class on Friday. April 15th at 5PM at 7 Vanderhorst St (courtyard by NSP). Please bring your own mat and join in on a free yoga class focused on unconditional body acceptance led by Transformation Yoga‘s yoga guide Kennae Miller. Followed by yoga, Kennae, an Inner Work Instigator, will also hold a discussion about self-care. We hope to see you there!

Women & Pilgrimage Book Launch

Women & Pilgrimage

Join the program next week for a WGS-sponsored book launch for Women and Pilgrimage. The event is taking place Monday, April 11, 3-5pm to hear from multiple authors featured in the book, many of whom are our faculty colleagues. We will gather with refreshments in the Alumni Center, and you can pre-register for the Zoom option: here.

From the publisher:

Women and Pilgrimage presents scholarly essays that address the lacunae in the literature on this topic. The content includes well-trodden domains of pilgrimage scholarship like sacred sites and holy places. In addition, the book addresses some of the less-well-known dimensions of pilgrimage, such as the performances that take place along pilgrims’ paths; the ephemeral nature of identifying as a pilgrim, and the economic, social and cultural dimensions of migratory travel. Most importantly, the book’s feminist lens encourages readers to consider questions of authenticity, essentialism, and even what is means to be a “woman pilgrim”. The volume’s six sections are entitled: Questions of Authenticity; Performances and Celebratory Reclamations; Walking Out: Women Forging Their Own Paths; Women Saints: Their Influence and Their Power; Sacred Sites: Their Lineages and Their Uses; and Different Migratory Paths. Each section will enrich readers’ knowledge of the experiences of pilgrim women. Readers’ understanding will be further enhanced by the book’s:· interdisciplinary nature: The contributors hail from a wide range of disciplines, including Anthropology, Political Science, French, Spanish, Fine Art, and Religious Studies;
· uniqueness: The text brings together previously scattered resources into one volume;
· feminist perspective: Much of the subject matter utilizes feminist theories and methodologies and argues that further research will be welcome.

International Transgender Day of Visibility

Transgender Visibility Day

Women’s & Gender Studies in co-sponsorship with the Sustainability Literacy Institute, Gender & Sexuality Equity Center, Charleston Pride, and PRISM are excited to share this student organized event to celebrate International Transgender Day of Visibility!

National Today highlights the history of this special day:

There is no doubt that the transgender community continues to face discrimination worldwide. Be it in the workplace, schools, or society, it has been subjected to immense harassment and inequality in every part of the world for the ‘sin’ of being born different.

Rachel Crandall, a U.S.-based transgender activist, founded this day in 2009 to raise awareness for the incredible burden of discrimination the community faces in every setting imaginable. The need to bring a day of ‘visibility’ for the transgender community is indicative of the oppression they face in many sectors of life. Crandall wanted to highlight the fact that the only transgender-centric day that is internationally recognized is Transgender Day of Remembrance, which is in mourning of members of the community who had lost their lives, and that there was no day to pay homage to living transgender people. By 2014, the day was observed by activists in Ireland and Scotland while, in 2015, many transgender people took part in the event by participating in social media campaigns. They successfully made the day go viral by posting selfies and personal stories.

Therefore, on Transgender Day of Visibility on March 31, annually, we recognize and revere their contributions, successes, and relentless resilience in standing tall and strong in the face of injustice. Through this Day of Visibility, we hope to induce moral responsibility and tolerance, and lift the restrictions on the rights of transgender people.

Engaging with Definitions of Southern Matriarchy with the authors of Through Mama’s Eyes

Through Mama's Eyes

Join WGS in partnership with the Avery Research Center for a virtual discussion Engaging with Definitions of Southern Matriarchy with the Authors of Through Mama’s Eyes.  Preregister for this Zoom event here.

From the publisher:

Through Mama’s Eyes: Unique Perspectives in Southern Matriarchy looks at the concept of Southern matriarchy and how it has influenced American society. In 2016, the Ernest J. Gaines Center hosted a public program that explored the way women use physical space in literature. That program created many discussions of how the term matriarch is understood and applied, especially in the southern regions of the United States. Southern matriarchy is something that has been idolized and parodied in popular formats, such as movies and film, and the purpose of this book is to explore all of the faceted interpretations of southern matriarchy and its impact on our society. This book contains 17 interdisciplinary essays that each look at the way standard tropes of southern matriarchy are interpreted and challenged through literature, history, and the sciences. Like the program that inspired the book, each essay can be used as an invitation to engage in deeper conversations and research about southern matriarchy and its perceptions as a whole. This book is a compilation of curiosity and intrigue surrounding a societal structure that has influenced so many aspects of so many cultures across America—the Southern Matriarch.

About the editors:

Cheylon Woods is the Head and Archivist of the Ernest J. Gaines Center, which is located at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Mrs. Woods has actively worked to assist in the preservation of rural African American communities and the stories of the Matriarchs who worked tirelessly to hold those communities together.

Kiwana T. McClung is a Baton Rouge, Louisiana native, an Associate Professor in the School of Architecture & Design at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and faculty advisor to the UL chapter of NOMAS, the student organization for National Organization for Minority Architects (NOMA). Kiwana’s research concerns the socio-spatial intricacies of our increasingly globalized and multicultural societies and how they affect the built environment, architectural education, and the profession.


Women on Fire

Women on Fire Gender Equality Week

Please join WGS in partnership with Master of Public Administration and Political Science on March 14th at 4:00pm for “Women on Fire,” an event where we will host a virtual discussion with seven dynamic women leaders in Fire Service, Paramedics, and EMS who are making a difference both in the field and in the greater Charleston region. This will be a unique opportunity to learn more about how these women leaders climbed the ladder to success as well as how they navigated obstacles along the way.

This event will kick-off Gender Equity Week. As outlined on CofC’s Critical Conversations webpage, “During Women’s History Month – celebrated annually each March – the College of Charleston reflects on the myriad contributions women and gender-diverse communities have made, and continue to make, on the growth and identity of the institution.

‘The purpose of Gender Equity Week is to build community and invite reflection on the many ways that gender shapes our identities, experiences and societal structures locally and globally,’ said former GSEC Interim Director Kristi ‘Kaj’ Brian. ‘The events throughout the week are designed to inspire and empower our students and our community. Students will have the opportunity to learn from the authors, panelists and presenters while building the awareness and skills necessary to negotiate for equitable wages, to navigate gender dynamics at work and to explore the importance of gender pronouns and expansive gender identities.’

In support of the College’s mission to create equity in learning and living on campus and beyond, GSEC promotes non-discrimination policies and equal protection for all individuals regardless of ability, race, class, gender expression or identity, sexual orientation or religion. GSEC advocates for a culture of resistance against inequality, judgment, prejudice and bias in all its forms.

Nearly 100 years ago, the first female student, Pierrine St. Claire Smith Byrd (Class of 1922), graduated from the College. It would be nearly half a century, in 1967, before the first Black women, Carrie Nesbitt Gibbs ’72 and Angela Brown Gilchrist ’72, were admitted. Change can be slow, often frustratingly so. Gender Equity Week and yearlong efforts by campus partners ensure it never stalls.”

Register for the Zoom event here.

Trailblazers: Black Women Who Helped Make America Great

Trailblazers Event

Join WGS on Monday, February 28th at 4PM for a virtual conversation with the authors of Trailblazers: Black Women Who Helped Make America Great. Register for the Zoom chat here.

Excerpts from 2Leaf Press’ TRAILBLAZERS press release:

NEW YORK, NY —Black women have inspired, elevated, and transformed society throughout the ages and across generations. While often breaking through barriers of racism and sexism, with underwhelming recognition or documentation, they managed to achieve greatness. TRAILBLAZERS, Black Women Who Helped Make America Great, American Firsts/American Icons by Gabrielle David shines a light on these historically marked footholds, which often led to widespread cultural change. TRAILBLAZERS is a six-volume series examining the lives and careers of over 400 brilliant women from the eighteenth century to the present who blazed uncharted paths in every conceivable way. The volumes will be released over the course of 2021 and 2022. The first volume is scheduled to publish November 1, 2021 exclusively at University of Chicago Press (, and is available on major online outlets on December 6, 2021. TRAILBLAZERS acquired discretionary grants from the Open Meadows Foundation, The New York Women’s Foundation, Women’s Sports Foundation, and sponsorship from the National Sorority Phi Delta Kappa, Inc., Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and The International Association of Blacks in Dance. Their financial aid and partnership,represents this volume’s featured sections, Activism, Dance, and Sports.

Each TRAILBLAZERS volume is organized into three to four sections. Besides providing biographical information written in accessible prose for a broad audience, replete with powerful photographs, David also provides a historical timeline for each section written from a Black woman’s viewpoint that maps out the significance of the featured women that follow. Volume 1 features an assortment of seventy activists, dancers, and athletes. We learn about the significance of activists like Ella Baker, Pauli Murray, and Addie Wyatt, who represent the hundreds of unnamed women who participated in the civil rights and labor movements, and women following their path, like Michelle Alexander, Glynda Carr and Leah Penniman. We re-discover dancers Jeni Legon and Margot Webb, who are honored alongside Josephine Baker, Katherine Dunham, Janet Collins, and a new generation including Cynthia Oliver, Misty Copeland, Dormeshia, and Camille A. Brown. And then Athletes who disrupted the world of sports, including the nearly forgotten tennis champion Ora Washington and Alice Coachman, the first Olympic gold medalist, to Debi Thomas, Maritza Correia McClendon, and tennis phenom Serena Williams. Throughout the series, as David re-introduces many of these women into the public sphere, they are not always in predictable ways. For example, Debbie Allen makes a brief appearance in this volume, not as actress or director, but rather as the dancer she initially trained to be, reminding us that Black women are multifaceted, multitalented, and complex. What binds these women together is that as they persevered, often challenging and shaking-up the status quo. With painstaking research, David created an affordable and visually appealing accessible reference book. From the foremothers who blazed the trail, to the women who followed in their footsteps, TRAILBLAZERS offers powerful and inspiring role models for women and girls from all cultural backgrounds. An importance reference book for people who are intellectually curious and want to learn more about Black women in America. TRAILBLAZERS, a clarion call for recognition of the transformative work Black women’s accomplishments, is a vital reference guide for use in schools, libraries, and homes.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: GABRIELLE DAVID is a multidisciplinary artist who is a musician, photographer, digital designer, poet and writer. She attended LaGuardia Community College (CUNY) and New School University. David is the publisher of 2Leaf Press and serves as chair of the board of 2Leaf Press Inc. Over the years, she has participated in and organized poetry reading panel discussions, festivals and workshops, and has published articles and essays in numerous publications. David is co-editor of What Does It Mean to be White in America, Breaking the White Code of Silence, A Collection of Personal Narratives (2016), the editor of Branches of the Tree of Life (2014), and co-editor of Hey Yo! Yo Soy! 40 Years of Nuyorican Street Poetry (2012). She is the author of the poetry chapbooks, Spring Has Returned and I Am Renewed (1996), and This is Me: A Collection of Poems and Things (1994).

ABOUT DR. CHANDRA WARING: Dr. WARING is an Assistant Professor at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell. Her research focuses on the growing bi/multiracial population. Her interest in race stems from being raised in a multiracial family in a three very different contexts: Germany, Georgia and Connecticut. Waring’s work has been published in numerous publications and she earned her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Connecticut in 2013, where she was a Multicultural Fellow.

Gender Identity in Second Language

Ilan Yona Event

Join Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies and WGS on Tuesday, Feb. 22nd for Gender Identity in Second Language at 7PM in Arnold Hall or on Zoom! Register at

Ilan Yona is a doctoral student at Middlebury College who researches the relationship between the acquisition of highly gendered languages such as Hebrew and student gender identity. He argues that highly genderized languages represent sexually oppressive structures for students, especially in terms of how they identify themselves in such languages. Hebrew is highly gendered language, and can pose certain problems for students coming to it from less gendered languages. This lecture will explore mutual interactions among the three elements of gender, identity, and second language acquisition.


WGS Intersections: Dyani White Hawk A Conversation

Dyani White Hawk Panel Event

Join WGS and Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art on Thursday, Feb. 17th at 5:30 p.m. for another WGS Intersections! Don’t miss DYANI WHITE HAWK a Conversation. The panel will feature Lisa Collins (Wassamasaw Tribe), Beckee Garris (Catawba Nation), Chief Michelle Wise Mitchum (Pine Hill Indian Tribe), and Dana Muckelvaney (Edisto Natchez-Kusso Tribe). Moderators are Dr. Kris De Welde (Director & Prof. of WGS), Dr. Brennan Keegan (Religious Studies), and Dr. Annette Watson (Political Science).

This is a virtual event. Watch at Free and open to the public.

About her exhibit HEAR HER (from Halsey’s website):
Dyani White Hawk’s work illuminates the lived experiences of Native Peoples. With her video, photography, and works in other media, she aims to use language of visual art to bring light to the chasm between our understanding of history and the truth. Her work weaves together forms from the canon of Western art along with the visual languages and traditions of Native people. In doing so, her work spotlights Native women, whose strength and fortitude through centuries of colonization have helped their people’s languages and cultures to survive.

On view in Hear Her, White Hawk’s video installation LISTEN presents a series of Native women speaking the language of their people. Each film takes place on the land of each participant’s nation, and viewers hear the respective languages without translation. As such, White Hawk puts a focus not only on the resonance of each speaker, but she also reveals society’s collective ignorance of the people, culture, and language of those native to the land on which we live. Chapter 1 of LISTEN features eight videos and White Hawk plans to continue the series to include 24 videos. The Halsey Institute commissioned White Hawk to create a video to honor the Catawba Nation, located in South Carolina.

White Hawk’s photography installation I Am Your Relative confronts the gross stereotypes and distorted caricatures that dehumanize and commodify Native women. This installation, along with LISTEN, helps White Hawk shine a light on the misrepresentation of Native Peoples while reinforcing the fact that we are all connected as human beings.

Dyani White Hawk: Hear Her is sponsored in part by South Carolina Humanities, a not-for-profit organization; inspiring, engaging and enriching South Carolinians with programs on literature, history, culture and heritage. This exhibition is also supported by the Center for Sustainable Development at the College of Charleston, which provides students with the opportunities and resources to engage in our community sustainably.

Image Credit: @dwhitehawk in Collaboration with photographer Tom Jones, “I Am Your Relative” [detail], 2020, photo sculpture, © Dyani White Hawk. Courtesy of the artist and Bockley Gallery, Minneapolis, MN.

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