Thursday, September 20, 2012

Hi Folks,
As we discussed in class, you must be registered in order to vote, and you must be registered one month prior to the election. Don't have time? Don't know where to go? Don't know what you need? Well RIC has answered your prayers! They are teaming up with the American Democracy Project to bring voter registration to campus on Sept 25th. Check out the Facebook.

Remember... First Wavers fought so hard because the right to vote is that important!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


So this week I too found a candidate, an issue, and an article. I chose Green party candidate Jill Stein. You can find out more about the Green party and its position on all sorts of political and social justice issues from Jill Stein's perspective here.

While the two main party candidates are having discussions largely focused on the economy and some key "hot button" social issues such as reproductive rights for Women or LGBTQ rights, there are a few fundamental concerns flying under the radar. The First Amendment is the US Constitution protected right to freedom of speech, press, religion, and assembly. It is the right to speak, to protest, to say things that may not be popular about the government, education, and the world we live in. It is the right to the media, to having your voice be heard and seen even if it is controversial. The First Amendment and the rights it protects are under attack in our country and is flying under the radar in this election, but I chose this article where Jill Stein discusses in an interview the implications of the First Amendment, why it is important, why it is under attack and why it matters for us as citizens. It may seem like a waste of a vote, or a lost cause in a country that focuses so strongly on a bi-party system, however check out this article from Huffington Post about how possible a Green Party candidate could be, and how it may be just the answer you were looking for.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Oppression- Marilyn Frye (week 2)

Marilyn Frye's piece Oppression begins to breakdown a fundamental concept of Women and Gender studies and many other related fields. What is oppression? How do we know? What makes it similar and different to other kinds of struggle? How does it impact individuals and social systems? It is with these questions in mind I approached Frye.

Note that Frye, (as mentioned on page 175) does not address the question of who is oppressed and who does the oppressing, in some finger pointing argument but instead looks at oppression on a larger thematic scale.

Fundamental to Frye's argument is two frameworks. The first is the concept of Mold. Immobilize. Reduce.

Second is the analogy of oppression as a birdcage, where each rung of the "bird cage" is representative of the many forces which combine to oppress an individual of a marginalized group, or a marginalized group as a whole.

Some questions to consider:

1.  Using Frye's definitions and understandings what are some populations of people who would be considered oppressed? What structures, forces, and relationships help to form their birdcages?

2. What social and political things are used to help Mold. Immobilize. Reduce? By who? For what?

3. What is your own relationship to experiences of privilege and oppression? Do you have your own birdcage?

Monday, September 3, 2012

The F-Word 9/4

The F-Word: Feminism in Jeopardy: Women, Politics, and the Future
Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner

(Page 20 start)

How does the history in these few pages support/oppose the information presented thus far in the film? Are there any surprises?

"The Fifteenth Amendment grandly stated, "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude," yet the word "sex" was conspicuously omitted.

What would Rowe say about the omission of "sex?" Do you think it was intentionally done? Why?

On page 24, Rowe-Finkbeiner discusses the culture surrounding voting rights during her Grandmother's era. Has this culture changed? How do you know? What does it represent for our modern day political culture?

On page 26, the author addresses the accomplishments and related criticisms of Second Wave Feminism. Would you agree with the criticisms? How would you respond to the accomplishments?

"What makes defining the third wave challenging is that not only is the shared label (feminism) missing, also missing is a shared movement that connects the factions of modern feminism and moves shared issues into the broad arena of popular concern."(32)

Do you agree with the notion that the shared movement and label of feminism is missing? Why or why not? What do you think Rowe-Finbeiner suggest as a remedy? 

Fear of Feminism: Why Young Women get the Willies 9/4

Fear of Feminism: Why Young Women get the Willies
Lisa Maria Hogeland

Hi Folks,
Below you will find some quote selections from the Fear of Feminism piece along with some questions to think about in order to be prepared for class. At the end I will provide a brief analysis/reflection. If you have any specific questions feel free to text or leave them as comments, otherwise we will work them out in class.

"One measure of feminism's success over the past three decades is that women's gender consciousness-our self-awareness as women-is extremely high.Gender consciousness takes two forms: awareness of women's vulnerability and celebration of women's difference."(18)

What are your thoughts on the idea of Gender consciousness? Does it apply to your life? How? Do men have one as well? Why or why not? What would Hogeland suggest for increasing Gender consciousness?

Hogeland states that "Feminism politicizes gender consciousness, inserts it into a systematic analysis of histories and structures of domination and privilege...Fear of feminism then, is not a fear of gender, but rather a fear of politics." (18)

Would you agree or disagree with Hogeland's analysis of the "fear of feminism?" Why? How does this help/harm the understanding of Feminism?

"Feminism has consequences..." (20)

What would Hogeland identify as consequences? Would you identify different ones?