21st Annual Women's History Conference


Associate Director, Graduate Program in Women’s History

E-mail Tara


The Struggle Continues: Intersectional Activism in the Age of Gender Based Violence and Authoritarian Oppression

March 1 & 2, 2019 

Recent high profile legal battles in the U.S. have brought attention to the problems of sexual assault and violence against women. These include the arrest of Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein, the conviction and prison sentence of comedian Bill Cosby, and the battle over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court. Activism against gender-based violence has become the focus of attention by both NGOs and local organizations resulting in social movements like #SayHerName and #MeToo. These concerns are also not isolated to the U.S. Movements in India, Kenya, China, and the UK have amplified the voices of victims of individual and state sponsored violence.

Intersectionality, a term first theorized by feminist activist and legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw, was based on the previous work of Black women in organizations such as the Combahee River Collective and the Third World Women's Alliance. These activists, by foregrounding the notion of “simultaneous oppressions,” gave voice to the frustrations surrounding the inability of feminist and anti-racist activists to consider the intersections of oppression that women of color faced. Crenshaw saw intersectionality as a tool to address failures within those movements. It is through Crenshaw’s framework that we seek to interrogate global gendered violence, now and in the past.

Conference Schedule

Friday March 1, 2019


4-8 p.m.
Heimbold Lobby

Plenary Session

6-7:30 p.m.
Heimbold Auditorium

Opening Remarks
Announcement of the Gerda Lerner Award
Introduction of Our Keynote Speaker
Mary Dillard, Director of the Graduate Program in Women’s History

Keynote Address
Karen Cheeks-Lomax, Chief Executive Officer, My Sister’s Place

The mission of My Sister's Place is to end domestic violence and human trafficking through comprehensive services, advocacy, and community education. My Sister’s Place works to create a world in which every individual has the basic human right to be free from gender-based violence and to engage in relationships that embrace the principles of respect, equality, and safety.

Dinner Reception

7:30-9 p.m.
Slonim Living Room

Saturday March 2, 2019

Due to inclement weather, the Women's History Conference will begin at 10 a.m. for registration, and the first panel will begin at 10:30 a.m. See you soon!


8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Heimbold Lobby

Art Exhibit

Behind Closed Doors
Susan Meiselas ’70
9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Barbara Walters Gallery

Plenary Session

10-11:45 a.m.
Heimbold Auditorium

Panel Discussion
#MeToo/TIME’s UP Movement: Accountability, Leadership, and Space

Stacy Chavez, Texas Tech University
Claudia Cogliser, Texas Tech University
Andrea Romi, Texas Tech University
Elizabeth Sharp, Texas Tech University


11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.

Session 1

1 p.m.
Choose one panel or workshop

Panel Discussion
The Impact of Sexual & Gender-Based Violence on the Incarceration of African American Women

Monika Mitchell, Sarah Lawrence College
Josephine Cochrane, Formerly Incarcerated Criminal Justice Activist, Fordham University
Karen Walker, Harvard University

Panel Discussion
Law & The State

Shirley Lin, New York University School of Law
Dehumanization "Because of Sex”: A Principled Analysis of Anti-Discrimination Law and the Rights of Transgender and Gender-Minority Workers

Elena Stavrevska, Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame
Daring to Ask for the Impossible? Intersectional Justice in Post-War Societies

Najjuwah Walden, Washington University
Suppressing Sexual Savages: Institutionalizing the Control of Sexually Transmitted Diseases in America

Panel Discussion
Menstrual Equity Activism: The Ground on Which We All Stand

Bridget J. Crawford (Chair and Moderator), Elisabeth Haub School of Law
Margaret E. Johnson, University of Baltimore School of Law
Marcy Karin, University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law
Laura Strausfeld, Co-Founder, Period Equity
Emily Gold Waldman, Elisabeth Haub School of Law

Session 2

2:45 p.m.
Choose one panel or workshop

Consent Culture

Jen Wilson, Southern Connecticut State University

Panel Discussion
Violence Against Women of Color

Kimi Bryson, Yale Divinity School
Christian Purity Culture, American Rape Culture, and Women of Color: An Intersectional Analysis of Violence Against Women

Darlene Means, City University of New York & Island Trees High School
The Dark Figure of Crime, Black Rape Myth & Why Women Should Believe Women

Brie McLemore, University of California, Berkeley
The Policing of Black Motherhood in the Afterlife of Slavery

Panel Discussion
Family Dynamics

Ashley Leeds, Columbia University
Familial Support through the Coming out Process

Jaimie D. Crumley, University of California, Santa Barbara
Black Feminist Feelings: Family, Friendship, and Secrecy in Antebellum New England

Katherine Swartwood, Sarah Lawrence College
When States Fail, Women Rise: How 1970s Feminists Changed Marital Rape Law

Panel Discussion
Authoritarian Oppression

Simone Alexandra Kolysh, The City University of New York Graduate Center
Redefining Violence: Thinking Through Daily Interactions as Oppression

Cristina Awadalla, University of California, Santa Barbara
“No Nos Dicen Brujas por Nada:” Nicaraguan Women Against a Rising Tide of Authoritarianism

Isadora J. Wagner, U.S. Military Academy
When Bargirls Become Global Humanitarians: Perspectives on Intersectionality from the Vietnam War

Jay Muir, Pace University
False Refuge: Cases of Trauma Within the United States’ Asylum System

Session 3

4:30 p.m.
Choose one panel or workshop

Panel Discussion

Kristina Fennelly, Kutztown University
Exploring the Ethical and Pedagogical Value of the #MeToo Movement

Mackenzie O’Brien, Law at Pace University
The Knowledge Disconnect Between Universities and Their Student's on Sexual and Interpersonal Violence

Hilary Vandenbark, SUNY University at Buffalo
The State of Sexual Violence: State Actors, Activists, and the Intersectional Discourses of the #MeToo Movement

Panel Discussion
Violence Against Women, A Global Perspective

Dustin Durovick, Binghamton University
Nanking and Berlin: Epicenters of Mass Rape during the Second World War

Morris Rossabi, City University of New York
The Law to Combat Domestic Violence in Mongolia

Rebecca Kuperberg, Rutgers University
Towards an Intersectional Approach to Violence against Women in Politics

Panel Discussion
Art, Pop Culture, & Activism

Marion Phillips, Sarah Lawrence College
Queercore and Riot Grrrl: Queer-Feminist Punk in the Twentieth-Century

Emilyn Kowaleski, Sarah Lawrence College
From the Streets to the Stage: How Art Contributes to a Discourse on Sexual Assualt

Hannah McCandless, Sarah Lawrence College
White Feminism and Beauty Standards Perpetuated by the Media

Panel Discussion

Cristina Tanzola, Sarah Lawrence College
Barriers of Being Undocumented: Mexican Women, Immigration Law, and Reporting Abuse

Bonnie Cherry, University of California, Berkely
The Gift and the Ghost: A Transnational Feminist Reading of the US/Mexico Boderlands

Dana M. Olwan, Syracuse University
Muslim Bans, Gendered Violence and Racial Terror in U.S. ‘Honor Crime’ Discourses

Closing Reception

6-7 p.m.