The Conversation in the Classroom

Recently, one of our SLC undergraduate classmates wrote an interesting piece for Even If Your Voice Shakes, the blog created by the Diversity and Activism Programming Subcommittee (DAPS) of Student Life. In “Can I Speak?” (10/17/16), Lizza Rodriguez ’17 invited us to think about our classroom experience and make change:

         It is clear to everyone who considers themselves members of this campus

         community that Sarah Lawrence is meant to be a place where critical thinking

         and social action are mediated among all of us here—a branding of neoliberal

         pedagogy that treasures collective understanding as well as individual growth. It

         is this very curriculum structure that helped me decide on Sarah Lawrence over

         three years ago. After some time here, upon reflection, I ask that we question

         how inclusive our own classrooms are, as academic circles here can become

         extremely inaccessible sooner rather than later. [italics added]

In her essay, Rodriguez reminded us of how classmates can monopolize class discussion with certain perspectives and leave fellow students who do not share their perspective unheard. She encourages us to: “[p]articipate in inclusive conversation. Scale back your contributions in class whenever you begin dominating discussion.”

As women’s history students, we are not inherently immune from monopolizing the conversation with a particular viewpoint. The public discourse on history isn’t impervious to it either. History is written and shared by people. We’re human and have biases. However, we can take responsibility for our mistakes and be cognizant of how we approach class discussion and our contributions to the public discourse in the future.

Have you experienced this challenge in the classroom (whether here, in high school or undergrad)? Have you noticed moments when the floor needed to be opened up to other voices? Have you taken action? Are there particular parts of history that you want to study and depart from the dominant perspective?

We’d love to get your comments and feedback to continue this discussion that Lizza Rodriguez started.

*Disclosure: I am a member of DAPS. Also, thank you to Even If and Lizza Rodriguez for allowing us to share a bit of the blog.

Write for Re/Visionist!

Are you interested in writing about women’s history? Undergraduate and graduate students are invited to attend a (second) brainstorming meeting about the SLC Women’s History Program’s blog.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

5:30PM – 6:15PM

Slonim Library Classroom

This meeting gives you an opportunity to share the topics about which you’d like to read and to indicate if you have an interest in writing for or taking on a leadership role with Re/Visionist. Funding is limited, but students will be paid for published submissions!

To help us get moving for the fall semester, please honor the deadline of noon on Monday, October 24th to submit the following to revisionist [at] gm [dot] slc [dot] edu:

If you are interested in writing a specific piece, please send a 100-word proposal and your CV.

If you are interested in taking on a leadership role, please send a short writing sample (less than 5 pages) and your CV.

If you attended the meeting last week, you are welcome to join us again or to simply email your content to revisionist [at] gm [dot] slc [dot] edu.

 

MISSION STATEMENT

RE/VISIONIST is an online publication created by students of the Sarah Lawrence College Women’s History Graduate Program. In the interest of fostering dialogue, RE/VISIONIST aims to promote a critical analysis of history and contemporary issues through the lens of multiple feminisms. We focus on the intersections of lived realities and histories, such as the experiences related to race, class, gender, sexuality, age, and ability. We strive to keep the question, “Who gets to write history?” on the table.

It’s On Us – National Fall Week of Action

I came across the activities of a new student activist group, which may be of interest to the readers of Re/Visionist. It’s On Us is not the first student undertaking to combat sexual violence on campus but is part of a legacy of women’s rights activism at colleges and universities. I will cover past SLC campus advocacy and education on the topic in the near future.

***

Today marks the beginning of the It’s On Us Fall Week of Action, which is happening across the country. It’s On Us began in September 2014 as a project of the White House to “help put an end to sexual assault on college campuses.” As President Barack Obama noted in a speech, about 20 percent of college student women experience sexual assault, with few getting justice.

Since then, representatives from colleges and universities across the country have been working to bring the message of It’s On Us to their campuses.

SLC junior Emma Heisler-Murray told me she got involved because sexual assault has “been a clear issue on the campus.” (Students may remember two particular Campus Safety Alerts that have been sent out by the college administration in the last few months. These alerts disclosed reports of sexual assault.)

Heisler-Murray invites the campus community to participate in events during this Fall Week of Action because “anyone can benefit from it.” Tonight, the It’s On Us campus organization has planned a screening of the film The Hunting Ground at Titsworth Lecture Hall, starting at 7:00 PM.

The major event of the week, says Heisler-Murray, is the “Still Not Asking for It” protest on Thursday. You can find the full calendar here.

For more information: you can visit the It’s On Us page on GryphonLink or by emailing Emma at emurray [at] gm [dot] slc [dot] edu.

Get involved! Re/Visionist 2016-17

Hello, readers!

If you’re a current student at SLC, you have gotten well into the swing of things for the 2016-2017 school year. Yet, there are still new opportunities for getting involved in campus life!

I have recently started as editor of Re/Visionist, and I am looking for other SLC students who are interested in contributing. As a contributor to the blog, you can be paid for your efforts!

We’re having a meeting next week where you can indicate your interest:

Thursday, October 13th at 5:30PM in the Slonim Library Classroom

I want to hear from you so you can share about what topics you would want to read and if you would like to contribute your skills! Both graduate and undergraduate students are welcome to attend.

Pizza will be served.

Contact me at revisionist@gm.slc.edu with any questions! See you soon!

Amanda Kozar

Student, Master’s in Women’s History Program