Barnard and Columbia Trans Student & Faculty Mixer!

T(ea) Party Flyer

Trans T(ea) Party is a mixer organized and hosted by GendeRevolution and LGBTQ at Columbia for trans students and faculty, taking place in the Broadway Room in Lerner on Monday, February 13 beginning at 6pm. This event is for anyone affiliated with Barnard and/or Columbia University. Transgender and nonbinary students, faculty, staff, and alumni are all welcome.

The goal of this mixer is to provide a space for trans affiliates of B/C to network safely with one another across generations, departments, and experiences.

There will be delicious food and an exciting keynote speaker!

Please make sure to RSVP at the following link:
The RSVP is solely for a number estimate and will remain confidential.

Thank you and please consider attending!

For any questions, please email any of the following:

What’s Next at BCRW, Plus Videos from our Events


Thank you to everyone who joined BCRW at our lectures and conversations, our salon, and the annual Scholar and Feminist Conference on feminist sustainabilities. Your thoughtful questions, insights, and contributions generated critical dialogues and planted seeds for ongoing work here at BCRW and beyond.

Though the semester has wound down, BCRW has several exciting projects underway this summer:

  • Launching the BCRW Activist Institute, a new iteration of BCRW’s scholar-activist collaborations.
  • A new partnership with artist Micah Bazant and #TransLiberationTuesday.
  • Organizing the second year of the Harlem Semester, a joint initiative of BCRW and the Department of Africana Studies.
  • Ongoing digitization of BCRW’s archives in collaboration with librarians in the Barnard Archives and Special Collections.
  • A forthcoming issue of The Scholar and Feminist Online on engagements with technoscience.

I hope you will read on to learn more about these projects and to watch recordings of the powerful events we hosted this past semester.

With appreciation,

Tina Campt
Director, Barnard Center for Research on Women




BCRW has partnered with artist Micah Bazant on #TransLiberationTuesday, a multimedia project dedicated to supporting, celebrating, and honoring trans people in life, not just in memoriam, focusing on the resilience and accomplishments of trans women, trans femmes, and trans people of color.

This week, #TransLiberationTuesday coordinated with Survived and Punished to support Ky Peterson, a black trans man who is currently incarcerated for defending himself against transphobic violence, and to demand his release.

Please join us by signing the petition demanding that Georgia Governor Nathan Deal exonerate Ky Peterson.

Ky Peterson

Isa Noyola Elle Hearns



Navigating Neoliberalism in the Academy, Nonprofits, and Beyond

This issue of The Scholar & Feminist Online uses the theoretical and historical models articulated by INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence to critique the non-profit industrial complex (NPIC) and later the academic industrial complex (AIC) to explore the non-profit and the university as two key sites in which neoliberal social and economic reforms are constituted and contested. This issue is edited by Soniya Munshi and Craig Willse. Contributors include Ujju Aggarwal, Gabriel Arkles, Maile Arvin, Myrl Beam, Avi Cummings, Treva Ellison, Pooja Gehi, Gillian Harkins, Priya Kandaswamy, Soo Ah Kwon, Colby Lenz, Edwin Mayorga, Mimi Thi Nguyen, Rori Rohlfs, Dean Spade, and Lee Ann S. Wang. In addition, the issue includes reprinted articles by Alisa Bierria, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Paul Kivel, Dylan Rodríguez, and Paula X. Rojas, fromThe Revolution Will Not be Funded, a crucial, currently out of print collection edited by INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence. This issue also includes videos produced by Dean Spade and Hope Dector, featuring interviews with activists and academics at the 2013 conference “Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues.”

Available free online at


BCRW and Africana Studies Department Wrap the Inaugural Harlem Semester

Spring 2016 marked the inaugural launch of the Harlem Semester – an ambitious public humanities initiative that explores the myriad forms of black culture and politics emerging in and around Harlem. Organized by the Barnard Center for Research on Women and the Department of Africana Studies, the Harlem Semester pairs faculty research and instruction with venerated Harlem institutions to teach the neighborhood’s rich cultural and political legacy.

Learn more about the initiative, course offerings, and institutional partnerships by visiting

Harlem Semester

Image Credit: Harlem Semester course Performing Risk: James Baldwin’s Harlem with Professor Rich Blint


Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues

A collaboration with BCRW Activist Fellow Dean Spade

Queer Dreams Part 1: What are We Fighting For? from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues Part 2: How Do Rich People Control Our Movements? from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues Part 3: The Nonprofit Hamster Wheel from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues Part 4: Who’s in Charge? from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues Part 5: Basebuilding from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Dreams and Nonprofit Blues Part 6: Where Do We Go From Here? from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.





Tina Campt – Welcoming Remarks at The Scholar & Feminist Conference 41: Sustainabilities from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Reina Gossett: Making a Way Out of No Way from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Queer Survival Economies: Invisible Lives, Targeted Bodies from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Sustaining Harlem: Art, Community Activism and Black Women’s Leadership from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Working at the Limits: State and Structural Violence from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

Gloria Joseph and Naomi Jackson: Caribbean Feminisms on the Page from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.

The Argonauts: A Salon in Honor of Maggie Nelson from BCRW Videos on Vimeo.


Argonauts Salon in Honor of Maggie Nelson

Schedule for Scholar and Feminist Conference: Sustianabilities

This year we at BCRW are implementing the framework of sustainability for our 41st Annual Scholar and Feminist Conference. As a community of activists and scholars, we would like to ask and discuss how we can sustain the material, creative, cultural and critical resources necessary to maintain the vitality of our communities, movements, and scholarship. The conference brings together feminist scholars, activists, artists and community members to address the obstacles we face–including biomedical models of health and wellness; anti-black police and state violence; and the far-reaching tentacles of neoliberalism shrinking public resources and expanding the prison industrial complex. Panelists will address the creative and courageous responses they have developed to sustain their work as activists, scholars, artists and visionaries working toward achieving social, gender, economic and racial justice. Visionary activist and thinker Reina Gossett will deliver the keynote address.   Here is a run-down of the schedule for the event:
10:00 - 10:30 AM Welcome
Tina Campt Event Oval, Diana Center
10:30 - 11:30 AM Keynote Address: Making A Way Out Of No Way Reina Gossett, BCRW Activist Fellow, Activist, Filmmaker Event Oval, Diana Center Reina Gossett will discuss the uses of art, representation, and other creative strategies trans and gender nonconforming people are using while living and loving under the shadow of heightened violence.  

11:30 - 12 PM Lunch pick-up Lunch is provided. Attendees are invited to bring their lunch to the afternoon sessions. 5th Floor Lobby & Event Oval Lobby, Diana Center  

12 - 1:30 PM Session I - Concurrent Panels PANEL: Fat Activism and Intersectionality at the Edges: Making Movements Sustainable LL 103, Diana Center This panel brings together artists, activists, and thinkers who are working at the interstices of fat activism and intersectional feminism. They will discuss challenges to and strategies for refusing single-issue approaches, while showing how fat activism is already intersectional and central to left movement building. Panelists will discuss how fat activism is part of the broader struggle for bodily autonomy, how their work struggles to address questions of left political horizons and legitimate political aspirations, and how ending fatphobia is central to collective liberation.   Presenters: Naima Lowe, Jamal Lewis, Tara Shuai & Rebecca Weinberger  

PANEL: Sustaining Harlem: Art, Community Activism and Black Women's Leadership Event Oval, Diana Center How have the arts served as an essential resource for sustaining Harlem's vibrant and diverse communities of color? How have the arts and arts organizations helped to shape and reshape Harlem's changing identity over time? How have Harlem’s arts institutions served as a catalyst for activism and change throughout their long history serving this community? This panel brings together four visionary black women, each of whom have made significant contributions to sustaining Harlem through their leadership in its signature arts institutions. Each will offer their perspectives on what it means to work collectively and collaboratively on the project of sustaining Harlem, the under-acknowledged role of black women, and the resources they draw on to sustain their work. Presenters: Pat Cruz, Thelma Golden, Virginia Johnson & Sade Lythcott  

WORKSHOP: Resourcing and Resilience: Building Alternative Models to Sustain Our Movements Room 504, Diana Center Very little money goes to LGBTQ organizations and even less goes to grassroots, social justice groups organizing around their experiences with racism, poverty and homelessness, transphobia, ableism, immigration, and incarceration. The combined legacies of white supremacy and capitalism and the limitations of the nonprofit industrial complex (NPIC) have shrunk what was already limited foundation funding for these organizations. What remains creates heavy administrative burdens for staff and members and pits communities into competition with one another. Taking the task of resourcing their movements into their own hands, the Trans Justice Funding Project (TFJP) and the Miss Major-Jay Toole Building for Social Justice (MMJT) Giving Circle have developed alternative models to build the long-term sustainability of their work and communities. Through mapping exercises, small group discussions, and report-backs, participants will unpack the history of the racial and gender wealth divide, share people of color giving traditions, redefine the value and worth of community resources beyond dollars, and explore the process of building and reclaiming alternatives. Presenters: Gabriel Foster, Cara Page, Krystal Portalatin, Eva Turner & Tanya Walker
1:30 - 1:45 PM Transition between sessions
1:45 - 3:15 PM Session II - Concurrent Panels
WORKSHOP: Building Community Safety and Security LL 103, Diana Center State violence, security, and militarization are daily realities for lesbian, gay, bisexual, Two Spirit, transgender, gender nonconforming, and queer people of color. Presenters will share their experiences, tools, and resources for creating safety teams in community spaces. Through storytelling, small group discussions, role plays about common situations, and resource sharing, presenters will share tools created by Black, Indigenous, People of Color, queer/trans/Two Spirit, sex working, disabled/chronically ill, and poor and working class communities to create safer events, conferences, gatherings and neighborhoods without relying on 911 or the police, redefining "safety" and how we can create it. Presenters: Ejeris Dixon, Elliott Fukui & Joo-Hyun Kang
PANEL: Working at the Limits: State and Structural Violence Event Oval, Diana Center This panel features scholars and activists in conversation around the issues of sustaining community-centered scholarship and programs in the wake of drastically decreased funding, hostile political environments, and tenuous public-private partnerships. This session asks participants to consider how we sustain our communities in the midst of financial crisis and structural violence. Emerging from BCRW’s Transnational Feminisms initiative, participants in this session work in areas around the globe, including South Africa, Barbados, and the US Virgin Islands. Presenters: Tami Navarro (moderator), Alison Swartz, Deanna James & Charmaine Crawford
WORKSHOP: Sustaining Community: Housing and Displacement in New York City Room 504, Diana Center Neoliberal economic and social restructuring combined with a recession lasting nearly a decade has led to the displacement and dismantling of communities of color in neighborhoods throughout New York City. The typical policy response of increasing affordable housing benefits the real estate industry and big business and fails the communities it is designed to serve. This workshop will discuss strategies for vulnerable communities to sustain themselves through the constant and persistent threat of displacement that is pervasive in New York City. This workshop was organized by Pamela Phillips. Presenters: Gregory Jost, Daisy Gonzales & Ryan Hickey   3:15 - 3:45 PM Break

Coffee and snacks
3:45 - 5:15 PM Session III - Concurrent Panels

PANEL/WORKSHOP: Disability and Healing Justice: Making Our Lives Sustainable and Our Movements Liveable LL 103, Diana Center Join two visionary panelists for a hybrid panel-workshop as they discuss the connections between disability and healing justice. Participants will be invited to think through how disability and healing justice need to be central to the work of making all of our lives sustainable in the face of ableist and capitalist modes of organizing and belonging. Presenters: Geleni Fontaine & Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha
PANEL: Queer Survival Economies: Invisible Lives, Targeted Bodies Event Oval, Diana Center Queer Survival Economies is a new initiative directed by Amber Hollibaugh and born out of the closure of Queers for Economic Justice. Queer Survival Economies aims to prioritize LGBTQ low-income and immigrant worker issues at a time of increasing crisis because of the on-going recession and reshaping of the global market. Participants will discuss overlooked and often invisible economic justice issues at the intersections of class, race, gender, immigration, HIV/AIDS, non-traditional families and sexuality. The goal of  this panel is to bring together and educate community members to be better able to build movement possibilities in the face of economic crises and queer marginalization. Presenters: Amber Hollibaugh (moderator), Yana Calou, Kate D’Adamo, Hamid Khan & Ola Osaze
WORKSHOP: Bridging the Generations: Carrying On… Room 504, Diana Center This workshop features four activists and nonprofit leaders who span four generations and have  diverse experiences working for social justice feminism.  Panelists will share their stories, discuss myths and assumptions about each other’s generations, and share strategies for building meaningful multi-generational relationships that sustain individuals, communities, and political movements for transformative social change. Audience members will be invited to participate in the conversation as an essential tool for "carrying on" the dialogue and generating ideas to propel us forward. Presenters: Katherine Acey (moderator), Trishala Deb, Frances Kunreuther, Krystal Portalatin

5:15 - 5:30 PM Transition between sessions

5:30 - 7 PM Reception Event Oval, Diana Center

The Wild, Wild West

When I offer the introduction: “I’m from North Dakota,” the usual answer is a snarky/incredulous, “People live there?” Well, I am standing before you, and I wasn’t exactly raised by buffalo, although that would be fun. I understand the reaction, and I don’t begrudge the occasional comparison to Siberia, because, in the scheme of the lives of hundreds of millions of American citizens, a state as under-populated as ND just sort of fades in with the rest of the Mid West in the rolling recesses of America’s mind. But the nation is starting to take notice of my scrappy little home state. Why? OIL. And we’ve got lots of it. North Dakota is changing at a booming rate, thanks to its vast shale oil fields, effecting major socio-economic changes in communities that have been static or in decline for decades; many of these changes are acutely affecting the lives of women in North Dakota.

Landscape photo of green field and blue sky

Here’s some background information on the ND oil boom: on February 3, North Dakota made the cover of New York Times Magazine and boasted the (intended-to-be-ironic) heading “The Luckiest Place on Earth.” The article “North Dakota Went Boom” depicts the rapid growth of the state’s population and oil industry in western ND, which climbed from the country’s 9th oil producer to its second, behind only Texas. ND is even projected to pass them, and soon. Eat your heart out, Texas. The influx in oil production began about 7 years ago, fueled by technological advancements in hydraulic fracturing (known scathingly as “fracking” on the East coast) that made it easier and cheaper to extract oil from the rocks.

Most of the oil comes from the Bakken Formation, also known as the Williston Basin. Oil towns in the area have been rocked by the population growth. Williston, ND, a hub of oil production, has grown from a steady, if not slightly declining, 12,000 people, to a bloated 20,000 in the last four years. Much of the growth is attributed to incoming single, able-bodied young men who flock to the high paying jobs in the oil fields. As the New York Times summed it up: Oil Towns Where Men are Many, and Women are Hounded. The article cites that in 2011, the census data showed 58% of North Dakotans ages 18-35 were men. And in the areas most affected by the oil boom, the disparity in gender ratios becomes even more obvious: there were more than 1.6 men for every 1 woman, and that’s only data for those who have reported a permanent residence, which many of the short-term oil labor and construction workers have not. As an aside, strippers often make more money on an average night in Williston than they would in Las Vegas. As women become fewer and farther between, the objectification of women has skyrocketed.

Continue reading

Gender-based Violence and Sexual Rights: Intersecting Forces in Women’s Lives

Originally published by International Planned Parenthood Federation/Western Hemisphere Region at

The 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women kicked off last week in New York. Its focus is on the elimination of violence against women and girls. Nine of the 45 countries that comprise the commission, tasked with negotiating an agreed conclusion document, hail from Latin America and the Caribbean. Yet every country in the region (and the world) has a stake in this major event.

Marchers hold a banner stating "For a life free from Violence Against Women and Girls!"

Gender-based violence (GBV) remains an all too pervasive reality for women and girls in the region, regardless of religion, cultural context, or socioeconomic status. While the roots of such violence are vast and complicated, the impacts are equally immense and wide reaching. In particular, GBV is linked to sexual and reproductive health. Although it is difficult to draw a direct, causal relationship between the two, the issues are closely woven together to form an important backdrop for the lives of women and girls in the region.

Experiencing violence can set in motion a pattern of poor reproductive health that is hard to undo. Worldwide, studies show that women who report abuse by an intimate partner are also more likely to report poor general health, including reproductive health. Women experiencing violence are also more likely to report depression. In Latin America in particular, with only a handful of exceptions, national-level studies show that women experiencing physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner are also more likely to have unwanted or unintended pregnancies. Women experiencing abuse also report higher incidents of miscarriage and induced abortion.

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More Contributers for The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia

In one week, the BCRW conference The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia will be showcasing a diverse and accomplished range of contributers presenting and leading workshops on topics that range from community design and remix culture to open education and feminist parenting. This is our third round of introductions (read earlier posts here and here) highlighting the work of six Utopia contributors who educate, organize, document, and design to change the status quo.

Utopia will kick off on Friday, March 1 with a screening of Wildness, an explosive documentary and “visual extravaganza” exploring the intersection of queer community, creativity, class, and “safe space” through its magical-realist portrayal of the Silver Platter, a historic Los Angeles bar home to Latin/LBGT immigrant communities. The screening will be followed by a conversation with the filmmakers Wu Tsang (Director) and Roya Rastegar (Co-writer). You can watch the theatrical trailer or read more about the intensions behind the film in Wu’s essay for the 2012 Whitney Biennial (PDF), which featured the documentary.

Leading a workshop on Creating a New Feminist Framework for K-12 Education at Utopia, Ileana Jiménez is a high school English teacher in New York and a pioneer in the field of social justice education. She is committed to “transforming education for gender, racial, and economic justice” as well as teaching students “how to make their writing a part of a larger public discourse through blogging.” Read more about her efforts in a recent video from The Atlantic or on her blog, Feminist Teacher.

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A Few More Contributers for The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia

To prepare for the upcoming BCRW conference The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia, we are highlighting the diverse and accomplished contributers who will be challenging us to imagine the impossible through bold presentations and participatory workshops. This is our second round of introductions (check out the first round here), highlighting the work of four Utopia contributors who write, remix, advocate, and teach to change the status quo.

Pop Culture Pirate Elisa Kreisinger creates video remixes by “slicing up familiar shows to create alternative narratives that expose and transform mainstream cultural messages.” By reconstructing footage into mashups with queer and feminist themes, Elisa sees herself as “writing for TV with TV.” You can read an interview with Elisa in The Atlantic or check out the Pop Culture Pirate website, which has a complete listing of her projects, like the above video queering the popular TV show Mad Men. Elisa and Francesca Coppa of Transformative Works will be leading a workshop on Talking Back to Culture Through Feminist Remix at Utopia.

In the afternoon session of Utopia, Families United for Racial and Economic Equality (FUREE) Executive Director Valery Jean will lead a workshop on Addressing Poverty. FUREE is “a Brooklyn-based multiracial organization made up of almost exclusively women of color. We organize low-income families to build power to change the system so that all people’s work is valued and all of us have the right and economic means to decide and live out our own destinies.” Read more about FUREE’s mission in a Village Voice interview with Valery.

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Introducing A Few of the Contributers for The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia

To prepare for the upcoming BCRW conference The Scholar and Feminist 2013: Utopia, we are thrilled to highlight the the diverse and accomplished contributers who will be engaging, educating, and challenging us to imagine the impossible through bold presentations and participatory workshops. Today, we highlight the work of four such contributors who are confronting the status quo through art, activism, publications, and performance.

Las Brown Berets by Melanie Cervantes

Dignidad Rebelde is the Oakland-based graphic arts collaboration of Melanie Cervantes and Jesus Barraza. The project “translates stories of struggle and resistance into artwork that can be put back into the hands of the communities who inspire it,” producing pieces “grounded in Third World and indigenous movements that build people’s power to transform the conditions of fragmentation, displacement and loss of culture.” Melanie will be a presenter at Utopia, speaking on “Building Utopia: Stitching the Lessons from Stories and Visions of Women in our Lives” in a morning keynote address.

Writer and activist Reina Gossett will lead the Prison Abolition workshop at Utopia. Reina has collaborated with BCRW as a contributing writer on the S&F Online New Queer Agenda with her piece “Reclaiming Our Lineage: Organized Queer, Gender-Nonconforming, and Transgender Resistance to Police Violence” and as the moderator of our October 2012 panel, Staking Our Claim: Trans Women’s Literature in the 21st Century. Her tumblr “The Spirit Was…” features great writing and links about trans and anti-violence activism. Continue reading

Nora Connor in Guernica

It has been more than a decade since the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan began, conflicts that have raised complex questions about women’s roles in combat, the effects of military life on women soldiers, and the ongoing struggles of veterans returning home from war. Filmmaker and freelance journalist Nora Connor, who is currently teaching a workshop at BCRW on building a journalistic career, writes about the complex relationship forged between herself as a journalist and one of the subjects of a documentary she produced about substance abuse among returning military veterans. In her account of the lasting connection she made with “Sophie,” a helicopter pilot-veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Connor writes,

After all the work and all the struggles, she was on, she was the one who knew what she was doing, she was the one others would and could rely on. She was making me feel… unwomanly. My own opinions about the specifics of the Iraq war were very far away. I asked something silly, like “What kind of gun is that?” It really got her started. She was a total gearhead.

I realized that this was the essence of what I liked about Sophie. Even though she spoke with passion about combat missions, machine guns, and helicopters—things I would never know with my own hands, much as I faithfully tried to keep pace and take notes—I recognized the love of a thing done well and to its fullest. I could not identify with her particular dreams, but I respected the commitment and the fury with which she pursued them.

The entire article, “Learning to Fly,” appears in a recent issue of Guernica: A Magazine of Art and Politics.

Elizabeth Castelli is the Chair of the Religion Department at Barnard, a member of the BCRW Advisory Board, and the former Acting Director of BCRW.


Exceptional Conversations about Sexuality

CatalystCon is a three-day conference founded by Dee Dennis with workshops and panels that foster dialogue surrounding all aspects of sexuality and sex-positivity. Its mission is to “spark communication in sexuality, acceptance & activism”, with the belief that knowledge comes first and foremost before activism. Participants, both speakers and attendees, include “sex educators, sexologists, sex workers, writers, activists, and anyone with a passion for creating change.” The conference will be held from March 15-17, 2013, in Washington, D.C and includes sessions that promise to be practical, political, and educational. A few examples include:

  • How to Be an Ally to Sex Workers in Theory and Practice
  • The Online Activist: Ready, Set, TWEET!
  • Slut Shaming in Sex Positive Communities

Registration is open now here, with early bird specials for those who register before Dec. 15. Students also receive a $10 discount, but have to be 18+ to attend.