1266 Oread, Lawrence, KS 66045

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The February Sisters Lecture in honor of Women’s History Month featuring Dr. Charisse Burden-Stelly

Monday, March 25, 2024, 7 pm
Jayhawk Welcome Center, Bruckmiller Room
1266 Oread Ave.

Refreshments Provided


Against Triple Oppression: Black Women, Radicalism, and Resistance
This talk elucidates the analysis, activism, and agitation of radical Black women in the United States at mid-century whose ideas and action deeply resonate in our current moment of diminishing life chances for the majority. Organizer-intellectuals including Claudia Jones, Louise Thompson Patterson, Esther Cooper Jackson, and Dorothy Hunton envisioned and struggled for a world free of imperialism, colonialism, war, sexism, and antiblack racial oppression. They uplifted the experiences and realities of Black working women to broaden the understanding of the working class, revolutionary struggle, and how structures of domination accrue around those at the bottom of the social order. Most importantly, they articulated an expansive understanding of what is to be done.  

About Our Speaker
Dr. Charisse Burden-Stelly is an Associate Professor of African American Studies at Wayne State University and a 2023-2024 Charles Warren Center Visiting Scholar at Harvard University. A scholar of critical Black studies, political theory, political economy, and intellectual history, she is the author of Black Scare/Red Scare: Theorizing Capitalist Racism in the United States, the co-author of W.E.B. Du Bois: A Life in American History, and the co-editor of Organize, Fight, Win: Black Communist Women’s Political Writings and of Reproducing Domination: On the Caribbean Postcolonial State. Her next book project, Mutual Comradeship: The Ethics of Radical Blackness, is under contract with the University of California Press. She is the guest editor of the 2021 “Claudia Jones: Foremother of World Revolution” special issue of The Journal of Intersectionality and has published in peer-reviewed journals including Small Axe, Souls, Du Bois Review, Socialism & Democracy, International Journal of Africana Studies, and CLR James Journal. Her words also appear in popular publications including Monthly Review, Boston Review, Essence magazine, The Nation, Teen Vogue, Black Perspectives, and Black Agenda Report. Burden-Stelly has held fellowships at institutions including the University of Chicago, the University of Illinois- Urbana-Champaign, and Amherst College, and she is a member of the Black Alliance for Peace.

About the Annual February Sisters Lecture in honor of Women’s History Month
The February Sisters, a group of 30 women and 4 children, occupied the East Asian Studies building at the University of Kansas for thirteen hours on February 4, 1972. This peaceful protest, accompanied by six non-negotiable demands, challenged “the continuing sex-based inequities perpetrated by this university” and pressured the administration to establish new “resources to meet the pressing needs of women.” As a result of their demands, the February Sisters brought about important institutional change at KU, including the establishment of Hilltop Day Care Center, the development of a Women’s Studies program and major, the accessibility of birth control pills and gynecological exams through Student Health Services, the appointment of more women administrators, and the implementation of a federally mandated affirmative action program.

Women’s History Month, which started as Women’s History Week, grew out of a 1979 institute on the new field of women’s history organized by Dr. Gerda Lerner. “Women's history,” wrote Lerner, “is indispensable and essential to the emancipation of women.” Lerner felt strongly that “we can draw pride, comfort, courage, and long-range vision” from the exploration of women’s history. She argued that the study of women’s history provides a powerful “tool for organizing,” allowing us to learn from the ideas, strategies, tactics, successes, and mistakes of our predecessors. In this tradition, the Department of Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies and the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity present the annual February Sisters Lecture in March to honor Women's History Month and celebrate KU's own women’s history makers. 
Proudly Sponsored by
Department of Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies
Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity 
Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging 
With the Support of
Department of African & African American Studies 
Department of American Studies 
Department of History
History of Black Writing 
Office of Multicultural Affairs 



People with disabilities are welcome and encouraged to attend events sponsored by the University of Kansas. Please email emilytaylorcenter@ku.edu with any accessibility questions or accommodation requests. 

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