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stephaniebarbeh:

here’s a copy of my letter to the Dean of Admissions at Smith College:
Dear Dean Shaver:
I have just learned of Smith’s decision to refuse admission to Calliope Wong on the grounds that she is a pre-op transwoman, and therefore technically a “man.”
I am writing to express my opposition to this decision in the strongest possible terms. Smith College prides itself on a progressive feminist agenda and has led the way to visibility and agency for queer women in the 70’s when I was a student on campus. As times change, and as notions of what constitutes womanhood evolve, Smith needs to evolve as well.   
In short, the College needs to de-essentialize its understanding of gender and recognize transwomen applicants as women.  
Please understand that I plan to withhold further financial contributions to the College until this discriminatory admissions policy changes, and I will urge my fellow alums to do likewise.
I hope that this matter can be resolved speedily. The future of Smith depends on its ability to continue to develop its progressive philosophy in education.
Sincerely,
Stephanie Barbé Hammer, Professor
Comparative Literature and Creative Writing
UC Riverside
B.A. English, Smith College, 1976
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stephaniebarbeh:

here’s a copy of my letter to the Dean of Admissions at Smith College:

Dear Dean Shaver:

I have just learned of Smith’s decision to refuse admission to Calliope Wong on the grounds that she is a pre-op transwoman, and therefore technically a “man.”

I am writing to express my opposition to this decision in the strongest possible terms. Smith College prides itself on a progressive feminist agenda and has led the way to visibility and agency for queer women in the 70’s when I was a student on campus. As times change, and as notions of what constitutes womanhood evolve, Smith needs to evolve as well.  

In short, the College needs to de-essentialize its understanding of gender and recognize transwomen applicants as women. 

Please understand that I plan to withhold further financial contributions to the College until this discriminatory admissions policy changes, and I will urge my fellow alums to do likewise.

I hope that this matter can be resolved speedily. The future of Smith depends on its ability to continue to develop its progressive philosophy in education.

Sincerely,

Stephanie Barbé Hammer, Professor

Comparative Literature and Creative Writing

UC Riverside

B.A. English, Smith College, 1976

Chilean students 'occupy' school and run it by themselves

anticapitalist:

Chilean students question the education system as commercial and elitist because it reproduces existing social inequities and makes them worse. But they are not just asking questions: They are practicing the kind of education they have spent years dreaming about and struggling to obtain.

“If workers can manage a factory, we can manage the school,” says Cristóbal, 17, as he flashes a smile. Cristóbal is a student at the Luis Galecio Corvera A-90 high school in the Santiago borough of San Miguel. The school is among the 200 in the city that students have occupied. But on September 26, they decided to follow the example of the workers of Cerámicas Zanón, the Argentine factory workers took over and began running 10 years ago.

“Things were getting complicated because the occupation was weakening,” Cristóbal says. “It was clear to us that it wasn’t enough to just criticize our education. We had to do something more, but we didn’t know where to start until we heard that the Zanón workers were giving a talk at the University of Chile. We went to listen to them and when we came back we started running the school ourselves.”

After the takeover, a majority of students—with the enthusiastic support of many parents—returned to school. Some of the teachers joined them. “When I saw that my children were getting up and going to school without having to wake them up, that they were excited about going, I understood that they were doing something important, something that adds up to a different kind of education,” says a mother at the basketball court, where the November sun shines brightly.

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Holy shit. This is fucking awesome.

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