International Organizations

International organizations and multilateral financial institutions play important roles in advancing the status of women and girls worldwide. The United Nations and its agencies, such as the UN Development Program, UNICEF, WHO, UNFPA and others, have made strides in efforts to “mainstream” gender initiatives throughout their policies and programs. The UN General Assembly passed a resolution in September 2009 to unify the four main organizations for gender equality into one unified entity. The new agency will unite UNIFEM, the DESA Division for the Advancement of Women, the Office of the Special Advisor on Gender Issues, and INSTRAW under one roof. This move aims to strengthen international support for gender equality, reduce bureaucratic redundancies and inefficiencies as well as improve accountability a and oversight . There is also a call for increased participation by civil society in monitoring governments and international organizations to ensure that their respective programs are actually improving the lives of women and girls.

Earthquake in Haiti: Time for Seismic and Systemic Change

January 15, 2010 posted by Linda Basch

As reports filter in from Haiti in the aftermath of Wednesday's catastrophic earthquake, it is difficult to process the sheer immensity of this tragedy. My thoughts go to the tens of thousands of grieving and displaced who are struggling with unimaginable loss. I am also thinking about the hundreds, maybe thousands of colleagues, advocates and humanitarian workers who have sacrificed their lives while trying to rebuild a nation ravaged by hurricane, poverty and continuing mismanagement. The UN mission in Port au Prince is still missing more than 100 staff members and countless schools, clinics and businesses have been destroyed.

I won't go into the long and turbulent history of Haiti's past: revolt against slavery, independence, colonialism, dictatorship, fragile democracy and the US's troubling role in this tested nation's myriad challenges.


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Where Do We Stand After 30 Years of CEDAW?

December 4, 2009 posted by Kyla Bender-Baird

Yesterday, three fabulous NCRW interns* and I journeyed down to the concrete maze that is the United Nations to participate in a commemorative event celebrating CEDAW’s 30th birthday. The United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, often referred to as the international bill of women’s human rights, was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1979. The Convention defines discrimination as


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Institute for Research on Women and Gender

The Institute for Research on Women and Gender fosters collaboration and further the research of all U-M faculty members and graduate students who use the lens of women and gender to pursue their studies.
 
IRWG provides direct research funding and valuable expertise to those seeking external funding.
 
IRWG sponsors a wide variety of lectures, symposia, and other forums geared to faculty and students in all disciplines, at all levels. Many of our free programs appeal to the general public.
 
IRWG enables faculty members to design their own multidisciplinary, multiyear programs that examine significant issues related to women and gender.

Contact

204 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1290
Ph. (734) 764-9537
Fx. (734) 764-9533
http://www.umich.edu/~irwg/
irwg@umich.edu


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Principal Staff

Sarah Fenstermaker, Director
E-mail: umsarah@umich.edu

Deborah Keller-Cohen, Senior Associate Director
E-mail: dkc@umich.edu

Hannah Rosen, Interim Associate Director
E-mail: hrosen@umich.edu

Debra M. Schwartz, Senior Public Relations Representative
E-mail: schwarde@umich.edu

Terrence W. Crimes, Business Administrator
E-mail: tcrimes@umich.edu

Lisa Parker, Contract and Grant Administrator
E-mail: wooliver@umich.edu
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Featured Events

Employment Opportunities

Projects & Campaigns

IRWG supports original, faculty-led programs that reach across the university, each one linking several U-M departments, interdisciplinary programs, or professional schools in a focused examination of a particular area or topic related to women and gender. IRWG Faculty Programs are usually funded for a two-year period, but some are long-standing.
 
IRWG welcomes program proposals that explore differences and commonalities among and between women and men in the multicultural United States and internationally. Typical programs involve a series of public events, workshops, and other creative activities that might inform a future research project or result in a publication or performance. Funding for as much as $10,000 is available for approved programs.

Click here for a list of Current Faculty Programs.

Click here for a list of Past Faculty Programs.


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Reports & Resources

Adolescents and Girls

Children's Time with Fathers in Intact Families, Pamela Davis-Kearn.

Gender, Puberty, and Objectification, Karin Martin.

Arts

Tharp, Feminism, and Postmodern Dance, Sally Banes.

Art/Girl: Graffiti, Femininity, and the Career of Lady Pink, Kristina Milnor.

No Place for a Woman? Critical Narratives and Erotic Graffiti from Pompeii, Kristina Milnor.

Family Stories/Family Pictures: Mothers With Cameras, Joanne Leonard.

Representation of Women in Art History: An Overview, Patricia Simons.

Censorship

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Law, Abigail Carter.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Sociology, Susannah Dolance.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Literature, Leslie Dorfman Davis.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Feminist Theory and Philosophy, Troy Gordon.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Education, Edwina Hansbrough.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in the Mass Media, Edwina Hansbrough.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Psychology, Zaje Harrell.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Visual and Performing Arts, Libby Otto.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in Economics, Lucie Schmidt.

Studies in Gender Based Censorship: An Annotated Bibliography in American History, Chris Talbot.

Feminist Thought and Scholarship

Objectification Theory: Emotional Consequences of Sexual, Barbara Fredrickson.

Feminist Foundations: Practicing Feminism in the Community. A transcript of a panel at the conference, Feminists at Work: Multicultural, Feminist Influences on Practice, sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Program in Feminist Practice, The University of Michigan, October 16-17, 1998.

Giving It Up: Disrupting White 'Innocence,' Re-Educating White Feminism, Gail Griffin.

International Issues - Religion

The Home and Garden are a Small Paradise for Women: Men and Women Gendering Bosnjak Nationalism in Muslim Bosnia-Hercegovina, Elissa Helms (1997).

Health and Health Care

Dual Autobiography and AIDS Witnessing, Ross Chambers.

Improving Pregnancy Outcomes during Imprisonment

Initial Exposure to Nicotine in College-age Women smokers and Never-smokers, Cynthia Pomerlau.

Mental Illness and Substance abuse: Implications for Women's Health and Health Care Access, Beth Glover Reed and Carol Mowbray.

Representations of Women's Bodies and Birthing, Carolyn Sampselle.

Women and Stress, Elizabeth Young.

Mental Health

Rumination and Depression in Women, Susan Nolen-Hoeksema.

Serious Mental Illness: Women and Parenting, Carol Mowbray.

History

Telling An Untellable Story: White "Daughter" Black "Mother" After the Cuban Revolution, Ruth Behar.

Prison Discipline, Reform and Debate: Negotiating the Female Prisoner in Nineteenth-Century England, Susanna Calkins.

The Figure of the Adulteress in the Construction of the "Cult of True Womanhood" in the19th-Century American Moral Reform Literature, Lisa Cochran.

Remembering a Forgotten Past, or Why Have We Only Heard of Ballerinas, Lynn Garafola.

The Pasha's Prostitutes: Rethinking Women, the State, and Female Prostitution in Nineteenth Century Egypt, Mario Ruiz.

International Issues - Prostitution

Making A Spectacle: The Nightly Transformations of Egyptian Nightclub Performers in a Conservative Age, Katherine Zirbel.

Contraband Women, Immigration Tricks of the Sex Trade, and State Visions of Migrant Women Workers' Rights? The 1997 Toronto Massage Parlour Raids, Cheryl Harrison.

Politics

Institutional Gender Analysis: Running for the Russian Duma, Janet Johnson.

Visions of Citizenship: Questioning the Liberal Promise of Equality, Elizabeth Wingrove.

Reproductive Rights

Informed Consent Issues in Assisted Reproduction, Nancy Reame.

Recent Trends in Abortion Legislation in Central Europe, Eleonora Zielinska.

Rural Women - International Issues

The (Wo)man in the Cashew: Gender and Development in Rural Belize, Melissa Johnson.

Sexuality

Images of Fashion: Constructing the Visible Body, Olga Vainshtein.

Sports and Fitness

Your Hair is Caked, Your Limbs are Sore: Gender, "Roughing It," and Class in Early Yosemite Tourism, Stephanie Palmer.

Violence Against Women

Assessing Sexual Harassment among Latinas, Lilia Cortina.

Domestic Violence Against Women in Serbia, Zorica Mrsevic.

Offender Interventions to End Violence Against Women, Daniel Saunders.

Women of Color

Dis/Arming the Black Champ: Joe Louis and the Legacy of Racial Uplift in the Post-Civil Rights Movement, Marlon Ross.

Violence

Seng, Julia, and Mickey Sperlich. 2008. Survivor Moms: Women’s Stories of Birthing, Mothering, and Healing after Sexual Abuse.


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Center News

Opportunities, Grants & Fellowships

 
IRWG’s Faculty Seed Grant program was established in 1996. It enhances scholarship on women and gender at U-M by supporting disciplinary and interdisciplinary faculty projects. Support may be requested for individual activities, such as research assistance, research-related travel, or research materials--including books, microfilms, or similar items. Faculty Seed Grants also support collaborative projects, such as pilot studies or initial research efforts, study groups, or conference planning and implementation. Awards range from $500 to $10,000. The following criteria play some role in the award process:
 
 
In October, 2006, IRWG joined with the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts to launch the Sisters Fund, an innovative program to support vital projects that address global health issues related to women and gender. The idea for the fund came from women faculty and administrators, and in its early phase the fund was primarily supported by women—a first at U-M. Grants, varying in size from $500 to $10,000, are awarded to U-M faculty members engaged in scholarship or other creative activities that benefit local and global communities experiencing gender-based health disparities. We welcome applications from all academic disciplines, including the arts, humanities, and sciences. The Sisters Fund awards as many as two grants annually.
 
IRWG/Rackham Graduate Student Research Awards

The IRWG/Rackham Graduate Student Research Awards program provides $500 grants to U-M graduate students who are planning or conducting research, scholarship, and creative activities focusing on women and gender. These grants are for expenses such as books, travel, production or exhibition costs, software, data collection, or payment of subjects. Students at any stage in their graduate careers may apply. Although most awards are made to doctoral-level students, students currently in master’s degree programs, but planning research or creative careers, are invited to apply.

Boyd/Williams Fellowship for Research on Women & Work

The Boyd/Williams fellowship is awarded annually to a U-M doctoral student writing a dissertation related to women and work. Successful proposals promote knowledge and enhance understanding of the complexities of women’s roles in relation to their paid and unpaid labor (e.g. philanthropy, volunteerism, community involvement, domestic work, and political activity). The fellowship provides funding in the amount of $2,000.

IRWG/Rackham Community of Scholars

The Community of Scholars (COS) is a four-month summer fellowship program. It is intended to support U-M graduate students who are engaged in research, scholarship, or other creative activities that focus on women and/or gender.

 
The purpose of the IRWG Senior Scholar Visitor program  is to bring accomplished senior faculty presently employed in academic institutions outside the University of Michigan to  IRWG for up to a year  to engage in research that advances our understanding of women/gender and/or sexuality. Visiting Senior Scholars are expected to offer a public lecture, hold one master class meeting with dissertation students and participate in the intellectual environment of the institute. In selection decisions we consider the applicant's field of interest, scholarly achievement, plan of research, and fit with the institute’s current interests and intellectual community. Scholars from the United States and abroad who hold a PhD, as well as creative artists with a terminal degree in their field, are encouraged to apply. In addition to office space, IRWG will provide a $5000 stipend per term and $1000 for research/ professional expenses.

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Impact of War and Militarization on Women

May 24, 2009 posted by admin

Last year’s UN Security Council Resolution 1820 recognized sexual violence as a war crime. Its passage is often cited as a milestone.  Given so many conflicts around the globe, however, what was this resolution’s real impact? If your heart drops every time you think about the continuing rape in the Congo, you are not alone! For NCRW’s upcoming Annual Conference we have assembled a special panel featuring experts on women, war and security. 


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Who Cares?

March 2, 2009 posted by admin The 53rd Commission on the Status of Women meetings start today at UN Headquarters in New York and will run until the 13th of March.  This year, the theme of the CSW is “The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men, including caregiving in the context of HIV/AIDS.” During this year’s events, I will have the privilege of working with the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development’s (UNRISD) Gender and Development Programme. The Gender and Development Programme at UNRISD has been working on the Political and Social Economy of Care as one of its main research themes for several years now. [One of my favorite gender and development researchers, Maxine Molyneux, wrote the first paper in the series, titled Mothers at the Service of the State.]  As part of the project, UNRISD led gender experts from around the world in an exploration of care issues, with research conducted in eight countries drawn from four different regions.  Within its comparative approach, the project focused on the gender composition and dynamics of the multiple institutions of care – households and families, states, markets, and the not-for-profit sector – and their effects on poverty and social rights of citizenship.


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THE GLOBAL TRACK: India--Land of Malls and Ragpickers

February 11, 2009 posted by Shyama Venkateswar

 
 

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="298" caption="Photograph: Deshakalyan Chowdhury"]Photograph: Deshakalyan Chowdhury[/caption]

I was recently in Calcutta, India, my place of birth, home to where my mother, a sibling, old friends, and sweet memories still reside. This is my other “home” where I try to get to every year to renew and regenerate myself, and recharge from the stresses of a running a two working parents’ nuclear household in frenetic New York City. My trip last month came after a two year gap; I felt the familiar overwhelming desire to be there, to be a part of the sights and sounds of an India that were at once familiar and yet distant to me. Having left almost 23 years ago to move to the US, I have a unique insider-outsider vantage point. I was born and brought up there; I know things instinctively – all the cultural puzzles, contradictions, nuances of language, wordplay and verbal cues, body language, subtle things - that only a native-born can ever know. But, having been away long enough, and trained in and working in a field where critical inquiry is required, I can no longer accept without questioning the status and daily conditions of millions of people living in absolute poverty, what Collier refers to as The Bottom Billion. Even as India’s economy grows steadily at about 8% a year, there are entire communities of people, some 300 million of them, who live under a $1 a day without regular access to food, water, housing, livelihoods, reproductive healthcare or education. Malnutrition in children under five is at a staggering 45%.

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SECRETARY OF STATE FORUM--Abigail Disney on HRC’s Projected Ascent

December 2, 2008 posted by admin "Senator Clinton's accession to Secretary of State will be an unprecedented opportunity for women at long last to take their rightful place shoulder-to-shoulder in the  international community as leaders, as peers, and as beings whose human rights are as important, valued and 'inalienable' as those of men.  Too long the human rights community has dismissed women's rights as important, but not  'human rights' and therefore not important enough to be addressed by their gigantic and well-funded organizations.


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Inspired Choices for Tough Jobs

December 2, 2008 posted by Linda Basch There is a widespread outcry for the US to reassert its moral leadership in the world. How do we do this? Well, for starters, we can demonstrate a genuine commitment to partnering with other nations to create greater global security and equality for all peoples – across genders, religions, ethnicities, races, and sexualities.  We have a lot of ground to make up, given the US’s record over the past eight years, when our government has often seemed to impede rather than facilitate global peace and security.  In this regard, President-elect Obama’s choice of Hillary Rodham Clinton as Secretary of State is promising.


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