Five College Consortium

Five College Women's Studies Research Center

Past 2017-2018 Events


Friday, May 4th - Saturday, May 5th 

Cold Storage: Time, Temperature and Transit in Feminist Science and Technology Studies - A Symposium

With this symposium, we seek to bring together scholars working in feminist science and technology studies to explore the intersecting themes of time, temperature, and transit. Our point of departure is to build on works charting the genealogies of cold storage and the centrality of cold storage to the development and consolidation of the life sciences, especially but not exclusively in the realm of cryopreservation.  Earlier scholarship in this area demonstrates that technologies of cold present challenges to extant understandings of temporality and ontology, relationships between parts and wholes, and concepts of species boundaries and human exceptionalism. We want to bring this literature into an ongoing conversation with feminist perspectives that foreground issues of race, sex, and sexuality as well as histories and genealogies of nationalism, colonialism, and imperialism.

Friday, May 4, 4-7pm - Presenters Hannah Landecker and Joanna Radin

Saturday, May 5, 8:15am-5:15pm - Presenters Risa Cromer, Jennifer Hamilton, Karen Hvidtfeldt Madsen, Charlotte Kroløkke, Venla Oikkonen, and Natali Valdez 

Co-sponsored by the Hampshire College Law Program and Mount Holyoke College

Friday, May 4th from 4-7pm and Saturday, May 5th from 8:15am-5:15pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Friday, April 27th

Pioneer Valley Bread House Gathering

Join others in a community bread-baking with the Pioneer Valley Bread House facilitated by Leda Cooks, Professor in the Department of Communication at UMass Amherst. 

4:30-6:30pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, April 18th 

Book Salon with Amy Cox Hall on Framing a Lost City: Science, Photography and the Making of Machu Picchu

Join us for a discussion of Framing a Lost City: Science, Photography and the Making of Machu Picchu (University of Texas Press) by Amy Cox Hall (FCWSRC Research Associate and Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Amherst College).

When Hiram Bingham, a historian from Yale University, first saw Machu Picchu in 1911, it was a ruin obscured by overgrowth whose terraces were farmed a by few families. Today Machu Picchu is a UNESCO world heritage site visited by more than a million tourists annually. This remarkable transformation began with the photographs that accompanied Bingham’s article published in National Geographic magazine, which depicted Machu Picchu as a lost city discovered. Focusing on the practices, technologies, and materializations of Bingham’s three expeditions to Peru (1911, 1912, 1914–1915), this book makes a convincing case that visualization, particularly through the camera, played a decisive role in positioning Machu Picchu as both a scientific discovery and a Peruvian heritage site.

Discussants: Rachel Engmann (Assistant Professor of African Studies, Hampshire College), Jennifer Hamilton (Associate Professor of Legal Studies and Anthropology, Hampshire College), and Matthew Watson (Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Mount Holyoke College)

Co-sponsored by the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at Amherst College

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, April 11th 

“‘The Women, They Hold the Ground’: Water Walkers, Digital Artwork and Indigenous Futurities”

Danika Medak-Saltzman, Assistant Professor, Department of Ethnic Studies, University of Colorado Boulder 

This presentation is organized around three pieces of digital artwork created by Anishinaabe and Metis artist Elizabeth LaPensée, namely “The Women, They Hold the Ground”(2015), “The Grandmothers Carry Water from the Other World” (2016), and “With Songs to Pull Oil from Water” (2017). Situating these pieces within the political moments from which they emerge foregrounds Indigenous resurgence movements, particularly those intended to protect and pray for water. From the Sky Woman story and the Water Walkers/Water Protectors to settler attempts to weaponize the sacred (in this case, water), Indigenous efforts to protect memoried landscapes have taken as many forms, as have settler efforts to separate Native peoples from said lands. Indigenous Resurgence work reflects a broader goal of working collectively for the recovery and regeneration of our world, and to ultimately dream better realities into being. Ultimately this project highlights how the artistic and more overtly political arms of Indigenous futurist efforts are emblematic of the power of imagining and bringing into existence alternative realities and alternative futures. In doing so this work will serve as an one example of how Indigenous futurities manifest, function and are represented under, and beyond, settler colonial realities.

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, April 4th 

FCWSRC Works in Progress Faculty Seminar 

"Rethinking Feminist Women's Movements in Africa with a Special Focus on the Agikuyu of Kenya"

Mary Njeri Kinyanjui, FCWSRC Research Associate and Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi

In Africa, feminism is an ambivalent concept that is used with caution. Those who define themselves as feminists are viewed with suspicion as a result of religious beliefs, traditional marriage setups, patriarchy, influence from the West, how African feminists carry themselves and the theory and pedagogy of feminism. Feminist movements in Kenya has two prongs. The first prong is the elite women-led movement which fights with men for equality, space and opportunity in the public domain, corporations and government boardrooms. The second prong consists of an indigenous motherhood rights-led movement by ordinary women, the majority of whom are peasants, artisans, and traders. The two strands of movements have evolved differently and use different approaches in their endeavor to achieve their goals.

Discussants: Holly Hanson (Professor of History, Mount Holyoke College) and Lynda Pickbourn (Assistant Professor of Economics, Hampshire College)

4:00-6:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Monday, April 2nd 

Book Salon with Laura Furlan on Indigenous Cities: Urban Indian Fiction and the Histories of Relocation

Join us for a discussion of Indigenous Cities: Urban Indian Fiction and the Histories of Relocation (University of Nebraska Press) by Laura Furlan (Associate Professor of English, UMass Amherst).

In Indigenous Cities Laura Furlan demonstrates that stories of the urban experience are essential to an understanding of modern Indigeneity. She situates Native identity among theories of diaspora, cosmopolitanism, and transnationalism by examining urban narratives—such as those written by Sherman Alexie, Janet Campbell Hale, Louise Erdrich, and Susan Power—along with the work of filmmakers and artists. In these stories Native peoples navigate new surroundings, find and reformulate community, and maintain and redefine Indian identity in the postrelocation era. These narratives illuminate the changing relationship between urban Indigenous peoples and their tribal nations and territories and the ways in which new cosmopolitan bonds both reshape and are interpreted by tribal identities.

Discussants: Christine DeLucia (Assistant Professor of History, Mount Holyoke College) and Laura Doyle (Professor of English, UMass Amherst)

Co-sponsored by the English Department at UMass Amherst

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Friday, March 30th

Pioneer Valley Bread House Gathering

Join others in a community bread-baking with the Pioneer Valley Bread House facilitated by Leda Cooks, Professor in the Department of Communication at UMass Amherst. 

4:30-6:30pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Tuesday, March 27th 

Feminist Science and Technology Studies Public Talk

"Fractal Thinking and Mathematical Monsters: Madness, Excess and Radical Exteriority"

Lindsay Miller, PhD Candidate, School of Education, University of Sheffield

The diffuse proliferation of psychotherapeutic technologies (e.g. mathematical and psy-entific tools of quantification, data collection, diagnostics and ‘counting the difference’) so interested in se-cure-ity; so interested in correcting the ‘incorrect’ or ‘uncorrected’, have never been objective reflections of the external world, ‘but premiere tool[s] for fantasies, power and imaginings’ (Warren, 2016). This paper will discuss the range of sometimes seemingly unrelated [settler] colonial psy-archives of governance that demonstrate the entanglements of monstrosity, animality, anarchy, and humanity; where at the foundational homology between the psy and the law Foucault finds the monster, appearing at the limit of law and nature. 

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Monday, March 26th 

FCWSRC Works in Progress Seminar for Faculty

"‘Your Nostalgia is Killing Me!’: ACT UP Nostalgia, Historical Narratives, and their Meaning in the Present”

Marika Cifor, Consortium for Faculty Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow, Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies Program, Bowdoin College

At this juncture nostalgia for ACT UP’s brand of visual, theatrical, and communal direct action abounds. Taking as a case the 2013 poster, “Your Nostalgia is Killing Me!" Marika Cifor analyzes the complicated and conflicted contemporary nostalgia for ACT UP’s radical queer politics, sense of community, and aesthetics. The poster features archival images of ACT UP actions amongst other now-iconic visuals of queer activism and AIDS cultural production. It sparked heated critical conversations between multiple generations of AIDS activists that extended from social media to the halls of the New York Public Library, and which foreground the fraught legacies of ACT UP/New York and of the AIDS crisis. Cifor argue that considering how quotidian aspects of daily life were affected by both HIV/AIDS and the activism created in response to it is crucial in understanding the desire for a collectively imagined, more socially engaged and communal past. The affective drag of nostalgia for ACT UP does not mean that anyone actually wants to revive or relive the death, discrimination, and mass destruction that marked the height of the AIDS crisis in the United States. However, the queer temporal practice of nostalgia for ACT UP’s brand of direct action AIDS activism, both on the part of those who participated and by younger generations who did not, has become a common language through which people express their disappointments and frustrations with the shortcomings of attention to AIDS and with LGBTQ politics and activism.

Discussants: Steve Dillon (Assistant Professor of Queer Studies, Hampshire College) and Christian Gundermann (Chair and Associate Professor of Gender Studies, Mount Holyoke College)

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, March 21st 

Book Salon with Pooja Rangan on Immediations: The Humanitarian Impulse in Documentary

Join us for a discussion of Immediations: The Humanitarian Impulse in Documentary (Duke University Press) by Pooja Rangan (Assistant Professor of English in Film and Media Studies, Amherst College).

Endangered life is often used to justify humanitarian media intervention, but what if suffering humanity is both the fuel and outcome of such media representations? Pooja Rangan argues that this vicious circle is the result of immediation, a prevailing documentary ethos that seeks to render human suffering urgent and immediate at all costs. Rangan interrogates this ethos in films seeking to “give a voice to the voiceless,” an established method of validating the humanity of marginalized subjects, including children, refugees, autistics, and animals. 

Discussants: Jennifer Bajorek (Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature, Hampshire College), Amy Cox Hall (Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Amherst College), Jina Kim (Mount Holyoke Fellow/Visiting Lecturer in Critical Social Thought and Assistant Professor of English and the Study of Women and Gender, Smith College) and Bernadine Mellis (Five College Senior Lecturer in Film & Video Production)  

Co-sponsored by the Department of English at Amherst College

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Monday, March 19th 

"The Search for an Inclusive and Just Global Economy: Why Women Peasants, Artisans and Traders Matter" 

Public Talk by Mary Njeri Kinyanjui, FCWSRC Research Associate and Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi

While it is difficult to pinpoint when the global economy was initiated, many critics are quick to point out how Africa is a burden or a problem to be solved by developed world economies. In the words of Giugale Marcelo, Africa is the "last frontier" which needs to be incorporated into the global economy through economic development or its "economies of affection" need to be captured, according to Goran Hyden. These individuals to be incorporated or captured include women peasants, artisans and traders who have survived into the 21st century doing their "own thing" which looks strange to many analysts. In this talk, Kinyanjui interrogates four issues: why the women peasants, artisans and traders have survived into the 21st century; the economic models which they have crafted for their survival against the imperialistic global economy penetration; why these models matters to the global economy; and why there is a need to shift the current global economic engagments of women peasants, artisans and traders to realize an inclusive and just global economy.

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, February 28th 

FCWSRC Works in Progress Seminar for Faculty

“Teamwork to Make the Dream Work: Networks of Opportunity and Mistrust as Tactical Tool"

Teresa Gonzales, FCWSRC Research Associate and Assistant Professor of Sociology, Knox College

Much of the literature on community development emphasizes the importance of cultivating trust in order to build interorganizational networks within poor communities. We know trust relationships may bring additional funds and political influence to a neighborhood, but at what cost? Particularly if power is consolidated into the hands of the few. If trust can increase marginalization, how might mistrust create opportunities? Using a case study of two low-income neighborhoods in Chicago, Little Village and Greater Englewood, Gonzales focuses on the ways that neighborhood-based community groups use mistrust as a strategy for local power. The larger study focuses on the Local Initiative Support Corporation/Chicago’s (LISC/Chicago) New Communities’ Program (NCP) in Chicago.

In the chapter being presented, Gonzales argues that organizational mistrust, in particular, is a valuable tool against continued neighborhood exploitation, helps to create and set work boundaries, and can decrease social cohesion (and socialization) between organizations with disparate access to power. Although there was a high level of mistrust between organizations, certain groups still collaborated, and shared information, resources, and ideas. These collaborative relationships – what Gonzales terms networks of opportunity – provide greater benefits to both community organizations and local residents. This approach to networking, while potentially time-consuming and difficult, allows for organizations to connect their local causes to broader national issues, and is particularly useful in networks that contain unequal power relations. 

Discussants: Hannah Holleman (Assistant Professor of Sociology, Amherst College), Caroline Melly (Associate Professor of Anthropology, Smith College), and Ellen Pader (Associate Professor of Regional Planning, UMass Amherst)

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Thursday, February 22nd 

"Indigene Economies: Women Peasants, Artisans and Traders in the 21st Century

Living Room Conversation with Mary Njeri Kinyanjui, FCWSRC Research Associate and Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Development Studies, University of Nairobi

According to the World Bank 70% of women in Sub-Saharan Africa are small scale traders while UN Women reports that 74% of women are in the informal economy. In this talk, Kinyanjui looks into the factors contributing to the survival of women peasant, craft and trade activities into the 21st century. She argues that their survival is part of decolonial policies that involve indigenous resistance and resilience to the colonial modernizations and neoliberal projects. Development practice should aim at enfranchising women in the informal sector rather than vanquishing them.

Co-sponsored by The Global Women's History Project at Westfield State University 

11:15am-12:30pm, Scanlon Loughman Living Room, Westfield State University


Wednesday, February 21st 

Book Salon with Loretta Ross on Radical Reproductive Justice: Foundations, Theory, Practice, Critique

Join us for a discussion of Radical Reproductive Justice: Foundations, Theory, Practice, Critique (Feminist Press) with Loretta Ross (FCWSRC Research Associate and Visiting Associate Professor in Women's Studies, Hampshire College).

The book, co-edited by Loretta Ross, Lynn Roberts, Erika Derkas, Whitney Peoples, and Pamela Bridgewater Toure, is an anthology assembling two decades’ of work initiated by SisterSong Women of Color Health Collective, creators of the human rights-based “reproductive justice” framework to move beyond polarized pro-choice/pro-life debates. 

Discussants: Carrie Baker (Associate Professor of the Study of Women and Gender, Smith College), Amrita Basu (Professor of Political Science and Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, Amherst College), Joyce Berkman (Professor of History, Emerita, UMass Amherst) and Laura Briggs (Professor of Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies, UMass Amherst).

Co-sponsored by the Five College Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice Certificate and the Five College Reproductive Politics Seminar

6:30-8:30pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Wednesday, February 14th

Pioneer Valley Bread House Gathering

Join others in a community bread-baking with the Pioneer Valley Bread House facilitated by Leda Cooks, Professor in the Department of Communication at UMass Amherst. 

5:00-7:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Friday, February 9th 

FCWSRC Spring Semester Opening Roundtable and Reception     

Join us for the FCWSRC's opening roundtable on "Building Alternative Worlds in an Age of Alternative Facts: A Provocation" from 2:00-3:30pm and reception from 3:30-5:00pm.

2:00-5:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College


Tuesday, December 5th 

Embodying Coalitions Across the Worlds of Postcolonial and Decolonial Scholarship and Practice - Faculty Reading Group 

Discussion will be on selections from Jodi Byrd's Transit of Empire and Macarena Gómez-Barris' The Extractive Zone.

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Wednesday, November 8th 

Reception and Book Salon with Gail Hornstein on Agnes's Jacket: A Psychologist's Search for the Meanings of Madness

Join us for a reception and book salon celebrating the new edition of Agnes's Jacket: A Psychologist's Search for the Meanings of Madness: Revised and Updated with a New Epilogue by the Author (Routledge, 2017) by Gail Hornstein (Professor of Psychology, Mount Holyoke College).

Discussants: Marty Hadge (Western Mass Recovery Learning Community) and Karen Remmler (Mount Holyoke College)

Co-sponsored by the Department of Gender Studies and Department of Psychology and Education at Mount Holyoke College. 

Reception 6:00-7:00, Book Salon 7:00-8:30pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Monday, November 6th 

"Frosties: Chilled Imaginaries on Seeds, Eggs and Ice"                                           Public Talk by Charlotte Kroløkke

Developments within cryobiology have turned frozen biological parts into standard clinical procedure, yet these technological advances are still in sore need of theorizing within cultural studies. This presentation responds to this need by turning to the cryopolitics of reproduction and seed conservation, discussing the cultural imaginaries of (frozen) cells and seeds revealed in the two documentaries: Motherhood on Ice (2014) and Seeds of Time (2014). 

Charlotte Kroløkke is an FCWSRC Research Associate and Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of Southern Denmark. 

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Monday, October 30th 

"Constructions of the Flawed Will: Explanations for Alcohol Use After Weight-Loss Surgery" Public Talk by Kate Tyrol

Join the Feminist Science and Technology Studies Initiative and FCWSRC for a talk by Kate Tyrol, PhD Candidate, Science and Technology Studies Department, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

5:00-7:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Tuesday, October 24th 

Embodying Coalitions Across the Worlds of Postcolonial and Decolonial Scholarship and Practice - Faculty Reading Group 

Discussion will be on selections from Gloria Anzaldúa's Light in the Dark/Luz en lo Escuroand Sara Ahmed's Living a Feminist Life

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Monday, October 16th 

Book Salon with Britt Rusert on Fugitive Science: Empiricism and Freedom in Early African American Culture 

Join us for a discussion of Fugitive Science: Empiricism and Freedom in Early African American Culture (NYU Press, 2017) with Britt Rusert (Assistant Professor, Department of Afro-American Studies, University of Massachusetts Amherst).

Discussants: Steve Dillon (Hampshire College), Sarah Patterson (UMass Amherst),    Kevin Quashie (Smith College), and Andrea Stone (Smith College) 

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Wednesday, October 11th 

"Domesticating Genomics: The Quest for a Molecular Medical Clinic in the 21st Century" Public Talk by Karen-Sue Taussig

Join the Feminist Science and Technology Studies Initiative and FCWSRC for a talk by Karen-Sue Taussig, Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, University of Minnesota.

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Friday, October 6th 

FCWSRC Fall Break Faculty Writing Retreat  

Join Five College faculty and FCWSRC Research Associates for a day-long writing retreat. 

10:00am-4:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Monday, September 25th 

FCWSRC Works in Progress Seminar for Faculty 

Annie Hill (Five College Women's Studies Research Center Research Associate/Assistant Professor of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, University of Minnesota) "Ambivalent Borders: Modern-Day Slavery Rhetoric, Human Trafficking, and Migration in the United Kingdom"

Discussants: Joan Cocks (Professor Emeritus of Politics, Mount Holyoke College), Karen Remmler (Chair and Professor German Studies, Mount Holyoke College), Svati Shah (Associate Professor of Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies, UMass Amherst)

6:00-8:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Friday, September 22nd

Pioneer Valley Bread House Gathering

Join others in a community bread-baking with the Pioneer Valley Bread House facilitated by Leda Cooks, Professor, Department of Communication, University of Massachusetts Amherst. 

4:30-6:30pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley


Friday, September 15th 

FCWSRC Opening Roundtable and Annual Fall Reception  

Join us for our opening roundtable on "Building Feminist Solidarity Across the Academy" from 2:00-3:30pm followed by the FCWSRC's annual Fall Reception from 3:30-5:00pm to welcome the 2017-2018 Research Associates and new Five College faculty in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. 

2:00-5:00pm, FCWSRC, 83 College Street, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley