Welcome to Women’s Histories Month

White text that reads Women's History Month on purple. background. Right side contains repeated text that reads Women's History and runs from the top to the bottom of the graphic.

The College of Arts and Sciences, in collaboration other units across our campus, acknowledges Women’s Histories Month. Throughout the month of March, the College is offering a student-centered calendar of events and programming that honors the diverse histories and achievements of women. Taking a broad, intersectional, and decolonial approach, our Women’s Histories month programming introduces the campus to cutting edge research on issues of gender, sexuality, feminism, and queer theory, and offers events that engage racial, social, political, environmental, and reproductive justice.

Women’s Histories month also recognizes the ground-breaking role that the University at Buffalo played in the founding of women’s, gender and sexuality studies across the globe. Launched in 1972, as a result of student and faculty activism, the Women’s College created a unique intellectual space that propelled research into women’s diverse histories, created powerful new knowledges that fundamentally challenged women’s erasure and inequality, and maintained activism and direct action in pursuit of a more just and equal world. This tradition continues with the College of Arts and Sciences Department of Global Gender and Sexuality Studies, an interdisciplinary home for students, faculty and the community. The knowledge, analysis and engagement produced in women’s and gender studies is as critical today as it was 50 years ago. This work continues to combat structural sexism, the devaluing of women’s labor, particularly that of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) women as we have seen during the recent COVID-19 pandemic, and the deep-seated gender-based violence which endangers the lives of sexual minorities every day.

Event Dates:

2021 Women’s Histories Month Schedule

Tuesday, March 2

Artwork of blue spikes in an organic circular pattern.

Artwork by Ronnie Lee Goeman and Stonehorse Lone Goeman

Conversation Series on Hodinöhsö:ni’ Geographies: Indigenous Land-Based Protocols and Commemoration at UB

Agnes Williams (Seneca, Wolf Clan), Lori Quigley (Seneca, Wolf Clan), Marilyn Schindler (Seneca, Snipe Clan), Christine Abrams (Seneca, Beaver Clan)

4 p.m.

Within Hodinöhsö:ni’ worldview, women are responsible for all matters regarding the land. Honoring this, our second installment of our Hodinöhsö:ni’ Geographies Series is designed as a listening session led by a panel of Seneca women of this territory. This listening session will provide a space where we can listen and receive direction on how best to develop our land acknowledgement protocols and other forms of Hodinöhsö:ni’ land-based commemoration on our campus.

Sponsors or co-sponsors: Sponsored by the UB Center for Diversity and Innovation, Humanities Institute and the College of Arts and Sciences.

Wednesday, March 10

Barbara Smith.

The 2021 African American Studies Endowed Lecture

A Conversation with Barbara Smith

7 p.m. 

The Department of Africana and American Studies is pleased to announce that Literary Critic, Feminist and Social Activist Barbara Smith will deliver the 2021 Endowed African American Studies Lecture. Barbara Smith is an author, activist, and independent scholar who has played a groundbreaking role in opening up a national cultural and political dialogue about the intersections of race, class, sexuality and gender. She was among the first to define an African American women’s literary tradition and to build Black Women’s Studies and Black Feminism in the United States. She has been politically active in many movements for social justice since the 1960s.

Sponsored by the UB Department of Africana and American Studies, the Michigan Street African American Heritage Corridor Commission and the UB Gender Institute

March 10 through April 5

EXpress Yourself: Creative Empowerment for Women

7:30-8:30 p.m.

Tiffany Du Mouchelle, director of vocal performance and opera studio and Leanne Darling, instructor of viola and chamber music from the Department of Music, are presenting "EXpress Yourself: Creative Empowerment for Women", a virtual workshop, through their artist collective, EX.C.E.L.L. (Expression and Creativity Experimental Learning Laboratory).

For Women’s History month, let your voice be heard! Take some time to nurture and empower yourself in this creative sound workshop! In this supportive community, we will explore the nature of creativity and expression, honor creative impulses, acknowledge and quiet our inner critic, and open up to the expressive possibilities of sound and words. Expand your senses, open your voice, and embolden your heart: take ownership of your creative and expressive potential in this judgement-free zone for women only!

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced musician, you have the ability to create songs that can inspire and empower! Develop a deeper connection to your inner voice through improvisation and songwriting, along with other fun exercises in creative practice, mindfulness, and introspection!

This workshop is for all gender-identifying women ages 18+. No previous musical experience is necessary. All backgrounds are welcome!

Cost: $175, need-based assistance is available.

Tuesday, March 16

Meaningful Dialogues on Sexual Harassment

Dina Benbrahim

2-4 p.m.

In the U.S., 66% of women versus 19% of men are harassed in public environments. The public space is still culturally perceived as a man’s world while women are traditionally confined to the private one.

Because claiming a safe public space for is a political act anywhere in the world, Assistant Professor Dina Benbrahim is actively cultivating a free creative experience that facilitates dialogues, ideation and agency for all self-identified women to reclaim their right to exist safely in the public space.

Your voice matters to challenge the norm, rewrite the narrative, and transform the public space.

Disclaimer: This workshop is not for the purposes of group therapy, professional therapy or art therapy. Our creative session will not provide any type of counseling, psychotherapy and/or medical advice on any subject matter.

Materials needed:

  • Large piece of fabric
  • fabric scraps (felt works well!)
  • A marker or pencil
  • Either fabric glue and brush or heat and bond (prefer heat and bond personally)
  • If you are using heat and bond, you will need an iron.
  • Sewing pins
  • Scissors/xacto knife

You can either draw your letterforms during the workshop or get a stencil pack

Tuesday, March 16

Black Ecology in a Creole Context

Benedicte Boisson, Professor of Afroamerican & African Studies Scholar at University of Michigan 

4-5 p.m.

In ecological terminology, commensalism refers to a class of relationship in which two organisms mutually benefit without affecting each other: there is no contract, no profit, and no need to feel indebted or grateful in a commensal relationship. One takes what is needed with no promise of return. This is often how people in Martinique and Guadeloupe relate to the liminal animal world. In this talk, Bénédicte Boisseron looks at Creole culture through the prism of commensalism, arguing that this ecology applies not only to the animal world but also to humans in a post-colonial context.

Co-sponsored by Melodia E. Jones Chair of French, the Humanities Institute Performance Research Workshop and the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures.

Attendees who register in advance will be sent samples of work the guest presenter has shared.

Wednesday, March 17

Gender-based Violence in the World of Work

9-10 a.m.

Join Us at CSW65. Violence and harassment in the world of work has deep impacts on women and is exacerbated by the lack of social and legal protections to address gender-based violence (GBV) in most countries. The ILO Convention (No.190), adopted in 2019, presents a key opportunity in the global policy landscape through which all workers—women in particular—can be protected from gender-based violence. This event will explore ways for countries to take specific actions to address violence and harassment, and build sustained commitment for member states to ratify the ILO Convention (No.190). 

Wednesday, March 17

"Preaching Guilt: Religion and Experiences of Painful Sex in College Women"

Katharina Azim, PhD

12- 1:30 p.m.

This research project investigated the relationship between women college students’ pelvic health, sexuality, and religiosity. Currently 20-26% of young women report chronic pain during sexual activity, which is generally a highly preventable and treatable condition. Considering that young girls and women grow up with strong messages about permissible and taboo sexual conduct, gendered expectations of what constitutes “normal” pain-free sex, and the privileging of vaginal-penile intercourse over other forms of non-penetrative sexual activity, we tested if religiosity and religious teachings were contributing factors to women’s experiences of painful sex. Specifically, we examined the relationship between the prevalence of genito-pelvic pain with sex among sexually active female college students based on their sexual conceptualizations and practices, religious self-identification, belief and exposure to religious teachings, and the experiences of sexual shaming and guilt. 

Professor Azim's research centers around women’s reproductive health, agency, and rights in the United States, and specifically on experiences of genito-pelvic pain and psychosocial factors of painful sexual intercourse in young women. Her second line of research encompasses MENA/Arab/Muslim+ women’s perceptions of ethnic identity at the intersection of geopolitical, sociocultural, religious, and gendered factors.

Wednesday, March 17

Black Women in WWII

Brenda Moore, PhD

7 p.m.

Brenda Moore, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University at Buffalo, receiving her PhD in Sociology from the University of Chicago. Moore has numerous publications, including several journal articles and a book entitled To Serve My Country, To Serve My Race: The Story of the Only African American Wacs Stationed Overseas During World War II. She has completed research for a forthcoming book, entitled Serving Our Country: Japanese American Women in the Military During World War II. Moore enjoys a wide range of scholarly interests, and served as a contributor to the edited book, African Americans and the Rise of the Post-Industrial City, writing a chapter on the class status of Blacks in Buffalo.

Sponsored by the UB Department of Africana and American Studies and the Michigan Street African American Heritage Corridor Commission.

Wednesday, March 24

"Through These Gates" Christine Parker's documentary film on John Brent and the Michigan Avenue YMCA

Lillian S. Williams, PhD

​7 p.m. 

Lillian S. Williams, PhD, is Associate Professor and former chair of the Department of African American Studies. Prof. Williams received the doctorate degree from the University at Buffalo. A specialist in United States social and urban history, Prof. Williams’ research is in the areas of institutions, ethnicity, biography and women’s history. Her research includes the Young Men’s and Young Women’s Christian Associations and the National Urban League; Jewish club women; and Mary Burnett Talbert, an early twentieth century reformer.

Friday, March 26

A Celebration of Vice President Kamala Harris, Civil Rights Activism and the 19th Amendment, 1920-2020

12- 1 p.m.  

Join the Department of Global Gender and Sexuality Studies for a virtual event to celebrate the election of Vice President Kamala Harris and reflect upon Civil Rights Activism and the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment.

Tuesday, March 30

(A)sexuality Studies and Critical Race Theory

Ianna Hawkins Owen

4-5 p.m.

Join the Department of Global Gender and Sexuality Studies for a presentation with Ianna Hawkins Owen, Professor of English and African American Studies at Boston University.

Wednesday, April 7

The Centenarians

Sharon Amos, PhD

7 p.m. 

​Sharon R. Amos PhD is a historian, poet, and author. She received her doctorate at the University at Buffalo in American Studies (Women Studies). Her dissertation is titled “Whose Dust is Rising?: Literary and Historical  Narratives of African American Women.” In 2012, she retired from the faculty of the University at Buffalo Educational Opportunity Center. 

Dr. Amos serves as the editor of Open Doors: Western New York African American Houses of Worship. One of the church historians at St. John Baptist Church, she is committed to documenting and preserving the rich history of our religious institutions. Additionally, she is the president of the Buffalo Genealogical Society of the African Diaspora (BGSAD) and a member of the Afro-American Historical Association of the Niagara Frontier (AAHANF). She self-published several volumes of poetry and her work appears in local and national publications.

The project “Centenarians: We have a Story to Tell” began with the video interviews of ten African American women and it culminated in 2015 with several events. Dr. Amos serves as narrator and co-presenter with the late Fern E. Beavers. The Links of Erie County, N.Y. and a grant from AAUW provided support for the project.