Previous Events

Film Screening and Panel Discussion:

Film Screening and Panel Discussion: "Bullied"

September 27, 20127:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Visual Arts Center, Beam Classroom

Bullied is a documentary film that chronicles one student's ordeal at the hands of anti-gay bullies and offers an inspiring message of hope to those fighting harassment today. The film will be followed by a panel discussion about gender- and sexuality-based harassment in schools.

Sponsored by the Department of Education and the Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity.

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Lecture: "Marianne into Battle? The Paulista Woman and the War of Sao Paulo" Oct. 18

October 18, 20124:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Moulton Union, Lancaster Lounge

Barbara Weinstein is a professor of history at New York University. Her research has focused on postcolonial Latin America, particularly Brazil, and explores questions of labor, gender, race, and political economy in regions as diverse as the Amazon, with the world's largest rainforest, and the state of São Paulo, Latin America's leading industrial center.

In 1932 the state of São Paulo -- then, as today, the most prosperous and populous state in Brazil -- declared war against the federal government. The conflict that ensued, known as the Constitutionalists Revolution, lasted for a mere 12 weeks but became a major event in São Paulo's history, and a crucial marker of regional identity.

Among the many intriguing features of this short-lived civil war was the massive mobilization of women in support of the "causa paulista." Virtually every chronicle, account, and memoir of the "revolution" foregrounds the role of women in the movement, which might lead us to conclude that this uprising opened the way to more public and political participation by women. However, if we look at representations of women's participation, it is striking to see how the female presence is always condensed into the archetypical figure of the Mulher Paulista (the Paulista Woman), and associated with traits portrayed as intrinsic to the woman (not women) of São Paulo, who is also implicitly figured as white and middle- or upper-class.

Despite some tension in these representations -- produced by the desire to insist on the gendered modernity of the state of São Paulo -- Weinstein argues that the figure of the Mulher Paulista served to depoliticize women's participation so that the public sphere remained a largely male arena that women could enter only under extraordinary circumstances, and which continued to be alien to notions of proper femininity.

Hosted by the Gender and Women's Studies, Africana Studies, and Latin American Studies programs, the Department of History, and the Bowdoin College Lectures and Concerts Fund.

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The academic program in Gender and Women's Studies is supplemented by co-curricular programs and events scheduled by Gender and Women's Studies, the Women's Resource Center, the Bowdoin Women's Association, and other campus organizations.

Testify, Witness and Act: Black Women's Resistance
Scholars from Bowdoin and other institutions will gather at Bowdoin Friday, March 4, 2011, for the one-day symposium "Testify, Witness and Act: Black Women's Resistance." The symposium will provide the opportunity for scholarly engagement with centuries of black women's embrace of freedom and refusal of dehumanizing definitions and practices.
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Past events and visitors have included:


Bowdoin Common Hour: Friday, January 28, 2005
Associate Professor of Women's Studies and Director of Gender and Women's Studies
"Your Flag Decal Won't Get You Into Heaven Anymore": U.S. Consumers, Wal-Mart, and the Commodification of Patriotism

An award-winning teacher and scholar,Jennifer Scanlon is associate professor and director of the Gender and Women's Studies Program at Bowdoin College. She is the editor of The Gender and Consumer Culture Reader; editor of Significant Contemporary American Feminists; and author of Inarticulate Longings: churchThe Ladies' Home Journal, Gender, and the Promises of Consumer Culture. Her most recent publications include, "Old Housekeeping, New Housekeeping,or No Housekeeping? The Kitchenless Home Movement and the Women's Service Magazine," Journalism History 30 (April 2004); and "Mediators in the International Marketplace: U.S. Advertising in Latin America in the Early Twentieth Century," Business History Review 77 (Autumn 2003). A version of Scanlon's Wal-Mart research is forthcoming in The Selling of 9/11; How a National Tragedy Became a Commodity, ed. Dana Heller. Professor Scanlon's current research projects include an article on the beauty parlor as feminist film space and a book about the relationship between Glamour Magazine, its longtime editor Ruth Whitney, and the second wave of the feminist movement in the U.S.

Friday, January 28, 2005
Kresge Auditorium, Visual Arts Center
12:30 P.M.

The Karofsky Family Fund was established by Paul I.'66,his son David M.'93, and his brother Peter '62 in memory of their father and David's grandfather,Sydney B.Karofsky. Each semester the Karofsky Faculty Encore Lecture will feature a Bowdoin faculty member chosen by members of the senior class honoring him or her as a teacher and role model.

Saturday, November 6, 2004
19th Annual Maine Gender and Women's Studies Conference

Keynote address by Susan Douglas in Kresge Auditorium
Susan Douglas is the author of Where the Girls Are: Growing Up Female With the Mass Media.  In her keynote address, she will speak about her most recent book, The Mommy Myth:  the Idealization of Motherhood and How It Has Undermined Women.

review of the book at:
Mommy Myth Book Cover

Schedule of Events
8:45 - 9:45 Registration and Refreshments
Main Lounge, Moulton Union

10:00 - 11:45 Keynote address by Susan Douglas
Kresge Auditorium

12:00 - 1:30 Lunch in Daggett
Thorne Hall with Hannah Pingree
Representative Pingree will lead us through a post-election rundown, Either Way There's Work Ahead

1:45 - 3:00 Break out sessions

  • The Mommy Wars:  Stay-at-Home vs. Working Mothers
  • Media Representations of Motherhood
  • The Baby Experts:  The "Right" Way of Mothering
  • Strategies for Overcoming "Momism"
  • Motherhood in Politics

Download the conference registration form, program and directions in PDF format PDF»

kirsch Gesa Kirsch
Authorship, Authority, and Gender: What We Know, What We Need to Learn
Kirsch's research and teaching interests include ethics, feminism, qualitative research, composition theory, and women's roles in higher education. Her publications include Ethical Dilemmas in Feminist Research: The Politics of Location, Interpretation, and Publication (SUNY, 1999); Women Writing the Academy: Audience, Authority, and Transformation (SIUP, 1994); and several co-edited collections. Currently, she is co-editing a thirty-year history of feminist thought in composition studies titled Feminism and Composition: A Critical Sourcebook (forthcoming from Bedford/St. Martin's Press).

vday The Vagina Monologues
Members of the Bowdoin community will perform Eve Ensler's powerful, hilarious, and provocative Vagina Monologues in support of the V-Day global movement to stop violence against women and girls. For more information about the Vagina Monologues and V-Day, please visit

Without Likeness: Paintings by Anne Harris

Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Anne Harris's portraits and self-portraits confound the expectations of traditional portraiture. They are not about realism but rather abstraction, both a formal 1000 and psychological abstraction, which nonetheless uses realist techniques.

ware Susan Ware
Susan Ware is currently the editor of volume five of Notable American Women. Her research interests include twentieth-century American history and the history of American women, as well as biography. She has published books on women in the New Deal and the 1930s, biographies of Molly Dewson and Ameilia Earhart, and a women's history anthology.

searle Berni Searle
Berni Searle's award-winning photography, video, performances, and installations articulate within global artistic frameworks of postmodernity and postcoloniality. At the same time, her focuses on the body, identity, and gender are colored by her experience as a South African woman of color. For more information,
Sponsored by the Lehman Lecture Fund for Art

Women's Studies Majors Concentration Presentations
These yearly presentations offer a unique opportunity to hear current Women's Studies majors discuss what they have learned in their years at Bowdoin by focusing on a topic that is of particular interest to them. This spring Women's Studies majors of the class of 2003--Cat Price and Camilla Yamada--will present on a broad spectrum of topics relevant to their individual work.

crittenden Ann Crittenden
The Price of Motherhood: Why the Most Important Job in the World is Still the Least Valued
Ann Crittenden is an award-winning journalist and author of The Price of Motherhood: Why the Most Important Job in the World is Still the Least Valued, a stunning indictment of an American economic structure that imposes overwhelming economic penalties on mothers. She was also a reporter for The New York Times and Fortune, a correspondent for Newsweek, a visiting lecturer at MIT and Yale, and executive director of the Fund for Investigative Journalism in Washington, D.C. ( » )

Take Back the Night
Come and participate in Bowdoin's TAKE BACK THE NIGHT MARCH! There will be chanting, glow sticks, and "rape-free" zone tape to hang around campus during the march (which will take place across campus). Everyone will be welcomed to the Women's Resource Center after the march for a discussion.
Sponsored by the Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance and V-Day

kimmel Michael Kimmel
Mars and Venus, or Planet Earth: Women and Men in a New Millennium.
Michael Kimmel is Professor of Sociology at SUNY at Stony Brook. His publications are many, and he edits Men and Masculinities, an interdisciplinary scholarly journal, as well as two book series on men and masculinities. He is the Spokesperson for the National Organization for Men Against Sexism (NOMAS) and lectures extensively on campuses in the U.S. and abroad.
Sponsored by the Gender and Women's Studies Program, the Women's Resource Center, Residential Life, Counseling Service, and the Bowdoin Working Group for Pluralism and Unity.

 Rose Weitz
Pony-tails and Purple Mohawks: Teenage Girls, Hair, and Identity
Rose Weitz is Professor of Sociology at Arizona State University. She has published extensively on women's health and appearances, and her talk will be excerpted from her forthcoming book, Rapunzel's Daughters: What Women's Hair Tells Us About Women's Lives (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2003).
Sponsored by the Gender and Women's Studies Program and the Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

Other past years speakers and performers have also included:

Antigone Rising
Byllye Avery
Laura Benkov
Anita Borg
Mary Daly
Angela Davis
Andrea Dworkin
Melissa Ferrick
Jewelle Gomez
Beverly Guy-Sheftal
Julia "Butterfly" Hill
bell hooks
Holly Hughes
Jackson Katz
Michael Kimmel
Jamaica Kincaid
Deidre McCalla
Dale McCormick
Gloria Naylor
Amy Richards & Jennifer Baumgardner
Sherley Anne Williams