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Women’s History Month 2018

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2018 events

Stephanie Shonekan portrait MU Black Studies Department page

Keynote event

Dr. Stephanie Shonekan,
"Four Women: Black Women Sing of Life, Liberation, and Love"

Thursday, March 8, 2018, 7:30 p.m.
Bixby Lecture Hall, Brouder Science Center

Dr. Stephanie Shonekan, chair of the Department of Black Studies at the University of Missouri-Columbia, will give the keynote address for Women's History Month 2018. Her talk will explore how African-American female musicians reflect their identities and experiences through art while making indelible contributions to the history of American music and culture.

Learn more about Dr. Shonekan and her scholarship in ethnomusicology at School of Music — University of Missouri.

Additional events celebrating Women's History Month 2018: 

Retrospective of Christian/Columbia College Alumnae in the Arts: a Catered Luncheon

Tuesday, March 13, 2018, 11:15 a.m - 12:15 p.m.
Dorsey Gym, Dorsey Hall

Bradley Meinke, collections manager of the Columbia College Archives, leads a discussion of four figures from the college’s past who blazed their own trails through the arts: presidential sculptor Vinnie Ream; Artie Mason Carter, who was instrumental in the creation of the iconic Hollywood Bowl; Native American opera singer Tessie Mobley; and dancing sensation Sally Rand. RSVPs to are requested for this luncheon.

Amy Adams as Margaret Keane in Big Eyes 2014

Big Eyes: A Film Night Hosted by Donna Kozloskie

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 - 6:30 p.m.
Bixby Lecture Hall, Brouder Science Center

Donna Kozloskie, feature films programmer of the Citizen Jane Film Festival, hosts a screening and discussion of the film Big Eyes (2014), starring Amy Adams and based on the true story of artist Margaret Keane. After her husband appropriated and commoditized her distinctive painting style as his own, Keane spent decades trying to reclaim her art, culminating in a dramatic court case.

Film Night is presented with the support of the History, Philosophy, & Political Science Department.

Finale event: Tuesday Night Live Showcase & Reception

Tuesday, March 20, 2018, 7 - 9 p.m.
Atkins-Holman Student Commons

In association with the “Tuesday Night Live” student group, Women’s History Month concludes with a night of performance and celebration. Students are invited to showcase their talents, whether those talents are in music, prose or poetry compositions, two- or three-dimensional works, short video or other artistic pursuits. Works by Columbia College artists past and present will be on display, and alumna and multimedia artist Valerie Wedel will be on hand to discuss her career and her art installation in the student commons.

Contact for more information and to sign up.

Original art installation: Sloughing Off, by Valerie Wedel '02

Throughout March
Atkins-Holman Student Commons

A large scale art piece by Wedel, a 2002 Columbia College graduate, will be featured for the entire month of March. Wedel creates immersive experiences for the audience that blur the lines between patrons and artwork and allow viewers to become participants in the piece. This installation features colored cords and voile fabric forms suspended from the second-floor catwalk at Atkins-Holman, reshaping the common space on the ground floor to dramatic effect. 

Val Wedel installation promo image

The History of Women's History Month

First begun as a local celebration of women's history in Santa Rosa, California in 1978, the movement for a national celebration of women's history gained momentum in 1979 at the Women's History Institute at Sarah Lawrence College. In February 1980 President Jimmy Carter issued a presidential proclamation recognizing the week of March 8, 1980 as National Women's History Week. Carter's proclamation coincided with resolutions in the House of Representatives and the Senate that declared support for National Women's History Week.

The movement continued to grow as individual states expanded these week-long celebrations to month-long recognition, so that by 1987 Congress issued a declaration of March as Women's History Month in perpetuity. The celebration continues to be marked by an annual presidential proclamation. For more on the history of women's history month, visit the National Women's History Project website.

Why March?

March was selected for the first women's history celebration in 1978 because of the celebration of March 8th as International Women's Day, which has been celebrated in various countries around the world since the early 1900s. By 1917 the date became firmly fixed on March 8 in recognition of a strike for "bread and peace" carried out by Russian women in the opening days of the Russian Revolution. For more information on International Women's Day visit the International Women's Day website.

Columbia College and Women's History

Columbia College, founded in 1851 as Christian Female College, has a rich history of providing education for women and of producing women who become forces of change in the world. Christian College's origins lie in the desire on the part of its founders to provide a quality liberal arts education for their daughters, who were denied admission at the University of Missouri where many of the founders were teachers and administrators. The opening of the school in 1851 marked the first institution of higher education for women west of the Mississippi. Christian College continued to provide educational opportunities for young women, and in 1970 extended its mission and opened its doors to men for the first time. Now as Columbia College, the community marks the significance of its own history and the contributions of women around the world to making history happen by hosting a series of events to celebrate Women's History Month.

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