Posted: December 3, 2012
Students, faculty, and staff gathered en masse Friday at the Motley Coffeehouse for the first Feminism Teach-In at Scripps College. The event, a panel discussion moderated by English professor Kimberly Drake that featured students, faculty, and Scripps President Lori Bettison-Varga, packed the house with people interested in reframing the feminism debate on campus.
Drake was joined by gender and women’s studies professor Chris Guzaitis, anthropology professor Seo Young Park, religious studies professor Andrew Jacobs, and Olivia Buntaine ‘15 and Emily Areta ’14. Interestingly, all were surprised upon arriving at Scripps by the lack of feminist ideologies, groups, discussions, and institutional support surrounding the ideas of feminism.
“I believe feminism is a movement for equality of opportunity,” said President Bettison-Varga. “I hope we can embrace the term feminism on this campus and not see it as a radical, pushy, or obnoxious idea,” said Bettison-Varga.
The definition of feminism grew with each panelist’s insights. Is it an everyday activism striving towards anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-homophobic goals? A political category and practice meant to challenge gender and sex are construction? “The process of demystification is an important part of feminism,” said Professor Jacobs.
“I’m really glad Emily addressed the privilege of academia and the fact that many of these definitions and ideas exist most prominently here,” said Megan Petersen ’15. “I think that idea still isn’t talked about enough, and I was happy that it was mentioned.”
— Lauren Prince ’14
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