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27th Annual WGSS Student Research Symposium

Friday, April 12, 2024, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM - Prairie Rooms, Bone Student Center

The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Student Research Symposium is a day long celebration of student scholarship, creative work, and ideas that are underrepresented in Illinois State University's traditional curriculum.  

All events are free and open to the public. For more information please contact Alison Bailey (baileya@ilstu.edu) or Jamie Anderson (jlande4@ilstu.edu).

2024 Symposium

Call for Student Submissions

Registration opens April 5, 2024

Keynote

Lauren Gutterman pictured with short dark hair and wearing black framed glasses

Dr. Lauren Gutterman of the University of Texas, Austin, will deliver her keynote, "Queer Survival: LGBTQ Leadership in the Child Sexual Abuse Survivors' Movement.

Lauren Jae Gutterman graduated with a B.A. in American Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies from Northwestern University. Professor Gutterman is the author of  Her Neighbor’s Wife: A History of Lesbian Desire Within Marriage  (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2020), which examines the personal experiences and public representation of wives who desired women in the United States since 1945. By demonstrating the remarkable extent to which married women have been able to engage in same-sex affairs, the book calls into question the straightness of marriage, particularly in the postwar period. Her Neighbor's Wife won the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians Book Prize, was a finalist for the Organization of American Historians' Lawrence W. Levine Award, and received an honorable mention for the Committee on LGBT History's John Boswell Prize. 

Professor Gutterman's next book project, Queer Survival: Gender, Sexuality, and the History of Childhood Sexual Abuse (under advance contract with University of North Carolina Press), examines the shifting cultural, political, and intellectual connections between queerness and surviving childhood sexual abuse from the late-nineteenth century to the present.

Climate and Inclusion Statement

The organizers of The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Symposium are committed to providing a harassment-free symposium experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, national origin, ethnicity, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference at the discretion of the conference organizers.

Harassment includes, but is not limited to:

  • Verbal comments that reinforce social structures of domination related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, ethnicity, religion.
  • Sexual images in public spaces
  • Deliberate intimidation, stalking, or following
  • Harassing photography or recording
  • Sustained disruption of talks or other events
  • Inappropriate physical contact
  • Unwelcome sexual attention
  • Advocating for, or encouraging, any of the above behavior
  • Use of a recording device (mobile phone, camera, etc.) to capture images or presentations, chats, demonstrations, etc. taking place during the annual conference.

Land Acknowledgement

Illinois State University was built on and has benefitted from the land stolen from multiple Indigenous Nations. These lands were the traditional birthright of Indigenous Peoples who were forcibly removed and dispossessed of their land by settlers. Normal, IL is on the lands of the Peoria, Kaskasia, Piankashaw, Wea, Miami, Mascoutin, Odawa, Sauk, Mesquaki, Kickapoo, Potawatomi, and Ojibwe Nations. As settlers, we recognize that we have a responsibility to continue to learn, teach, and understand Indigenous histories and present-day realities as they pertain to these Nations as well as to confront the ongoing violence of settler colonialism.

Past University Research Symposia

2023 WGSS Symposium

Thursday, April 27, 2023
Prarie Rooms, Bone Student Center

The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Student Research Symposium is a day long celebration of student scholarship, creative work, and ideas that are underrepresented in Illinois State University's traditional curriculum. This year the keynote speaker Dr. Kate Manne, PhD will deliver "He Said, She Listened: On Epistemic Entitlement, Mansplaining, and Gaslighting". All events are free and open to the public. For more information please contact Alison Bailey (baileya@ilstu.edu) or Jamie Anderson (jlande4@ilstu.edu). E-poster option viewing of projects in the Circus Room - 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

2023 Program Book Dr. Kate Manne's Profile

The WGSS Symposium is sponsored by:

  • The Alice and Fannie Fell Trust
  • ISU Philosophy Department
  • Harold K. Sage Foundation Fund
  • ISU English Department
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Queer Coaltion
  • ISU Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program

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2022 Queering Gender: The 25th; Annual WGSS Student Research

April 1st - 15th, 2022
Brown Ballroom, Bone Student Center

The symposium is a two-week long celebration of student scholarship and creative work designed to center scholarly texts, projects, and ideas that are underrepresented across Illinois State University's traditional curriculum. Our theme "Queering Gender," is inspired by recent scholarship and creative projects focusing on the lives of LGBTQAI+ people and their communities. The symposium runs from 1-14 April and will be accompanied by an curated WGSS Symposium Historical Retrospective Exhibit in Milner Library. All events are free and open to the public.

2022 Online Program Guide
Dr. Arlene Stein Profile Dr. Veronica Ivy's Profile Dr. Karma R. Chávez's Profile Maia Kobabe's Profile

The WGSS Symposium is sponsored by:

  • MECCPAC: A Dean of Students Diversity Initiative
  • Harold K. Sage Foundation and Illinois State University Foundation Fund
  • Alice and Fannie Fell Trust
  • Philosophy Department
  • History Department
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Milner Library
  • Queer Coalition

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2021 WGSS Symposium

The 2021 Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Symposium was a virtual week-long celebration of student scholarship, creative work, and ideas that are underrepresented in Illinois State University's traditional curriculum. Our theme "Reconcile, Rebuild, and Recover," was inspired by National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman's call to action with poem "The Hill We Climb,";. Gorman's words remind our campus and surrounding community not to lose sight of how our collective spirits have been challenged. The symposium serves as an invitation to navigate our frustration, exhaustion, and doubt with the courage to "find light in this never-ending shade." It prompts us to pause and "rebuild, reconcile and recover." Thank you to those who joined us in this celebration.

2021 Online Program Guide Dr. Tristen Johnson's Profile Harsha Walia's Profile Laina Reese Carney, MFA

The WGSS Symposium is sponsored by:

  • MECCPAC: A Dean of Students Diversity Initiative
  • Harold K. Sage Foundation and Illinois State University Foundation Fund
  • Alice and Fannie Fell Trust
  • Philosophy Department
  • History Department
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Milner Library
  • Queer Coalition

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