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!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sex Trafficking Information and Resources

In preparation for the GWS event this Thursday, October 1 with Erin Giles, Founder of End Sex Trafficking day, check out some resources and information concerning sex trafficking.

For a “Global Sex Trafficking Fact Sheet” : http://www.equalitynow.org/node/1010

To read about the FBI’s initiatives for sex trafficking: https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/civilrights/human_trafficking

For resources, see the National Human Trafficking Resource Center: http://www.traffickingresourcecenter.org/states

The United Nation’s webpage on human trafficking: https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/human-trafficking/index.html?ref=menuside

Thursday, September 24, 2015

GWS Student Spotlight: Emily Tifft

Name: Emily Tifft

Year in school: Senior

Majors and minors: English, GWS, Honors

Hometown: Elmira, NY

Favorite place you’ve ever traveled to: Oxford, England

Favorite GWS class: Philosophy of Women

Why do you study GWS/why is it important to you? There are countless reasons why I love being a GWS major. Studying gender is inherently intersectional and relational to every aspect of lived experience. As a future lawyer, my GWS major has offered me a lens through which I can view oppression, discrimination, and injustice-- and gain the confidence and leadership skills necessary to work to enact change. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Women in Peace and Conflict Panel Discussion 9/28/15 at Swarthmore

“Women in Peace and Conflict: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow”

Monday, September 28, 2015
7:30 p.m.
Scheuer Room, Kohlberg Hall
Swarthmore College

A panel discussion with Jody Williams, 1997 Nobel Peace Prize recipient and chair of the Nobel Women’s Initiative, and Wendy Chmielewski, George R. Cooley Curator, Swarthmore College Peace Collection. Professor Marjorie Murphy, will serve as panel moderator.

Moderated by Marjorie Murphy, James C. Hormel Professor in Social Justice

Jody Williams received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997 for her work to ban landmines through the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which shared the Peace Prize with her that year. At that time, she became the 10th woman - and third American woman - in its almost 100-year history to receive the Prize. Since her protests of the Vietnam War, she has been a life-long advocate of freedom, self-determination and human and civil rights.

Like others who have seen the ravages of war, she is an outspoken peace activist who struggles to reclaim the real meaning of peace - a concept which goes far beyond the absence of armed conflict and is defined by human security, not national security. Williams believes that working for peace is not for the faint of heart. It requires dogged persistence and a commitment to sustainable peace, built on environmental justice and meeting the basic needs of the majority of people on our planet.

Wendy Chmielewski, has held the position as George R. Cooley Curator of the Swarthmore College Peace Collection since 1988.  Trained as a historian, she has specialized in the history of women, social movements, and social reform.  Chmielewski received her Ph.D. in American History from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 1989, and her dissertation explored issues of feminism and women’s roles in U.S. communal societies and utopian literature of the nineteenth century.

A reception will follow the panel discussion.

The Defunding of Planned Parenthood

This past week, the House of Representatives voted to defund Planned Parenthood for one year. For many women, particular minority and low-income women, Planned Parenthood is the only affordable access to reproductive healthcare. To better understand the consequences of this vote, please read the following articles.

To learn about the possible effects of defunding Planned Parenthood, check out the links below:

To learn more about Planned Parenthood and the work they do, visit their website here: http://www.plannedparenthood.org/ and NPRs breakdown of Planned Parenthood fund allocation: http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/08/05/429641062/fact-check-how-does-planned-parenthood-spend-that-government-money.


Monday, September 21, 2015

GWS Event October 1: Erin Giles - ACS APPROVED!

Erin Giles, the founder of End Sex Trafficking Day, is coming to campus Thursday, October 1! She will be speaking in the Connelly Cinema at 5 PM. This event is ACS APPROVED!

From food stamps to freedom fighter, Erin Giles is going to be talking about how keeping it real and getting uncomfortable is the jumping off point to doing something that inspires change.

You will learn:
1. How she started EST Day and how her biggest vulnerability became her biggest turning point.
2. Why NO excuse should hold you back from inspiring change.
3. That we’re all leaders and why being vulnerable attracts followers
4. How you can stand up for freedom with Erin


Erin Giles started End Sex Trafficking Day in 2012 while on food stamps. She’s passionate about inspiring change and standing up for freedom. She’s been seen on USA Today, Marie Claire, Inc., and spoke at TEDx about her work with EST Day. You can find her online at eringiles.com and instagram at erinmgiles.

Check out the flyer below for all of the information on this important event!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

GWS Student Spotlight: Julia Tich

Name: Julia Tich 

Class: Junior 

Majors and Minors:  GWS with a concentration in Peace and Justice and a minor in Africana Studies I am originally from 

Hometown: Fallston, MD which is just outside of Baltimore

Favorite class: One of my favorite classes that I have taken at Villanova was a criminal justice course through the Peace and Justice department in which I gained incredible knowledge and perspective when it came to gender. Through the class I was able to tutor at Graterford Prison. My experience there really brought the issue of the prison industrial complex to a personal level and I was able to see how the intersection of race, age, and gender all play a huge role in targeting certain groups of people in a system of oppression. Beyond the system however, I witnessed how incredibly long sentences and lack of personal interaction have the potential to destroy the will and spirit of a human being.

Why is GWS important to you? I have enjoyed being a part of transgender and gender non-conformity advocacy on campus. My hope for Villanova is that regardless of gender identity or expression, students can feel and be free, safe, and have suitable accommodations- especially when it comes to housing and bathrooms. The study of GWS is not only important to me in terms of my major. I honestly believe my study of these topics has change my life and made me less judgmental, more loving, and more motivated to continue learning and advocating.gws

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Sexual Assault on College Campuses: In the News and Resources

There is no doubt that there is an epidemic of sexual assaults on college campuses. This problem has been getting much-needed national attention over the last year. Presidential candidates are beginning to have to confront the issue for their campaigns and current office holders are feeling pressure to address the issue head-on. Below are some important news stories and resources to keep up with this hot-button topic.

Time Magazine online articles: http://time.com/topic/campus-sexual-assault/

The American Association of University Women (AAUW), “Know Your Rights: Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault under Title IX”: http://www.aauw.org/what-we-do/legal-resources/know-your-rights-on-campus/campus-sexual-assault/

Campus Sexual Violence Resource List: http://www.nsvrc.org/saam/campus-resource-list

Huffington Post, “26 Groups That Work With Rape Victims Think The Safe Campus Act Is Terrible”: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/rape-victims-safe-campus-act_55f300cce4b063ecbfa4150b

The Washington Post, “New poll shows support for greater police role in college sexual assaults”: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2015/09/09/new-poll-shows-support-for-greater-police-role-in-college-sexual-assaults/

Thursday, September 10, 2015

GWS Student Spotlight: Caroline Foley!

Throughout the semester, we will be posting spotlights celebrating our GWS majors and minors. First up, Caroline Foley!

Name: Caroline Foley

Class: Junior

Majors and Minors: Communication major, GWS minor, Irish Studies concentration

Hometown: Swarthmore, PA

Favorite place you have traveled to: Aran Islands, Ireland

Favorite GWS Class: Sexuality in America

Why is GWS important to you?: I think it is important to give context to the social constructions and institutions that limit and regulate our lives today. By studying GWS, we enlarge our circle of understanding regarding identity, openly discuss tough theories, and often find a call to action at the end of rich discussions.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

2016 Presidential Candidates and Women's Issues

Even though it is still over a year away, the 2016 presidential race is off and running! This is a time in history when gender and women’s issues are often at the forefront of debates, platforms, and campaigns. Check out the link below to read Glamour’s “The Woman's Guide to the 22 (Yes, 22!) Candidates for President” to see where all of the current candidates stand on important issues. Below is a preview of the information provided


Thursday, September 3, 2015

Gender and Women's Issues Podcasts

Podcasts are the new media craze and help make the morning commute much more bearable. There are a plethora of entertaining, hilarious, and informative options out there. Outlined below is a starting list of current podcasts concerning gender, women’s issues, sex, and all of the history and politics in-between. Happy listening!

Throwing Shade

"Description: Taking a weekly look at all the issues important to ladies and gays...and treating them with much less respect than they deserve."

Recent episode topics include: 
sex-ed, legal sex, anti-gay billboards, marriage equality 



"Our hour-long show Popaganda digs deep on movies, books, TV, and media while Backtalk is a snappy conversation between two Bitch editors about the week’s pop culture."

Recent episode topics include: 
defunding Planned Parenthood, beyond marriage, Hollywood’s women directors, Amy Schumer, and the Duggars 



Reality Cast

"RH Reality Check is a daily publication providing news, commentary and analysis on sexual and reproductive health and justice issues."

Recent episode topics include: 
fighting rape culture, rise of anti-choice extremism, GOP candidates’ views on women, sex between straight men



The Broad Experience
"Here's why I started the show: We all define success differently, and having a sane, balanced existence is important to a lot of us. But many women are ambitious, yet we don't quite reach our full potential. There are many reasons why. Often they are boiled down to one thing: babies. It's more complicated - and interesting - than that. I wanted to bring some nuance to this topic.
About the name: non-Americans may not know that 'broad' is decades-old slang for 'woman' in US English. I wanted the name to be fun and distinctive. We discuss important topics here, but I don't take myself too seriously."
Recent episode topics include: transcending tradition – women in India, claiming credit, when men stay home, when women work for free, power and body language 
Feminist Current

We provide a unique perspective on pop culture, politics, current events, sexuality, gender, and many other issues that are often underrepresented or misrepresented by most media sources.
Recent episode topics: 
eggsploitation, femicide, sexual exploitation



History Chicks

"First off: This isn’t History 101 and there is no test.

Secondly, our goal is to introduce you to female characters in history, factual or fictional via our podcast and shownotes. An introduction, an overview and a little push to explore and learn more on your own.
The shownotes will give you a short look at the life of the person that we are discussing- basic facts and links to other sources to learn more.  The podcast episodes will go into greater detail as we chat about the challenges, failures and successes, times, and all the juicy bits that we find interesting about the  life of our subject. Sometimes, as opportunities present themselves, we will add Special Features here on our website that relate to the person that we are spotlighting.

Tuck away a couple of facts to throw out at dinner parties! Dazzle your kids when they are learning history in school! Dive headfirst into the subcultures that exist for just about anyone! Redecorate a room in homage! Plan a vacation around a women that existed long before you but, for some reason, you relate to. How you use the resources that we provide is entirely up to you."

Recent episode topics: Dorothy Parker, Marie Antoinette, Lydia Pinkham, Joan of Arc, Hattie McDaniel


Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Suit Up for Success

Check out this great event featuring Villanova alums and organized by Villanova Women’s Professional Network!


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Penn Humanities Forum on Sex

The University of Pennsylvania, School of Arts and Sciences will be holding their annual Penn Humanities Forum starting September 16! The mission statement of the forum includes the following description:

“The Penn Humanities Forum is charged with taking a fresh look at those insights that touch on the human experience. Our goals are to demonstrate how vital the humanities are to the life of the mind and the health of society, and how the humanities are connected with many areas of inquiry in medicine, law, business, and the social sciences.

The topic for the 2015-2016 forum is sex. The public events for this series are listed below.

What Is Appropriate Behavior?
September 16, 5:00pm—8:00pm
Harrison Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Desiree Akhavan, Patricia White

The Kin Who Count, and Those in the Shadows...
October 1, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Afsaneh Najmabadi

A Place in the Middle AND Heart of the Sea
October 11, 2:00pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

Living in the Era of Sexual Health
October 14, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Steven Epstein, Lance Wahlert

Sex: A History in 30 Objects
October 17—July 31
Special Exhibitions Gallery, 3rd floor, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

Victorious Secret
October 20—February 15
Penn Libraries Education Commons, Franklin Field, 233 South 33rd Street
Angela Lorenz

Entertaining Notions of Elite Ideals for Women, 300 A.D.
October 21, 5:30pm—6:30pm
Kislak Center, Penn Library, 3420 Walnut Street
Angela Lorenz

Sex, Gender, and the Human Genome
October 28, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Sarah S. Richardson

The Queerness of the Drive
November 5, 6:00pm—7:30pm
Slought, 4017 Walnut Street
Teresa de Lauretis

A Quiet Inquisition
November 8, 2:00pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

The Corrupter of Boys
November 11, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Dyan H. Elliott

“No, I’m Not a Woman—I’m a Not-A-Woman”
November 18, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Terry Castle

A Very Queer Family Indeed
December 9, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Simon Goldhill

December 13, 2:00pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

Syndromes and a Century
January 20, 7:00pm
International House, 3701 Chestnut Street

In Treatment
January 27, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Regina Kunzel

9 Songs
February 3, 7:00pm
International House, 3701 Chestnut Street

Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!
February 10, 7:00pm
International House, 3701 Chestnut Street

February 14, 2:00pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

What’s So Dangerous About Black Women’s Sexuality?
February 17, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Dorothy E. Roberts

Liberating Sexuality: Starting with Black Women
February 24, 5:00pm—6:30pm
G17 Claudia Cohen Hall, 249 South 36th Street
Dorothy E. Roberts

Soul Food Stories
March 13, 2:00pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street

Blue is the Warmest Color
March 16, 7:00pm
International House, 3701 Chestnut Street

Sex and Jewelry in Cross-Cultural Mythology
March 23, 5:00pm—6:30pm
Rainey Auditorium, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street
Wendy Doniger

April 13, 7:00pm
International House, 3701 Chestnut Street

For my information and to register for these events visit the forum’s events webpage here