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NWSA, A History 2000 – 21st National Conference

Friday, May 15, 2020  
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Cover of the 2000 conference program book

21st National Conference | "2000 Subversions: Women's Studies and the 'Twenty-First Century'" | June 14-18, 2000 | Simmons College | Boston, Massachusetts

Program Highlights

Welcome to the 21st century with the 21st NWSA National Conference! The theme this year, "2000 Subversions: Women's Studies and the 'Twenty-First Century,'" spoke to the ongoing mission of women's studies to continuously subvert the quickly-shifting social conditions with a globalized world. True to form, the 2000 conference hosted a long bill of "Cultural Events." That bill included speakers like comedian Karen Williams, novelist Barbara Neely, and writers Jyoti Puri and Cynthia Enloe. It also included another slate of film screenings, and below are some (or their trailers) that still exist online! Their original scheduled times are also provided.



Thursday, June 15, 2000

5:30pm – The Edge of Each Others Battles: The Vision of Audre Lorde (2000)

The Edge of Each Others Battles: The Vision of Audre Lorde directed (2000) by Jennifer Abod on Vimeo.

Lorde's work: the role of culture in political transformation, Black Feminism, Black Lesbian Feminism, the erotic, inclusion, internationalism, and the importance but difficulties of working across differences for grassroots empowerment.


7:45pm – Honey Moccasin (1998)

Honey Moccasin (1998) directed by Shelley Niro on Vimeo.

Part of the Smoke Signals film series examining Native identity in the 1990's, Honey Moccasin is a comedy/thriller about the Smokin' Moccasin Bar and The Inukshuk Café rivalry, featuring the travails of Honey Moccasin, a crusading investigator and Zachary John, a closeted drag queen/powwow clothing thief.


Friday, June 16, 2000

2:00pm – Performing the Border (1999)

Performing the Border (1999) directed by Ursula Biemann on Vimeo.

Set in the Mexican-U.S. border town of Ciudad Juarez, where U.S. multinational corporations produce electronic and digital equipment, candid interviews with female Mexican factory and sex workers, activists and journalists investigate the growing feminization of the global economy.


7:20pm – Ringl and Pit (1995)

Ringl and Pit (1995) directed by Juan Mandelbaum on Vimeo.

The lives of émigré photographers Grete Stem and Ellen Auerbach are explored from their "ringl + pit" studio days in 1920s Berlin to their current major exhibitions in Germany. Still virtually unknown in the US, they won international prizes for work that subverted images of women in advertising.


8:30pm – The Life and Times of Sara Baartman: The Hottentot Venus (1998)

The Life and Times of Sara Baartman: The Hottentot Venus (1998) directed by Zola Maseko on Vimeo.

In this shocking story, Sara Baartman, taken from South Africa and displayed in Britian [sic] as a freak until J814, died in 1815 in France after a year as the object of European research that led to concepts of black female sexuality. The Musee de l'Homme in Paris displayed her sexual organs and brain until 1985.



List of 2000 program committee members


See the full program here

From the NWSA President

Dear Conference Participants,

Welcome to the 2000 NWSA Conference, the twenty-first national conference held since the founding of the association. The conference theme, "2000 Subversions: Women's Studies and the 'Twenty-First Century'," calls upon us to carry forward the transformative momentum of women's studies inside and outside the academy, in local and global contexts. We hope you will find that the multiple events of the conference help us towards that goal.

This year we return to a campus-based conference, and we are profoundly grateful to Simmons College for its generous offer to host the conference and the splendid cooperation we have received from so many at the College. We especially thank President Daniel Cheever for his outstanding support. The debt we owe to Christina Brinkley, Chair of the African American and Africana Women's Studies Program, for undertaking to chair the conference planning and oversee the coordination of the conference this year, is beyond words. Nor can words be adequate to thank our NWSA Conference Coordinator, Bea Thompson, for her tireless work with Christina Brinkley and numerous others in all aspects of scheduling and preparing the program for the conference. At Simmons College, Adrienne Gordon, Diane Hammer, Carol Stewart, Elizabeth Amelia Hadley, and others noted elsewhere in this program book, have shared the heavy burden of on-site planning and operations. The NWSA 2000 Conference has also had an exceptional range of cooperation from other departments at Simmons and neighboring institutions, particularly Wheelock College. We especially thank Jane Hardin and Gail Dines for their work in making possible the Professional Development Institute and Laura Roskos of the Radcliffe College Graduate Consortium in Women's Studies for coordination and sponsorship of our Friday plenary session. We are also deeply grateful to the officers and members of the New England Women's Studies Association who have devoted countless hours to the planning of the program, the cultural events, and the writers' series and provided the funding for a travel award program to enable students to attend. It is heartening and impressive to observe the strong community support that has been engaged for this national conference of NWSA.

The conference program reflects the intellectual, educational, and activist vitality of NWSA and its diverse constituencies. This year our plenaries seek to shape agendas for feminist scholarship and education, linking academy and community on multiple levels of intellect and action. The sessions and workshops address these issues and also carry forward directions set in last year's conference, continuing the challenging debates on interdisciplinarity, feminism and post-colonialism, and women's studies students. We address the changes that are already taking place, in theory and practice, in "women's studies" and "feminist theory," broadening our understanding of the meaning of those terms to encompass recent developments in gender studies, queer theory, womanist studies, and other challenging trends. We search out "2000 subversions" of injustice and violence, global and local, and we share visions, knowledge, methods, pedagogy, and theory to create and build our women's studies programs.

Welcome to NWSA 2000!
Bernice Carroll, President, 1999-2000


NWSA Governance

Below are the 2000 NWSA governance members, as well as the NWSA staff team. You can see the current Governing Council members, conference co-chairs, and staff members here.


2000 Governance Members 2000 Governance Members

See the rest of the history project here

Have any pictures, stories, or fun facts from past conferences? Let us know! Email us at nwsaoffice@nwsa.org.

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NWSA Program Archives

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About the Writer

Victoria Agunod is the office assistant at the National Women's Studies Association, as well as an adjunct faculty member in the Peace, Justice, and Conflict Studies Program at DePaul University. Victoria received their BA and MA in Women's and Gender Studies at DePaul. They first attended NWSA in 2018 and presented their research on university students organizing for racial justice against the new alt-right galvanized by the 2016 U.S. presidential election. They joined the NWSA team the following year. Their teaching emphases are on women of color feminisms, racial justice movements and organizing, and neoliberal rhetorical and cultural influences.

Please note: The information compiled in this project comes from the archived conference programs at the University of Maryland, College Park.