The Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Working Group is a subsidiary of the Colloquium. The purpose of the Working Group is to foster interdisciplinary discussion about current issues in the field of women’s, gender, and sexuality studies by bringing together graduate students and and faculty at Yale who are working on topics at the intersection of their discipline and WGSS. This venue aims to introduce recent work in a variety of disciplines and to strengthen our understanding of how our own work might engage with emerging debates in this field.
Matt Shafer, Political Science
Presentation Title: Neoliberalism and Epistemic Violence
Abstract: This paper traces the idea of epistemic violence from its introduction by Gayatri Spivak to its contemporary academic and activist deployments, arguing that recent versions of the concept substitute a neoliberal emphasis on individualized linguistic behavior for Spivak’s more radical account of the structures of power constituting discourse itself.
Nishin Nathwani, Political Science
Presentation Title: The Biopolitics of Legal Reason: A Critical Reassessment of Roe v. Wade’s Legal Legacy
Abstract: In this paper, I develop the concept of ‘regulatory potentialities’ to frame the law as a critical space in which Roe v. Wade and subsequent abortion-related legal opinions ostensibly recognizing women’s bodily autonomy conceal biopolitical rationales that further extend State power into women’s bodily life.
Ever Osorio Ruiz, American Studies
Presentation Title: An Act of Speech: The Politics of #MyFirstHarassment
Abstract: I will explore the political grammar of the feminist Latin-American movement #myfirstharassment by reflecting on its political temporality and on the use of emotions as catalysts that mediate social anxieties and injustices. I will address this hashtag as a discursive and performative act of speech that rearranges the political order.
Sam Huber, English
Presentation Title: Between Here and There: Feminist Internationalism and the Vietnam War
Abstract: Decentering more familiar women’s liberationists, this paper asserts the centrality of internationalism to the emergence of second wave feminism in the U.S. I read Muriel Rukeyser, Grace Paley, and Toni Cade Bambara as exemplary writers for whom feminist insights emerged in necessary relation to a felt complicity with war-making abroad.
Kate Redburn, History and Yale Law School
Presentation Title: Before Equal Protection: The Fall of Anti-Crossdressing Laws and the Origins of the Transgender Legal Movement 1964-1980
Abstract: By the mid-20th century, local ordinances banning public cross dressing were ubiquitous in urban America. Starting in the early 1960s, however, the nation’s cross-dressing ordinances began to fall. This paper locates the origins of the contemporary trans legal movement in the national wave of successful judicial challenges to anti-cross-dressing ordinances.
Yuhe Faye Wang, American Studies
Presentation Title: Dirty Laundry: Chinese Civil Rights and the Making of Domestic Work in 19th Century California
Abstract: My presentation explores the rarely discussed importance of Yick Wo v. Hopkins’s plaintiffs as small business proprietors in making a juridical appeal for Chinese civil rights in the 19th century. Doing so underscores the gendered and racialized reality of laundry work and its role in transforming what constitutes work itself.