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Newsletter: Fall-Winter 2008-09 Gillian, Creese; Leonora, Angeles; Sunera, Thobani 2010-3-23

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Newsletter  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies, UBC Fall/Winter 2008-09 Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies The University of British Columbia, Canada  CWAGS’ renewed Community Visitors program supported by Vancity grant Gillian Creese, Director  The November rains have arrived in earnest and I am pleased to report that repairs to our roof and exterior walls were finished just before the deluge. The CWAGS building was scheduled to be painted last May – prettied up in advance of hosting the Canadian Women’s Studies Association (CWSA) annual conference as part of the Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences. But alas, when the awnings were removed  for painting serious rot was discovered in the wood panelling underneath, and things only got worse as a closer inspection revealed that the roof was also in need of significant repair. With repairs now done, we look forward to finally painting the building next spring! The CWSA conference went off without a hitch in early June, in no small part thanks to the tremendous efforts of Kim Snowden, our UBC CWSA coordinator (and CWAGS Ph.D. grad and current WAGS instructor). Thank you Kim – we  What’s Inside... Graduate Advisor Report Remembering the Centre News from RAGA Centre Visiting Scholar Reports Congratulations Visiting Scholar Program WAGS Program Update WSGSA Report Fall Lecture Series  3 5 6 4/8/10 9 11 12 13 15  The Newsletter of the Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies The University of British Columbia 1896 East Mall Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1 Canada (604) 822-9171 tel (604) 822-9169 fax wmst1@interchange.ubc.ca www.wmst.ubc.ca  Director Gillian Creese with poet and novelist Dionne Brand and Women’s Studies Program Chair Wendy Frisby.  2  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  could not have done it without you. The conference also afforded CWAGS the opportunity to host an all-day meeting of the coordinators of Women’s Studies programs across the country.It was a productive and enjoyable event; getting to know more of our colleagues in other parts of the country, and hearing about the accomplishments and challenges facing our sister institutions, reminds us how we all manage to run successful programs on a shoestring. The main CWAGS/WAGS public event this fall coincided with UBC’s Celebrate Learning week and women’s history month. We sponsored a public lecture by celebrated poet, writer and scholar Dionne Brand on October 3. Dionne spoke to well over 100 people who ventured out on a dark and rainy evening to hear an inspirational talk entitled “Inventory”. While at UBC Dionne also ran a workshop for CWAGS graduate students, and gave a lecture in a WAGS introductory course. Dionne’s talk was also the third and final event (following the research forum on “Engendering Social Justice” in November 2007 and the International women’s Day event, “Teaching Women’s and Gender Studies at UBC”, in March 2008) to mark 35 years of research and teaching in women’s and gender studies at UBC. Proceedings from the first two events are now available. Please contact CWAGS if you would like a copy of Celebrating Women’s & Gender Studies at UBC: 35 Years. CWAGS was delighted to co-sponsor the performance artist ORLAN on October 6 (brought in by the Vancouver Art Gallery as part of the WACK exhibition), a full day symposium organized by our graduate students, Creating Resistance: Arts Practice/Political Praxis (with the Gender Performances Research Group) on October 24, and Louis-Georges Tin on “Deconstructing Homophobia: Asserting LGBT Rights in a Globalized World” on November 20 (with the Consulate General of France  and Arsenal Pulp Press). We have also helped to co-sponsor a number of other events, including Kunqu Chinese Opera on June 16-17 (with Asian Studies), Aihwa Ong on September 16 (with the Centre for CrossFaculty Inquiry), a conference on Two Concepts of Liberty (with Political Science), Erlinda Palaganas on November 5-6 (with Metropolis, Liu, and IAR), and events CommemoratAuthor and CWAGS PhD Chris Shelley (right), with Professor Becki Ross ing a Century at the launch of Chris’s book Transpeople: Repudiation, Trauma, Healing of South Asian on Sept. 10th. Presence in Canada from November 17-23 (with fall term with a book launch on SeptemRAGA). In addition to these events, ber 10 for Chris Shelley, our first Ph.D. we have welcomed a diverse and in- graduate. Chris’ dissertation is now teresting range of speakers in our a book with the University of Toronto Wednesday noon CWAGS speak- Press, entitled Transpeople: Repudiaers’ series. (The list for this term ap- tion, Trauma, Healing. Congratulations pears elsewhere in this newsletter.) Chris! We welcomed 5 new graduate In collaboration with Wendy Frisby students adding to a total complement (Chair of WAGS) we are editing a book of 25 (see the Graduate Advisor’s and on Feminist Approaches to Commu- the Graduate Students’ reports for more nity-Based Research that will highlight details). We are continuing CWAGS various kinds of feminist community re- tradition of welcoming Visiting Scholars search undertaken by CWAGS Faculty from all over the world. Visiting ScholAssociates and Research Associates. ars this fall include Valentina MarinesThe book is a collaborative project, with cu (University of Bucharest, Romania), chapters designed to speak to each and Nanette Garcia Dungo (University other across a range of disciplines, of the Philippines, Quezon City); in addisubstantive topics and social and spa- tion to Susana Rosano (University Natial geographies. A half day workshop cional de Rosario, Argentina) funded by in October will be followed by a full-day the International Council for Canadian symposium next February and a com- Studies, and Shastri Scholar Upasana pleted book at the end of the summer. Mahanta (Jawarharlal Nehru UniverCWAGS has been a hive of activity sity, India ). Visiting Scholars’ individual this fall. We were delighted to begin the reports appear later in this newsletter.  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  The renewed tradition of welcoming Community Visitors to CWAGS will also continue this year. The call for proposals has already gone out and we hope to have two community researchers from local non-profits conducting research at the Centre next term. The deadline for applications is January 5, 2009. We wish to thank the Vancity Community Foundation for its generous support for this program, and Nancy Cardozo  ...We were delighted to begin the fall term with a book launch on September 10 for Chris Shelley, our first PhD graduate.....  (CFIS) for helping us attain this funding. With new leadership at the College for Interdisciplinary Studies – Principal Michael Burgess and Assoc. Principals Tim Cheek and Sneja Gunew (past director of CWAGS) – we have entered a period where we feel both heard and valued for the interdisciplinary and collaborative feminist research and teaching we help to foster. Although CFIS remains ‘challenged’ in terms of resources we do anticipate better times ahead (the fiscal crisis notwithstanding) and hope that initiatives in the works may soon result in more resources for our graduate program and other activities. As always, I am very grateful to members of the CWAGS advisory committee for their support and council, to Nora Angeles, our Grad Advisor, for her many, varied, and always cheerful contributions, to Wendy Frisby, Chair of the WAGS undergraduate program for so generously sharing her experience and insights, and most of all, to Jane Charles, our administrator, and Wynn Archibald, our grad secretary, for holding the Centre together and always going above and beyond what we have any right to expect.  3  Graduate Advisor’s Report Leonora C. Angeles  Another term is over; another year ends. Where did time go? In a few months, we will be preparing for the next April 2009 Graduate Student Seminar, to be led by four new M.A. students -- Andrea Carlson (Women’s Studies and Sociology, U of Regina); Sarah Leamon (Political Science and Women’s Studies, U of Calgary and Law, Bond U); Michele Murphy (Cultural and Classicial Studies, UWO and B.Ed, Queen’s); and Soni Thindal (Sociology, SFU). They are joined by our only new PhD student, Bjorg Hjartardottir who studied in Iceland and the Netherlands. These five dynamic women have been moderating the CWAGS Fall Lecture Series. We have a very good success rate of 87.5% in the last years’ UGF-SSHRC competition. This fall, we put forward to FOGS three PhD and two MA grant applications, which all qualified for SSHRC consideration. We look forward to another stellar record when the results are announced in March. Acting on students’ recommendations at the April Grad Student Forum, we have introduced some new innovations to support students. One is an optional mock “departmental defense” to help our students prepare for their PhD oral examination. We had also recommended that PhD students who were unable to meet their supervising committee in the summer or fall term request their primary supervisor to provide a one paragraph progress report for the Spring Review. This is also a good way to keep everyone on track after some hiatus in the writing stage. The FOGS has been assisting Grad Advisors and Research Supervisors in providing high-quality supervision of graduate students at UBC. When I arrived as a junior faculty member ten  years ago, I was immediately put in the roles of PhD thesis supervisor and University Examiner. There was very little support provided to new and existing faculty members interested in honing their supervisory skills, other than those given as part of the general mentoring offered either through the Centre for Teaching and Academic Growth (TAG) and the now-defunct Faculty Mentoring Circle. My on-the-job training was provided by observing colleagues and by asking myself, what would have I wanted my research supervisor to do when I was a graduate student. I realized later that many colleagues, junior and senior alike, were also not mentored, and also learned by observation, trial-and-error, and learning-by-doing. The development of faculty in graduate supervision had been identified as a key need across 34 graduate programs on campus at a January 2008 workshop. This need resonated with the recent Canadian Graduate and Professional Student Survey Report that between 10-24% of respondents did not rate their supervisors well in the 13 indicators of effective mentoring. ...Cont’d on 9  4  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Visiting Scholar Report  Priti Singh, Jawaharlal Nehru University  My visit to the Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of British Columbia as a Visiting Scholar was one of my most refreshing and invigorating research trips in recent years! The prime focus of my study there was to attempt a comparative analysis of the issues pertaining to indigenous/ tribal self-government in Canada and India. Looking at these issues from a public policy perspective, I sought to examine the role of the state in promoting Aboriginal/First Nations community participation in the evolution of selfgovernment in Canada and the strategies that indigenous peoples’ organizations should evolve to sustain the interest of its constituents. More particularly, I was interested in addressing issues with regard to Aboriginal women within indigenous organizations and their role in self-governance. The Centre for Research on Women’s and Gender Studies proved to be ideal for my research and to orient and familiarize myself with Canada and its people and their “Canadianness”. Being my first visit to Canada it was essential for me to be able to do so. The  ethnic diversity of Vancouver and of the faculty, staff and students of the Centre was my first exposure to Canada and it made a deep impression on me. People to people interactions make for a much better understanding of any subject than pure library research. Dr. Gillian Creese, Director of the Centre made me feel completely at home in the Centre and we had a discussion on some of the current Aboriginal issues and my research concerns. I met briefly some of the other associated faculty members at the Centre like Dr. Wendy Frisby, Dr. Nora Angeles and Dr. Veronica Strong-Boag. I had a number of useful meetings with Dr. Sunera Thobani, CWAGS who gave me a list of the people and Aboriginal Women’s associations and groups that I could meet with and contact. She steered me in the right direction. Dr. Sneja Gunew and Dr. Margery Fee have been very supportive and encouraging. Their warmth and hospitality, not to mention their academic inputs and comments on one of my research papers on Indigenous activism has been very useful for me. Their invitation to a talk by Will Kymlicka on the evolution of the policy of Multiculturalism in Canada was one of the highlights of my visit. I am indebted to Dr. Valerie Raoul, Director of the Centre for Studies in Autobiography, Gender and Age (SAGA) who took it upon herself to take me through a crash course on the ‘British Columbia experience’. Interactions with her were not restricted to verbal exchanges on themes of mutual interest but were more a case of “show and tell”. Ms. Jane Charles and Ms. Wynn Archibald at the Centre were very helpful with any request that I had. It was my good fortune to meet with Dr. Rose Charlie, member of the Union  of B.C. Chiefs and the Grand Chief of B.C. She is also a founder member of the National Indian Brotherhood, now the Assembly of First Nations and has helped found the National Association of Indian Rights for Indian Women and the Native Women’s Association of Canada. I could also establish contacts with others at University of British Columbia like the First Nations Law Professor June McCue, Dr. Madeleine  ...I was interested in addressing issues with regard to Aboriginal women within indigenous organizations and their role in self-governance....  MacIvor, Associate Director of the First Nations House of Learning, and Dr. Garth Greskiw, Manager of Aboriginal Initiatives, Forest Sciences Centre. I found the library and the librarians at UBC very warm and welcoming. Indeed, I must mention Ms. Kim Lawson at the First Nations House of Learning Library who spent her valuable time making sure that the time I spent in the library was very fruitful. It was also possible for me to visit the University of Victoria where I had very useful interactions with academics at the Indigenous Governance Program—its Director Dr. Taiaiake Alfred; Dr. James Tully; Dr. Avigail Eisenberg and Mr. Johnny Mack. My presentation at the Centre on “Issues of Gender, Socio-Economic Equity and Justice for Governance of Tribals in India” was the last in the series for the semester. Yet, it was well  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  attended and the discussions following the presentation were useful for me. I could also interact with students outside the Centre who were there for the presentation and get to know their themes of interest and research. My visit to the Centre has resulted in enhancing my understanding of Canadian Aboriginal women’s issues, an aspect that I have not yet brought out in my research and writings on issues of Aboriginal governance. For that I will always be grateful to the Centre. Ms. Rupa Bagga, a research scholar at the Centre in the final stages of her PhD took personal care to see that I had no adjustment difficulties and that I could work unhindered. What made my visit a grand success for me was what I can only describe as “a woman’s touch” of care and concern!  5  Remembering the Centre Veronica Strong-Boag  As I was helping to organize our celebration of 35 years of Women’s Studies at UBC, I was constantly reminded of how much we have done and how much we can do to advance research, teaching, and community outreach in women’s and gender studies. CWAGs has existed for almost 20 years (since 1991) and has a sterling record in encouraging research and graduate teaching that will make a difference to women in BC and beyond. Under four directors, the Centre has brought in international speakers and experts, hosted workshops and conferences, and coordinated efforts with grassroots communities in Canada and abroad. Our collective efforts have been recognized by numerous honours to faculty and students, by a growing en-  Congratulations to our graduating students! Jade Boyd, PhD and Kristi Engle Folchert, MA Nov. 19, 2008  dowment, and also an endowment in honour of the Canadian novelist, Jane Rule, to the Critical Studies in Sexualities program associated with the Centre and the undergraduate program. Today faculty, graduate students, and community associates under the leadership of the Director Gillian Creese pursue important questions ranging from public policy and women’s and children’s well-being to literary expression and creativity that deserve our full support. I have contributed a monthly donation to the Centre’s endowment since I became the inaugural director. More recently, as I have begun to consider retirement, I also realized that I wanted to make a further contribution to an initiative that means so much to the advancement of women at UBC and to research and scholarship more generally. While ensuring that the educational needs of my three sons are met, I have organized my will to help guarantee that others in less fortunate circumstances are helped as well. I’ve provided for a portion of my estate to benefit the Centre’s future initiatives on behalf of women and children. It has given me a great deal of pleasure to imagine that others will be assisted by the provision that I make today. I know there are many demands on us for money and time but I hope that many of you might be interested in considering a donation that promises to benefit women and children over the long term. .For more information about making a current gift to support CWAGS, please contact Nancy Cardozo at 604-822-1313 or nancy.cardozo@ubc.ca. If you are interested in learning more about gift and estate planning, please contact Cheryl Stevens at 604-822-1232 or cheryl.stevens @ubc.ca.  6  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  News from the RAGA Centre Race Autobiography, Gender and Age Sunera Thobani, Director  The Race, Autobiography, Gender and Aging studies Centre (RAGA) will promote critical race feminist studies and activism, with a focus on autobiography, oral history, artistic expression and the experiences of women at various stages of the lifespan. The Centre will foster innovative academic and community based research projects and promote the sharing of knowledge, resources and expertise between postsecondary educational institutions and community organizations. The Centre provides space and other resources to graduate students and Visiting Scholars and is also committed to providing opportunities to students to enhance their links with grassroots women’s organizations. As the incoming Director of the RAGA Centre, I am currently working with a coalition of academics and community activists to organize a week-long series of events Commemorating Over a Century of South Asian Presence in Canada (November 17-23, 2008). South Asians first arrived in Canada at the end of the nineteenth century, and by 1908, approximately 5,000 were reported to be resident in British Columbia. That year, the Canadian government introduced the Continuous Journey requirement to prohibit further South Asian migration into the country. A group of South Asians chartered the Komagata Maru in 1914 to challenge this racist law, and although the 376 passengers on board were forced to return to India, they dealt a serious blow to the ‘Keep Canada White’ policies of the settler society. In the mid-twentieth century, a growing demand for labour in Canada, as well as the activism of immigrant com-  munities for non-discriminatory immigration policies and family reunification, led to a significant transformation in immigration and citizenship policies. The introduction of the point system in the 1960s resulted in a dramatic increase in immigration from South Asia, including that of women. Citizenship was also liberalized, and with the new economic opportunities available to the community, South Asians created an indelible presence in Canadian society. This week-long series of events will promote research on the South Asian diaspora, pay homage to the struggles waged by South Asian communities, celebrate their achievements and build alliances to face the challenges of the 21st century. -----COMMEMORATING OVER 100 YEARS OF SOUTH ASIAN PRESENCE IN CANADA Paying homage to the struggles waged by South Asian communities, celebrating our achievements, and building alliances for the challenges of the 21st century.  Schedule of Events MONDAY NOVEMBER 17, 8PM Opening Reception Desi Downtown, 911 Denman Street Including performances by Bass Poetry Music and more. Cosponsored by Desi Downtown. MON NOVEMBER 17, 1-7 PM Over a Century of South Asian Presence in Canada UBC RAGA Centre, Thea’s Lounge GSS Building (6371 Crescent Road). TUES NOVEMBER 18, 7-9PM Representing South Asians in the Media: A Round Table  Roundhouse Community Centre Moderator: Prem Gill (Telus TV) WEDS NOVEMBER 19, 6-8 South Asian Women on Violence: Resisting and Speaking Out Lecture Hall A130, 100 West 49th Ave Contact and Moderator: Indira Prahst, Sociologist THURS NOVEMBER 20, 6-9 Film Screenings of Continuous Journey and Rex vs. Singh Followed by discussion with filmmaker Ali Kazimi. Cosponsored by Raja Cinema. Raja Cinema FRI NOVEMBER 21, 10AM Commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the Continuous Journey Legislation Debate, Discourse and Discussion at University House Centre for Indo Canadian Studies University of the Fraser Valley, Abotsford FRI NOVEMBER 21 Public Forum and Exhibition of Community Publications Vancouver Public Library Cosponsored by Siraat and VPL. SAT NOVEMBER 22, 1:30-5 Marking 100 Years of the Continuous Journey Regulation: Surrey Community Forum Kwantlen College, Surrey Film Screening of Continuous Journey  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  SAT NOVEMBER 22, 6:30-8:30PM An Evening of Poetry Kwantlen College, Surrey Contact and Moderator: Surjeet Kalsey  SAT NOVEMBER 22, 10 AM Children’s Book Reading/ Dance Workshops. 6667 Main St. Cosponsored by SAFA  SUN NOVEMBER 23, 7-10PM Jashan: A Night of South Asian Performance Arts Massey Theatre, New Westminster Featuring some of the most prominent and groundbreaking South Asian performance artists. Cosponsored by CFIS/UBC.  THANK YOU TO OUR GENEROUS SPONSORS: AMS Colour Connected Against Racism AMS-RGAC Asian Studies UBC A-Town Productions Bangladesh Student Association CFLS-UBC CISAR-UBC CWAGS-UBC Delhi 2 Dublin Desi Downtown Gender Performances Project Harinder Toor Herb Dhaliwal Kamal’s Video Palace Komagatamaru Heritage Foundation Kwantlen Faculty Association Law and Society UBC MOSAIC No One is Illegal Pabla’s Himalaya Restaurant Progressive Inter-Cultural Community Services Punjab Food Centre Radical Desis Network Roundhouse Community Centre SANSAD SAFA Sarup Mann School of Journalism UBC Siraat Collective St Johns College UBC Surrey Urban Youth Project Telus-TV Vancity Printers Vancouver & Lower Mainland Multicultural Support Services Vancouver Status of Women VPL VIRSA WAGS-GSA and WAGS-UBC  7  8  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Visiting Scholar Report  Nanette Garcia Dungo  Miriam College, Women and Gender Institute, Philippines Academe draws its life from the constancy of ideas generated by the tensions and issues of everyday reality. No one can ever take away the excitement of being able to birth new strands of ideas from what appears to be so ordinary and taken for granted, yet at closer and intent gaze, a novel insight conjures and opens a new discourse. The chance of discovery does not happen everyday for it takes a deeper reflection of ordinary happenings driven by a certain discomfort or suspicion that something needs to be unravelled beneath the face of an external appearance. This motivation to search for new meanings intensifies even more in a new environment that refreshes the drive to discover more, and grow in one’s capacity to expand the horizon of academic experience. Coming to UBC has brought such a wonderful and stimulating opportunity to enrich my academic engagement, meet and dialogue with new people with differing perspectives, deepen one’s understandings of certain events as differences provoke new reflections of prevailing ideas, from which may come variant spaces to traverse. Conversations with people from other cultures fertilize images and notions of things. They bleed with new meanings and add texture to a prevailing mode of reflection. It has been a chance to renew an enduring friendship which for many years has been mostly mediated by memory, but which this visit objectified and revived with all the rich emotions of coming together again. Reunited with Dr. Nora Angeles, a most cherished Graduate Adviser of the Centre, and treasured friend capped the glow of this encounter. Most of all, the wealth of new materials, journals,  books provide such a fertile source and stimulation to engage the classroom anew, and share the changing texture of literature as new interpretations from young minds rise to render new levels and directions in the search and production of ideas. The limit of time, given just two weeks, made the experience more intense as every moment was carved to contain as much substance never encountered before to maximize the gains of a cross cultural experience. From all angles, limited time sharpens focus and engages more. Facing a new culture amidst the many other exposures before is always a way of sharpening one’s sensibilities. Novelties of language, gestures, articulations are materials for rising perspectives of how to visualize the form and content of realities and imaginaries. They constitute the seedbed of ruptures that reveal crevices from where beginnings can be born. Whether these are mental concepts or personal growth potentials, matters little, for they eventually constitute a synergy that gives a new spirit that invigorates the mind. Departures are “breaks” but they are breaks which we leave enriched by that which we leave behind as we move on. Life is moving on; there’s no stopping, for “lost time will never be recovered” as they often say. Certainly, one carries the past into the present, and together they configure a more enhanced academic future, refreshed with new life. An old place becomes reinvigorated, a new burst of energy powers the mind, and the creation of ideas throbs with new insights. No language can capture the depths of my gratitude to Dr. Gillian Creese,  to the faculty and staff of the Centre, who have all provided so much comfort, presence, and a steady support that made staying in the Centre a great experience.  Christmas Raffle Results Congratulations to Andrea Carlson who won a $100 London Drugs Gift Certificate -- and kindly donated it to a needy family. The raffle raised $152 for the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre. Thanks to all of you who bought tickets!  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Graduate Advisor’s Report ....cont’d from 3  To address this need, FOGS Associate Dean Cindy Prescott has announced a number of initiatives, including the appointment of a new FOGS Associate Dean in charge of Professional Development, at a recent October workshop for Grad Advisors. There are also a number of half-day workshops offered to all UBC faculty members this coming year, with topics ranging from “Getting Started” and “Building an Effective Student-Supervisor Relationship” to “Preparing for the Future.” FOGS has also circulated two excellent manuals for dissemination to interested faculty supervisors: the 25-page On the Right Track: A Manual for Research Mentors by Margaret King (Council of Graduate Schools, Washington D.C. 2003), and the 50-page Eleven Practices of Effective Postgraduate Research Supervisors by Richard James and Gabrielle Baldwin (University of Melbourne, 2006). These two booklets are at the CWAGS front desk for all interested faculty supervisors and graduate students. Many of our students will become future graduate research supervisors themselves. A good way of mentoring our own graduate students in research supervision is leading by  example. As King said in On the Right Track: Directing the research of graduate students is the primary point at which the research and teaching missions of the university intersect. Nowhere is instruction more individualized, nowhere is the potential for both satisfaction and frustration greater, and nowhere are the stakes higher. Through their research training, graduate students internalize the norms of their discipline – intellectual, methodological, and ethical. Thus the future health of the discipline, as well as the professional future of the student, depends on the success or failure of this enterprise (p. 1). Since students have other career mentoring needs, the PhD dissertation writing group has now evolved into contributing to professional development of graduate students, as well as sessional lecturers in the Undergraduate Program. One proposed activity is an early January workshop on career search and job talk preparation when short-listed for a tenure-track position. We will have this as an opening workshop in 2009, along with others lined up by the Undergraduate Program: the now- regular February Pedagogy Workshop (this year’s topic is on Classroom Assessments), and possibly an....cont’d on 11  Congratulations! Dr. Margery Fee was the recipient of the 2008 Dean of Arts Award, acknowledging her many contributions over the years as teacher, graduate mentor, author, chair of Canadian Studies, Editor of Canaadian Literature, and Associate Dean for Students. Dr. Chris Shelley’s book Transpeople: Repudiation, Trauma, Healing was published by University of Toronto Press in Summer 2008. Emilia Nielsen, CWAGS PhD student, was this recipient of the 2008 Michelle Lynn Rosa Memorial Prize. Dr. Becki Ross was the winner of the Sociology Student Teaching Prize for 2007-08. Dr. Kartik Roy’s book Institutions and Gender Empowement in the Global Economy (World Scientific Studies in International Economics) was published by World Scientific Publishing in Aug. 2008. Professor Roy (University of Queensland) prepared the proposal for the book during his time as a Visiting Scholar at the Centre. Emilia Nielsen was awarded a 3-year SSHRC doctoral scholarship in the amount of $35,000/year beginning 2008-09. Sally Mennill was awarded a SSHRC doctoral fellowship in the amount of $20,000/year beginning 2008-09. Jenny Fawcett, Manuela Valle, and Sanzida Habib were all recipients of one-year University Graduate Fellowships for 2008-09.  Left: PhD student Rupa Bagga and Benoit Roulx at their wedding reception, Dec. 7, 2008. Above: PhD student Manuela Valle with baby Ramona, born June 4, 2008..  9  10  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Visiting Scholar Report  Valentina Marinescu, University of Bucharest, Romania  My two months of visiting fellowship at the Centre for Women and Gender Studies have been a rich and extremely useful period for me. I have had the opportunity to meet special people and to take part in various scientific events. From the first day in which I arrived I was helped to accommodate with the rules of University of British Columbia by Jane Charles and Wynn Archibald. It was a first proof of the excellent organization at the Centre for Women and Gender Studies. In the same day I met with Gillian Creese, the Director of CWAGS, and Leonora Angeles -- the Graduate Student Advisor -- who provided me with the first contacts for my research project on gendered diasporic identities and communication. The huge amount of information available at the UBC Libraries – both in “traditional” (book and printed materials) and electronic shape – offered me an opportunity to refine and correct the research project. The flexible and interdisciplinary approach to gender studies issues is, per-  haps, the main striking characteristic of the scientific activity at the Centre for Women and Gender Studies for someone from another country. What seems important in this case is not the “formal” shape of the meeting but the ways in which ideas are presented and the real dialogue is stimulated. The weekly presentations from the seminar series are, in my opinion, a good example of this form of “scientific commitment”. During my visiting period the issues debated have varied from the analysis of the violence against women in India case to the study of the reshaping of social identities in the case of the returning migrant Filipina women. On that occasion I had the opportunity to exchange information and to find common points of interest with other researchers. To take only one example, the need for ongoing reshaping of social identity I found in the Romanian women from dasporic Canadian communities could be identified also in the case of migrant women from the Philippines who decided to return home – the last subject being approached in her research by Professor Nanette Dungo from Miriam College (Philippines). Nanette was also a visiting fellow at the Centre for Women and Gender Studies (UBC) during the same period. The presentation I gave on the Romanian women diasporic identities in Canada and communication was, as such, a part of a continuum of scientific interest towards the women and gender issues. I took advantage from the above-mentioned access to the newest information and I prepared a first article to send for review for the book: ”In Transition: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux”, Kseniya Fedorova (ed.) [ Ekater-  inburg Academy of Modern Art Ural State University, Ekaterinburg, Russia]. The informal further discussions I had with Sneja Gunew and Alexia Bloch pointed out and stressed the new ways in which the research could be carried and refined in the future for more substantial articles that could be published in peer-reviewed publications. I thank the Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies for the fellowship offered to me and for the very important and interesting moment I spent here.  check it out. thirdspace the journal for emerging feminist scholars www.thirdspace.ca  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  11  Visiting Scholars Program 2010-2011 Academic Year The University of British Columbia offers a Visiting Scholar Program as an integral part of its Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies. Scholars working in these areas are encouraged to apply to spend leave time (one to six months) in affiliation with the Centre. The goal of the Centre is to stimulate feminist research and to facilitate interchange of ideas and collaboration among scholars, at UBC and elsewhere. Scholars will be expected to participate in the activities of the Centre and to give a public lecture during their term. The Visiting Scholar program is open to faculty, both untenured and tenured, as well as to independent scholars who are engaged in critical work on women and gender, who are not currently working on a higher degree at any institution and who reside in areas outside the B.C. Lower Mainland. Some funding for travel expenses (to a maximum of $3000) is available for scholars from “developing” countries. In its selection of visitors, the Centre hopes to create a diverse community of junior and senior scholar-researchers. The Centre is particularly interested in applicants who are situated within existing Women’s Studies centres which might be interested in forging future international links. Scholars will normally be provided with shared office space at the Centre or a computer workstation in the RAGA Centre, Koerner Library, phone and secretarial assistance. The University’s academic year runs from September to April; therefore applicants are encouraged to schedule the majority of their visit to the Centre during these months. This program is likely to be of particular interest to scholars who are on sabbatical.  Almas Zakuiddin with grandson Zain, Rupa Bagga, and Visiting Shastri Scholar Upasana Mahanta at “Chatting with Chocolates”, a social event hosted by the WAGS Undergraduate Association.  Applications must include: • Curriculum vitae • A detailed statement of research plans for the time period • The length of stay proposed and the dates • Estimate of travel costs (for scholars from “developing” countries requesting financial support) The applicant must also arrange to have two referees forward their assessments to: Visiting Scholar Program, UBC Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies, 1896 East Mall, Vancouver, B.C., Canada, V6T 1Z1. The closing date for receipt of applications is December 31, 2009.  Graduate Advisor’s Report ...cont’d from 9  other workshop in March on Technical and Policy-Oriented Writing. We will have a large cohort of graduating students in the coming year and I look forward to grand celebrations in May and November. I will be stepping down come from my post as Grad Advisor on June 30, 2009, and I am very happy and proud to announce that Dr Dawn Currie had agreed to take over. As a seasoned Grad Advisor in Sociology and former Chair of the Women’s Studies Undergraduate Program, Dawn comes to us with an intimate knowledge of the Centre and several decades of effective graduate supervision experience. Please join me in welcoming Dawn.  12  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Update  Women’s and Gender Studies Undergraduate Program Wendy Frisby, Chair  Over the last several months, we have been engaged in a process of curriculum review. From January to April 2008, students in WMST 422 – Advanced Research Methods with Dr. Nora Angeles conducted a study of our curriculum. Their research objectives were to: i) contribute to the ongoing WAGS curriculum review by making recommendations based on participatory action research; ii) produce knowledge on the conduct and outcomes of feminist pedagogies as practiced in WAGS’ classrooms; and iii) disseminate grounded experiential knowledge about how its faculty and students relate and respond to current socio-political issues. They concluded the WAGS undergraduate program at UBC is outstanding, even though students still report encountering a “chilly response” when discussing their WAGS Majors and Minors on and beyond campus. Results from the WMST 422 study helped to inform the curriculum review workshop that was subsequently held on April 11, 2008. Dr. Harry Hubbell from Curriculum Studies led an inter-  active workshop that was very well attended by students and instructors. We worked on developing program learning outcomes and assessment strategies to build an overall framework for curriculum development. The WAGS curriculum committee, composed of Sunera Thobani, Nora Angeles, Kim Snowden and Wendy Frisby, then met over the summer to fill in the details. This led to a number of motions for curriculum change that were approved at the WAGS Coordinating Meeting in September, 2008. WAGS Program Learning Outcomes Upon completion of their program, WMST Majors and Minors should demonstrate: 1. the responsible use of ethical principles and values of contemporary Women’s and Gender Studies (ability); 2. knowledge of diverse feminist theoretical traditions and intersectional frameworks in local, national and global contexts (knowledge);  3. a critical consciousness and problem solving skills informed by an interdisciplinary perspective (combines knowledge, ability, skills); 4. a critical feminist analysis and an understanding of the role of activism in social change (combines knowledge, ability); 5. the acquisition of critical research methodologies and their application in a wide variety of contexts (combines knowledge, ability, skills); and 6. effective verbal and written communication skills considering voice, diversity, reflexivity, and respectful interpersonal relations (combines ability, skills). WAGS Program Level Assessment How we will know the 6 program learning outcomes are being achieved? 1. The learning outcomes begin to be demonstrated in WMST 101 and ....cont’d on 13 The Women’s Studies Undergraduate Student Society once again staged a successful “Chatting with Chocolates” event on Oct. 30th. The popular annual event provides undergraduate and graduate students with a chance to mingle. PhD student Almas Zakuiddin’s grandson Zain makes friends with Sally Mennill’s dog Finnegan (left) while the grownups chat.  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  ...cont’d from 12  102 and are then built upon in 2nd, 3rd and 4th year courses which, as a whole, are interdisciplinary in nature. 2. The learning outcomes are assessed in a variety of ways throughout the curriculum including the use of small group work, presentations, class discussions, case studies, creative works and writing. 3. A capstone graduating portfolio for Majors in 4th year in conjunction with the completion of WMST 422 (Advanced Research Methods) and WMST 480 (Practicum) to demonstrate the learning outcomes, perhaps through a public presentation. Curriculum Changes Based on the approved program learning outcomes and assessment, the following curriculum changes have been submitted to the Faculty of Arts for consideration. 1. That WMST 100 (6 credits) be split into WMST 101 (3 credits) and WMST 102 (3 credits).  13  Women’s and Gender Studies Graduate Student Association Report Warm regards from your new WAGS– GSA representatives, Gemma Hunting (MA) and Emilia Nielsen (PhD). We are honoured to represent Women’s and Gender Studies graduate students, and thank Jenny Fawcett and Manuela Valle, outgoing representatives, for their hard work, advocacy, and positive cheer over the 2007-2008 academic year. This term we are pleased to welcome our newly elected officers: Michele Murphy, Secretary; Andrea Carlson, Treasurer; Sarah Leamon, Social Events Coordinator; Manuela Valle, Equity and Climate Representative; Sam Semper, Special Projects Coordinator (1); and Jenny Fawcett, Special Projects Coordinator (2). We look forward to a productive year working with these fabulous folks. To start off the academic term, both new and returning graduate students  enjoyed a meet-and-greet and orientation at the Centre, a campus-tour, and a refreshing beverage at Koerner’s Pub where we had a chance to unwind and chat before all the hard work and endless multitasking was to begin. Then, during the week of Halloween, we had an opportunity to test our carving skills—and indulge our sweet-tooths— with the annual pumpkin carving contest. Thank you to all who contributed, especially Bjorg’s lovely kids for helping make such spooky jack-o’-lanterns! Also in October, the WAGS Undergraduate Student Association hosted a hugely successful “Chatting over Chocolates” at the Centre. It certainly doesn’t get much better than tea, chocolate fondue, and addictively decadent cakes and pies while chatting with fellow students, colleagues, faculty, and friends. Thank you to all who chipped  2. That the title of WMST 101 be Gender, Knowledge, Sex and Power and WMST 102 be Feminist Perspectives on Local to Global Issues. 3. That WMST 480 (Practicum Women as Agents of Change) be required for the WMST Major. 4. That WMST 300 (Introduction to Gender Relations) be an elective for the WMST Major and Minor. 5. That WMST 405, 403, 440, 410 and 411 be renumbered as 3rd year courses to increase accessibility to these courses for UBC students. Appreciation is extended to everyone who participated in the WAGS curriculum review process. Women’s and Gender Studies faculty and students at the wedding of PhD student Rupa Bagga and Benoit Roulx on Dec. 7, 2008 at Queen Elizabeth Park Celebration Pavillion.  14  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  in their time and energy. A large crowd came out to support our own UBC Gender Performances Project in October, first, with an artist talk by internationally-acclaimed feminist body performance artist Orlan, on October 6 at Thea’s Lounge and, second, at “Creating Resistance: Arts Practice / Political Praxis” on October 24 at the First Nations Longhouse. After more than a year of planning, “Creating Resistance” a one day symposium coordinated by UBC Gender Performances Project, was an event not to be missed! The crowd was especially energetic at midday for the keynote address by Dr. Ann Cvetkovich, Professor of English and Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. We were especially pleased to see our own Hui-Ling Lin deliver a top-notch paper “The Audiovisual Textuality, Spatiality, and Queerness in A Girl Named Kai (2004)” on the Film/New Media panel. Excellent work Hui-Ling! UBC Gender Performances Project endeavours to continue highlighting the academic, activist, and organizational capabilities of the Centre, our graduate students, and recent MA and PhD graduates. In so doing, UBC Gender Performances Project hopes that its efforts might assist in better linking the Centre with fine arts and queer interests at UBC, not to mention such organizing groups in the larger Vancouver community. Co-sponsors of “Creating Resistance” included: the University of British Columbia’s AMS Innovative Project Funding; Access and Diversity; the Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies; Women’s and Gender Studies Program; Critical Studies in Sexuality; the Centre for Cross-Faculty Inquiry in Education; the Department of English: and the Vancouver Art Gallery. The Organizing Executive of “Creating Resistance,” Sam Semper, Emilia Nielsen, Jenny Fawcett, and Manuela Valle wish to extend sincere thanks for  all the needed support in making this event possible, and, of course, to the fabulous volunteers that stepped in to help the day of. In close, congratulations to Jenny Fawcett and Manuela Valle for their success in the University Graduate Fellowship (UGF) competition, and to Sally Mennill and Emilia Nielsen with their success in the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) doctoral fellowship competition. Kudos to Jane Lee who received the 2008 Korean Canadian Scholarship Foundation Award and presented words of appreciation on behalf on all 2008 recipients. Also to Emilia Nielsen who was invited to attend The Sage Hill Poetry Colloquium 2008 with Daphne Marlatt.  “Women and Meat: We Are What We Eat”. Women’s Health Research Network Summer Institute 2008 . Victoria, BC. May 1-2, 2008  Women’s and Gender Studies Graduate Student Accomplishments  “Contingent Queerness in the Heterotopia: Unbecoming, Dancing, Archiving”. Queer Utopias and Dystopias. 2008 Queer Studies Graduate Symposium, University of California, Davis, CA. May 17, 2008.  JENNY FAWCETT Public Presentations “‘Voyeurism is Participation’: Watching John Cameron Mitchell’s Shortbus”. Shifting Boundaries: Women’s and Gender Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference. UBC. April 25, 2008. Publications “‘Voyeurism is Participation’: Watching John Cameron Mitchell’s Shortbus” . Views from the Edge, Vol. 16. Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies, UBC. GEMMA HUNTING Public Presentations “‘Culture’ Discourse in Health Research: Furthering Health Inequities?” Shifting Boundaries: Women’s and Gender Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference. UBC. April 25, 2008.  Publications “‘Culture’ Discourse in Health Research: Furthering Health Inequities?” Views from the Edge, Vol 16. Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies, UBC. EMILIA NIELSEN Public Presentations “‘Unbecoming Lesbian’: Contingent Queerness in the Heterotopia”. Shifting Boundaries: Women’s and Gender Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference. UBC. April 25, 2008  “Troubling Gender Variance in Cereus Blooms at Night”. CWSA / ACEF (Canadian Women’s Studies Association) Conference. CONGRESS 2008: University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC. June 2, 2008. “The Plight to Survive in Cereus Blooms at Night: Transgression and Strategic Conformity”. ACCUTE (Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English) Conference. CONGRESS 2008: University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC. June 3, 2008 Publications “Queerness in the Heterotopia: Unbecoming, Contingency, Archiving”. Views from the Edge: Vol 17. Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies, UBC.  Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies  Dionne Brand  Sharalyn Orbaugh  15  Upasana Mahanta  CWAGS Fall Lecture Series 2008 Sharalyn Orbaugh Women’s & Gender Studies and Asian Studies, UBC Otaku Feminism: Cyborgs, Superflat, and Cute Culture in Japan Sep. 10, 2008 Maria Escolan Vancouver Status of Women & CWAGS Community Visitor The Racialization of Poverty Sep. 17, 2008 Stephanie Reifferscheld Women Against Violence Against Women & CWAGS Community Visitor Stepping out of the Binary: Deepening the Dialogue on Prostitution Sep. 17, 2008  women diasporic identities and communication Oct. 1, 2008 Special Event, Friday, October 3 Dionne Brand, Poet and Novelist Inventory Free public lecture followed by wine and cheese reception Theatre, AERL Building Special Event, Monday, October 6 Orlan, Performance Artist This My Body This is My Software Between Western Art and Non Western Art Free public lecture and penal presentation, Graduate Student Centre  Mukesh Eswaran Dept of Economics, UBC Domestic Violence in India (a joint paper with Nisha Malhotra) Sep. 24, 2008  Upasana Mahanta JNU, India, Visiting Scholar Political Participation of Scheduled Caste Women in Panchayati Raj Institutions in India: A Critical Evaluation Oct. 22, 2008  Valentina Marinescu University of Bucharest, Romania Between “homelands”: Romanian  Nanette Garcia Dungo Miriam College, Women & Gender Institute, University of the Philippines  Women Migrant Returnees: The Recapture of Self, Identity, Home and Family Oct. 29, 2008 Larissa Lai Dept of English, UBC Organ Donor’s Transit Lounge: Race, Gender, Passports and Biopower in Stephen Frear’s Dirty, Pretty Things Nov. 5, 2008 Chris Lee Dept of English, UBC Maxine Hong Kingston’s Captive Voice: Re-reading The Woman Warrior Nov. 12, 2008 Jim Ponzetti Dept of Sociology, UBC Sexism or academic elitism? The marginalization of predominantly female professions in the academy Nov. 26, 2008  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA CENTRE FOR WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES  The University of British Columbia 1896 East Mall Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1 Phone: 604-822-9171 Fax: 604-822-9169 Email: wmst1@interchange.ubc.ca Website: www.wmst.ubc.ca Gillian Creese, Director 604-822-9175 creese@interchange.ubc.ca Leonora Angeles, Graduate Advisor 604-822-4085 gradadv@interchange.ubc.ca Sunera Thobani, RAGA Director 604-822-9265 sth@interchange.ubc.ca Jane Charles, Administrator 604-822-9173 jane.charles@ubc.ca Wynn Archibald, Graduate Secretary 604-822-9171 wynn.archibald@ubc.ca Members of the Advisory Committee: Gillian Creese, Director CWAGS (Chair) Leonora Angeles, Graduate Advisor Erin Baines, Liu Institute for Global Issues Susan Boyd, Law Anne Condon, Computer Science Margery Fee, English Wendy Frisby, Chair, Women’s Studies Program Gemma Hunting, MA Student, Women’s and Gender Studies Madeleine MacIvor, First Nations House of Learning Emilia Nielsen, PhD Student, Women’s and Gender Studies Jerilynn Prior, Medicine Valerie Raoul, Director of SAGA Veronica Strong-Boag, Educational Studies Sunera Thobani, Women’s and Gender Studies Manuela Valle, PhD Student Women’s and Gender Studies Colleen Varcoe, Nursing Amanda Vincent, Fisheries Centre Dominique Weis, Earth and Ocean Sciences  The Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies is a part of the College for Interdisciplinary Studies at The University of British Columbia. Our primary purposes are to: •	 Highlight the significance of research in Women’s Studies or Gender Relations and feminist research in all fields; •	 Encourage UBC faculty, graduate students and others to meet together in multi-disciplinary groups for discussion and research in these areas; •	 Bring UBC researchers together with activists and researchers from other institutions in Canada and abroad, and from within the community; and •	 Communicate support for women’s studies, gender analysis and feminist research to governments, insitutions, community groups and the public in British Columbia, Canada and elsewhere.  This Newsletter is published by The University of British Columbia’s Centre for Women’s and Gender Studies twice a year. It is available in electronic form (PDF) on our website: http://www.wmst.ubc.ca/publicationsNewsletters.html. Any part of this newsletter may be reprinted with credit to the source. If you would like to share your feedback with us or contribute to the newsletter, please contact the coordinator of the newsletter wmst1@interchange.ubc.ca.  


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