The Center for Women’s and Gender Equity (CWGE) proudly hosts consciousness raisings throughout the school year. Here we focus on discussing topics and personal experiences relevant to contemporary issues. During these gatherings, it’s important to us that an inclusive environment is present in order to create a space where people feel they can freely share their perspectives, so the CWGE provides food and a comfortable space for its attendees to speak their mind. It is of the upmost importance that the center remains a space for students to find empowerment in using their voices to name inequities and identify ways of advocating for change. For this reason, the invitation is extended to students only.
Consciousness raisings have historically served as a valid form of political action, and still do today. Since the late 1960’s, consciousness raisings have been one of the most effective ways to create a revolution, or to focus the attention of a wider group. They were developed in the primarily white feminist wing of the women’s liberation movement and used to create a revolution and attract members. In these groups, all attendees would discuss personal experiences with dating, economic dependence, having children, abortion, or a variety of other controversial issues. Each member would take turns discussing their own viewpoints, as it was important for none of them to dominate the discussion. At the end, the group discussed what had been learned. It allowed for women to create a sense of sisterhood. Because discrimination was so pervasive, it was difficult to pinpoint. What an individual woman previously felt was her own inadequacy could have resulted from society’s ingrained tradition of male authority oppressing women.
Today, consciousness raisings remain effective because of their ability to destroy isolation and allow for the sharing of different perspectives. With that, it is important to be able to have discussions at the CWGE where people can feel comfortable to communicate feelings and perspectives that others may have dismissed as unimportant.
Participation from each student at UNC is encouraged.
Due to the current circumstances surrounding COVID-19, further consciousness raisings at the CWGE have been postponed, however, a Fall consciousness raising will be held, but date and time are TBD. We encourage you to visit our website linked below or contact Tammy Ortiz or Savana Griego with any questions you might have.