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Social Justice Authors to Speak at UW Symposium

March 19, 2015
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Peggy McIntosh

A writer internationally known for her groundbreaking work on the image of women in advertising, and an author who focuses on a gender-fair curriculum and women’s studies, are the two keynote speakers for the 19th annual Shepard Symposium on Social Justice at the University of Wyoming.

Peggy McIntosh and Jean Kilbourne will deliver their keynote addresses during the symposium titled, “Social Justice in a Media-Driven World,” April 8-11.

McIntosh will speak in the Wyoming Union Ballroom from 5-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 8. A feminist and anti-racism activist, McIntosh is best known for her acclaimed article, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.” Her work has been instrumental in putting the dimension of privilege into discussions of gender, race and sexuality. She also is the author of many influential articles on curriculum change, women's studies and “systems of unearned privilege.”

She is founder and co-director of the National S.E.E.D. (Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity) Project on inclusive curriculum. The SEED Project helps teachers, counselors and administrators create their own yearlong, site-based seminars on making school climates, curricula and teaching methods more gender fair and multiculturally equitable.

McIntosh is the associate director of the Wellesley (Mass.) College Center for Research on Women.

Kilbourne will speak in the Wyoming Union Ballroom Thursday, April 9, from 5-6:30 p.m. She is known for her work on the image of women in advertising and her critical studies of alcohol and tobacco advertising. Her films, lectures and television appearances have been seen by millions of people throughout the world. Kilbourne was named by The New York Times Magazine as one of the three most popular speakers on college campuses.

She is the author of the award-winning book “Can’t Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel” and “So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids.” Kilbourne is a frequent guest on radio and television programs, including “The Today Show” and “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

She holds an honorary position as senior scholar at the Wellesley Centers for Women at Wellesley College.

Several events are planned during the symposium, including the annual Saturday Night Party, a fundraiser for local Wyoming high school diversity student organizations. The “Black and White Ball” is from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. April 11 at the Laramie Plains Civic Center, located at 710 E. Garfield St.

The event is open to the public, ages 18 and up, with a cover charge of $5. A cash bar will be hosted by the Crowbar and Grille, and a raffle and prizes will be available. Attendees are invited to dress for the event.

A full schedule of Shepard Symposium events can be found at www.shepardsymposium.org.

The Shepard Symposium on Social Justice has evolved into a major national conference. The symposium, originally titled “The Symposium for the Eradication of Social Inequality,” focused on involving UW and local students in dialogue about issues related to social justice, particularly within the context of public education.

In 2003, the symposium was renamed the Shepard Symposium on Social Justice, honoring the work of the Shepard family and the memory of their son, Matthew Shepard, a former UW student and social activist.

For more information, email Angela Jaime, chair of the symposium, at jaimea@uwyo.edu.


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Chad Baldwin

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