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Wednesday, May 23 • 2:15pm - 3:00pm
How Might We Cultivate Gender Inclusivity in Classroom Discourse?

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According to recent polls, half of the younger university-age generations experience gender as fluid and existing on a spectrum, the most recent iteration of resistance against the traditional male-female gender binary. Current efforts at promoting inclusivity, like the practice of identifying one’s chosen pronouns (e.g., she, her, hers), highlight the particular issue of language in this context. How can we best cultivate gender inclusivity in classroom discourse amid the challenge of gender-normative language and with students from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds? Are some disciplines inherently more gender exclusive or inclusive by their very discourse? Does promoting gender-inclusive language affect the discipline itself? This session will include a brief presentation of various scenarios and research that frame the context and challenge of gender-normative discourse, gender inclusivity, and language across diverse disciplines (e.g., visual arts, languages, and psychology), as well as examples of some solutions that have been proposed or put into practice in university contexts. This initial presentation will serve as a catalyst for the core of this session, which is group discussion of the issue, the proposal of potential solutions for diverse scenarios and contexts, and the collective development of ongoing strategies for making our classrooms and courses more gender inclusive from day one.


Lindsay Eufusia

Lecturer, Italian, Northwestern University

Wednesday May 23, 2018 2:15pm - 3:00pm CDT
RB 175