Dungy, Ouellette part of Ethan Allen Homestead event

Both presenters for 4-part “New Virtual Symposium, Centennial of Women's Suffrage: One Event, Many Perspectives” on May 16

May 14, 2020
Faculty/staff report

Kathryn Dungy and Susan Ouellette of the Saint Michael’s history faculty will both be presenters for a four-part “New Virtual Symposium, Centennial of Women’s Suffrage: One Event, Many Perspectives” presented by the Ethan Allen Homestead in Burlington this Saturday, May 16 at 2 p.m. (story continues below graphic)symposium graphic

From Homestead publicity about the event:

Women’s suffrage was a complicated and far-reaching event. Ethan Allen Homestead Museum, in partnership with League of Women Voters of Vermont, the Vermont Commission on Women, and the Vermont Suffrage Centennial Alliance, invites the public to explore this topic in a new, four-part, virtual symposium … featuring two Saint Michael’s professors.

Available on-demand afterward, the four symposium video presentations set the historical context and tell the stories of the suffrage movement and its impact for African American women, for Indigenous women in federally recognized tribes, for Abenaki women in Vermont, and in the role of education for women and girls.

Kathryn Dungy presents in the videos on “The Courage of their Convictions: African American Women in the Fight for Women’s Suffrage.”  Kathryn’s talk discusses the role African-American women played in the struggle for women’s suffrage, though they would not realize these benefits until many years later, and in many places still struggle for them.

Dungy is a professor of the social and cultural history of Latin America and the Caribbean; gender and race identity; the Atlantic World, and Antebellum U.S. at Saint Michael’s College. She frequently incorporates her own research into her teaching. Presently, she is working on a manuscript entitled “The Conceptualization of Race in Colonial Puerto Rico, 1800-1850,” and last year presented at “Slavery in the African World: Interrogating the Past and Confronting the Present,” an international conference.

Susan Ouellette presents on “Emma Willard, Women’s Education, and the Campaign for Women’s Suffrage.”  Her talk looks at Emma Willard’s trailblazing work, and how education played a major role in women expressing their political voice and advocacy.

Ouellette is a professor of Early America at Saint Michael’s College. She focuses on the first settlement, up to the American Revolution period; Native Americans; Immigration history, especially the experience of Francophones in the Northeast; Textiles history; Women’s history; and diaries and memoirs. Her research enhances her teaching. Her recently published book, An Extraordinary Ordinary Woman, features research and analysis of the diary of Phebe Orvis, a 19th Century Bristol resident with ties to Vergennes and Middlebury. The professor said that some of her students from the spring semester will be contributing their work in her American Revolution course as content for the Homestead as well.

This event is presented by the Ethan Allen Homestead Museum with assistance from the League of Women Voters of Vermont, the Vermont Commission on Women, and the Vermont Suffrage Centennial Alliance, with special thanks to Burlington Cars, 802 Cars, One Day In July financial advisors, and People’s United Bank for their generous support.

Other presentations in the video series:

Beverly Little Thunder presents “On the Shoulders of our Ancestors and Mother Earth.” Beverly discusses how Indigenous women have been marginalized and their voices removed through colonization, violence, and misogyny. She emphasizes the dire need for women to exercise leadership on our planet. Beverly is an enrolled member of the Standing Rock Lakota Band from North Dakota, she has been both a Sundancer and Inipi Ceremony Water Pourer for over 40 years. Her permanent home is Kunsi Keya Tamakoce, situated high in the mountains of Vermont and accommodating a program of Lakota ceremonial activities each year. Along with leading activities on the land and providing guidance for individuals and families in life’s transitions, Beverly travels widely to speak and share her traditions and work. She speaks about traditional beliefs and ceremonies, community building and personal empowerment, breaking the cycle of violence against women and children, LGBTQA peoples, undoing racism and other forms of oppression through practicing the values of inclusivity and respect that come from understanding our place in the interconnected web of life.

Melody Walker presents on “Navigating Freedom in Two Worlds.” Melody examines political agency and the importance of women, children, and all living creatures having that agency in society, and in being noticed and heard when exercising it. Melody is an educator, activist, artist, and citizen of the Elnu Abenaki Band of Ndakinna. She is former chair of the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs and was vice chair when the Elnu received state recognition. She has a master’s degree in History from the University of Vermont and was recently profiled in UVM’s alumni magazine, Vermont Quarterly. Melody’s TEDx talk, “Weaving a Thread Through the Seven Generations,” gives viewers the flavor of her engaging presentation style.

View the symposium at this link or on the Ethan Allen Homestead Museum’s YouTube page.


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