Event: Crenshaw to Speak at Brandeis University, Nov. 8, 2012

Executive Director Crenshaw to speak at Brandeis University November 8th, 2012. Check out this Press Release just shared with AAPF:

The Heller School and Brandeis University will host a two-day symposium on intersectionality, a concept which describes the simultaneous intersections between aspects of social difference and identity (e.g., race/ethnicity, gender, class, etc.) and forms of systematic  oppression such as racism, sexism and classism at micro and macro levels.

On Thursday evening November 8, the reception begins at 6:30 p.m., followed by introductory remarks and the keynote address by Kimberlé Crenshaw, JD at 7:00 p.m., concluding the event at 8:30 p.m.

On Friday morning November 9, a welcome coffee will begin at 8:00 a.m. The program will consist of two sessions with Prof. Crenshaw, one focusing on research and policy and another on teaching. A comprehensive wrap-up session with Professor Crenshaw will provide participants with the opportunity to reflect upon and express ideas and thoughts on the role of intersectionality in the academy and through public engagement. Professor Crenshaw has authored some of the most important works on intersectionality, and is credited with being the founder of this perspective.

Registration is now open.

For more information contact Laurie Nsiah-Jefferson '80, Ph.D. '06.

More Heller events listed at the Heller Bulletin>


Event: Crenshaw to Speak at Ithaca College, Oct. 26, 2012

Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw is scheduled to speak this Friday at Ithaca College, in Ithaca, New York. From a press release issued by Ithaca College:

 ITHACA, NY — Kimberlé Crenshaw, recognized as one of the founders of Critical Race Theory, will discuss “Intersectionality in the Age of Post-Racialism” at Ithaca College on Friday, Oct. 26. Her free public talk, which is sponsored by the Ithaca College Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity, will take place at 7 p.m. in Textor 102.

Critical Race Theory is an academic discipline focused upon the application of critical theory — an examination of society and culture — to the intersection of race, law and power. Crenshaw’s body of legal scholarship on race has had enormous influence, and her groundbreaking work on “intersectionality” was influential in the drafting of the equality clause in the South African Constitution.

Crenshaw was the coeditor of “Critical Race Theory: Key Writings That Formed the Movement” and coauthor of “Words that Wound: Critical Race Theory, Assaultive Speech and the First Amendment.” She authored the background paper on race and gender discrimination for the United Nations World Conference Against Racism (WCAR) and coordinated efforts by nongovernmental organizations to ensure the inclusion of gender in the WCAR Conference Declaration.

Crenshaw serves as the faculty director of the Critical Race Studies program at UCLA Law School. In 1996 she cofounded the African American Policy Forum to house a variety of projects designed to deliver research-based strategies to better advance social inclusion. She has served as a member of the National Science Foundation’s committee to research violence against women and has consulted with leading foundations, social justice organizations and corporations to advance their race and gender equity initiatives.

Twice named Professor of the Year at UCLA Law School, Crenshaw has been honored with the Lucy Terry Prince Unsung Heroine Award presented by the Lawyers’ Committee on Civil Rights Under Law and the ACLU Ira Glasser Racial Justice Fellowship.

For more information, visit www.ithaca.edu/cscre.


Click here to learn more about this event.

Blogging the News With an Intersectional Lens

The Project

Starting with the 2012-2013 school year the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies is collaborating with the African American Policy Forum  to host a series of blogs on topical issues using an intersectional lens.  Guided by work being done in fields as diverse as  law and the social sciences, our bloggers will deploy intersectional frameworks to question and articulate the stated and unstated assumptions concerning the lives and stories of everyday people and public figures that adorn the pages of the nation's leading newspapers and blogs.

What is Intersectionality?

Intersectionality is field of study first pioneered by Kimberlé Crenshaw.  Intersectionality provides a way to think about and conceptualize the ways that people with multiple identities and community associations experience life events that often turn on and are shaped by one's unique axes of identity.  Intersectionality is an expansive theory, and recognizes the unique combinations of socio-political identities and associations that people claim and identify with including, but not limited to: sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, class, disability, immigration status, and incarceration status.

Intersectionality's core contribution to the way that we think about community and individual experiences today is the recognition that a whole host of biological, social, and cultural categories and identities form complex axes of identity that interact on multiple and often simultaneous levels.

For example: Intersectionality recognizes that gender discrimination as a generalized phenomena is experienced differently by different people depending on what other identities and community association particular persons ascribe to.  This means that two women who experience gender discrimination in the same workplace may, nevertheless, experience that discrimination differently if they are of different races or different sexual orientations.

Ultimately, intersectionality holds as a central tenet that the complex and often under-appreciated ways in which categories and identities interact play a central role in shaping the way individuals, groups, and broader society experience things like racism, sexism, homophobia, and other forms of oppression.

Why is an Intersectional Lens Needed?

In our experience we noticed that traditional newspaper journalists and bloggers fail to pick apart the ways in which overlapping identities and associations of people that are the subject of news reporting inform or further color what is actually going on.  As academics, pundits, students, and interested members of collective communities we have banded together with the intent to pick out some of the key news events and broaden the discussion beyond the scant facts reported to provide deeper and richer discussions linking current events to broader policy debates.


Though we are not limiting our committed bloggers to particular topics or takes on current events and hot topics, we are urging them to pay particular attention to a smattering of themes including:

  • Threats to Affirmative Action and Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin
  •  Overincarceration and Overpolicing of Women and Girls of Color
  • Employment Discrimination 
  • 2012 Presidential Election
  • The Great Recession


Featured Bloggers

Kimberlé Crenshaw
Luke Charles Harris

 Our featured writers this year include law students at Columbia Law School in New York City as well as Center fellows and African American Policy Forum fellows.  In addition, our founders Kimberlé Crenshaw--the mother of intersectionality--and Luke Charles Harris--one of the nation's leading experts on affirmative action--will contribute periodically.


 Check in with us every other week for the latest take on the news.

Event: Game Changer or Door Closer: A Roundtable on the Future of Racial Inclusion Post Fisher




















The Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School has just shared another exciting event with AAPF!

On Wednesday October 10th the United States Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Fisher v. University of Texas--the latest attack on affirmative action programs in our nation's leading public universities and colleges.  The Center, along with a cohort of student groups at Columbia Law School, have banded together to put together an event exploring the fallout from Fisher.

Please join us on Tuesday October 16th from 6pm–8pm at Columbia Law School in New York City for a star-studded event bringing together some of the nation's leading scholars, advocates, and governmental figures to discuss the future of racial inclusion in the wake of Fisher.  Students, practitioners, members of the greater-Columbia University community as well as the general public are invited!

For attorneys seeking CLE credit, two credits are available.  For details regarding pre-registration check out: http://www.law.columbia.edu/centers/intersectionality/fisher-event

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Download the CLE Packet: Fisher CLE Packet (final)


Thursday October 18th, 2012 Screening of "Agents of Change: Black Students and the Transformation of the American University"


Reception starts at 6pm

Screening and Discussion starts at 6.30pm

Hosted by  Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP:

51 West 52nd Street

New York, NY 10019


Join directors Frank Dawson and Abby Ginzberg for a screening of select scenes from their movie Agents of Change: Black Students and the Transformation of the American University.  Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw will be part of the after-screening panel, which also includes:

  • Martha Biondi, Professor of African American History, Northwestern University, author of The Black Revolution on Campus
  •   Ibram Rogers, Professor at SUNY Albany, author of The Black Campus Movement
  •  Wayne Glasker, Professor of History, Rutgers-Camden, where he directs the African American Studies Program, author of Black Students in the Ivory Tower

Click here to learn more about the movie!

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Volunteer Opportunities with the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies

  The Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School has just shared  call for volunteers.  The Center, founded in 2011 by AAPF Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw, is currently collaborating with AAPF on many exciting projects that help further both institution's commitment to fighting for gender and racial equality here in the US and abroad.  This is great and exciting way to volunteer your time!


From the Center:


Interested in affirmative action, the school-to-prison pipeline, disability studies, or gender discrimination?  Looking for opportunities to engage in cutting edge social justice work with a chance to design and create next generation tools to combat structural inequality in the United States?  Recently graduated and looking for a way to further develop practical skills that will help you stand out in your next interview?

The Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School is proud to announce the opening of several volunteer opportunities for students and volunteers of all ages!

The Center engages in holistic social justice advocacy work tying together the resources of one of the nation’s preeminent law schools and the vision of our founder, Professor Kimberlé Crenshaw, to produce next generation advocacy reports, research, and community education tools currently used on the frontlines of the war for equality across myriad social justice movements.

Our past projects include: advocate toolkits used by community groups engaged in prison pipeline reform; a educational board game used to teach people of all ages about structural inequality throughout US history; and scholarly reports focused on resource disparities across race, class, and medical condition.

Past and present volunteers have joined us from across the nation, and from different academic disciplines, professions, and different career stages.  The Center takes a holistic approach to its institutional work as well as its personnel development—no matter what your prior experience, future career ambitions, or past exposure to social justice movements and work there is a place for you at the Center.

Current Needs:

  • College Students
  • Community Activists
  • Experienced Grant Writers
  • Graduate Students (social work, humanities, social sciences)
  • Graphic Designers (all skill levels)
  • Law Students
  • Researchers (familiarity with basic university-level research as well as aptitude with free search engines like Google Scholar)
  • Teachers/ Education Reform Advocates
  • Web Design (all levels)
  • Web/Social Media Marketing Gurus



  • We ask that volunteers commit to at least 2hrs a week per academic semester.



  • Volunteers based in the NYC-metro area will be given preference, but the Center is also open to volunteers able to telecommute.


If you are interested in exploring a volunteer opportunity with the Center please send resumé/CV as an email attachment to: intersectionality@law.columbia.edu.  In your email please include a brief description of your interest in the Center.



Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw Speaks at American Sociology Association's Annunal Meeting, August 16th, 2012


Opening Plenary Session. Equality

 August 16, 7:00 - 9:00 PM (MDT) - Hyatt Regency Denver



From the ASA's Annual Meeting Website:

At the core of the idea of real utopias is the problem of realizing ideals of social justice, and in one way or another, these ideals are always bound up with questions about equality. Equality is also part of the normative context for one of the central preoccupations of sociology - understanding the causes and consequences of diverse forms of inequality, especially class, gender and race. This first plenary, then, will examine various issues connecting equality and real utopias.

At the opening of the plenary, there will be a 30-minute spoken word performance on social justice and real utopias by students from the First Wave Spoken Word and Hip Hop Arts Learning Community, a cutting edge multicultural artistic program for incoming students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

"Real Begets Real" -- a performance based scholarship using the unfiltered narrative structure of spoken-word in which First Wave Scholars deconstruct social realities that challenge the success of a "real utopia" through the lens of personal experiences. Representing diverse urban communities in the USA, these artist scholars seek to exemplify the possibility of "real utopias" by valuing partnerships, responding to realities and building collaboratively as they aspire to create a new space where individuality, personal and corporate responsibility contribute to a common good.


Click here for the live feed broadcasted from the American Sociological Association.

Check out AAPF's Interrogating Colorblindness Project, one of AAPF's many groundbreaking projects highlighted by Crenshaw tonight!