Women's Studies Put Feminist Bunk Above Scholarship
By Michelle Easton
President, Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute
October 31, 2000"My experience with academic feminism and my immersion in the ever-growing gender feminist literature have served to deepen my conviction that the majority of Women's Studies classes and other classes that teach a 'reconceptualized' subject matter are unscholarly, intolerant of dissent, and full of gimmicks. In other words they are a waste of time."Thirty years ago women calling themselves feminists were taking off their undergarments and gathering in public places to burn them as a statement of their liberation. Most people snickered at those bra burners.
~ Luce speaker and author Christina Hoff Sommers in Who Stole Feminism? How Women Have Betrayed Women
Today those same women run the Women's Studies programs promoting a radical feminist ideology at America's colleges and universities. They have started more than 600 Women's Studies programs with more than 30,000 courses and formed over 50 major feminist institutes.
The Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute has been closely monitoring these programs for more than seven years. We have found that: (1) there is virtually no intellectual diversity in their courses - a total absence of conservative ideas and conservative women, (2) professors who dare to speak against the leftist feminism are driven out, and (3) students are attacked and demeaned if they challenge their feminist professors.
Most Women's Studies courses and feminist leaders promote the notion that women are besieged and subjected to relentless and vicious male oppression. Radical feminists don't even pretend to uphold evenhanded intellectual honesty. They emphasize women as a political class whose interests are at odds with the interests of men. Below are just a few courses and their descriptions offered at Wellesley College, a trendsetter for unrepentantly bizarre Women's Studies classes.
WOST 317 Seminar: History of Sexuality: Queer Theory
This seminar will introduce the concepts central to queer theory. It will examine queerness in its various manifestations and practices, butch-femme, transgendering, cross-dressing, bisexuality and third gender.
WOST 220 American Health Care History in Gender, Race and Class Perspective
We will ask how have gender, race and class affected the kind of care developed, its differential delivery, and the problems and issues addressed.
WOST 313 Fieldwork in Women's Studies
This is a supervised, independent research project resulting in a research paper, documentary, policy initiative, creative arts presentation or other research product. Students may (1) work in an organization, (2) work with activists or policy makers on social change issues or social policy issues, or (3) they may design their own fieldwork experience. For example, a student with a concentration in women's health might decide to work in a family planning clinic.
Where is the balance, or more importantly, scholarship in this bunk?
Americans should not continue to ignore the damage that these college courses are doing by giving the leftist bra burners a free ride. Sensible alumni of our thousands of colleges and universities should demand a minimum amount of intellectual integrity and ideological diversity at their alma maters.
This article copyright 10/00 by Michelle Easton, all rights reserved. Not to used in whole or in part, without written permission from the author.