Duke Establishes ‘Sexism, Homophobia, Gender Bias and Violence’ Think Tank


Ian Miles Cheong Contributor
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Duke University’s Women’s Center and the school’s student government have established a new think tank called “Think Gender.”

Its sole purpose is to “illuminate the interrelationship of sexism, homophobia, gender bias and violence.”

The university is tripling down on its efforts to be a more inclusive space for women and LGBT minorities.

College Fix reports that the gender-centric think tank will provide a “space for respectful dialog about gender equity.” Like other programs of its nature, the initiative focuses on “advocating on behalf of survivors of gender based discrimination, and be a portal of campus and community resources for Duke’s LGBT community, women, and other intersections of identity (race, class, ability, etc.)”

The school faculty-operated Women’s Center will serve as an “administrative component” to Think Gender, which is mostly run by students.

Speaking to the Fix, the student who helped found Think Gender, Jacqueline Monetta, says that the organization’s projects include “a free hygiene products initiative,” among others. She said that the little-publicized project, which was only reported by the Fix on Tuesday, has had four meetings since it was founded in October.

The organization hopes to include more students, faculty, and university staff for more projects in 2018

According to College Fix, Think Gender is one of many gender-related events and functions, which have become a fixture on the Durham campus. The school’s Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies webpage includes an event called “Gender Wednesday,” and a series on transgender studies.

The Gender Wednesday is aimed at undergrads and invites students to “build an ongoing conversation that helps us explore the many and varied ways of having an impact on our world,” and purports to “widen our sense of possibilities.” Few details are given about the exact nature of the event.

Other gender-based events include “Duke on Gender,” which consists of a “multi-disciplinary space to develop and present current research and further critical conversations within gender and women’s history, gender and queer theory, sexuality studies, transgender studies, and the study of feminism, social movements, and contemporary social issues and a policy in a transnational world.”

Ian Miles Cheong is a journalist and outspoken media critic. You can reach him through social media at @stillgray on Twitter and on Facebook.