Welcome to the official blog for Villanova's Gender and Women's Studies program! Please come back often for information on events, programming, academic opportunities, alumni news, student accomplishments, and more! Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

GWS Student Spotlight: Kevin Madden

Name: Kevin Madden

Year in school: Senior

Majors and minors: English major with minors in GWS, Spanish, and Honors

Hometown: Sarasota, FL

Favorite place you’ve ever traveled to: Regensburg, Germany

Favorite GWS class: Gender and the World with Travis Foster

Why do you study GWS/why is it important to you? I study GWS because it feels kind of subversive. It challenges me to interrogate the metanarratives I unquestioningly accepted growing up about what it means to be a man, to be gay, to be a feminist. I was surprised by how few of those assumptions actually held true when I applied a bit of pressure to them. Studying GWS has equipped me with the tools to critically engage a world that insists on telling me how to understand my identity, and it has cultivated a deep sense of compassion for others who have been told all their lives that they belong on the social periphery. I don’t think so. Feminism has something to offer everyone, and as I continue to grow through my studies, I understand more and more that having meaningful, unique experiences is our common denominator, the unifying factor. Solidarity through difference, whether those differences are shared or not. I don’t think I could have comprehended that without GWS.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

GWS Student Spotlight: Mary Pat Norton!

Name: Mary Pat Norton

Year in school: Class of 2017, Junior

Majors and minors: English and art history with a minor in GWS

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

Favorite place you’ve ever traveled to: Urbino, Italy

Favorite GWS class: Ellen Bonds' Women in Literature

Why do you study GWS/why is it important to you? I study GWS because I am interested in studying how gender roles of different societies have evolved, and what I can do to eliminate stereotypes about both men and women.  

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

#ItsOnUsNova: Sexual Violence Survey Discussion

Time for the last GWS event of the year! Join us for this important conversation!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Get to know the GWS Student Research Conference Keynote Speaker: Lauren Berlant

The 27th Annual Gender and Women's Studies Student Research Conference is coming up this Thursday, April 7! Please read about our keynote address Lauren Berlant. This information comes from her faculty webpage from the University of Chicago.

"My work has focused on the affective components of belonging in the U.S. nineteenth and twentieth centuries—now the twenty-first: in particular, in relation to juridical citizenship, to informal and normative modes of social belonging, and to practices of intimacy as they absorb legal, normative, and fantasmatic forces. These scenes of relation articulate state, juridical, and institutional practices of zoning and more abstract boundary-drawing—between public and private, white and non-white, and/or citizen and foreigner—with other kinds of social bonds through which people imagine and practice world-making.

I am interested in how modes of social membership flourish that absorb the blows of power while preserving critical and optimistic attachments to the political as a site of a vaguely rendered, collective ongoingness or potentiality. To this end, I have finished a trilogy on national sentimentality—in order of their historical address, The Anatomy of National Fantasy (Chicago, 1991); The Female Complaint: The Unfinished Business of Sentimentality in American Culture (2009); and The Queen of America Goes to Washington City: Essays on Sex and Citizenship (Duke, 1997). I have also followed out this interest in collective attachments and affects in my edited volumes Intimacy (Chicago, 2000); Our Monica, Ourselves: Clinton and the Affairs of State (with Lisa Duggan; NYU, 2001); and Compassion: the Culture and Politics of an Emotion (Routledge, 2004).

My next book, Cruel Optimism, is about the wearing out of the fantasy of the good life that has bound people to various kinds of intimate and political normativity despite their constant inadequacy to the fantasies that bring people to them. So its intervention is two-pronged, to do with conceptualizing affect historically, and with addressing the neoliberal sensorium insofar as it is shaped by the recognition that the social democratic/liberal fantasy of mass upward mobility, meritocracy, and durable intimacy has less and less traction in the world. Here “optimism” does not mean the emotion of optimism but the affective structure of attachment that enables people to survive and even flourish amidst the ordinariness of life-in-crisis, life without foundations, anchors, or footing. Looking at ways to think about attachment and suffering that attend to the structural and therefore that would be misdescribed by the exceptionalist analytic of trauma and the modernist model of “everyday life,” it provides, I hope, better genres for the historical present.

Also related to the impact of these circuits of social exemplification is an interest in pedagogies of normativity in the academy, culture, and politics. I have edited two volumes of Critical Inquiry called On the Case, which bring together leading thinkers to examine the “case”—the standard unit in law, medicine, psychoanalysis, the humanities, the sciences, and popular culture. What makes a case ordinary, easily dealt with, or forgettable? What makes some cases, and not others, challenges to the way ordinary life or institutional systems usually proceed? How do kinds of people become examples of kinds of thing? The project works through cases—of torture, of scientific paradigms, of OCD and Obesity, of the cinematic closeup, of literary personhood, of philosophical norms for adjudicating ethics, of servants, and gods, and lyric poetry, and sexuality. But all of the essays address their cases with an eye to understanding how cases have been and might be made.

Selected Publications:

Cruel Optimism: by Lauren Berlant

The Queen of America goes to Washington City: by Lauren Berlant
The Female Complaint: by Lauren Berlant
The Anatomy of National Fantasy: by Lauren Berlant

Cruel Optimism (Duke UP, 2011), 2011 René Wellek Prize, American Comparative Literature Association
"Love as a Properly Political Concept" (Response to Michael Hardt), Cultural Anthropology (2011)
"Affect and the Politics of Austerity," Variant 38/40, with Gesa Helms, Marina Vischmidt (2011)
"Opulism," SAQ (2010)
"Neither Monstrous nor Pastoral, but Scary and Sweet: Some Thoughts on Sex and Emotional Performance in Intimacies and What Do Gay Men Want?" Women and Performance (2009)
"Affect Is the New Trauma," The Minnesota Review (2009). Rpt. 2010.
“The Broken Circuit: An Interview with Lauren Berlant,” by Sina Najafi and David Serlin, Cabinet (2008).
“Thinking about Feeling Historical,” Emotion, Space, and Society 1, 1 (2008). Rpt. Political Emotions, ed., Janet Staiger, Ann Cvetkovich, and Ann Reynolds (2010).
"Risky Bigness: On Obesity, Eating, and the Ambiguity of "Health," in Jonathan Metzl et al., Against Health/ (NYU, 2010).
The Female Complaint: The Unfinished Business of Sentimentality in American Culture (Duke UP, 2008).
“Nearly Utopian, Nearly Normal: Post-Fordist Affect in La Promesse and Rosetta” Public Culture 19, 2 (2007): 272-301.
Keyword, “Citizenship,” in Keywords of American Cultural Studies, Edited by Bruce Burgett and Glenn Hendler, http://www.nd.edu/~ghendler/keywords.html (NYU press, 2007).
“Cruel Optimism,” Differences 17, 5 (2006): 21-36; and New Formations (2008; longer version).
“Starved,” SAQ 106:3 (2007), 433-444.
“Slow Death,” in Critical Inquiry 33 (Summer 2007): 754-780.
The Queen of America Goes to Washington City: Essays on Sex and Citizenship (Duke UP, 1997).
Compassion, ed. (Routledge, 2004).
Our Monica, Ourselves:  The Clinton Affair and the National Interest.  Ed. with Lisa Duggan (NYU Press, 2001).
Venus Inferred, with Laura Letinsky (University of Chicago, 2000).
“Unfeeling Kerry,” Theory and Event 8, 2 (2005).
“The Epistemology of State Emotion,” in Dissent in Dangerous Times, ed. Austin Sarat (Ann Arbor MI: University of Michigan Press, 2005).
“Two Girls, Fat and Thin,” in Regarding Sedgwick, eds. Stephen Barber and David Clark (New York:  Routledge, 2002).
“Love (A Queer Feeling),” Psychoanalysis and Homosexuality, eds.  Tim Dean and Christopher Lane (Chicago, 2000), 432-451.
“Sex in Public.” Written with Michael Warner. Critical Inquiry (Winter 1998).
Editor, “Intimacy: A Special Issue,” Critical Inquiry (Winter 1998).
“Poor Eliza,” in American Literature (1998).
“Pax Americana: The Case of Show Boat,” in Institutions of the Novel (Duke UP, 1997).
“The Female Woman: Fanny Fern and the Form of Sentiment,” in The Culture of Sentiment (Oxford, 1993).
“National Brands/National Body: Imitation of Life,” in The Phantom Public Sphere (Minnesota UP, 1993).
The Anatomy of National Fantasy: Hawthorne, Utopia, and Everyday Life (Chicago, 1991).

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1985. Teaching at Chicago since 1984."

Thursday, March 31, 2016

GWS Student Spotlight: Victoria Rose Vicente

Name: Victoria Rose Vicente

Year in school: Senior

Majors and minors: Nursing, GWS (minor)

Hometown: Upper Darby, PA

Favorite place you’ve ever traveled to: Ghana, Africa

Favorite GWS class: Race, Class, and Gender with Professor Carol Anthony. This class was a wonderful combination of such important issues. It provided me with a didactic understanding of the intersectionality of these topics.

Why do you study GWS/why is it important to you? : GWS plays such a huge role in my practice as a nurse. Understanding that patients are people that experience life through a multitude of different lenses makes me a more compassionate nurse. GWS has opened up my mind and heart to the possibility that differences make us great. We are all unique, but share the common bond of humanity.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

The 27th Annual Gender and Women’s Studies Student Research Conference: April 7!

The 27th Annual Gender and Women’s Studies Student Research Conference is coming up soon! The conference will be held on Thursday, April 7 in the Connelly Center. The general schedule for the conference is as follows:

1:00 PM – Welcome
1:10 PM – Session One: Panels – Connelly Meeting Rooms
2:20 PM – Session Two: Performance Showcase - Connelly Cinema
3:20 PM – Session Three: Panels - Connelly Meeting Rooms
4:30 PM – Keynote Address: Lauren Berlant – Connelly Cinema

The panels and keynote address are free and open to the public. Lauren Berlant’s keynote address is titled “On Being in Life without Wanting the World:  Rankine, Isherwood, and Dissociative Life.” This talk is located in a shattered, formally inconsistent, yet intelligible zone defined by "being in life without wanting the world." Reading with Claudia Rankine (Don’t Let Me Be Lonely), the novel and film of A Single Man (Christopher Isherwood, 1964; Tom Ford, 2009), and Harryette  Mullen (Sleeping with the Dictionary), it describes an aesthetics and a subjectivity shaped on one side by suicide and on the other by a life drive that is also, paradoxically, negative, in that it turns toward life by turning away from the world of injury, negation, and contingency that    endures as a defining presence for biopolitically-defined subjects. It suggests attending to and developing a dissociative poetics.