Monthly Archives: March 2018

Theme Thursday – Evolution of Revolution

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

Those 37 words make up the revolutionary legislation that ensured equal access to both men and women in federally funded educational programs and activities. Although it is the application of Title IX to athletics that has gained the greatest public visibility, the law applies to every single aspect of education, including course offerings, counseling and counseling materials, financial assistance, student health and insurance benefits and/or other services, housing, marital and parental status of students, physical education and athletics, education programs and activities, and employment.

Title IX benefits everyone — girls and boys, women and men. The law requires educational institutions to maintain policies, practices and programs that do not discriminate against anyone on the basis of gender. Elimination of discrimination against women and girls has received more attention because females historically have faced greater gender restrictions and barriers in education. However, Title IX also has benefited men and boys. A continued effort to achieve educational equity has benefited all students by moving toward creation of school environments where all students may learn and achieve the highest standards.

Want to learn more about Title IX and the the effect it’s had on modern athletics and women’s opportunities in higher education? Check out some of these resources from Ames.

Women’s rights in the USA: Policy debates and gender roles, Dorothy E. McBride, Janine A. Parry

Game, set, match: Billie Jean King and the revolution in women’s sports, by Susan Ware

Invisible seasons: Title IX and the fight for equity in college sports, by Kelly Belanger

Equal play: Title IX and social change, edited by Nancy Hogshead-Makar and Andrew Zimbalist

Getting in the game: Title IX and the women’s sports revolution, Deborah L. Brake

Title IX: A brief history with documents, by Susan Ware

A place on the team: The triumph and tragedy of Title IX, by Welch Suggs

Title IX, by Linda Jean Carpenter, R. Vivian Acosta

Best Gateway Essay Contest Winners

Congratulations to this year’s winners of the annual Best Gateway Essay Contest, Aaron Manuel, Kalen Gray, and Haley Steward!

Each year, Gateway instructors are invited to nominate up to three student essays from their Gateway sections. The papers submitted by students for the contest were evaluated first by teams of Writing Center tutors. The Writing Committee then reviewed these and selected a winner and two runners-up. The winner will receive $150, and the runners-up will receive $75 each. Associate Dean of Curricular and Faculty Development Kevin Sullivan provides the funds for these awards.

The 2016-17 Winners are:
Winner: Aaron Manuel, for his essay, “Goldman’s Paradox: Imperfect Perfection,” nominated by Prof. Mark Criley from his Gateway section, “Punishment.”

Runner-up: Kalen Gray, for his essay, “The New Face of Civil Revolution,” nominated by Prof. Nawaraj Chaulagain from his Gateway section, “Peace and War.”

Runner-up: Haley Steward, for her essay, “Mary Tyler Moore and her role in the feminist movement,” nominated by Prof. Jim Plath from his Gateway section, “Sitcoms and Society.”


The winning essays are now available and free to download through the Digital Commons @ IWU. We encourage you to take some time out to read them!

Making a Peep

Yesterday, The Ames Library had the pleasure of hosting and judging the annual Peeps diorama contest, which is sponsored by the Greek and Roman Studies program at Illinois Wesleyan.

The winning entry, by seniors Ania Bui and Joi Stack, showed the labyrinth through which Theseus traveled to slay the Minotaur, a menacing looking Peep chick, complete with horns.

“The horns are brilliant,” said Karen Schmidt, professor and librarian, who judged the competition along with Meg Miner, university archivist and special collections librarian.

Miner liked the attention to detail in many of the entries, such as mazes and a group of Greek gods with various accessories.

One diorama depicted Achilles dragging the body of Hector behind a chariot pulled by two Peep chicks that had been transformed into horses.

“What this is really is outreach,” said Sultan. “We want to get students at our campus to know the Greek and Roman studies program is here and also see Classical mythology is influential even today. They all have lessons. They teach morals that are timeless.”

(Via The Pantagraph.)

Want some fame, glory, and a $100 cash prize of your own? Unfortunately you’ll have to wait until next year. In the meantime, you may consider taking a course or two in Greek and Roman Studies!


Theme Thursday – Evolution of Revolution

The modern English word gender comes from the Middle English gender (also gendere, gendir gendyr, gendre), a loanword from Anglo-Norman and Middle French gendre. In the last two decades, the use of gender in academia has increased greatly, outnumbering uses of sex in the social sciences, as distinctions between biological categories and social constructions grow. The study of gender is not specifically a women’s issue, but the rhetoric grew out of the feminist movement.

Check out some of these resources, available through Ames, to catch up on the conversation.

Michael Kimmel: On Gender – We’ve heard again and again that men and women are engaged in a “battle of the sexes,” that we’re so differently wired and so foreign to each other that we might as well come from different planets. In this powerful new lecture, renowned speaker and bestselling author Michael Kimmel (The Gendered Society, Manhood in America) turns this conventional wisdom on its head. With clarity and humor, Kimmel moves beyond the popular inter-planetary notion that “men are from Mars and women are from Venus” to advance a decidedly more earth-bound and inter-connected view of the things men and women have in common. This is an accessible and entertaining introduction to gender politics and gender theory — as intellectually informative as it is inspiring, and suited for use across a range of disciplines and courses.

The Role of Gender – This lesson focuses on how all of us learn about gender from an early age, and explores some of the ways in which gender-based roles, expectations and assumptions are changing.

FtF: Female to Femme imagines a world in which the journey toward femme was understood to be as radical as journeys to claim and inhabit other queer bodies.Envisioning more than it documents, this documentary celebrates dyke femme identities, combining farce and seduction with analysis and personal history. For years, femmes have forged community and created space for themselves out of edgy performance and authentic parody. FtF recognizes these strategies and builds them into an unforgettable sexy, funny and moving film. Bursts of queer burlesque amplify the idea of a femme drag. A satire of a femme transition support group uses humor to disarm viewers (as it did its participants), finally stripping away layers of performance to arrive at a raw recognition of femme tactics of self-conceptualization. Interviews feature a host of fabulous femmes, including actress/ writer Guinivere Turner, novelist/activist Jewelle Gomez, poet Meliza Banales, rock stars Leslie Mah (Tribe8) and Bitch (Bitch & Animal), professors, activists, artists and dancers. The filmmakers ask these brilliant thinkers and performers to use the language of gender transition to talk about femme identity, opening up new possibilities for understanding femininity while reinforcing connections among gender warriors around the world. A wildly original extravaganza, FtF: Female to Femme presents a saucy, indelible portrait of a people and their politics central to the gender revolution.

Want a historical perspective? Consider this text, available to check out through Ames.

Theme Thursday – Evolution of Revolution

On March 8, 2017, women around the world organized thousands of marches in solidarity with the Women’s March on Washington. From their website – “In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore. The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.”

Just as protests and activist marches have played a large part in black activism, the Women’s March on Washington was one in a long line of efforts to draw attention to women’s issues. So what are some of those marches, here in the United States and around the world? Check out some of these resources from Ames.

Fields of protest: Women’s movements in India, by Raka Ray

Women and social protest, edited by Guida West, Rhoda Lois Blumberg

Women, work, and protest: A century of US women’s labor history, edited by Ruth Milkman

Protest, policy, and the problem of violence against women: A cross-national comparison, by S. Laurel Weldon

“Viva”: Women and popular protest in Latin America, edited by Sarah A. Radcliffe and Sallie Westwood

Why women protest: Women’s movements in Chile, by Lisa Baldez


Not enough? Check out these collections made available by the Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Women of Protest: Photographs from the Records of the National Woman’s Party

This collection includes 448 digitized photographs selected from approximately 2,650 print photographs in the Records of the National Woman’s Party (NWP). The NWP sought to attract publicity, generate public interest, and pressure government officials to support women’s suffrage in order to win passage of a federal amendment to the U.S. Constitution guaranteeing women the right to vote. View the Collection »

The Colorado

Join us this week on Tuesday, March 6th at the Hansen Student Center from 7:00pm – 9:30pm for a special screening of the film The Colorado. In a 2016 review, The New York Times says: “The film, narrated by the actor Mark Rylance, surveys the Colorado River’s history and ecology, as well as the people whose lives and livelihoods it affects. Various sections focus on aspects like prehistoric settlements, European exploration, dam-building, agriculture and migration, and climate change.”

You can learn more about the film here.

The project’s director and co-author, Murat Eyuboglu, will introduce the film and discuss its development and production. The event is free and open to the public. We hope to see you there!


A Database for the Birds

With spring just weeks away, the air will soon be filled with birdsong. And what better way to identify birds and their calls than the Birds of North America database? Wesleyan students, staff, and faculty have access to the full online database here. Whether you’re a biology major or simply enjoy birding, we encourage you to check it out!


Theme Thursday – Evolution of Revolution

Women’s History Month is an annual declared month that highlights the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society. It is celebrated during March in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, corresponding with International Women’s Day on March 8, and during October in Canada, corresponding with the celebration of Persons Day on October 18.

For this first Theme Thursday in March, we consider the contributions of women to the Scientific Revolution. The scientific revolution is a concept used by historians to describe the emergence of modern science during the early modern period, when developments in mathematics, physics, astronomy, biology (including human anatomy) and chemistry transformed the views of society about nature. The scientific revolution took place in Europe towards the end of the Renaissance period and continued through the late 18th century, influencing the intellectual social movement known as the Enlightenment.

Some well known contributions to the Scientific Revolution by women include the works of

Margaret Cavendish

Maria Winkelmann

Maria Sibylla Merian

Unfortunately, the Scientific Revolution did little to change people’s ideas about the nature of women – more specifically – their capacity to contribute to science just as men do. According to Jackson Spielvogel, “Male scientists used the new science to spread the view that women were by nature inferior and subordinate to men and suited to play a domestic role as nurturing mothers. The widespread distribution of books ensured the continuation of these ideas.” We use spaces like these to combat those preconceptions. What have you learned about someone’s contributions that were usurped by a more dominant social group?