CGS 2nd IWS 2005 Comes Next

ICU Center for Gender Studies marks its first anniversary this April, having grown to a large membership with twenty faculty members and thirty students involved. Our center space has also grown to be functional place for students and members to get together. Our activities for the last year have been various. We organized many lectures and casual lunchtime meetings with splendid lecturers invited from inside and outside the university. Our first international workshop was held 25-27 November 2004 on Human Security and Gender in Asia, and saw lively and reciprocal discussions by researchers and activists from 10 Asian countries. Though, the definition of security may differ according to one's cultural and historical background, we agreed upon the mutual understanding that women's security have been overshadowed by the concept of national security and its emphasis on military power. We are glad that we have created an intimate network among gender researchers regardless of language and nationality. This experience will prove valuable for CGS. In June 2005, CGS is going to attend the women's conference, WW05, in Seoul, and to host a panel discussion on the possibility of cooperation between academia and activists.

From this April, Program of Gender and Sexuality Studies (PGSS) is starting. This is the fourth interdisciplinary program at ICU, involving faculty from all six divisions. It features various courses including those on sexuality. One example is the course, Approaches to Gender Studies, in which faculty members and invited scholars take turn to talk of the relation between their own field and gender, and show the students possibilities of Gender Studies. We are hoping, with the launch of PSGG, we can interest more students.

Many more lectures are on their way, and we are having our second international workshop on 16-18 September this year. The theme of this workshop is gender representation in Asian countries, and we expect to have lively discussions with various participants, scholars, performers, film directors, etc. We would like to make it an opportunity for participants and students to be involved more directly, and arrange to experience Asian films, literature, theatrical performance, as well as forum theatre in which we all take part. CGS are determined to have wide variety of exciting venues, and to develop to become a place even better for all of us.

Cordinator of the 2005 International Workshop : Natsumi Ikoma