Journal Article — Activist Learning vs. Service Learning in a Women’s Studies Classroom — by Anne Bubriski and Ingrid Semaan




Various scholars assert that teaching and discussing feminist literature written by and about women constitutes activism. While we agree that integrating Women’s Studies into college and university curricula is a radical act and an important step toward broader social change, we argue that Women’s Studies programs must see promoting feminist scholarship as a beginning point, and not an end point. We argue that faculty members must teach students to merge feminist theory with social action in order to transform systemic gender, class, and race inequalities. At a time when there are few strong and vibrant social movements and few students who participate in movements for social change, one way to include activism in the classroom experience is to structure it into course assignments. Based on a pilot of an activist learning project for a Women’s Studies class, we make recommendations to faculty members on how to get the best results from such a project.

Recommended Citation

Bubriski, Anne, and Ingrid Semaan. 2009. “Activist Learning vs. Service Learning in a Women’s Studies Classroom.” Pp. 91-98 in Sociological Re-Imaginations in & of Universities (Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge: Volume VII, Issue 3, 2009.) Belmont, MA: Okcir Press (an imprint of Ahead Publishing House).

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