First planning meeting for the Scholar and Feminist III conference, 1975

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From: Hester Eisenstein, Academic Coordinator

Subject: Plans for Next Academic Conference Report of the First Planning Session September 11, 1975

After reviewing the background of the first two conferences, there was discussion about the conferences and their place in feminist scholar- ship. People had positive reactions and it was agreed that the Women's Center academic conference occupies an important niche and that there continues to be a real need for another such conference.

One strong finding that came out of the last conference, The Scholar and The Feminist II, was the interest in interdisciplinary scholarship.

This led to the suggestion that a natural evolution might be The Scholar and The Feminist III: Interdisciplinary Implications of Feminism.

There was a general feeling that this might be a logical focus, with perhaps two morning speakers and in the afternoon seminar leaders who have been thinking along interdisciplinary lines.

There was considerable discussion about how to treat the afternoon semi- nars and several people suggested having at least two seminar leaders treating selected themes in different disciplines. One comment was that feminism seems to lend itself to interdisciplinary treatment. An inter- esting question might be asked: What is it in the nature of feminism that makes it interdisciplinary and how does it operate?

Out of the discussion on interdisciplinary topics came a suggestion of treating science, ethics, and public policy. This led to a broader sug- gestion of considering ethics and public policy in other disciplines and the question was raised as to whether these areas could be included in afternoon seminars. Another suggested overall theme for the conference was The Impact of Feminism on Social Structure; this came out of a dis- cussion of the current ferment over women entering the rabbinate and ministry.

The consensus of the group was that we had the germ of some good ideas for our next conference. We have funding from the Rubinstein Foundation once more and a date set on the Barnard calendar, April 10th, 1976. We need more thoughtful input and hope you will come with a sandwich to our next meeting, scheduled for Wednesday, September 24th, at noon in the Women's Center. If you can't come but have some thoughts, please call me or drop them off at the women's Center.