F.L.A.M.E. Raises Awareness about Domestic Violence
Gail Trimpe-Morrow and Emma Belz from the Feminist Lead Activist Movement to Empower (F.L.A.M.E.) were featured in an interview about domestic violence and the recent attention in mainstream media given to the National Football League (NFL). For more information, please click here.
WGS Affiliated Faculty Member Launches World Premiere of Walking with My Ancestors
The world premiere of Walking with My Ancestors, a show by Illinois State University Associate Professor Ama Oforiwaa Aduonum, will run from November 6th to the 16th at the New Route Theatre in Normal, IL. For information about showtimes and ticket price, please click here.
NORMAL, Ill. – Something in the air was different on the night of October 21, 2014. It started as a low grumble and moved into a fierce and empowered roar. That noise was the chants heard across Illinois State University (ISU)’s campus and Uptown Normal as the Feminist Led Activist Movement to Empower (F.L.A.M.E.) broke the silence of sexual and domestic violence on their annual Take Back the Night march.
When victims of sexual and domestic violence are first assaulted, they may feel their voice has been taken from them. They are at times left broken with seemingly no outlet or support. But it is the work of groups like F.L.A.M.E. and the Bloomington-Normal community that work to break this misconception empowering victims to become survivors.
F.L.A.M.E. is a leader in this social change. A team of 15 passionate activists together brought the national program of Take Back the Nightto ISU’s campus. Engaging over 150 participants throughout the night, F.L.A.M.E. brought clear attention to the issues of sexual and domestic violence
It is key in empowering social movements to work as a collaborative. With 13 social justice organizations tabling, the night began with highlighting community partnership. One man stood out among the rest of these organizations. ISU President Larry Dietz made a special appearance, even engaging with the student leaders of F.L.A.M.E. prior to the program. President Dietz gave an opening presidential address to show his support, which in his words included, “ending the crime of sexual violence.”
“The president of Illinois State University came to the program and marched with us, which was an incredible honor and so wonderful to know we are apart of an institution that takes sexual violence seriously,” expressed F.L.A.M.E. President Brooke Barnhart. It was a clear moment in solidarity coming together as an institution and a community.
As much as Take Back the Night’s march offers an outlet for rage and confronting energy, its roots lie in the process of healing. The night opened with five survivors finding comfort, community support, and their own power to retell their stories.
“It’s not your fault, it’s never been your fault, and it’ll never be your fault. You are still in control of yourself and you are still able to regain power and get past what has happened to you,” declared Barnhart branching from the emotional testimonies into a powerful rally.
Clutching her bullhorn tightly in her grip, F.L.A.M.E. action member Emma Belz rallied the march of over 60 individuals across campus. Belz had the exact electric energy and assertion needed to take on the community at large and challenge our social practices.
When this challenge came to an end, F.L.A.M.E. knew their voices had been heard and came together in a candlelight vigil. Concluding at Schroeder Plaza, the activists spoke the names of loved ones passed into the night air. Inside Schroeder Hall, safe spaces supported by Student Counseling Services were offered to any rally members or survivors triggered from the night’s events.
“Take Back the Night left me speechless,” recapped Barnhart. “It was an incredibly empowering night, and I am so happy that F.L.A.M.E. could help bring attention to this extremely important issue. Survivors Unite! Take Back the Night!”
F.L.A.M.E. is a proud annual supporter of Take Back the Night and works towards ending sexual and domestic violence as well as addressing concern in many other areas of social justice. Additional information about F.L.A.M.E. is available at www.facebook.com/ISU.FLAME or by contacting F.L.A.M.E. President Brooke Barnhart at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Michelle Vought has recently joined the WGS affiliated faculty. Dr. Vought is a Professor in the College of Fine Arts who specializes in contemporary music, opera, operetta and musical theater.
Vought graduated from Gettysburg College with a bachelor’s degree in music education (flute) and taught public school music education for four years. She earned a master’s degree in music at Converse College and a doctorate in vocal performance at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.
Vought grew up in a musical family and she credits her upbringing for her passion for the arts. She has sung and performed in Italy, Ireland, Canada, Austria, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and, most recently, Brazil. Professor Vought believes she is “blessed to be able to work in what she considers her life’s passion.”
One of her biggest accomplishments is the creation of her trademark one-woman-show entitled Madam Monsieur, which has become a staple performance at Provincetown’s Women’s Week. In this musical showcase Vought appears as Madame Diva during the first half of the show. After intermission she returns in dapper, dashing male attire performing arias/songs from the standard male repertoire. Vought explained that her show, “underlines messages about crossing gender roles and the need for unisex tones in the musical arts industry.”
Professor Vought is currently creating a course focusing on women in the musical arts industry. Her goal is to educate students about the gender politics of the music industry, representations of women in musical lyrics, and to introduce students to the career opportunities in musical arts.
Dr. Vought was diagnosed with sarcoma, a form of cancer, during the early stages of her career. Since that diagnosis, she won her battle with sarcoma, and now regularly performs benefit concerts for cancer patients. Vought strongly believes that, she would “not have had a successful career had it not been for her optimistic personality and belief in self-healing.”
Check out Professor Vought’s upcoming performance at the new University Galleries in Uptown Normal on Tuesday, November 4th, at 7:30pm. For more information about Professor Vought, please visit her website at http://www.michellevought.com/.
Social Work Masters Open House
Sat, November 1, 2014 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Fairchild Hall (FH), 301
Student Art Showcase: Pile, Pack, Adorn, Adjust
Mon, November 3, 2014 8:30 AM - Fri, November 21, 2014 4:30 PM Rachel Cooper
International Seminar Series: Visuality and Modernity in Shanghai
Wed, November 5, 2014 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM Bone Student Center (BON), 1st Floor West Lounge
Submission Deadline for Online Student 'Zine Hissy Fit
Sun, November 30, 2014 4:00 PM - 4:30 PM Rachel Cooper
Submission Deadline for Online Student 'Zine Hissy Fit
Wed, December 31, 2014 4:00 PM - 4:30 PM Rachel Cooper