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  • They Both Die at the End – General Review
    Summer break is the perfect opportunity to get back into reading. Adam Silvera’s (2017) novel, They Both Die at the End, can serve as a stepping stone into the realm of reading. The pace is fast, action-packed, and develops loveable characters. Also, Silvera switches point of view each chapter where narration mainly focuses on the protagonists, […]
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    If there’s one book that I believe everyone should read once in their life, it’s my favorite book – Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi. From my course, Queer Literature under Dr. Bill Albertini, I discovered Emezi’s Freshwater (2018). Once more, my course, Creative Writing Thesis Workshop under Professor Amorak Huey, was instructed to present our favorite […]

Brown Bag Lunch relates crafting evolution to feminism

The first Brown Bag Lunch of March was held at the Women’s Center yesterday to kick off Women’s Issues Month. Graduate Assistants Aisha McGriff and Heather Pristash led a discussion with guests about the history and importance of crafting in their presentation ‘Women Crafting Narratives of Self.’ Knitting, patchwork and needle point have traditionally been associated with women and femininity, but not until recently has the art of crafting gained attention as an important issue to the feminist movement, Pristash said. Prior to the 1850s crafting, specifically quilting and knitting has been used to reinforce the ‘cult of domesticity’ and to reinforce ideas of femininity, McGriff said. The study of quilting can be useful when trying to better understand women and women’s narratives in history, McGriff said.’ ‘ ‘Quilting was a craft controlled by women, in a time where men controlled virtually all other areas of art and society,’ McGriff said. ‘Because of this, it is important to analyze quilts as historic pieces of art.’ Quilting allowed women to form bonds with each other in ways that could not have been done previously, McGriff said. During the Civil War, crafting and quilting made a shift from domestic to political. Women sold quilts at Sanitation Fairs of the 1860s with political messages on them, promoting social movements, McGriff said. Because of the associations between crafting and domesticity, it has traditionally been rejected by feminist movements, Pristash said. ‘Feminists have tried to divorce themselves from craft in the past,’ Pristash said. ‘But in the third wave many have tried to rebuild craft and crafting.” Crafting can be useful to build social networks between women and also instill a sense of creatorship in the crafter and as a means to get away from mass produced culture, Pristash said. ‘The history of craft is also the history of femininity,’ Pristash said. ‘So it is important we pay attention to it.’ Mary Kruger, director of the Women’s Center, said she has always been interested in crafting because it seemed like a safe place for women. ‘I have always thought that crafting allowed time without men,’ Kruger said. ‘This is a place for women to bond and create a space for each other.’ Pristash pushed for more research and study of crafting within academic circles. ‘Craft allows us to examine gender, sex, labor and other vital areas of concern,’ Pristash said. ‘It is vital we have more scholars in this area.’

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