Paper Title

At the intersection of past and present: What University Archives can teach us about feminist pedagogy

Location

Room 220, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

Start Date

April 2016

End Date

April 2016

Keywords

Feminism, Feminist, Pedagogy, Archives, History, Women's and Gender Studies, Intersectionality

Abstract

Undeniably, to teach gender one must teach intersectional concepts like race and class. This intersectional framework undergirds my WGS lectures and is reflected in the pedagogical structure and teaching partnerships used to deliver class material. One example is a partnership between my class and our University Archives, which is grounded in Adrienne Rich’s (1972) idea of re-visioning- “the act of looking back, of seeing with fresh eyes, of entering an old text from a critical new direction” (p. 18). Looking at intersectional issues in our University’s history, we see them reflected in current events. This is especially poignant as we learn how UNCG went from a white woman’s college to one of the most diverse campuses in the UNC system (https://oedi.uncg.edu/diversity-at-uncg/). After learning about University history, students were introduced to archival records focused on intersectional themes. Students were asked to take information from the lecture and apply it to primary source documents from the University Archives to pinpoint critical differences in content and rhetoric based on opinion or circumstance. The themes focused on the 1950s and early 1960s and topics covered included the debate over institutional desegregation, participation in the 1960 Sit Ins in Downtown Greensboro by white and African American students, and the 1963 student-led movement to desegregate an off campus shopping center. By looking at our institutional history with “fresh eyes,” this pedagogical frameworks allows students to grapple with issues, expand their knowledge, and become situated in a history of place.

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Apr 2nd, 10:30 AM Apr 2nd, 11:45 AM

At the intersection of past and present: What University Archives can teach us about feminist pedagogy

Room 220, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

Undeniably, to teach gender one must teach intersectional concepts like race and class. This intersectional framework undergirds my WGS lectures and is reflected in the pedagogical structure and teaching partnerships used to deliver class material. One example is a partnership between my class and our University Archives, which is grounded in Adrienne Rich’s (1972) idea of re-visioning- “the act of looking back, of seeing with fresh eyes, of entering an old text from a critical new direction” (p. 18). Looking at intersectional issues in our University’s history, we see them reflected in current events. This is especially poignant as we learn how UNCG went from a white woman’s college to one of the most diverse campuses in the UNC system (https://oedi.uncg.edu/diversity-at-uncg/). After learning about University history, students were introduced to archival records focused on intersectional themes. Students were asked to take information from the lecture and apply it to primary source documents from the University Archives to pinpoint critical differences in content and rhetoric based on opinion or circumstance. The themes focused on the 1950s and early 1960s and topics covered included the debate over institutional desegregation, participation in the 1960 Sit Ins in Downtown Greensboro by white and African American students, and the 1963 student-led movement to desegregate an off campus shopping center. By looking at our institutional history with “fresh eyes,” this pedagogical frameworks allows students to grapple with issues, expand their knowledge, and become situated in a history of place.