• The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal, v. 1, issue 1 (complete issue)

      2015-10-27
      We are thrilled to introduce the inaugural edition of The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal. This multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed, online journal grows out of the Biennial Seneca Falls Dialogues (SFD), a biennial conference launched in October 2008 to celebrate the 160th anniversary of the first women’s rights convention held in Seneca Falls, New York and the 60th anniversary of Eleanor Roosevelt’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal volume I draws from the 2014 SFD conference theme, "Ecofeminism: Cultivating Place and Identity", which was highlighted in the keynote address by BLK ProjeK founder and Eco-Warrior, Tanya Fields. Contents: Bollheimer, Meredith, and Elissa Reitz. "The Disproportionate Impact of Toxins in Consumer Products." Browdy de Hernandez, Jennifer, and Holly Kent, Colleen Martell. "Confronting Student Resistance to Ecofeminism: Three Perspectives." Clark-Taylor, Angela, and Jane L. Bryant, Susan Storey, Julianne Lawlor Nigro. "Sisterhood & Feminism: Engaging Gender and Women’s Studies Students in the Community." Faehmel, Babette, and Tiombe Farley, Vashti Ma'at. "Unusual Subjects: Finding Model Communities Among Marginalized Populations." Iverson, Susan V. "The Potential of Ecofeminism to Develop ‘Deep’ Stainability Competencies for Education for Sustainable Development" Schlombs, Corinna, and Ann Howard, Caroline DeLong, Jessica Lieberman. "Changing an Institutional Environment through Appreciative Inquiry: Rochester Institute of Technology’s College of Liberal Arts." Shafer, Leah. "The 1848 Declarations of Sentiments: Usurpations and Incantations." Sierra, Wendi, and Alysah Berwald, Melissa Guck, Erica Maeder. "Nature, Technology, and Ruined Women: Ecofeminism and Princess Mononoke."
    • Unusual Subjects: Finding Model Communities Among Marginalized Populations

      Faehmel, Babette; Farley, Tiombe; Ma'at, Vashti; Schenectady County Community College; SUNY Albany University; SUNY Empire State College (2015-10-27)
      Unusual subjects: Finding model communities among marginalized populations This paper is inspired by the questions that we have asked ourselves since we first met at Schenectady County Community College. What is it, we wondered, that keeps so many of our fellow Americans seemingly wedded to a political economy that is sustainable only at great cost? Could we use our academic work to help spread awareness about people who dared to demand different lives? And might our studies suggest strategies to work for change? We currently all pursue different projects, but we share a belief that one obstacle to progressive change in the U.S. is our investment into an ideology that posits individualism and consumer capitalism as the only real pathway to success and happiness. Visions of a society based on solidarity, community, and a more sustainable economy, by contrast, are cast as naïve and unachievable pipe dreams. In this paper we argue that one does not have to search for long to find examples of communities that have rejected the status quo, embraced counter-hegemonic values, and thrived in spite of scarce resources and adversity. By drawing on our research on an urban squat, African-American beauty culture, and polyamorous families, we hope to contribute to a dialogue about how we today can work constructively for progressive social change.
    • Confronting Student Resistance to Ecofeminism: Three Perspectives

      Browdy de Hernandez, Jennifer; Kent, Holly; Martell, Colleen; Bard College at SImon's Rock; Moravian College; University of Illinois at Springfield (2015-10-27)
      Teaching ecofeminism is a dynamic, vital practice, demanding a great deal of both educators and students. At the heart of this essay is the question: how can we teach ecofeminism effectively? In this work, we reflect on our successes and failures teaching ecofeminism within various topics and in different settings. While each co-author of this piece brings ecofeminism into our classrooms, we do so in very different ways and have diverse approaches to making ecofeminist theories and ideas feel vital, necessary, and relevant for our students. In our essay, we aim to offer some productive and provocative suggestions and ideas that will be of use to other students, activists, and teachers working in this rich and important field.
    • The 1848 Declarations of Sentiments: Usurpations and Incantations

      Shafer, Leah; Hobart and William Smith Colleges (2015-10-27)
      Three video recordings of participants reciting the "1848 Declaration of Sentiments" at the Seneca Falls Dialogues conferences. In the first video titled "Sentiments and Usurpations", an excerpt is repeated over and over until it begins to sound like an incantation. In the second video, "Declaration of Sentiments 2014", still images accompany an audio track featuring the voices of the participants. The third video, "Declaration of Sentiments Wesleyan Chapel" uses the 2014 audio track for an avant-garde exploration of the interior of the Wesleyan Chapel.
    • Editorial Introduction to The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal, v. 1

      LeSavoy, Barbara; Uman, Deborah; St. John Fisher College; The College at Brockport, State University of New York (2015-10-27)
    • Nature, Technology, and Ruined Women: Ecofeminism and Princess Mononoke

      Sierra, Wendi; Berwald, Alysah; Guck, Melissa; Maeder, Erica; St. John Fisher College (2015-10-27)
      This article examines the popular anime Princess Mononoke through the lens of ecofeminism. In particular, we provide a close reading of the two female lead characters, San and Lady Eboshi, to demonstrate the problematic gender tropes that are often woven into films about ecological issues.
    • The potential of ecofeminism to develop ‘deep’ sustainability competencies for education for sustainable development

      Iverson, Susan V.; Kent State University (2015-10-27)
      Education for sustainable development (ESD) has gained much currency in the literature; yet, less attention has been given to understanding or defining learning outcomes, or rather, what competencies for sustainability should students develop and be able to demonstrate. In this position paper, I ask (and answer) the question, “What might be gained by bringing a feminist lens, and specifically an ecofeminist perspective, to ESD?” I argue that infusing ecofeminism into ESD can develop students’ sustainability competence beyond individual level change to thinking and acting systemically; it can develop the critical consciousness, activist skills, and deeper sustainability knowledge needed to foster social change.
    • The Disproportionate Impact of Toxins in Consumer Products

      Bollheimer, Meredith; Reitz, Elissa; Mercyhurst University (2015-10-27)
      The number of chemicals used in everyday products has grown exponentially over the last century. Many of these chemicals are known endocrine disrupting compounds (EDC’s) and they have not been proven to be safe for humans or for the environment. Rather, many of these chemicals have been linked to negative human health outcomes and damage to the environment. Corporate America is responsible for the production and liberal use of these chemicals in consumer and personal care products. The federal government has failed to provide effective or meaningful standards or regulations for the myriad chemicals of concern that make their way into innumerable daily-use products. The negative impacts from these failures by corporate America and the federal government are suffered disproportionately by women and children. Women use more products than men. Women and children are uniquely impacted by the hormone disruption caused by EDC’s. Women’s bodies carry more “foreign chemicals” than their male counterparts. Women are also disproportionately impacted by the care-giving burden associated with these negative health outcomes. While women shoulder a disproportionate share of the negative consequences, they at the same time, are underrepresented in the decision-making process regarding the manufacture and regulation of these chemicals. Through collective action, women can effect change and reduce exposures to toxins in products.
    • Sisterhood & Feminism: Engaging Gender and Women’s Studies Students in the Community

      Clark-Taylor, Angela; Bryant, Jane L.; Storey, Susan; Nigro, Julianne Lawlor; University of Rochester (2015-10-27)
    • Changing an Institutional Environment through Appreciative Inquiry: Rochester Institute of Technology’s College of Liberal Arts

      Schlombs, Corinna; Howard, Ann; DeLong, Caroline; Lieberman, Jessica; Rochester Institute of Technology (2015-10-27)
      This article introduces readers to Appreciative Inquiry as a form of feminist engagement in higher education. Appreciative Inquiry is a strength-based approach to organizational change that builds on positive psychology as well as social construction of language. At Rochester Institute’s College of Liberal Arts, a group of women faculty currently pursues an Appreciative Inquiry process to change their institutional environment to make it more beneficial to the success of women (and colleagues of all genders) rather than changing themselves to better fit into the existing environment. At the 2014 Seneca Falls Dialogues, members of this group engaged conference participants in an experience and discussion of Appreciative Inquiry. This article provides an overview on Appreciative Inquiry, analyzes the results of the Seneca Falls Dialogues session, and discusses the Appreciative Inquiry process at Rochester Institute of Technology.
    • Empowerment through Dialogue: Women’s Experience with Division of Labor as a Leisure Constraint in Family Life

      Agate, Sarah; Agate, Joel; The College at Brockport (2017-12-06)
      Women in American society experience high levels of stress and the resultant physical and psychological challenges. While leisure is often seen as a context for stress relief, a variety of leisure constraints make it difficult for many women to have this experience. A focus group was conducted with five women who are mothers of young children to explore the division of labor in family travel. This paper reports on the experience of participant empowerment, which occurred through the dialogue that took place. Findings from this study have implications for those seeking to empower people who experience discrimination and marginalization in a variety of settings. We explore the value of creating safe spaces and facilitating dialogue as a means of mitigating against alienation, enhancing community building, and creating solidarity.
    • The New Normal: Sustaining and Growing WGS Programs with Professionally-Driven Students

      Sheffield, Kathryn I.; Ursic, Elizabeth; Mesa Community College (2017-12-06)
      In today’s volatile economic climate, students are increasingly choosing courses and majors that are primarily focused on professionally valuable skills and employment opportunities. This trend poses challenges for Women and Gender Studies programs, calling for a shift in both instructional and institutional strategies within the field. Yet, far from finding this a detriment, we have found that Women and Gender Studies courses have considerable value for professionally-driven students. In addition, we have found that the presence of professionally-driven students in Women and Gender Studies courses present opportunities for WGS programs. This article discusses the instructional and institutional implications of the inclusion of professionally-driven students in Women and Gender Studies programs at Mesa Community College, as well as findings from the 2016 Seneca Falls Dialogues.
    • Appearance Discrimination: Lookism and the Cost to the American Woman

      Adomaitis, Alyssa Dana Dana; Raskin, Rachel; Saiki, Diana; Ball State University; New York City College of Technology (2017-12-06)
    • Disrupting the Lean: Performing a 2016 Declaration of Sentiments

      Schroeder, Tambria; LeSavoy, Barbara; Brown, Melissa; Love, Brooke E.; Rosen, Maggie; Ophardt, Brooke A.; Lai, Audrey; The College at Brockport (2017-12-06)
      Inspired by the spirit of disruption, this article narrates the making of a “2016 Declaration of Sentiments,” invented in a roundtable, “Disrupting the Lean: Performing a 2016 Declaration of Sentiments,” at the fifth Biennial Seneca Falls Dialogues (SFD). We open the essay with a brief theoretical overview that informs manifestos written in a feminist theory or senior seminar course that take up questions of gender equity, labor, and acts of resistance. We follow with excerpts from these manifestos as read in the roundtable, closing the essay with a “2016 Declaration of Sentiments,” collaboratively authored and recited by roundtable participants. Looking back but thinking forward, we give you our words and our voice as we seek to bring activism and agency back to Seneca Falls.
    • Underrepresented: The Lack of Black Designers Featured in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue

      Ellington, Tameka N.; Kent State University (2017-12-06)
      During the Fall 2012 New York Fashion Week preview, only two African American designers showcased collections of the 127 designers (Mullins). Spring 2015 Fashion Week showcased 25 African American/African (Black) designers (Superselected), which is a significant increase. However, there is still minimal to no presence of Black designers in high-fashion magazines. There has been lay/popular research on this phenomenon (Kearney; madamenoire; Mullins; Williams; Woodberry), but no academic data has been published regarding this injustice. Through a Critical Race Theory (CRT) lens the coverage or lack thereof that Black designers receive is divulged. CRT recognizes that racism is engrained in the fabric and system of the American society (UCLA School of Public Affairs). A content analysis of Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue was conducted for year 2000 and 2012 in order to track a possible increase in coverage. The data revealed that there was no increase of exposure Black designer received in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue from year 2000 to 2012. Tokenism was found as an issue which did not allow for other non-token Black designers to be recognized. The results suggest that there is continued need for diversification in high-fashion publications.
    • Editorial Introduction: Women Have Achieved This, I Follow: WHAT IF?

      Uman, Deborah; LeSavoy, Barbara; St. John Fisher College; The College at Brockport, State University of New York (2017-12-06)
      In turning to questions of gender, economics and entrepreneurship, the 2016 Seneca Falls Dialogues asked participants to explore how various forms of labor and compensation affect individual lives, societal movements, and institutions. One of the sub-themes for the conference was “Arts and Activism,” which led to our choice of keynote speaker Brenda Ann Kenneally and inspired Eastman professor of music education, Philip Silvey, to propose a performance of the University of Rochester’s women’s chorus at the Dialogues. With the full support of the Department of Music at University of Rochester, chaired by Professor Honey Meconi, and the full enthusiasm of the organizing committee, this proposal became a reality and the performance was a highlight of the Dialogues, dramatizing the importance of place and the contributions of women throughout time and cultures.
    • Add Women and Stir: Female Presidents in Pop Culture, 2012-2016

      Laflen, Angela; Smith, Michelle; Bayer, Kristin; Ramirez, Riana; Recce, Jessica; Scott, Molly; Marist College (2017-12-06)
      In this article, we argue that there was a representational shift in popular culture representations of female presidents following Hillary Clinton’s 2008 primary run, from earlier representations that were entirely preoccupied with gender to more recent depictions that tried to set aside “the gender question.” We explore three representations of female presidents produced since 2012 that can illuminate popular understandings of gender and the presidency between the 2008 and 2016 elections: Veep, State of Affairs, and Scandal. While all three texts attempt to normalize images of female presidents and break from earlier representations by treating a female presidency as an ordinary course of events, only Scandal normalizes female political power without also minimizing either the significance of gender as a cultural force or the value of the presidency as a feminist goal. These representations continue to offer a limited vision of female presidents and the social changes needed to create the conditions that would clear a path to the American presidency, which remains, in Clinton’s words, “that highest, hardest glass ceiling.”
    • Constructing Sexuality and Fetishizing Women in American History: Debunking Myths in Popular Culture from Pocahontas to the Cold War

      Wagman, Jamie; Dee, Katlynn; Tipton, Alison; Whisman, Adrienne; Saint Mary's College (2017-12-06)
      This paper features recent teaching and scholarship produced in U.S. Women’s History and Women’s History coursework at Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame, Indiana. We discuss using visual culture analysis and intersectionality in the U.S. History and Women’s History classroom to produce scholarship that interrogates the intersection of race, class, gender and sexuality at a particular historical moment and examines visual primary sources. We give examples of scholarship produced in coursework using these methods, from studying the Lavender Scare and popular culture’s constructions of Democracy that equated communism with homosexuality to the ways in which middle class social reformers used their class status and white privilege to help prostitutes while also harming them in the early 20th century. We also look at contemporary popular culture constructions of Pocahontas and the ways in which her depictions reinforce white supremacy and distort narratives of Native-America history. The paper engages readers with images and discussion questions about a visual construction of what is considered civilized womanhood. We also examine and question what it means to be American and American ideologies on the right way of being a sexual being.
    • The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal, v. 2, 2017 (complete issue)

      Uman, Deborah; LeSavoy, Barbara; St. John Fisher College; The College at Brockport, State University of New York (2017-12-06)
      Memory. Disruption. Presidential. Underrepresented. History. Empowerment. Sustaining. Intersectionality. Transfeminism. These words capture the breadth and scope of essays in volume 2 and bring us back to the 2016 Biennial Seneca Falls Dialogues conference. Photojournalist, activist, and 2016 Seneca Falls Dialogues keynote Brenda Ann Kenneally uses her artistic work to explore the how and why of class inequity in America. Her project, Upstate Girls, set in Troy, NY, followed seven women for five years as their escape routes out of generational poverty led to further entrapment. Pictured on the journal cover, one of seven upstate girls, is Kayla and mom before their morning ride to work in Troy NY in 2007. This image and the essays that follow ask us to recognize the large spaces of inequality in which we live and work and to reconcile the gendered and racial dimensions to these inequalities. Written into the goals of The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal is the importance of creatively engaging diverse tools for feminist activism, particularly those that support dialogues across difference. Inspired by Brenda Ann Kenneally’s Upstate Girls, and drawing on the Lean Out, Gender, Economics and Enterprise theme, The Seneca Falls Dialogues Journal honors the work of those who came before us as we build an accessible and inclusive publication in our continued pursuit of enlightenment and equality. Contents: Brown, Michael J., Rebecca a. R. Edwards, and Tina Olsin Lent. "Kate Gleason: Introducing a Twentieth-Century Businesswoman to Twenty-First Century Students." Schroeder, Tambria, Barbara LeSavoy, Melissa Brown, Brooke Love, Maggie Rosen, Brooke Ophardt, and Audrey Lai. "Disrupting the Lean: Performing a 2016 Declaration of Sentiments." Laflen, Angela, Michelle Smith, Kristin Bayer, Riana Ramirez, Jessica Recce, and Molly Scott, "Add Women and Stir: Female Presidents in Pop Culture, 2012-2016." Adomaitis, Alyssa Dana, Rachel Raskin, and Diana Saiki. "Appearance Discrimination: Lookism and the Cost to the American Woman." Ellington, Tameka N. "Underrepresented: The Lack of Black Designers Featured in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue." Wagman, Jamie, Katlynn Dee, Alison Tipton, and Adrienne Whisman. "Constructing Sexuality and Fetishizing Women in American History: Debunking Myths in Popular Culture from Pocahontas to the Cold War." Agate, Sarah Taylor, and Joel R. Agate. "Empowerment through Dialogue: Women’s Experience with Division of Labor as a Leisure Constraint in Family Life." Sheffield, Kathryn I., and Elizabeth Ursic. "The New Normal: WGS Programs and Professionally-Driven Students." Cunningham, Lisa J.. Pao Lee Vue, and Virginia Maier. "Intersectionality and Feminist Pedagogy: Lessons from Teaching about Racism and Economic Inequity." White, Melissa Autumn, with Maddy Devereaux, Jason Kwong, Clare McCormick, Judith Schreir, and Vincent Creer. "Gender (As Constant) Labor:” A Consciousness Raising Dialogue on Transfeminist Scholarship and Organizing."
    • “Gender (As Constant) Labor”: A Consciousness Raising Dialogue on Transfeminist Scholarship and Organizing

      White, Melissa Autumn; Hobart and William Smith Colleges (2017-12-06)
      This co-authored essay draws on student research conducted for an upper-level course called Trans*Studies that was originally presented at the Seneca Falls Dialogues Conference in October 2016. Drawing on Jane Ward's generative concept of "gender labor", our Dialogue highlights the material effects of representational politics, and articulates the need to centre a transfeminist critique of normative regimes of power, including the representation of "women's" history in the United States.