Women's and Gender Studies
Core Faculty Research
Felicia Kornbluh, Associate Professor, Department of History and Director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program
Dr. Kornbluh is an historian of social welfare and grassroots politics in the twentieth‐century United States. Her first book was The Battle for Welfare Rights: Poverty and Politics in Modern America (University of Pennsylvania Press, series in modern American politics and culture, 2007; paperback edn., 2008). Kornbluh has written many articles for journals in her fields of specialization, history, legal studies, and women’s and gender studies. The journals include Feminist Studies, Radical History Review, the Journal of American History, Law and Social Inquiry, Law and Society Review, Social Service Review, the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism, Northwestern Journal of Law and Social Policy, The Nation, and the Women’s Review of Books. She has published chapters in books such as Women’s America (the leading textbook in U.S. women’s history), Exploring Women’s Studies, Race Consciousness, Freedom North (a now-canonic collection on the civil rights, or “freedom,” movement in the North), and the Blackwell History of American Law.
Kornbluh has recently completed two major, field-defining historiographic essays—on the legal history of sexuality, and on the legal history of poverty. She is pursuing two major research projects. The first recasts the histories of disability, race, and equality after World War Two, offering a new interpretation of the constitutional and political changes that made Brown v. Board of Education and similar landmarks possible by the middle 1950s. The project focuses on Jacobus tenBroek, one of the authors of the transformation that occurred in interpretations of the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment after World War Two. The second, related project offers a new interpretation of social movements in the post-World War Two United States. The book, entitled Constant Craving: The Quest for Economic Justice in America, surveys four major movements –the African American civil rights movement, the disability rights movement, the LGBT and AIDS/HIV movements, and the women’s movement and movement for reproductive rights. It explores the contested efforts of activists within all four of these movements to expand what the philosopher Nancy Fraser has termed “redistribution justice” as well as “recognition justice,” in other words, to improve public benefits and wages as well as to practice the more familiar politics of identity.
Felicia Kornbluh’s research has earned support and recognition from, among others, the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, and the law school at New York University. She has spoken on her scholarship at Princeton University, Harvard-Radcliffe, the Boalt Hall (Berkeley) School of Law, UCLA, and the University of Michigan. She has recently been named the North America editor of a new book series on the global history of social movements, to be published by Palgrave-Macmillan. She spoke at a major international conference to inaugurate the series in Bochum, Germany. She will speak at a special international workshop on the history of blindness in Paris in June, 2013.
She earned an M.A. (highest honors) and Ph.D. in history from Princeton University and a B.A. in Social Studies (cum laude) from Harvard‐Radcliffe. Before taking up her position at the University of Vermont, she taught for 8 years in the history department at Duke University, where she specialized in post‐1945 U.S. history, legal history, and the history of women and gender. She helped build bridges between the history department and Duke’s school of Public Policy Studies, and co‐chaired the university’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Task Force.
Kornbluh has been an advocate on issues related to social welfare and women’s and children’s well‐being for over twenty years. Since Spring, 2012, she has served as one of sixteen commissioners on the Vermont Commission on Women, a body that represents the interests of women in the state before the legislature and executive branch. Before graduate school, she served as a staff member of the U.S. House Select Committee on Children, Youth, and Families, and worked at both the Urban Institute and Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. She was a leader of the children’s advocacy organization CHILDREN’S EXPRESS while still in high school, and briefly hosted a radio show in WBAI‐FM (Pacifica) after college. From 1995 to 2005, she participated actively in the Women’s Committee of 100, an organization of feminist scholars and writers that was created to block punitive welfare reform. Kornbluh continues her interest in networking scholars around the country to add their voices to social policy debate. Her recent organizing efforts have included the organizing of academic women in response to economic stimulus package of the Obama administration and its impact on women. This work resulted in the creation of a national coalition of historians, economists, and other social scientists.
Ellen Andersen, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Women’s and Gender Studies Program
Ellen Ann Andersen is Associate Professor of Political Science and Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Vermont. Her research is centered on the politics of sexuality and resolves around two major themes: the efforts by social movement actors to mobilize legal and political systems to rectify perceived injustices and the ways in which existing institutional arrangements structure the options available to those actors. The lion’s share of her attention in recent years has been focused on the politics surrounding same-sex marriage. She is currently writing about the emotional consequences of marrying for same-sex couples, and the impact of those consequences on sustained involvement in the marriage equality movement. A project examining the recent acceleration in public support for same-sex marriage is in its initial stages. Her co-authored article, “Culture and Mobilization: Tactical Repertoires, Same-Sex Weddings, and the Impact on Gay Activism,” was published received the 2010 Outstanding Article Award from the American Sociological Association’s Section on Collective Behavior and Social Movements.
Recent and in-progress work related to WGST
“Emotion and Meaning in the Struggle for Marriage Equality.” Paper prepared for presentation at the 2012 meeting of the American Political Science Association. Under revision for submission to peer-reviewed journal.
“Culture and Mobilization: The Impact of Same Sex Weddings on the Resurgence of Gay Activism.” American Sociological Review 74:6 (December 2009): 865-890. (with Verta Taylor, Nella Van Dyke, and Katrina Kimport)
“The Gay Divorcée: The Case of the Missing Argument.” In Queer Mobilizations: LGBT Activists Confront the Law, edited by Scott Barclay, Mary Bernstein, and Anna-Maria Marshall. NYU Press, 2009.
Out of the Closets and Into the Courts: Legal Opportunity Structure and Gay Rights Litigation. University of Michigan Press. Original edition published in 2004. Updated paperback edition published in 2006.
Mary Burke, Lecturer, Department of Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies ProgramMy primary areas of specialization are in gender, sexualities, and social movements, with an emphasis on LGBTQ social movements and queer politics. In my research in these areas, I have been particularly interested in exploring cultural, social, and political changes around gender and sexual norms, identities, and rights, and the role of social movements and social institutions in these changes. My research also explores intra-movement and intra-community tensions and debates over goals, tactics, and strategies. I have done research on mainstream and LGBTQ media coverage on same-sex marriage and civil unions, focusing especially on the place of feminist and queer critiques of the institution of marriage in the same-sex marriage debate. I also conducted ethnographic research with a LGBT marriage equality group, examining the relationship between professionalization and emotions in social movements. In my most recent work, I continue to examine gender, sexualities, and social movements, while at the same time shifting to a focus on sociological studies of medicine and health. In this work, I examine debates over medical diagnosis and treatment within the transgender rights movement as a way to explore the role of and relationships between medico-psychological discourse and practice and social movement activity in changing conceptions of sex and gender and processes of medicalization and demedicalization. My work appears in Introducing the New Sexuality Studies, Advances in Medical Sociology, Volume 12: Sociology of Diagnosis, and (Not) the Marrying Kind: The Politics of Same-Sex Marriage.
Annika Ljung-Baruth, Lecturer, Department of English and Women’s and Gender Studies Program
As a lecturer in Women’s and Gender Studies and English, I specialize in 20th century literature and phenomenology, representations of gender in literature and in the media, and feminist theory. Current research areas include the field of ecofeminism, and the connection between the oppression of women and the exploitation of nature in Western society and globally. An additional research area is the development of feminism as a component of public policy and culture in Scandinavian social democratic societies.
I have received scholarships from Stockholm University, The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation, and The Sweden-America Foundation. During the academic year of 2009/2010, I was trained as a UVM Sustainability Faculty Fellow, and I became a fellow in May 2010. Some of my recent articles include "The Virtue of Responsibility: Femininity, Temporality, and Space in Michael Cunningham's The Hours" and "In Search of a Moral Erotic Standard: Female Subjectivity and Eros in Dorothy Canfield Fisher's Rough-Hewn and The Brimming Cup", both published in Springer's book series Analecta Husserliana. Recent conference presentations include the paper “Masculinity in Motion: Constructions of Masculinities, the Scandinavian Parental Leave Model, and Revising American Individualism” presented at the conference “Masculinity in Motion: Men and (E)Quality of Life” at the University of Oslo, Norway, in May 2012. In this paper, I employed an ecofeminist analytical framework to examine the subject of parental leave in the US and in Scandinavia.
Elaine McCrate, Associate Professor, Department of Economics and Women’s and Gender Studies Program
Elaine McCrate is conducting research on work schedules, especially unstable and unpredictable work schedules, and their implications for underemployment and overemployment, employee turnover and absenteeism, firm profitability, and the gender and racial division of labor. As such she is addressing one important aspect of the major changes in work life in the last several decades, the decline of the "standard work day". She is also examining similar issues through the analysis of payroll records at the Tredegar Ironworks, an Old South firm in the late 19th century, where working hours and wages were both highly variable -- before the norm of the standard work day had been established.
Elaine has taught Women in the U.S. Economy, the Economics of Work and Family, African Americans in the U.S. Economy, Labor Economics, Labor-Management Relations, the Economics of Education, and Econometrics, as well as the introductory economic theory courses and Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies. Professor McCrate received the George V. Kidder Outstanding Faculty Award in 2009.
"Screening for Honesty and Motivation in the Workplace: What Can Affirmative Action Do?", forthcoming in /Capitalism on Trial: Explorations in the Tradition of Thomas Weisskopf/. Jeannette Wicks-Lim and Robert Pollin, eds., Routledge.
"Employer-Oriented Schedule Flexibility, Gender, and Family Care,' forthcoming in /Handbook of Research on Gender and Economic Life/, Deborah M. Figart and Tonia Warnecke, eds., Edward Elgar.
"Flexibility for Whom? Control Over Work Schedule Flexibility in the US" , /Feminist Economics/ 18 (1), 1-34, 2012.
"Parents' Work Time in Rural America: The Growth of Irregular Schedules", in /Economic Restructuring in Rural America/, Kristin Smith, ed., Pennsylvania State University Press, 2011.
Last modified December 04 2012 09:30 AM