The Program in Sexuality Studies promotes outstanding scholarship and helps foster a more diverse, tolerant, and inclusive climate.
Stacy Braukman (Ph.D. 1999) Named Finalist for Lambda Literary Foundation Award for LGBT Nonfiction
Historian Stacy Braukman's Communists and Perverts under the Palms: The Johns Committee in Florida, 1956-1965 (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2012) is among the 25th Annual Lambda Literary Award finalists. Her book received the Florida Historical Society's 2013 Rembert Patrick Book Award, given to the past year's best book on a scholarly topic in Florida history. Since the book's publication, Braukman has been contacted by individuals whose lives were impacted by the Johns Committee's efforts to weed out communist and homosexual activity between 1956 and 1965, and is making plans to conduct oral history interviews with them to document their experiences.
Kevin Claybren Selected for Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship
Kevin Claybren came to Carolina intending to major in biology and attend medical school, but realized, he says, that "my passion lies with working towards inclusion, equality and acceptance of all people regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression."
Inspired by Professor Karen Booth's "Comparative Queer Politics" course, Kevin threw himself into trying to help better educate the public about what was at stake in the debate over Amendment One. Having supported the inclusive, accessible and safe housing options on campus since coming to Carolina, he advocated successfully for that cause as student coordinator of the UNC-Chapel Hill Gender Non-Specific Housing Coalition.
Claybren, a Women’s and Gender Studies major with a double minor in Sexuality Studies and Education, is the recipient of the 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship, chosen on the basis of his activities and contributions demonstrating commitment to civil and human rights and a desire to improve the quality of life of all members of University community. Nominees are also judged on the ability to achieve and excel academically.
“Being the 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Award recipient,” said Claybren during his acceptance speech, “celebrates the accomplishments and transformational policies that I helped to achieve while providing me with financial support for the next academic year.”
Alumni Profile: Terah Crews '08
[from the November 1, 2012 Office of Undergrduate Research newsletter]
Curiosity. That’s what started it all for Terah Crews ’08. As an undergraduate at UNC, she discovered the archives where she began reading about the experiences of women at UNC before her. As a former high-school drop-out and first generation college student, Terah didn’t know anything, she says, about research or academia. It was Dr. John Sweet, who became her faculty mentor, and who encouraged her to apply for a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship. Terah was successful and received a SURF for her 2007 project, “Women’s Higher Education in the Early Years of the Progressive Movement in N.C: Influences that shaped early advancements.”
Terah credits the SURF experience, which allowed her to concentrate on her project and not have to work during that summer, with starting her career. It inspired her, and made her passionate about history. Of Dr. Sweet she says “he was one of the most influential professors I’ve ever had.” In addition to his early encouragement of her work, he held her to extremely high standards. Terah commented that Dr. Sweet pushed her hard, teaching her to anticipate criticism and to be ready to respond to it. Read more.
Henry Abelove Visits UNC
Henry Abelove (Willbur Fisk Osborne Professor of English, Emeritus, Wesleyan University) is the co-editor of The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader, which won the Lambda Prize, and the author of The Evangelist of Desire and Deep Gossip.
Abelove is currently working on two books, one on colonialist fantasies in the eighteenth-century Atlantic world and another on the intellectual and cultural dimensions of the gay liberation movement in New York City.
Anqi Li '11 Publishes
'is now a published author. Her honors thesis, "Back to the Future: Use of history in newspaper coverage and judicial records on marriage equality for same-sex couples during and after Perry v. Schwarzenegger," earned the 2011 Best Undergraduate Work in Sexuality Studies prize, and has just been published as Uses of History in the Press and in Court During California's Battle Over Proposition 8: Casting Same-Sex Marriage as a Civil Right (Edwin Mellen Press, 2012). Anqi Li is currently pursuing her J.D. from the University of Arizona’s James E. Rogers College of Law where she hopes to graduate in 2014.
Sam Peterson's F to M to Octopus Going to New York
In January 2013, Sam Peterson's award-winning student show, F to M to Octopus, will travel to New York. Renowned performance space 3 Legged Dog has invited him to develop and grow the piece with a residency at their generously tech-outfitted studio. UNC Director Joseph Megel, recent undergrad artist Laura Melosh, UNC’s designer Rob Hamilton, frontier projection designer Jared Mezzocchi and Sam will all converge in NYC for one week to make his autobiographic retelling of his "girlhood-into-boyhood-into-maybe octohood?" and hormonal adventures with testosterone a visual, fantastical undersea experience using state-of-the-art digital projection technologies and an improved set. If you'd like to know more, contact Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank You, Christopher Putney!
Sincere thanks to –2012. Professor Sweet resumed his duties as Director on July 1, 2012. for a year of extraordinary leadership as Interim Director of the Program in Sexuality Studies while John Sweet was on a National Endowment for the Humanities sabbatical year. Professor Putney served for the academic year 2011
Randall Styers Honored
Randall Styers (Religious Studies) is one of the four winners of UNC's annual Distinguished Teaching Award for Post-Baccalaureate Instruction. The awards recognize faculty members for exceptional teaching of graduate and professional students. Professor Styers leads graduate seminars in Religious Studies and Religion and Culture.
The Program annually awards its Prize for best Undergraduate Work in Sexuality Studies. This year the nominations were so impressive that two were awarded, to Billy Kluttz and Sam Peterson. In addition, a Special Citation for Extraordinary Achievement in Sexuality Studies recognized the work of Justin Kamens. Read about these impressive young scholars and their projects, their time at Carolina, and their plans for the future.
This year, two projects equally impressed the awards committee, and fellowships were given to Laura Meadows (Journalism and Mass Communications) and Benjamin D. Reed (History). They are off to interesting places this summer to do research.
A grant from the Program in Sexuality Studies allowed Karen Booth to develop Women's Studies 111, the core course in the Sexuality Studies minor. Read an interview with her about this exciting class.
Sahar Amer is currently creating a new course in Asian Studies on Gender and Sexualities in Arab and Islamicist Cultures, supported by another Program in Sexuality Studies Curriculum Development Grant.