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Women, Rhetoric, and Political Agency: What Do Women Need to Know About Their History in Order ...

Leaders: Karlyn Kohrs Campbell, University of Minnesota; Mari Boor Tonn, University of Maryland; Justin Killian, University of Minnesota

Women, Rhetoric, and Political Agency:
What Do Women Need to Know About Their History
in Order (Phronesis) to be Successful Politically?

Karlyn Kohrs Campbell (University of Minnesota)
Mari Boor Tonn (University of Maryland)
Justin Killian (University of Minnesota)

This seminar is an effort to collect and explore materials that assist women and men in understanding the history of women and politics, the dynamics of that history, and the sources that illuminate these processes.

  1. What can auto/biographies of women presidential, vice presidential, and gubernatorial candidates, of women candidates for or in Congress, tell us? Which are most useful?
  2. What can we learn from the careers of U.S. first ladies? Wives of presidential candidates, e.g., HRC, Cindy McCain, and Michelle Obama? From the careers of international leaders? Golda Meir, Indira Gandhi, Canadian Kim Campbell, Margaret Thatcher, Benazir Bhutto, Liberian Ellen Sirleaf-Johnson, Chile's Michelle Bachelet, etc.
  3. What can we learn from the 2008 presidential campaign of Hillary Rodman Clinton? Key case study incorporating role of media.
  4. What do we need to know about women and political theory (e.g., Carol Pateman)?
  5. What should be on everyone's bibliography? For instance, K.H. Jamieson Beyond the Double Bind. Oxford, 1995; Lori Cox Han and Caroline Heldman, eds. Rethinking Madam President: Are We Ready for a Woman in the White House? Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2007; Erika Falk, Women for President: Media Bias in Eight Campaigns; Pierre Bourdieu, Masculine Domination; Gerda Lerner, The Creation of Feminist Consciousness; Iris Marion Young, "Gender as Seriality: Thinking about Women as a Social Collective," Signs 19 (Spring 1994): 713-38.
  6. What can we learn from the rhetoric of women leaders and candidates? Consider these examples:

a. Shirley Chisholm, Margaret Chase Smith, Geraldine Ferraro, Pat Schroeder, announcement and campaign speeches.
b. Margaret Chase Smith, "Declaration of Conscience"; Martha Griffiths and Shirley Chisholm on ERA and inclusion of "sex" in 1964 Civil Rights Act.
c. Keynote addresses of Clare Booth Luce (1944), Jeane Kirkpatrick (1984), Barbara Jordan (1976).
d. Supreme Court Justices: on the Court, see Jeffrey Toobin, The Nine; response of Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader-Ginsberg to their nominations.
e. Anita Hill statement and hearings on nomination of Clarence Thomas.
f. Health care reform speeches of HRC.

For inquiries, contact Karlyn Kohrs Campbell:

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