Equity Matters

Crossroads: The Status of Gender, Women and Sexuality in the Academy

Caitlin Stone Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences

Many scholars in the social sciences and humanities have spent years critically examining the social constructions of gender and sexuality in society and how women are expected to behave in social settings. While academic settings seem to be environments that welcome difference, many professors who identify as gender-queer are met with social resistance in their own workplace. In addition, female professors are expected to perform according to traditional gender roles. As one panel audience member recalled: “my teaching evaluations have been the highest they’ve ever been when I am kind, caring, and soft spoken towards my students.”

Together, Janice RistockMargaret Ann Armour, and André P. Grace ...

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Dignity, Equality, Freedom: The Charter 30 Years On

Caitlin Stone Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

On May 28, I attended the first equity panel in the series sponsored by the Equity and Diversity Portfolio at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Later, as I re-read the pages of notes I took during the panel, I realized how many questions I had which had been left unanswered. To say that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is a complex piece of legislation is a gross understatement. Thankfully, I’ve completed some of my undergraduate course work on the Charter and I was familiar with the relevant case law that was referenced by the panelists – don’t worry, I have no intention of delving into that sort of detail here. Instead I’ll discuss my particular interest in Carissima Mathen’s analysis of equality and...

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Privilege vs. Complicity: People of Colour and Settler Colonialism

Beenash Jafri, York University
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the Equity Issues Portfolio’s series on Indigenizing the academy and Indigenous education.

March 21st marks the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. It is a day to commemorate lives lost during the 1960 Sharpeville Massacre, and to reflect on our contemporary efforts to challenge racism and colonialism. In the spirit of this day, I would like to contribute to the ongoing Equity Matters discussions – for example,...

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LGBT Struggles for Human Dignity and Equal Rights in Uganda

Val Kalende, Episcopal Divinity School

Guest Contributor This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on issues related to LGBTQI2-S (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning, intersex and Two-Spirited) peoples.

The influence of the Christian Right on LGBT rights continues to spread beyond the United States. It is productive to examine the nature and impact of this influence on the African continent. As a Ugandan lesbian who grew up in an evangelical Christian household, I think it is productive to examine the role and activities of...

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Status of Black Women in the Academy on International Women’s Day

Njoki N. Wane, University of Toronto
Guest contributor

“Despite some notable progress in the past decade towards greater diversity, the Canadian academy remains largely white and male,” according to a recent CAUT Educational Review. Further, the 2006 “Census data shows an ongoing underrepresentation of women, First Nations, and visible minority professors, as well as significant earnings and unemployment gaps for many of these groups.”

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Resisting Invisibility: Black faculty in Art and Art History in Canada

Charmaine Nelson, McGill University
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the VP Equity Issues series on Black History Month in Canada.

As Black History Month draws to a close and Women’s History Month begins, I am reminded of the importance of my identity as a black female scholar. More specifically, I am a rare breed of Canadian academic, a black female art historian. At the most recent meeting of the Universities Art Association of Canada (UAAC) annual conference in Ottawa in 2011, I found myself again...

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Homonationalist Discourse, Queer Organizing and the Media

Fatima Jaffer, University of British Columbia
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on issues related to LGBTQI2-S (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning, intersex and Two-Spirited) peoples.

Media stories build on tropes and themes familiar to readers. Such tropes and themes act as a shorthand or ‘common sense’ of what we, as readers, are assumed to believe or are likely to accept. I would argue that in Canada these tropes haven’t changed much since Confederation, although they have varied in form over time and space. Historically these tropes – of white superiority versus the racial inferiority of...

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Indigenous Peoples, Colonialism and Ballet-Slipper Socks: Telling Stories and Storytelling

Jocelyn Thorpe, Memorial University
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the Equity Issues Portfolio’s series on Indigenizing the academy and Indigenous education.

Our daughter rarely wore the pink ballet-slipper socks she received when she was born. My partner couldn’t stand them, finding in those socks every limitation ever imposed upon a girl. But I hung onto them, unable to give away newborn socks that actually stayed on newborn feet. Two-and-a-half years later, those socks have made a reappearance, this time on the feet of our baby boy. Suddenly, my partner can’t get enough of...

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