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  • Women’s Political Past, Present and Future: A Symposium on the Centennial of Women’s Suffrage

    The Symposium on the Centennial of Women’s Suffrage consisted of five events ranging from August 26 through October 20, 2020. The Centennial offered an opportunity to re-examine gender equity through the lenses of the present moment, with a renewed emphasis on racial justice invigorating our national conversation.

    Sessions looked at opportunities and obstacles to women in politics, including the ultimate glass ceiling of the presidency; the role of black women in securing the vote throughout American history; the role of indigenous peoples in influencing the Women’s Suffrage movement; and contemporary struggles over voter suppression and voting rights.

    Gender and Politics

    August 26

    Gender and Politics began with an independent film that chronicled ten thousand people visiting Susan B. Anthony’s grave on Election Day 2016, many voting for the first time for a woman for president. The session looked at where we are four years later: how race and gender bias influence political perceptions; and how generational difference affects political behavior. Panel featured filmmaker Linda Moroney, Samantha Hall-Saladino, Executive Director of the Fulton County Historical Society, RSC ‘09, and Melissa Deckman, author of the textbook Women and Politics.


    A Century of Votes for Women: American Elections Since Suffrage by Christina Wolbrecht and J. Kevin Corder

    Tea Party Women: Mama Grizzlies, Grassroots Activists, and the Changing Face of the American Right by Melissa Deckman

    Women and Politics: Paths to Power and Political Influence by Julie Dolan, Melissa Deckman and Michele L. Swers

    Contemporary Struggles in Voting Rights

    September 17

    Contemporary Struggles in Voting Rights examined the issues with access to voting that persist 100 years after the 19th Amendment. Panel featured Nancy Abudu, Deputy Legal Director, Voting Rights, Southern Poverty Law Center; Nancy L. Thomas, Director, Institute for Democracy & Higher Education (IDHE) at Tufts University’s Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life, and Perry Grossman, Senior Staff Attorney in the Voting Rights Project at the New York Civil Liberties Union.

    Women, Politics and Activism

    September 24

    Co-sponsored with the Emma Willard School

    Keynote address by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, followed by a panel discussion with prominent women politicians and activists. (No references for further study.)

    Vanguard: How Black Women Have Always Led on Voting Rights

    October 8

    Vanguard: How Black Women Have Always Led on Voting Rights, a lecture by Martha S. Jones, the Society of Black Alumni Presidential Professor and Professor of History at The Johns Hopkins University. Jones is a legal and cultural historian whose work examines how black Americans have shaped the story of American democracy.

    For Further Study



    The Role of Indigenous Peoples in Women’s Suffrage

    October 20

    The Role of Indigenous Peoples in Women’s Suffrage featured Sally Roesch Wagner, author of Sisters in Spirit: Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Influence on Early American Feminists, which documents the surprisingly unrecognized authority of the Native women who inspired the suffrage movement; joined by Michelle Schenandoah, a member of the Oneida Indian Nation Wolf Clan of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and founder of Rematriation Magazine.


    A Clan Mother’s Call: Reconstructing Haudenosaunee Cultural Memory (SUNY series in CriticalHaudenosaunee Studies)

    Blume, A. (2020). A New Psychology Based on Community, Equality, and Care of the Earth: An Indigenous American Perspective. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger

    Morse, G. & Lomay, V. (2020). Understanding Indigenous Perspectives: Visions, Dreams, and Hallucinations. San Diego, CA: Cognella.



    Without a Whisper (2020)




    An in-depth talk about the Haudenosaunee worldview and influence on women’s suffrage: nysm.nysed.gov/programs/

    A great cultural reference from the Central Fire of the Haudenosaunee: onondaganation.org