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 Our Slip is Showing: The Status of Women

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Our Slip is Showing

Women across Canada have made some remarkable gains in recent years, with half the provinces, like Newfoundland and Labrador, now headed by a woman premier, and more women than men graduating from our universities and colleges. However, the income gap between rich and poor in Canada and the gender gap between men and women have been widening. The World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report ranks Canada in 20th place in 2013, and the research organization Catalyst gives us a grade of “C.” Come find out more and air your views as academic and activist Dr. Wendy Robbins from UNB, Fredericton, gives a presentation entitled “Our Slip Is Showing” on December 6th.

Programme/Lineup

  • 6:30-6:40: Introduction to and welcome of Dr. Wendy Robbins: Dr. Marie Croll and Dr. Holly Pike
  • 6:40-7:25: Talk/lecture: Dr. Wendy Robbins
  • 7:25-7:45: Introduction to and facilitation of Q and A: Paula Sheppard Thibeau, Executive Director, Corner Brook Status of Women Council (facilitator of Q and A) and respondent (Wendy Robbins)
  • 7:45-8:00: Dr. Sonja Corbin Dwyer “(M)Othering in the Ivory Tower”
  • 8:00-8:10: Thank you: Dr. Shoshannah Ganz and Dr. Stephanie McKenzie
  • 8:10-8:30: Refreshments and mixing

Meet Dr. Wendy Robbins

With degrees from Bishop's and Queen's, and ten years’ experience as an itinerant scholar, Dr. Robbins joined the English Department of the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton in 1984. She became the department's first female full professor and co-founded UNB's Women’s Studies Interdisciplinary Program, which she currently heads. Over the years, she has developed numerous courses on women’s writing and women's studies and has worked to improve the situation of academic women across the country.

In 1995, in the dying days of the Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women, where she was Director of Research, Dr. Robbins co-founded PAR-L, one of the world’s first feminist online discussion lists, which continues today with some 1600 participants. At the turn of the millennium, she started an annual "feminist and equity audit" of Canadian universities. Based on its statistics, she led a successful human rights Complaint against the federal government over discrimination in the Canada Research Chairs Program. She was honoured by Michaelle Jean with a Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case. In 2008, she co-edited Minds of Our Own: Inventing Feminist Scholarship and Women's Studies in Canada and Québec, 1965-1975, with Margrit Eichler, Meg Luxton, and Francine Descarries, a collection of first-person narratives by more than 40 academic activists.

Dr. Robbins was a member of the Expert Panel on Women in University Research, convened by the Council of Canadian Academies at the request of the federal government after the stunning "shut out" of women from the new, but not improved, Canada Excellence Research Chairs program. Dr. Robbins is currently writing a book about academic women in Canada, tentatively called “Roughing It in the Sacred Grove."

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