Jakobsen to start Fisher Center series – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Jakobsen to start Fisher Center series

GENEVA, N.Y — Janet Jakobsen will speak on “Religion and Sexuality: What's War Got to Do with It?” as the first speaker of the year in The Fisher Center series at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. “Gender, Religion and Politics” are the focus during the 2005-06 academic year.

Her talk will begin at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 7 in the Geneva Room of the Warren Hunting Smith Library, and is free and open to the public.

Jakobsen is director of the Center for Research on Women and Professor of Women's Studies at Barnard College in New York City, and will consider how issues of religion, gender and sexuality are implicated in the U.S. war in Iraq.

Examining the specific religious genealogy of the type of “freedom” espoused by the Bush administration to legitimate the war, Jakobsen shows how this freedom becomes embodied in particular forms of violence, including that of the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib.

She then shows how this genealogy may be used as a means think about ways to link progressive struggles across issues like peace, justice and gender equality. Jakobsen is the author of Working Alliances and the Politics of Difference: Diversity and Feminist Ethics (Indiana University Press, 1998), co-author (with Ann Pellegrini) of Love the Sin: Sexual Regulation and the Limits of Religious Tolerance (New York University Press, 2002), and co-editor (with Elizabeth Castelli) of Interventions: Activists and Academics Respond to Violence (Palgrave/Macmillan 2004).

She is now working on a book, Sex, Secularism and Social Movements: The Value of Ethics in a Global Economy, and is a former policy analyst and lobbyist in Washington, D.C.

She will also appear a roundtable discussion the next morning.

Lesley Adams is overseeing the Center this year, while Betty Bayer is on sabbatical.