Feminist author and scholar Cynthia Enloe to deliver lecture on feminism during war

February 26, 2024
By: Rebecca Cross

In honor of International Women’s Day, Worcester State will welcome professor, author, and feminist Cynthia Enloe for a lecture on Monday, April 22. Her talk, “Feminists Everywhere Stay Active While the Bombs are Falling,” will take place at 12:30 p.m. in the Blue Lounge in the Student Center and will examine how women’s advocates are organizing for gender equality—even in war zones.

Enloe’s talk “will provide some much-needed guidance on how feminist politics can shed light on the complexities of diverse lives and wartime experiences,” said Nafisa Tanjeem, associate professor in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies. “Feminist thinkers and organizers have a lot to teach us, drawing on their decades of organizing in countries such as Sudan, Ukraine, Palestine, Israel, Myanmar, and Yemen. Enloe will elaborate on feminist lessons of war that can make us dependable allies of gendered and racialized sufferers of wartime violence. Feminist lessons can equip us to hold abusive governments and abusive people accountable.

Tanjeem, who is also chair of the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Advisory Board, added, “Living in the United States means living in the heart of a global empire that disburses billions of dollars of military aid to its selected beneficiaries while our working-class, BIPOC/ALANA, and other minoritized communities continue to struggle to make ends meet. It’s vital for us—the Worcester State community—to ask, ‘How can we play our part to resist war and the destruction of innocent lives?’

Enloe is a research professor in the Department of International Development, Community, and Environment, with affiliations with Women’s and Gender Studies and Political Science, at Clark University. She is the author of 15 books, including her most recent, Twelve Feminist Lessons of War published by the University of California Press in 2023. She has received numerous awards for her scholarly work.

This talk is part of the annual Sharbach lecture series, hosted by the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program and the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies at Worcester State. The lecture is free and open to all and will be followed by a book signing. Enloe’s latest book will be available for purchase.

Tanjeem hopes that students from multiple disciplines will attend. Students in Tanjeem’s Introduction to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies class are reading Twelve Feminist Lessons of War. Tanjeem says, “My students look forward to meeting Enloe in person and having a conversation with her.”

Photo courtesy of Cynthia Enloe

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