The GCWS is governed by a dedicated Board of Directors. Board members are selected by each participating insitution’s Women’s Studies Program. The Board of Directors are responsible for course development and selection, community outreach, and the financial and GCWS staff governance. The Board is led by two co-chairs. This position changes annually; a new co-chair is elected by the Board each year and serves a two-year term.

2014-2015 Board of Directors

Caroline BicksCaroline Bicks
is Associate Professor of English at Boston College. She specializes in women in early modern culture, Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, early modern girlhood, history of science, and women writers of the seventeenth century. Her books include Midwiving Subjects in Shakespeare's England (2003),The History of British Women’s Writing, 1500-1610 (2013), co-edited with Jennifer Summit, and Shakespeare, Not Stirred: Cocktails for Your Everyday Dramas (Perigee and Scribe, 2015).  She has also published articles in Journal for Early Modern Cultural StudiesModern Philology and Studies in English Literature, among others.

Caroline BicksCatherine Connell is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and WGS Affiliated Faculty at Boston University. Her work focuses on the intersections of gender, sexuality, and work & occupations. She received her PhD in Sociology from University of Texas at Austin in 2010. She is the author of School’s Out: Gay and Lesbian Teachers in the Classroom (2014, UC Press). Her work has been published in Signs, Gender & Society, and Women’s Studies Quarterly, among other outlets. She is currently the Director of Graduate Studies for the BU Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Department.

Faith SmithAliyyah I. Abdur-Rahman
is Associate Professor of English, African and Afro-American Studies, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Brandeis University. A two-time winner of the Darwin T. Turner Award for Best Essay of the Year in African American Review, she has been awarded fellowships from the Ford Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the American Association of University Women, the Mellon Foundation, the W.E.B Du Bois Institute at Harvard University, and the JFK Institute at the Freie Universitaet, Berlin. Her first book, Against the Closet: Black Political Longing and the Erotics of Race, was published by Duke University Press in 2012. Additionally, she has published numerous articles and book chapters on 19th and 20th-century American and African American literature and culture. Abdur-Rahman is currently editing a volume on African American literature and culture of the 1950’s as part of a larger series, African American Literature: In Transition, 1750-2015, to be published by Cambridge University Press. She is also writing her second book, provisionally titled Millennial Style: The Politics of Experiment in African Diasporic Culture.

Sarah RichardsonTey Meadow
 is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and Studies of Women, Gender and Sexuality at Harvard University. Her scholarship spans the domains of law, politics, the family, sexuality and gender, with a specific focus on the creation and maintenance of social classifications. Her first book, Raising the Transgender Child: Being Male or Female in the Twenty First Century, is an ethnographic and interview-based study of the first generation of families affirming and facilitating gender nonconformity in children. In it, she offers sociologists a new theory of gender, one that accounts for the intricate ties between personal identities and social institutions. Her previous work examined the operation of legal gender classifications, feminist ethnographic research methods, and the politics of family diversity in post-Apartheid South Africa. Her articles have appeared in Gender & Society, Sexualities, Politics and Society, Contemporary Ethnographyand in a number of edited volumes.


SandyAlexandreSandy Alexandre is Associate Professor of Literature at M.I.T. Her research spans the late nineteenth-century to present-day black American literature and culture. Her first book, The Properties of Violence: Claims to Ownership in Representations of Lynching (Mississippi 2012), uses the history of American lynching violence as a framework to understand matters concerning displacement, property ownership, and the American pastoral ideology in a literary context. She is currently writing a second book, Up From Chattels: Thinghood in an Ethics of Black Curation, which will take as its point of departure the premise that the former, enforced condition of black Americans as fungible merchandise can haunt, inform, and morally energize their own relationships to material objects. She has published articles in Mississippi Quarterly, Signs: Journal of Women in Culture & Society, Modern Drama, The Journal of American Drama and Theatre, and Criticism.

Caroline BicksSerena Parekh
is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Northeastern University in Boston, where she is the director of the Politics, Philosophy, and Economics Program. Prior to this, Professor Parekh taught at the University of Connecticut where she was jointly appointed in the Department of Philosophy and Human Rights Institute. Her primary philosophical interests are in social and political philosophy, feminist theory, and continental philosophy. Her book, Hannah Arendt and the Challenge of Modernity: A Phenomenology of Human Rights, was published by Routledge in 2008 and translated into Chinese. She has also published numerous articles on social and political philosophy in Hypatia, Philosophy and Social Criticism, and Human Rights Quarterly. Her current research focuses broadly on global justice, responsibility, and statelessness.  She is in the process of completing a manuscript concerning our moral obligations to refugees and the forcibly displaced. She is also the editor of the APA Newsletter on Feminism and Philosophy.

Renee Bergland
Jo Trigilio is the director of the Graduate Program in Gender and Cultural Studies at Simmons College. Trigilio specializes in oppression/liberation theories, including feminist, gender, sexuality, race, and queer theories, with a special interest in the intersection of theory and practice. Trigilio is politically active in the queer community of Boston and has served on the board of directors for the National Women's and Gender Studies Association for six years. Trigilio is currently leading the Boston Dyke March History and Archive Project.

Christina Sharpe
Sabina Vaught is Associate Professor in the Department of Education, Director of Educational Studies, and is an affiliate faculty member in the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Africana Studies Programs. Dr. Vaught's scholarship examines the institutional contexts and dynamics of race, gender, schooling, and power. Her research focus on educational inequity and the political economy of schooling is grounded in Critical Race Theory and feminist theories. Specifically, she has conducted institutional ethnographic studies in a large urban school district and in a state division of juvenile affairs and its prison schools. In 2011, she published Racism, public schooling, and the entrenchment of White Supremacy: a critical race ethnography with SUNY Press and has contributed articles in The Urban Review, International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, Race, Ethnicity, and Education, among others.

Randy Albelda
Chris Bobel is Associate Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. Her scholarship lies at the intersection of social movements, gender, health and embodiment, or how feminist thinking becomes feminist doing at the most intimate and immediate levels. She is the author of The Paradox of Natural Mothering, New Blood: Third Wave Feminism and the Politics of Menstruation, and co-editor of Embodied Resistance: Breaking the Rules, Challenging the Norms. Recently, she has shifted her focus to health-focused development campaigns in the Global South. Her current book project explores and critiques menstrual health initiatives targeting school girls in various locations throughout Africa and India.




Next Steps

Course List

Contact Us

The Graduate Consortium in Women's Studies
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 14N-211
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
Phone: 617-324-2085