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MICA Hosts Capacity Crowd for Constitution Day Panel Focusing on Women's Rights

Angela Davis, Amy Goodman, Helen Molesworth, Sheilah Kast Engage College Community, Visitors

Posted 09.16.09 by MICA Media Relations

Angela Davis, Sheila Kast, Amy Goodman and Helen Molesworth

BALTIMORE--No topic was off limits at MICA's Constitution Day symposium, an event focusing on women's rights that drew a capacity crowd to the College's Falvey Hall on Sept. 12. Moderated by WYPR's Sheilah Kast, panelists Angela Davis, Amy Goodman and Helen Molesworth discussed feminism's connection to healthcare reform, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, wage disparities, the American prison system, and art museum exhibitions and collections.

How Soon Is "Equal Rights Now?" Women's Rights After Women's Lib was co-presented by MICA and the Maryland ACLU. MICA faculty Firmin DeBrabander (language, literature and culture) and the ACLU's Susan Goering argued in their introduction that civil rights advances promised to half the population have not been delivered in full, and are slipping away in many corners.

The panelists seemed to agree.

Molesworth, head of the department of modern and contemporary art and the James R. and Maisie K. Houghton curator of contemporary art at the Harvard Art Museums, said there is one time each year when she feels most like a woman: "when I sit down for my annual review." She urged women to ask for the salaries they believe they deserve and to work against wage disparities between men and women at their places of employment.

Davis, a political activist and university professor who was associated with the Black Panther Party for Self Defense and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, challenged the audience to measure the progress (or lack thereof) of women's liberation by the "progress of those who were much worse off to begin with," like incarcerated women.

Americans have to take back the media, which has been hijacked by corporations, said Amy Goodman, the host/excecutive producer of Democracy Now!, a daily, independent news program. Today's mainstream media leaves out coverage of movements like women's rights, anti-war. etc., she said.

"The airwaves are a national treasure ..." Goodman said. "The media is power, the media is liberation."

After the nearly two hour discussion, audience members lined up to ask questions of the panelists and have their books signed.

Read the Afro's review of the event here.

Image caption: Angela Davis (left) speaks to a capacity crowd at MICA's Constitution Day panel. The panel was moderated by WYPR's Sheilah Kast (l-r) and also featured Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman and art historian and curator Helen Molesworth. Photo by Christopher Myers '94 for MICA.

Founded in 1826, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is the oldest continuously degree-granting college of art and design in the nation. The College enrolls nearly 3,500 undergraduate, graduate and continuing studies students from 49 states and 52 countries in fine arts, design, electronic media, art education, liberal arts, and professional studies degree and non-credit programs. With art and design programs ranked in the top ten by U.S. News and World Report, MICA is pioneering interdisciplinary approaches to innovation, research, and community and social engagement. Alumni and programming reach around the globe, even as MICA remains a cultural cornerstone in the Baltimore/Washington region, hosting hundreds of exhibitions and events annually by students, faculty and other established artists.

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