Community Resilience: Women Making Change

Winter 2017 quarter

Taught by

Resilient communities depend on relationships of trust and respect between their members. Our attention in Community Resilience: Women Making Change will focus on women’s experiences of organizing and acting for racial and gender equity. We will celebrate the public accomplishments of successful advocates, and consider how best to continue to work for change. An introduction to public policy and its role in shaping lives will provide context for our considerations.

Resilience can be thought of as capacity for learning and for response to change. Writings arising from advocacy work for women’s equity form one record of U.S. society’s social resilience. Program texts will be drawn from U.S. women’s, feminist, and womanist writings from the 1840s, 1970s, and the 1990s and 2000s. These texts encompass four types of writing: history, poetry, the prose of public policies, and creative nonfiction. (Creative nonfiction is factual writing combining accounts of personal experience with more abstract or theoretical thinking.) Women working for change have long relied on crafting and reading poetry and creative nonfiction, in particular, as ways to acknowledge where women stand in the world and where and how they might move forward. History and public policy are important centers of work for social justice and equity – history as a record of human effort, and public policy as one guide for, and path of, action.   

Participants in this program will have opportunities to develop the habits of mind of analytic, creative, and resilient thinkers who work with others to create life-affirming choices. Our work to develop skills in research, in clear and thoughtful speaking, in idea-based creative nonfiction writing, and in cultivating a culture of resilience and relationship-building across the significant human differences apparent in any community will be essential components of our work together.

Credit will be awarded in writing and women's studies.

Community Resilience: Women Making Change can be taken as a one-quarter program. It is also linked to the Spring quarter program Community Resilience: Social Equity and Environmental Issues.

Program Details

Fields of Study

gender and women's studies government sociology

Preparatory For

government and public service, education, social work, community development and organizing


Winter Open

Location and Schedule

Campus Location


Time Offered

Evening and Weekend

Advertised Schedule

Wed 6-10p and Sat 9:15a-4:45p Jan 14, 28, Feb 11, 25, Mar 11. First meeting is Wednesday, January 11, 6p, in Seminar 2 C2105.

Online Learning

Enhanced Online Learning