Penn State Gender & Technology Writing Group

The 2010-2011 Gender & Technology Writing Group's monthly meetings are Sept. 15, Oct. 13, Nov. 17, Dec. 1, Jan. 12, Feb. 16, March 2, April 6, and May 4 on Wednesdays, 5:30-7:30 pm in 118 Willard. All graduate students and faculty are invited. Those attending are invited to share work-in-progress. If you would like to receive the work-in-progress paper a week in advance contact Irina Aristarkhova, Eileen Trauth, or Karen Keifer-Boyd.

The end of each monthly meeting is devoted to audio-recorded dialogue about online feminist pedagogy for a collaborative writing project by participants involved throughout the year. The May 4 meeting will be devoted to this project. Transcriptions from the dialogue are prepared each month by Jung-Hyun Kim to refer to at the next meeting.

Research on the topic of gender and technology is an interdisciplinary endeavor that cuts across the humanities, arts and sciences. As such, it is often challenging to keep up-to-date with the state of research and publishing in the many fields in which such work is conducted. For this reason, we have instituted an interdisciplinary writing group at Penn State University. The purpose of this writing group is to provide support and feedback to new and emerging researchers working in the broad area of gender and technology. Participants will discuss research ideas, solicit advice on sources of funding, submit manuscripts in process for preliminary review, and share tips on publication outlets. We expect two benefits to derive from this writing group. First, participants will be able to share knowledge in furtherance of each others' research and publishing agendas. Second, this writing group will serve as a vehicle for creating an interdisciplinary community of scholars. We usually read one or two papers by the participants.

We have had participants from such units around campus as the following:

College of Liberal Arts
Science, Technology & Society Program
College of Information Sciences & Technology
College of Arts and Architecture
College of Engineering
Eberly College of Science
College of Earth and Mineral Sciences


New Phenomenology Reading Group

Joe Valente, Kim Powell and Gail Boldt are starting a reading group for people who might be interested in reading and discussing Deleuze and other theorists writing about in what we're calling, for a lack of a better term, the "new phenomenology" -- a resurgence of interest in affect, embodiment, movement and a reconceptualization of time and causality. This is new stuff for us, so we expect to struggle together through reading which has its own vocabulary and its own often unspoken assumptions. Anyone is welcome to join us.  We anticipate meeting every two weeks and taking smaller chunks of reading. Our first organizational meeting will be Friday, September 3, at 11 am.  We'll meet this time at the large table outside of Gail Boldt's office --164B Chambers.  We expect to move to a more hospitable setting after
this first time.


Global Approaches to Intersectionality Reading Group

Welcome to the reading group on global discourses of race, especially new members.  The name of our group is "Global Approaches to Intersectionality" (which refers to race and its intersections with gender, class, sexuality, nation, etc.). This important new forum for discussions on global discourses of race arose out of the Meanings of Sara Baartman Colloquium held at Penn State in March 2010, which brought together scholars of race, gender, sexuality and slavery from the US and South Africa in a productive set of discussions.  The Colloquium provided a model for collaborative scholarly exchange across the globe. This reading group is the result of that exchange, and forms part of a three-year initiative co-sponsored by the Rock Ethics Institute and the Africana Research Center at Penn State described more fully below. The reading group will focus on global discourses of race and its intersections with gender, class, sexuality, nation and other categories of identity.

This is the first reading group jointly sponsored by the Rock Ethics Institute and the Africana Research Center, and the reading group project forms part of a three-year initiative.  During the first year of the group, we will focus on the themes of race in Rwanda, South Africa and the U.S.   In the second year, we aim to hold a workshop with invited speakers.  In the third year, we plan to hold a major conference, potentially in collaboration with a university partner in Rwanda or South Africa. We have also built partnerships with other programs and departments, such as the Social Thought program at Penn State, the English Department at Stellenbosch University, the Women's and Gender Studies Department at the University of the Western Cape, and the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Cape Town. We hope to build the initiative through our regular discussions, invited speakers, exchange of scholars, and teaching and research collaborations.  Further details will be sent via email. 

The best day and time for the majority of us to meet is every second Wednesday from September 1st at 10 am in the US (EST), which is 4 pm in South Africa.  Hopefully in coming semesters during the three-year initiative the selected time will suit everyone. Here is the list of dates for the semester: September 1, 15, 29; October 13, 27; November 10.

Our first meeting will take place on Wednesday September 1st during which we'll get to know one another and start our discussion on the four summer readings, and the next meeting will take place on September 15, when we continue discussion of the summer readings. To facilitate introductions, Barb Edwards, who administers membership, will solicit brief bios which will be posted onto the reading group website.  Angel also allows us to post reading suggestions and our own writing.

Readings to discuss on Sept. 1 & 15, 2010:

1. Mahmood Mamdani, When Victims Become Killers: Colonialism, Nativism and the Genocide in Rwanda (Princeton, 2002)

2. Michelle Berger and Kathy Guidroz, eds., The The Intersectional Approach: Transforming the Academy through Race, Class, and Gender (UNC, 2009)

3. Steve Biko, I Write What I like (Heinemann, 1978, and a 2002 edition from U Chicago)

4. Saul Dubow, Scientific Racism in Modern South Africa (Cambridge, 1995)

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