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View Diary: The ballot and black women (223 comments)

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  •  I think that's true ... (4+ / 0-)

    in 101 classes, but there are other classes in WS departments that do have a more holistic approach. For example, I took a basic women's history class, which had a lot of focus on the white suffragist movement. But then I took an AA women's history class, which covered that movement but also included so much more, re-inserting WOC into the history. The problem of course is that these histories are still segregated, so that there's History, Women's History, African-American Women's History, etc.

    The issue, the goal, is changing the way we think about and discuss history so that even a white man understands that African-American women's history is actually his history too.

    •  Good point - when white men can embrace (4+ / 0-)

      these women as political mothers we will have won.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 11:17:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Precisely (9+ / 0-)

      But I would say that the goal is to change the way we think about, discuss, and frame history so that both white men and white women understand that the white experiential framework is not presumptively normative.  Of course educational institutions are part of the institution -- as such, all the institutionalized "isms" are deeply embedded within it.  That is to say, part of the role of such institutions is to reinforce those "isms."

      The saying often goes that history is the story of the powerful and how they became powerful.  African-American women's history, Native-American women's history, Asian-American women's history, etc. should not be segregated from women's history.  Women's history should not be segregated from history.  Period.  

      Otherwise, history courses remain a form of indoctrination, omitting stories of not only various civil rights movements (and how they came about), but also various forms of oppression, including white colonialism -- and how that led to various ethnic diasporas and the various humanitarian crisis we see happening right now, e.g., Somalia, Congo, etc...

      Only then can we get people to wake up, otherwise there will be no paradigm shift.

    •  Out of the 4 women's studies classes that I (9+ / 0-)

      took, 3 were exactly as seeta described.  I was fortunate that my 101 class wasn't.  The rest?  I cannot even begin to describe.  One professor was particularly heinous and seemed quite surprised that I would rate her class according to how she'd behaved.

      "...blacks and whites still view the reality of being black differently." Sophia Angeli Nelson, via Twitter discussion 08/18/11

      by conlakappa on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 11:34:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  So sad, really. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        seeta08, Denise Oliver Velez

        I remember thinking, when I finally transferred to the university, that I'd finally found a course of study that would address all that I felt had been missing from my education. But instead, I found the same kind of strict enforcement of certain narratives. I was also appalled by how much male-bashing happened in my department. I mean, it was like a confirmation of the very worst things that are said about feminists.

        I learned a lot, yes, but overall, I found it to be a disappointing experience because it really illustrated just how difficult it is to change the way we approach our conversations. Different people in power, maybe, but how the power structure works remained largely the same.

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