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LIVE STREAM OF CELEBRATION OF AUDRE LORDE

 

BIOGRAPHY

Audre Geraldine Lorde was the third child of Linda Belmar and Frederic Lorde born on February 18, 1943. Born Audrey, she dropped the "y" from her name while still a child, explaining in Zami: A New Spelling of My Name, that she was attracted to the symmetry of the "e" at the end of each name.  Influenced by her mother's love for words and storytelling, Lorde was drawn to poetry and language from a young age. Her schooling began at a Catholic grammar school where she experienced racism and hostility. It was during this time that Lorde first began to develop her literary voice; as a teen she was an active contributor to her school arts magazine and published her first poem in Seventeen magazine. Lorde attended Hunter College (1954-1959) studying Library Science and went on to earn a Master's degree in that subject from Columbia University in 1961. There she met Edwin Ashley Rollins, an attorney, whom she married in 1962. Lorde and Rollins wedding reception took place at Roosevelt House. The couple had two children, Elizabeth and Jonathan; they divorced in 1970. In 1968, Lorde was a writer in residence at Tougaloo College in Mississippi where she met Frances Clayton, a professor of psychology, who was her partner until 1989.

Mina Shaughnessy, former director of City College's SEEK Program (Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge) offered Lorde her first position at CUNY. From there, she went to John Jay College of Criminal Justice in 1970 where she fought to build a significant Black Studies program. In 1981, she accepted the Distinguished Thomas Hunter Chair offered by Donna Shalala, then Hunter College's president, where she taught until 1986. Lorde also taught in the Department of English; today an annual prize for undergraduate excellence in poetry and prose is named in her honor. Lorde was a mentor at the Audre Lorde Women's Poetry Center, housed at Roosevelt House in the 1980s-90s prior to its renovation.

In 1980, together with Barbara Smith and Cherrie Moraga, she co-founded Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press in order to call attention and make available work by women of color. As a prolific poet, talented teacher and artist, and well known activist, Lorde has been acclaimed as a central figure in the feminist movement. In 1991-92, Lorde was the State Poet of New York.

In the late 1970s, Lorde was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a radical mastectomy; she died on November 17, 1992 ofliver cancer in St. Croix where she was living with Gloria Joseph. In her own words, she was a "black, lesbian, feminist, mother, warrior, poet"; Lorde's life and career was characterized by her hopeful efforts to establish a better humanity through her teaching, activism, poetry and prose.


This biography is compiled from a number of sources, from entries found at "e-notes", poets.org, and from Columbia University's Center for New Media Teaching and Learning as well as Clare Coss and Blanch Wiesen Cook's entry in Notable American Women. Special thanks to Thorn in the Department of English for providing some details about Lorde's time teaching at Hunter.

 

 

Daniel G. Simmonds, III

 

Meet Our Faculty

 

FACULTY

 

Catherine Raissiguier

Professor/Chairperson
212-772-5509
Room: West 1715
catherine.raissiguier@hunter.cuny.edu

Catherine Raissiguier joined the Hunter College faculty in 2014 and is currently the Chair of the Department.  She completed her undergraduate education in France and holds a M.A. in Women's Studies/American Studies and a Ph.D. in Comparative and International Education from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She is the author of Reinventing the Republic: Gender, Migration, and Citizenship in France (Stanford University Press, 2010) and Becoming Women/Becoming Workers: Identity Formation in a French High School (SUNY Press, 1994).  Dr. Raissiguier is currently at work on the gender, race, class, and sexuality underpinnings of the 2016 burqini bans in France and the debates they have generated. Dr. Raissiguier has taught Women's and Gender Studies at SUNY/Buffalo, the University of Michigan, Middlebury College, University of Oregon, Oregon State University, the University of Cincinnati, and New Jersey City University.

 

 

Jennifer Gaboury

Lecturer
212-772-5559
Room: West 1716
jgaboury@hunter.cuny.edu

Jennifer Gaboury is an off-tenure-track, full-time Lecturer, currently serving as Associate Director of the Women and Gender Studies Program at Hunter College. She was trained as a political theorist at UC Santa Cruz, the New School for Social Research, and CUNY Graduate Center. Her work is related to issues of masculinities, feminisms, and politics; she is currently working on a project related to race and sex segregation in public bathroom facilities. She has served on the boards of CLAGS and Alternatives to Marriage Project, and has been a member of the Advisory Committee for the LGBT Rights Division at Human Rights Watch. In another life, she worked for Madre and Human Rights Watch. 

 

Kelly M. Nims

Doctoral Lecturer
212-772-5070
Room: West 1212

Kelly M. Nims is an anthropologist by training and a former Peace Corps volunteer who has lived and worked in Africa, resulting in research and service that she brings to bear on the literature and cultural studies courses that she teaches in her joint appointment in English and Women and Gender Studies. Her interests and research lie at the intersection of global black studies and identity, black feminism, and literary ethnography. Dr. Nims' courses on Zora Neale Hurston, Black Aesthetics, The Harlem Renaissance and Black Women Writers, speak to the interdisciplinarity of her work.  Dr. Nims completed her undergraduate degree in English at the University of Virginia and she holds a Ph.D. in Applied Anthropology from Columbia University.  Her first book project, The Goffal Speaks: Coloured Ideology and the Perpetuation of a Category in Post-Colonial Zimbabwe, focuses on the colonial classification of race and its meanings in modern day Zimbabwe, particularly among the Coloured or mixed-race population. She is also working on a second monograph about miscegenation through an engagement with twentieth-century American literature, political anthropology and critical race theory. Dr. Nims has recently presented work at the African Studies Association and has two forthcoming articles, "The Necessary Violence of Frantz Fanon and Malcolm X in Global Black Revolution" in an essay collection on the black 1960s (Oxford UP) and a contribution to Measuring Mixedness: Counting and Classifying Mixed Race and Mixed Ethnic Identity Around the World (Palgrave).

 

Deborah Tolman

Professor
212-772-5715
Room: West 1714
dtolman@hunter.cuny.edu

Dr. Deborah L. Tolman is Professor of Women and Gender Studies at Hunter College.  She teaches a course on girlhood, "Growing Up Girl" and the senior seminar in WGS.  She has published over 60 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and several books and edited volumes, including Dilemmas of Desire: Teenage Girls Talk about Sexuality (Harvard, 2002) and The American Psychological Association Handbook of Sexuality and Psychology (2015, with Lisa Diamond). Find her on Twitter at @drdebnyc. She holds an MS in Human Sexuality Education (UPenn) and a doctorate in Applied Developmental Psychology (Harvard Graduate School of Education).  She is a co-founder (with Lyn Mikel Brown and Dana Edell) of SPARK Movement, www.sparkmovement.org, an intergenerational initiative supporting intergeneration feminist activism between women and girls. Her current projects include: writing a book on girls' experiences of embodied sexuality, Desiring Girls: Teenage Girls Talk about Sex and Relationships; qualitative, experimental and participatory action research studies on diverse girls' and young women's management and perceptions of racialized sexualization and body surveillance; and sexgenlab.org, a web platform to translate and disseminate "critical knowledge for critical times" making scholarship on gender and sexuality accessible to the public, a project of SexGenLab, a collaborative of doctoral students who produce and disseminate critical research. In Spring 2018, she launched and directs PhenomenalWomen@RH, a series at the Roosevelt House Institute of Public Policy, bringing the voices and experiences of remarkable women to the Hunter Community and beyond. She is also on the faculty of the Critical Social Psychology doctoral program at the CUNY Graduate Center and the Human Rights and Public Policy faculties at Roosevelt House. Prior to joining the faculty at Hunter, she was Professor of Sexuality Studies at San Francisco State University, where she was the founding director of the Center for Research and Education on Gender and Sexuality (CREGS). 

 

Rupal Oza

Associate Professor
212-650-3035
Room: West 1718
rupal.oza@hunter.cuny.edu

Rupal Oza was the Director of the Women and Gender Studies Program at Hunter College, CUNY. Her book, The Making of Neoliberal India: Nationalism, Gender, and the Paradoxes of Globalization was published by Routledge, New York and from Women Unlimited, India. She has several articles in peer reviewed journals. Her current project is on examining the link between special economic zones and the discourse of security in India.

 

ADJUNCT FACULTY

 

Mignonette Chiu

Adjunct Assistant Professor
212-772-5484
Room: West 1739
mch0078@hunter.cuny.edu

Mignonette Chiu has taught in WGS departments at Hunter College, Barnard College, and the University of Missouri, where she was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Department.  Dr. Chiu received her BA in English from Wesleyan University; an MA in International Comparative Education from Teachers College, Columbia University; and a PhD in Political Science from Columbia University.  She specializes in immigration/migration; transnational feminisms; global/globalization studies; ethnic studies; critical race studies; and asian american/diaspora studies.

 

Michael Fisher

Adjunct Lecturer
212-650-3035
Room: West 1718
mfisher@hunter.cuny.edu

Michael Philip Fisher is an Adjunct Lecturer in Women and Gender Studies at Hunter College, where he teaches courses in feminist theory and gender/race/sexuality in American political institutions.  His teaching and research are especially focused on reproductive justice and the politics of reproductive rights in the U.S. federal courts and state legislatures.  

 

Dillonna Lewis

Adjunct Lecturer
212-650-3569
Room: East 1222
illewis@hunter.cuny.edu

Dillonna Lewis holds a Master's degree in Education and Counseling Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is the recipient of the Brawley Award, which funded a research project at the University of the West Indies in Barbados, West Indies to document the impact of racism, sexism and poverty on women in Caribbean society. She has served on the Board of Directors at Project Fair, and as a member of the New York Women's Foundation Grants Advisory/Allocations Committee. As Welfare Rights Initiative (WRI) Co-Executive Director, she shares responsibility for overall governance, funding, programming development and leadership.  Dillonna supervises and trains staff, interns and undergraduate students to operate and evaluate WRI's programs. She also plans, develops and implements projects in support of WRI's mission and vision for social change.  Dillonna instructs WRI's (two-semester, credit-bearing) Community Leadership training courses (WGSP 398.00 & 490.00) at Hunter College that's offered in Women and Gender Studies and cross-listed in Sociology.  The Community Leadership Training Program curriculum is designed to promote interactive learning among students with firsthand experience of poverty, scholars, advocates, organizers, service providers and activists engaged in welfare policy discussions. The program exposes students to information about the social welfare system and develops their capacity as leaders, organizers and trainers of others who seek to influence the public policies that affect their lives.  In its 19th year, the Community Leadership program has trained close to 500 students to serve as leaders in welfare and education public policy discourse, and as agents of real change in their communities.

 

Boon Lin Ngeo

Adjunct Assistant Professor
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
bngeo@hunter.cuny.edu

Dr. Ngeo, Boon Lin is Chinese Malaysian. He was an award-winning journalist before he came to the United States in 1997. He has published extensively in the Chinese language since 1999, and is the author of more than 30 books and numerous bestsellers in Malaysia. He holds a BA degree in sociology from university of Wisconsin, a MA degree in sociology from Minnesota State University, a Master of Theological Studies from Episcopal Divinity School, and a doctoral degree in theology from Boston University. He is also a doctoral candidate in sociology. Dr. Ngeo is a staff pastor of MCC New York, and the first openly gay minister in his native country Malaysia, and the first openly gay minister who holds a doctoral degree in theology in Asia. He is one of the most sought after speakers in LGBTI Chinese communities in Asia, such as China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Malaysia. His activisim in Asia has been reported by CNN and the New York Times. He also has been named as one of the most inspiring LGBT religious leaders in the world by Huffington Post.

 

Christopher Mitchell

Adjunct Assistant Professor
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
cm549@hunter.cuny.edu

Chris Mitchell is an adjunct professor of women's, gender and sexuality studies at Hunter College, where he teaches about feminist intellectual and political traditions and the history of gender and sexuality. He also teaches United States and queer history at Rutgers University-Newark and men and masculinities at Pace University. He currently serves on the Board of Directors at CLAGS: The Center for LGBT Studies at the CUNY Graduate School. He holds a B.A. in English and history from Texas Tech University. He currently attends Rutgers University in New Brunswick, where he is completing a dissertation on the role of markets in the history of queer community formation, Gay Liberation, and race, class, and gender stratification in New York City from 1945 to 1980.
--
Christopher Adam Mitchell
Adjunct Professor of History and Women's/Gender Studies, Rutgers University-Newark, Hunter College at CUNY, and Pace University
Ph.D. Candidate, History, Rutgers University

 

Daniel Polyak

Adjunct Lecturer
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
dpolyak@hunter.cuny.edu

Daniel Polyak, is a lecturer in Women and Gender Studies at Hunter College. In addition to teaching at Hunter, he also works at Stella & Charles Guttman Community College and Marymount Manhattan College. He is currently pursuing psychoanalytic training at the National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis (NPAP). At NPAP, he facilitates a psychoanalytically oriented study group on gender and sexuality. He also works collaboratively with parole-eligible people serving life sentences in NYS as they prepare for release. His areas of interest include social and political philosophy (specifically 20th century continental thought), theories of identity, power, and oppression, feminist thought, queer and trans studies, race studies, psychoanalysis, and abolitionist politics.

 

Susan Rosenberg

Adjunct Lecturer
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
susan.rosenberg@hunter.cuny.edu

Susan Rosenberg is a human rights and prisoners rights advocate, adjunct professor, communications consultant, award-winning writer, public speaker and a formerly incarcerated person.  Her recently published memoir, An American Radical, details her 16 years in federal prison as well as her conclusions about her prison experience and he past. She was released from prison in 2001 through executive clemency by then President Bill Clinton. Upon her release she worked at American Jewish World Service for 12 years beginning as a writer then becoming the director of communications. Post-AJWS Susan has worked extensively in the nonprofit communications field with a focus on human rights and international development.. She is the founder of Sync It Communications, a communications-consulting group. She is also an Adjunct Lecturer at Hunter College and a member of the prison writing committee of PEN America. Susan lives in New York City with her partner.

 

John Paul Sanchez

Adjunct Associate Professor
jp.sanchez@njms.rutgers.edu

John Paul Sanchez, MD, MPH is Assistant Professor; Emergency Department, Chairperson; Einstein LGBT Steering CommitteePrincipal Investigator; Building the Next Generationof Academic Physicians Initiative, www.bngap.org Albert Einstein College of Medicine; Chair, Council of Young PhysiciansNational Hispanic Medical Association. He is the co-organizer of the LGBT Health Workforce Conference.· He serves as a Board Member of the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies (CLAGS) of the City University of New York and focuses on LGBT health education and health disparities.· CLAGS is the first university based LGBT research center in the United States and provides a platform for intellectual leadership in addressing issues that affect Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender individuals and other sexual and gender minorities.· He also serves as the Chairperson of the Einstein LGBT Steering Committee of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University and is charged with building a supportive institutional climate for the personal and professional development of students.· He previously served as founding Board Member of the Bronx Lesbian and Gay Health Resource Consortium (2000-2005) and as a Steering Committee Member for the Group of Diversity and Inclusion of the Association of American Medical Colleges (2009-2011).

 

Raymond Joshua Scannell

Adjunct Lecturer
212-396-6706
Room: West 1636
rs999@hunter.cuny.edu

Raymond Joshua Scannell is a PhD student in sociology at the CUNY Graduate Center. His work focuses on the intersections of embodiment, technology, incarceration and political economy. He is the author of Cities: Unauthorized Resistance and Uncertain Sovereignty in the New Urban World (2011) and with Patricia Clough et al. of "The Datalogical Turn" in Nonrepresentational Methodologie. (2014)

 

Portia Seddon

Adjunct Lecturer
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
pseddon@hunter.cuny.edu

Portia Seddon is an anthropologist and lecturer in Women & Gender Studies. Her areas of interest include race, gender, social movements and ethnomusicology, with recent work covering the intersections between populism and Afrofuturism in urban dance-music cultures. Prof. Seddon's current research examines sexual violence and morality in Jamaican dancehall music. She earned her M.A. in Anthropology from Hunter College.

 

Erin Siodmak

Adjunct Lecturer
212-396-6706
Room: West 1636
esiodmak@hunter.cuny.edu

Erin Siodmak is a PhD candidate at the CUNY Graduate Center. She likes to study art, film, social theory, cities, geography, gender, and a lot more. Her dissertation is on performance and installation art, politics, and development in New York, New Orleans, and Detroit. Erin has been teaching at Hunter (and loving it) since 2008. When not teaching or studying, Erin likes to watch whole seasons of TV shows, ski, or play with her dog, Dolly Parton.

 

Stephanie St. Pierre

Adjunct Lecturer
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
sstpierr@hunter.cuny.edu

Stephanie St. Pierre, in 2010, began teaching at Hunter College and currently teaches courses that explore gender, health, food and public policy (not necessarily all at the same time) including: Introduction to Gender and Sexualities; Gender and Health Policy; Gender, Sexualities and Indigenous Rights; Gender, Globalization and the Politics of Food; and Feminist Activism and Advocacy/Internship Seminar. At other colleges she has taught: Women's Health; Nutrition & Society; Public Health Ethics; and Health Education.

She is also a candidate for the DPH in Public Health at the Graduate Center working on her dissertation "Exploring Food System Change and Food Sovereignty in Indigenous Communities of North America." Her broader research interests include indigenous rights, gender and public policy, community health and food systems, environmental justice, bioethics and impacts of trauma on community health.

 

Red Washburn

Adjunct Associate Professor
212-772-5284
Room: West 1739
awashbur@hunter.cuny.edu

Dr. Red Washburn, is Associate Professor of English and Director of Women's and Gender Studies at Kingsborough Community College (CUNY). Red (them/ them/ theirs) is also Adjunct Associate Professor of Women and Gender Studies at Hunter College (CUNY). They are a Visiting Professor at Vassar College summers 2018-2019, and they are a Research Fellow at the CUNY Grad Center fall/spring 2018-2019. They received a M.A. in English from the State University of New York at New Paltz in 2005 and a M.A. in Women's Studies from the University of Maryland in 2007. They received a Ph.D. from the Department of Women's Studies at the University of Maryland in 2010. Their articles appear in Journal for the Study of RadicalismWomen's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and Journal of Lesbian Studies. Their poetry collection Crestview Tree Woman was published by Finishing Line Press. Their poem "Enjera" appears in the 2015 "Reconciliations" issue of Sinister Wisdom. In 2017, Red co-edited Sinister Wisdom issue 103, "Celebrating the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival," in which their piece "156 Avenue and Madison Road" is featured. Their piece "Cherry Blossom Branch" is featured in the 2017 "The Lesbian Body Issue" issue of Sinister Wisdom and additionally, their essay "Cliff Notes: On Memory, Identity, and Communitywill be featured in the 2019 "Tribute to Michelle Cliff" issue of Sinister Wisdom. They just edited the "Dump Trump: Legacies of Resistance" issue of Sinister Wisdom with Cheryl Clarke and Morgan Gwenwald in the fall 2018. They will be co-editing the 45th Anniversary Sinister Wisdom issue of the Lesbian Herstory Archives with Deborah Edel, Flavia Rando, Maxine Wolfe, Joan Nestle, Morgan Gwenwald, Stevie Jones, and Shawn(ta) Smith Cruz in the fall. In addition, they are working on editing a collection of Jane Verlaine's writings and an anthology on Trans and Lesbian/ Queer Feminisms. Their current work is on the intergenerational and intersectional trans/ feminist connections in lesbian/ queer and trans/ nonbinary communities, 1990-2015. Red is a coordinator at the Lesbian Herstory Archives and of the Rainbow Book Fair and on the board of directors of Sinister Wisdom.

 

 

 

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