Need a reason to cheer? How about the 30th anniversary of Women’s and Gender Studies? The founders who are still at Lafayette say they started the program to provide students with a more accurate and inclusive academic experience than the one primarily offered through the lens of white European heterosexual males.
“The world looks different to men and women, depending upon socio-economic class, ethnicity, religion, and sexual orientations. It’s not that there’s something wrong with seeing things from one’s own standpoint, but when whole fields are constructed representing a singular segment of humanity, it’s pretty distorted,“ says Susan Basow, Dana Professor of Psychology and the first coordinator of the Women’s Studies program, renamed Women’s and Gender Studies in 2007. “I think Women’s and Gender Studies, and not just at Lafayette, has transformed everything we learned.”
Kimberle Crenshaw, a pioneer in the field and a professor of law at Columbia University and UCLA, delivered the keynote address Sept. 17.