What is the Image of a Feminist in the Field of Art Education Today?
The question was thoughtfully discussed in an open dialogue at the 2010 NAEA Convention with Women’s Caucus member and friends. The transcript is now available at http://naeawc.net/lobby2010.html
The NAEA Women’s Caucus invites you to use the Voices blog as a place to submit additional comments.
PURPOSE: Beyond the WC sessions, meetings, and events that reside within the formal protocol of the NAEA, the Lobby session serves as an informal forum for political discussion and/action. Karen Keifer-Boyd, Read Diket, and Joanna Rees facilitated the 2010 NAEA WC Lobby session, an open forum for current, previous, and future NAEA Women’s Caucus (WC) members, as well as those who do not intend to join the NAEA WC, to engage in a dialogue on the meaning, practices, and rejection of feminism in art education.
PROCESS: The WC 2010 Lobby session began with informal conversations among those new to each other, and to exchange contact information to meet during the conference, or later via email dialogue. Then the full group came together to introduce themselves and respond to the 2010 Lobby session question: “What is the Image of a Feminist in the Field of Art Education Today?”
INTERIM ANALYSIS OF 123 SURVEY RESPONSES: Prior to the NAEA WC Lobby session, we invited art educators, through the division listservs, to complete a survey. The purpose of this survey is to learn of art educators’ perceptions of and relationship to feminism in their work in the field of art education today. What are the reasons that art educators identify with or reject feminism? What are the differences of ideology and teaching practices between those who consider themselves to be feminists and those who don’t? A snapshot interim analysis of the 123 responses gathered as April 10, 2010 was presented to stimulate discussion at the 2010 WC lobby session.
More than 40 people recorded their responses to a question posed at the 2010 WC Lobby session, “What is the image of a feminist in the field of art education today?” The NAEA Convention WC Lobby session extended the “Survey of Art Educators’ Perceptions of and Relationship to Feminism.” If you missed the 2010 Lobby session in Baltimore, we invited responding to the survey by July 1, 2010 at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/GBQV8Z6
A time when you felt empowered.
Prompt 2. A time when you felt stereotyped or discriminated against because of your gender, race, sexuality, age, abilities, appearance, or creed.
“A time when I felt powerless or not in control.”-Written by the artist
Prompt 3. A time when you felt powerless or not in control.
“Nightmare” by Elzbieta (Elka) Kazmierczak
Prompt #5. When you or another you know felt/was violated/threatened.
Prompt #3. Powerless.
Prompt #2. A time when you felt stereotyped or discriminated against because of your gender, race, sexuality, age, abilities, appearance, or creed.
“This design relates to issues #2 and #3. We wear varied masks each day in order to relate and cope with our environment. In some groups I am totally transparent to them and have no voice whatsoever. In other groups, I am a valuable colleague or friend. Our minds are always working, but no one really cares!” -Written by the artist.
Leaving the NAEA Convention in 2010, one of the goals the Outreach Coordinators had was to extend the dialogue and connection of Women’s Caucus members beyond convention and throughout the year. The Postcard Project is one avenue for creating a dialogue among members and importantly, speaking in our medium: Visual Art.
WC members were mailed Postcard Project packets on January 3rd, 2011. Inside you found a greeting letter, consent form, and blank stamped postcard addressed to Outreach Coordinator, Caryl Church. Using the prompts below as a jumping off point, members are asked to reflect and visually create a statement. Place the postcard in the mail. Once postcards have been received, Caryl will post them to this blog. From there we can, as a membership, create a thoughtful, inspired dialogue about feminism, feminist pedagogy, social justice, and art education.
1. A time that you experienced feminist pedagogy as teacher or student.
2. A time when you felt stereotyped or discriminated against because of your gender, race, sexuality, age, abilities, appearance, or creed.
3. A time when you felt powerless or not in control.
4. A time when you felt empowered.
5. A time when you or another you know felt/was violated/threatened.
An article in Cleveland’s Plain Dealer newspaper highlighted the blog of seventeen year old feminist Julie Zeilinger. About 356,000 visitors have read her website, thefbomb. Zeilinger considers herself an editor, but contributes to the articles on the blog. A blog from 4/30/2010 questions “How are we supposed to identify as feminists when most of us don’t even know what a feminist looks like?” This young woman is adding her voice to the larger discourse and bringing other teenagers with her. Kudos to her!
No doubt this blog is a insightful read for all of us trying to conceptualize the idea of a feminist and feminist art educator. You can read the Plain Dealer article here.