The Feminism of Uncertainty: A Gender Diary
Ann Snitow is Associate Professor of Literature and Gender Studies at Lang College, The New School, in New York City. A longtime activist, Snitow has cofounded The Network of East-West Women, No More Nice Girls, and New York Radical Feminists. She has written for The Village Voice, The Nation, The Women’s Review of Books, Dissent, and many other publications, and is coeditor of Powers of Desire: The Politics of Sexuality and The Feminist Memoir Project: Voices from Women's Liberation.
Certainty and Doubt in the Classroom: Teaching Film in Prison
This account of Snitow’s experience teaching film to men of color in a medium security prison raises questions about pedagogy: How can one teach students to observe the complexity of human motive? How can one discuss current structures of male/female relationships without once mentioning the often-suspect word “feminism”? How can one teach at many levels at once: about aesthetics, emotions, self-regulation, politics, oppression, violence? Snitow told skeptical friends: “I want the students to consider the idea that sometimes you hit someone, but really you’re sad.” The piece includes portraits of some of the inmates in the class and describes the changing dynamics of the course, week by week. By the end, most in the group had fused into an intellectual and intimate community, sharing views developed on both sides of the prison fence. The course gave pleasure, one of its chief goals