Classroom Connections

As you prepare your syllabi for the spring semester, please consider reserving time for students to participate in the entirely virtual and free 4W and WGSC virtual conference April 8-10, 2021.  This year’s conference events include:

You can see a tentative schedule of daily events here.

Coordination with Course Assignments:

As you draft your syllabi for spring 2021please consider holding a spot for students to attend the conference as part of your course assignments. The conference is free and all events can be accessed quickly for participation.  The overall conference theme and threads have a strong interdisciplinary and intersectional lens which likely overlap with much of your coursework.  Here are some ideas for creating assignments:

  1. View and comment on 3 pre-recorded conference talks or poster presentations.
  2. View the virtual art exhibition and comment on the connections between each artist’s work and themes relating to gender, race, and intersectionality.
  3. Attend one synchronous plenary or keynote and connect the content to larger course themes.
  4. Attend the virtual drag show on Friday, April 9 and discuss performativity as an element of social justice.
  5. Attend the virtual roundtable featuring research from GWS students across the UW System.  Provide feedback on one project and the connections you see with your own work.

**All assignments could include the following inquiries:

  1. What are common themes relating to gender and the arts?
  2. How do the arts shape and define engagement with the current social, political, historical, and cultural terrain? How can art (broadly defined) help activists and scholars deconstruct, decolonize, and reimagine life and society?
  3. How is creative work a feminist tool of inquiry, knowledge production, and critical resistance?
  4. How does a feminist and transfeminist art aesthetic expand and complement our work as researchers, students, educators, and activists?
  5. What is the role of intersectionality in each artist or presenter’s work?
  1. How does the space of the conference offer a different arena for sharing and connecting with others? What are the opportunities and limits of this type of space for thought exchange, dialogue, and feminist activism?

Class Participation in the Conference:  

We also welcome projects and exhibitions from courses.  We have simple instructions for uploading pre-recorded projects and presentations. If you would like students from your class to create a presentation or poster sesssion and received feedback from others, we can accept submissions to our on-demand sessions until April 1, 2021.  Feel free to contact me directly for more details.

I’m also open to other versions of class participation and collaboration if you have something else in mind.  In the past, I’ve worked with instructors to design specific assignments, and I’m happy to create something for a specific course or area of focus!  I can also do class visits and presentations to discuss the conference and provide feedback on how students can make the most of the conference experience as presenters, participants, and networkers.

Thank you for your support of this annual event!  Instructors will need to complete a free register for the conference (registration opens in two weeks) to gain access to content to share with class, but you can then share all events and links with your class!