PULLMAN – The Department of History at WSU is presenting a series of lectures during the month of March in recognition of Women’s History Month. History faculty members and graduate students will speak about the achievements of women in the U.S., their historical significance and their lasting impact. All lectures are free and open to the public.

Julie Neuffer, a General Education instructor and recent WSU history doctoral graduate, will speak on March 3 at 12:10 p.m. in Wilson-Short Hall, room 333. Her lecture is titled “Visions of a New World: Women’s Leadership in New American Religions.”

Lee Ann Hall, a graduate student in history, will lecture on March 5. Hall’s talk, “Making Plutonium and Maintaining Gender: WACs, Wives, Workers and Other Adventurous Women of Wartime Hanford” can be heard in the Smith Center for Undergraduate Education (CUE), room 518, at 12:10 p.m.

– Highlight speaker Susan Armitage, Claudius O. and Mary W. Johnson Distinguished Professor of History, will present “Pioneer Women: Then and Now” on March 19 at 7 p.m. in CUE 119. 

Armitage said about her lecture, “I broaden the definition of pioneer to include not only the Oregon Trail women we immediately think of, but also to include later migrants of other races and ethnicities. Pioneering, as women have experienced it, remains the same. It is multicultural.”

– Doctoral candidate Amy Canfield presents “Re-‘Liberating’ Feminism: Assessing the ‘I’m-Not-a-Feminist-But Syndrome,’” a look at how the term “feminism” became an insult in our society and a label younger women avoid, at noon on March 25 in Wilson-Short Hall, room 333.

– Graduate student Jacquelyn Dumin will present “Creating the Betty Crocker Ideal: Images of Early Cold War Women in Regional Print Media” on March 26 at 12:10 p.m. in CUE 119.

Dumin researches how architecture, print media ads and home economics taught in schools during the early Cold War created a kitchen culture for women. In her presentation she will look at how print advertisements from the Pacific Northwest helped establish the female stereotype of the 1950s—the Betty Crocker ideal.

Brigit Farley, associate professor of history at WSU Tri-Cities, will conclude the series on March 27 at 12:10 p.m. in Wilson-Short Hall, room 333, with her talk “Queen of the Quagmire: Gertrude Bell and the Making of Iraq.”

Farley will talk about Gertrude Bell, the first female to graduate from Oxford with highest honors in history and, as a Middle East specialist, one of the architects of the post–World War I transformation of the old Ottoman Empire to the country of Iraq.

In 1987 Congress passed a bipartisan resolution designating March as Women’s History Month after being lobbied by the National Women’s History Project (NWHP), a grassroots organization formed in Santa Rosa, Calif., to make known and recognize the contributions of women of every race and class that have helped to shape and strengthen this country.

 “In spite of the Chinese saying, ‘Women hold up half the sky,’ women certainly don’t hold half the space in history textbooks, in newspapers, or in our popular media.  Women’s history month is a time to correct that balance, at least a little, by highlighting women’s contributions to history and to society” Armitage said.

The national theme for the 2008 celebration, “Women’s Art: Women’s Vision,” was selected by NWHP to honor the originality, beauty, imagination and multiple dimensions of women’s lives.

For more information, visit http://www.nwhp.org/.