Join us in celebrating the FGS graduating seniors!
Hi, my name is Cameron Bacher (she/her) and I’m from Santa Cruz, California. I came to FGS through Dr. Lewis’ Intersectionality in Berlin course. That was truly an amazing experience and allowed me to see first had what community building and activism looks like abroad. I am infinitely grateful for all that FGS has taught me and for the support, intentionality, and wisdom of the department. My senior capstone will focus on comedy, specifically improv and the ways in which it can be used as a site for community building and exploring the embodiment of intersectional and anti-carceral feminisms.
she her hers
I was raised in Bend, Oregon. My journey in FGS started in the first block out of my FYE in Intro to Queer Studies with Dr. Kumar which rocked my world completely. That class, and all of the FGS classes I’ve taken following that, have made me grow, challenged my conceptions of myself and the world we live in, and have been spaces where I’ve built community at CC. For all these reasons, choosing to major felt like an obvious choice. I feel so grateful to the FGS professors, majors, and minors for building classroom spaces that are caring and supportive. And, for creating unforgettable experiences like Dr. Lewis’ summer course “Hidden Spaces, Hidden Narratives: Intersectionality Studies in Berlin”. This year, I’ll be working on my Capstone project, focusing on the work and activism of contemporary herbalists in the U.S. I’ll (hopefully) be conducting interviews and making a digital zine as a part of that project. I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone in the department more this year, and watching everyone’s Capstone projects bloom.
Created by Fiona Herzig (Editor), Molly Dibble (Editorial Assistant), Julia Odland (Journalist), Lauren Hough (Journalist) and Sophie Roden (Graphic Designer) during Block 5 2021
“In addition to an emphasis on the history of women healers, (S)healers provokes discourse around the challenges that both healers and patients face in today’s society and medical institutions. We hope to inspire those interested in connecting with reproductive, physical, and mental health to find sources of healing that work for them. Future issues will continue to call attention to the legacy of women healers and today’s (s)healers!”
—Fiona Herzig, Editor
View the “Table of Contents” below, and click here to read (S)HEALERS!
I have to start by saying that the five-year anniversary of the course started out with a bang for a few reasons:
It’s the first time the course has been full. In fact, we exceeded the maximum enrollment limit of 16 by one student;
two of my students were able to secure funding to come conduct research—Judy Fisher, Feminist & Gender Studies Major ’20, 2019-2020 TriotaPresident, 2018-2019 Shannon McGee Prize winner, and Fall 2017 #FemGeniusesinBerlin alum came to conduct transnational studies of American Indigeneity; and Mekael Daniel, Feminist & Gender Studies Major ’20 and 2019-2020 Triota Vice President came to conduct transnational studies of Blackness;
and we were joined by my niece-cousin-boo from Memphis, TN, Kelsey Nichole Mattox, who turned 18 and graduated from high school recently. So, her presence was especially meaningful. In fact, she had never gotten on an airplane until she traveled here, excitedly letting us know, “I decided to go all the way!”
Judy and Mekael arrived the same day I did, and we trekked to Radebeul (near Dresden) to attend the Karl May Festival so Judy could observe, think about, and examine Native American participation in predominantly white festival culture in Germany, as well as white Native American hobbyism. Imagine the raised-eyebrows of every single one of my friends and comrades in Berlin when I told the about this—haha. Judy and Mekael also went to the Great Indian Meeting at the El Dorado theme park in Templin the following weekend to continue Judy’s work. Shoutout to my colleague, Dr. Santiago Ivan Guerra (Associate Professor of Southwest Studies at Colorado College), for introducing Judy to the significance of hobbyism in Germany, illustrating the collective efforts necessary for critical theory work.
Also, it’s worth pointing out that it’s been a while since the #FemGeniusesinBerlin were so full of #BlackGirlMagic (2015was the last time, to be exact), and I couldn’t have been more excited about that. One adorable and powerful manifestation of that was Avi(a) leading several rounds of “Deep Truth, Truth,” a game that allowed her to bond with her classmates, especially her roommates, but also with Dana and I one day during lunch. “Deep Truth, Truth” starts with someone asking another person if they’d like to share a deep truth or what one might refer to as a “regular” truth. A “regular truth” could be anything from sharing your favorite color to a song that you hate; however, a “deep truth” is usually something that one might not share in a group like this, because lots of us don’t know each other well enough to be comfortable with that kind of vulnerability. Then, once the person being questioned decides what kind of truth they want to share, the questioner asks a question. After the question is answered, the person being questioned then gets to ask another person in the group a question. I got to ask and answer twice (one truth and one deep truth), and learned a lot about the students that day. Neat stuff.
In “short,” the2019 #FemGeniusesinBerlin were such a great bunch even though we most certainly hit a few snags along the way. Here are some (definitely not all) of the most memorable moments:
The weather hitting 90F degrees, something I’m pretty sure never happened in years past, and doing so several days each week.
Bella’s cube bear.
Mekael, Judy, and I being photographed by a stranger (with consent) at the Karl May Festival and finding the very poorly-filtered but very cute photograph on social media (posted with consent).
Lauren’s RBF and fierce modeling skills.
Avia’s phone fan and ridiculous pranks.
Zander playing Captain Save ‘Em, and gettin’ hollered at all along the way.
Nicole being almost entirely silent then shakin’ up the space with the loudest, most hilarious laugh you ever did hear.
Vang asking to sit on our roof (which would most certainly result in his untimely death), asking about transporting beer back to the U.S., telling us he got “hemmed up by 12” (which turned out to mean he was approached by some ticket-checkers on the subway and allowed to continue his trip with a mere warning…side eye), telling folks about sex stores, and gettin’ hollered at for almost every single thing all along the entire way.
Discussing the advantages and risks of comparative analysis.
Dr. W. Christopher Johnson, Assistant Professor of History and the Women and Gender Studies Institute at the University of Toronto and husband of our Course Associate Dana Asbury, coming for a visit and joining us for a few sessions.
I could go on and on and on. I will never forget this group. Such a great summer through it all, which led to my new phrases: Must be June. Must be Berlin.
2019 FemGeniuses in Berlin Podcast Index: Click hereto view a slideshow, and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to see more pictures and videos!