The Message is in the Music: Hip Hop Feminism, Riot Grrrl, Latina Music & More

As you may know, Sarah Lawrence College’s 12th Annual Women’s History Conference, The Message is in the Music: Hip Hop Feminism, Riot Grrrl, Latina Music & More is this weekend. The RE/VISIONIST team is super excited about it, and some of us will be moderating panels.


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Marriage, Gender, and Law

by Elsa Sjunneson-Norman

The 75 degree temperature at this year’s meeting of the American Historical Association did not deter its international attendees from donning their tweed jackets with requisite elbow patches. The participants had come, not for the weather, but to share research with colleagues on topics from varied time periods, fields, and programs. I was attending because the AHA chose to present a mini-conference on same-sex marriage and the issues it poses in an historical context. Continue reading

Mother India: A Window into the Past

by Chandeen Santos

If the delivery is delayed, the dhai is expected to explore for the reason of the delay.  She thrusts her long-un-washed hand, loaded with dirty rings and bracelets and encrusted with untold living contaminations, into the patient’s body, pulling and twisting at what she finds there.  If the delivery is long delayed and difficult, a second or third dhai may be called in … and the child may be dragged forth in detached sections – a leg or an arm torn off at a time.[i]

~Mother India by Katherine Mayo

Katherine Mayo shocked the world with descriptions like these of the practices behind closed doors in India.   Continue reading

Of the Cloth: The Question of Women’s Ordination in the Catholic Church

by Thea Michailides

The Roman Catholic Church is the epitome of a patriarchal institution. In the early 1960’s, as movements for social change were gaining momentum the Catholic Church seemed poised to make reforms that would mark its entrance into a new era with dramatic and unprecedented institutional changes. The Second Vatican council, convened in 1962, held the promise of making the Catholic Church relevant in the modern world. Catholic reformers hoped Vatican II would facilitate modernization throughout Church practice and doctrine. For Catholic women – lay and religious – Vatican II did not realize its full potential. As women in general were beginning to identify the institutions and ideologies of their subjugation, Catholic laywomen recognized the same practices within their faith community that relegated them to secondary status. Continue reading

‘Don’t You Talk About My Mama!’: Black Women Writers and the Reconstruction of Motherhood

‘Don’t You Talk About My Mama!’[1]:
Black Women Writers and the Reconstruction of Motherhood

by Anne Louise Cranwell

My thesis project was inspired by my love for the work of author Toni Morrison.  After reading Beloved for the third or fourth time, I could not get the main character, Sethe Suggs, out of my mind.  I thought about Sethe’s roles as mother and slave and how the latter institution determined the parameters of the former.  Sethe developed a way of being a mother to her children that denied slavery’s ownership of her body.  She defined motherhood for herself even as her racial identity prohibited such a proclamation. Continue reading