This Too Is Women’s Studies Series

This Too Is Women’s Studies is a series of program aimed at engaging students and community members in feminist issues and debates, beyond the classroom.

Past Events:

Masculinity and Memoir Writing: A Conversation with E. Ethelbert Miller
October 21, 2009, 6:30 pm, 0102 Francis Scott Key

The 5th Inning is E. Ethelbert Miller’s second memoir following on his earlier publication of Fathering Words: The Making of an African American Writer (2000). In this latest memoir his poetic voice is unmistakable as he weaves a lyrical narrative about turning sixty, marriage, fathering, writing and family.

Join us as Miller reads from The 5th Inning and talks about the role of memoir in crafting his own understandings of masculinity.

E. Ethelbert Miller, highly respected Washington D.C. based poet, literary activist, blogger and, since 1974, the Director of the African-American Resource Center at Howard University. He is the board chairperson of the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) as well as a board member of The Writer’s Center and editor of Poet Lore magazine. Mr. Miller is the former chair of the Humanities Council of Washington, D.C. and a former core faculty member of the Bennington Writing Seminars at Bennington College. He is also the author of the memoir Fathering Words: The Making of an African American Writer (2000).

His awards include the Columbia Merit Award (1993), the Mayor’s Art Award for Literature (1982) and the O.B. Hardison Jr. Poetry Prize. In 1979, the Mayor of Washington, DC, proclaimed September 28, 1979 as “E. Ethelbert Miller Day.”, an honor bestowed again on May 21, 2001 by the Mayor of Jackson, Tennessee.

Miller is the Founder and Director of the Ascension Poetry Reading Series, one of the oldest literary series in the Washington area. He and his wife live in Washington, D.C.

Screening of the film “La Operacion” followed by a discussion with Dr. Iris Lopez
April 8, 2009, 6-8 pm, Charles Carroll Room, Stamp Student Union 

The Department, as part of our “This Too is Women’s Studies” series, will co-sponsor the screening of the film “La Operacion” which will be followed by a discussion of the film with Dr. Iris Lopez, author of Matters of Choice: Puerto Rican Women’s Struggle for Reproductive Freedom.

La Operacion is a classic documentary which was released in 1982 and exposed the routine and repeated forced sterilization of Puerto Rican women from as early as the 1930s. The film connects the procedure to a discussion of eugenics and U.S. economic and foreigh policy. The film is approximately 40 mins. long.

Dr. Iris Lopez is the Director of the Latin American Studies Program at CUNY and her work explores the ways in which women’s reproductive health and well-being are implicated in the politics of inter/national identities, race and class.

Filmmaker Annabel Park speaks on Immigration, Activism and New Media
October 29, 2008

Filmmakers Annabel Park and Eric Byler’s most acclaimed work is the interactive YouTube channel, 9500Liberty, documenting the anti-Hispanic “crackdown on illegal immigration” in Prince William County, Virginia. Soon to be a feature length documentary, this project began as the world’s first “Interactive Documentary” on YouTube, and developed into a virtual town hall about the politicization of the immigration issue. The channel fostered a constructive dialogue based on real information among residents of Prince William County that led to residents meeting and organizing against the crackdown. The impact of 9500Liberty on the community has been featured on CNN and in other news sources. Their work encourages us to think about how new media contribute to policy debates and enhance our understandings of activism and of our individual roles and responsibilities in creating change in our communities. For more information about 9500 Liberty, visit

Solo performance of LOW: Part 1 of the Meditations Trilogy
October 15-17, 2008 8 pm, 
Kogod Theatre

Rha Goddess’ Low takes on the question “What is insanity?” In a 75 min. piece she explores the mythology, stigma, fear and confusion surrounding mental illness through the story of Lowequesha, a vibrant young woman who takes the all too-common journey through the mental health system. There will be pre- and post- show questionnaires. Friday night will include a post-show questionnaire and community dialogue.

Rha Goddess, “Who Got Next?!: Cultivating Feminine Leadership in a Global Hip Hop Era”
October 13, 2008, Nyumburu Cultural Center, Multipurpose Room (RM 0130)

Renowned artist and social activist Rha Goddess is an artist, writer, poet and social activist who examines the question of mental illness.

Keynote discussion on media representations of young women and the importance of developing young women’s leadership. Join Rha Goddess in a rare interactive keynote discussion to find out how a new brand of bold, courageous and empowered leadership is being cultivated among America’s daughters and how YOU can participate in this new movement.

Screening: Chocolate City
April 23, 2008 7 pm, 0102 Francis Scott Key

The film chronicles the removal of approximately 400 families from the Arthur Cappers public housing project in South East DC and the subsequent demolition of their homes for the construction of high-income condominiums. It highlights the housing crisis faced by low and middle income individuals in Washington, D.C.

The screening will be followed by an excerpt of the performance piece “Cappers” by Anu Yadav and a Q/A with a former community member and co-producer of Chocolate City, Ellie Walton.

Anu started out doing theater work with young people at the Arthur Capper recreation center, as well as organizing with Friends and Residents. After a year of working as a volunteer member, Anu developed a number of fictional characters based on the voices of residents, city officials into her one woman production entitled “Cappers.”