"The Effects of Choice Feminism in Weddings." How does the freedom of choice in weddings effect ourselves and the people around us (i.e. choice feminism)? Is there such a thing as free will? This lecture takes a look at how many brides evoke their "freedom of choice" to justify making patriarchal or gendered decisions in their weddings and marriages.
Stonehill College, Breaking the Rules Panel, April 2013
"The Sexy and Sexist Layers of the Wedding Cake." The wedding cake is a lot more complex than just flour, egg and water, there's a whole history to it that started thousands of years ago. Learn how every time you have a slice of wedding cake what you're really eating is one sugary slice of sex! Not only that but there are traditions within that are not so sanitary, we're talking about some sexist, double standards. Watch the video on what this tradition really means and how you can serve up some cake with a little more equality.
TuftsUniversity: 2nd Annual Women’s Center Symposium on Gender & Culture. 2011.
"Why Do Brides Take Their Husband's Name?" Before you get excited about becoming the next Mrs. John Smith, beware! There's a sordid history to this cultural practice and severe modern implications as to how women are contributing to their own marginalization. It explains the history of why women take men's name upon marriage, dives into its modern relevancy and issues and offers solutions for what women and men can do to practice the art of name change with more egalitarianism.
Tufts University Women's Center 'Beyond the Classroom' symposium. 2012
"Understanding the Past, Present and Future of Marriage." The institute of marriage is experiencing a renaissance as we speak. The argument against or for same-sex marriage is as polarized as the tools used to support either side. Concerns over religious beliefs versus civil liberties and Equal Protection as defined in the 14th amendment drive the debate's momentum today. My research suggests that our historical and cultural understanding of marriage is undernourished and is what really perpetuates this ongoing debate of marriage's definition. This issue will never abate without adequate understanding of the history of Western marriage and a proper analysis through cultural deconstruction as to how it influences marriage, relationships, social gender roles and leadership both in the private and public sector. I will place particular focus on the most inherently sexist and discriminatory practices, such as the engagement ring, patronymics and sex. The LGBT community demands to join an institute that continues to discriminate against women. We are unaware of lingering sexism because it is hidden in ideas of celebration, third wave feminism and social and lingual constructs. Without identifying the systems ingrained with sexism, the LGBT community will struggle to gain acceptance into it and hetero women equal partner status. However conversely, LGBT marriage participants that incorporate heterosexual wedding traditions and then modify them are helping to identify and eradicate discriminatory practices. Without a transparent understanding of the influence of our most beloved social and cultural institute on women's equality and LGBT rights, neither group will see resolution for the better because we defend and protect a system we all unconsciously misunderstand.
Tufts University Graduate Research Symposium, 2012