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Women and Gender Studies Receives Mellon Foundation Grant

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The Department of Women and Gender Studies has received a $100,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation's new Affirming Multivocal Humanities initiative. The funds support three years of programming and curriculum development to advance the study of race, ethnicity, gender or sexuality.

“Affirming Multivocal Humanities is an initiative that champions the insightful scholarship and teaching taking place in these disciplines—those that are too often undervalued and even undermined in American society today," said Mellon Foundation President Elizabeth Alexander.

“We are grateful to the Mellon Foundation for their recognition of the important work we are doing at UD," said Sloane-White. “Our department has spent 50 years teaching about, studying, and advocating for the rights of women and justice for all marginalized people. Enormous strides have been made but there is still much to do, and this grant will allow us to deepen the impact we have on our students."

Funding was used this semester to create a series of programs and special events on the topic of wrongfully convicted people, exoneration and criminalized victims of gender-based violence. They included this year's Ida B. Wells lecture which featured former Central Park Five member and current New York City Council member Yusef Salaam. This event was supplemented by a screening of the documentary “The Central Park Five."

The department also developed a three-course integrated curriculum focused on the issue. The courses gave students opportunities to engage with and produce projects confronting exoneration and wrongful incarceration. A highlight of the curriculum was the interdisciplinary student-led “mock trial" of Darryl Hunt. Students contributed to the script, and directed and acted in the production.

The grant also supports the creation of a digital archive addressing exoneration and social justice, primarily for the Black community, and the enormous cost of racial inequality.

“Students have told us the events and curriculum this semester were life-changing," Sloane-White said. “We are excited to continue that momentum moving forward."​

Article by Hilary Douwes

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The Department of Women and Gender Studies has received a $100,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation’s new Affirming Multivocal Humanities initiative.
Women's Studies
 
4/16/2024
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