At the Intersections: I Remember


Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Leah Fortner, who is a senior at Illinois College with a major in Psychology and a minor in Gender & Women’s Studies. She plans to move to Oregon and become a Child [Read More...]

At the Intersections: On Being Black and Queer at a Black Baptist Church


Many good people live and work at the intersections, and I occasionally invite someone to tell a story from where they stand. Today’s piece comes from Brittany Spaulding, a Chicagoan who will graduate from Illinois College this May.  Brittany looks forward to starting work on her MFA in Poetry at Columbia College Chicago in the fall.  She is [Read More...]

Nonconformity, Anger, Hope: A Genealogy of Words for MLK Day 2015


This morning, I participated in a Speak-In on campus during which faculty, staff, and students read and heard the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was an important way to mark the day, and to start a new semester. The complete list of readings is pictured here. I chose to edit the words [Read More...]

Casting Off White Invisibility


In a piece for Salon last week, Brittney Cooper wrote about her ongoing struggle with rage and frustration in the wake of the Ferguson nonindictment: “I woke up in black skin this morning. Frustrated, because for the first time in a long time, I felt the weight, the scourge of this skin. Had visions of [Read More...]

“To Welcome The Stranger”


The Conference of Bishops of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America released the following statement about President Barack Obama’s executive action related to immigration and deportation this week: As people of faith and leaders of the church, we support public policy that protects children, reunites families, and cares for the most vulnerable, regardless of their place of birth. [Read More...]

Band Aid 30: Colonial Christmas Is Back!


That’s right. Your 24/7 Christmas music playlists and stations are likely to have the Band Aid 30 updated version of “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in full rotation this season, topping sales charts with the charitable intent of raising money to help fight the Ebola pandemic in West Africa. Cathleen Falsani has written over at [Read More...]

Feminist Scholarship & Pedagogies at #NWSA2014


I’ve escaped the cold blast hitting the Midwest this week by heading to the National Women’s Studies Association annual conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Today, I am spending time in a workshop for Program Administrators and Developers, as a former chair and founding member of the Gender & Women’s Studies Program at Illinois College.  [Read More...]

Be Afraid


I’ve never understood the appeal of haunted houses or roller coasters or scary movies. I don’t enjoy being afraid and can’t imagine how it can be a form of entertainment. I vividly remember being terrified at haunted houses as a child, and demanding at one that they let me out before the end because it [Read More...]

Called to Act for Peace


I read former President Jimmy Carter’s latest book this summer in preparation for today. The 90-year-old is speaking on my campus today alongside Khalaf Al Habtoor, a major benefactor of the college, and former U.S. Representative from Jacksonville, Illinois, Paul Findley. A major campus initiative titled Pathways to Peace is being announced, and the college’s [Read More...]

Reproductive (in)Justice in Jacksonville


I wrote this piece in response to events in the Illinois town where I live, and it was first published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier on September 10, 2014: Abandonment used to be a regular form of family planning — leaving a newborn out in the elements where she or he would likely die from exposure [Read More...]