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PERC 2012 Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: Authoring Identity Amidst the Treacherous Terrain of Physics: A Multiracial Feminist Examination of the Journeys of Women of Color
Abstract: The study of the identity processes of women of color in science-based fields helps us (a) find ways to support similar women, and (b) study the dynamics of inequity, within and beyond science. Participants in this study (a Black woman, a Latina, and an American Indian woman) survived inadequate high schools and discouraging college science departments to win formal recognition (fellowships, publications). Qualitative methods were designed around multiracial feminist theory and Black feminist precepts of caring and personal accountability, the use of concrete experience and of dialogue. Participants reported conflicts between their identities as women of color and as credible science students, and having racist, sexist identities ascribed to them. All became more adept at fending off negative ascription and all found settings with less identity conflict; their ability to read a situation and quickly adjust helped them survive. But the fact that they needed to do this is unjust.
Abstract Type: Symposium Talk
Targeted Session: Finding a Home for All of Myself: Intersectionality in Identity Formation for Women of Color in Physics

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Angela Johnson
St. Mary's College of Maryland
and Co-Presenter(s)
Jaweer Brown, EngenderHealth;
Heidi Carlone, University of North Carolina at Greensboro;
Azita Cuevas, New York University School of Medicine