School of Public and International Affairs presents

Fall 2015 Symposium

Sexual Violence: Community, National, and Global Dimensions

The speakers, films, and panels in this symposium will explore the problem of sexual violence at the community, national, and global, level, highlight the impact of social inequality and culture on perceptions of sexual violence and victimization narratives, introduce and evaluate prevention and intervention strategies for sexual violence and contribute to building a capacity for effective response.

See our flyer!

Roundtables, Panels, and Workshops:

Roundtable: Tuesday, October 13, Taylor 306, 4:00 pm

Teaching and Learning About Sexual Violence

In this faculty roundtable on Scholarship and Teaching, faculty from Justice Studies, Political Science, and other academic departments will present overviews of how their teaching and research address sexual violence. The goal of the roundtable is to highlight the range of issues relevant to the study and teaching of sexual violence and build connections among those interested in sexual violence among students and faculty. Topics discussed will include sexual assault as a component of exposure to violence, sexual assault in prison, and other relevant topics.

Faculty Brown Bag: Tuesday, October 20, Taylor 404 12:30-2pm

Sexual Violence: Faculty Resources

This panel discussion for faculty and staff is designed to answer questions and concerns and facilitate discussion about addressing sexual violence on campus; the panel will explore issues such as Title IX responsibilities, resources for faculty and students, supporting students, and identifying high risk populations. Panelists include Liz Howley, Assistant Director of Sexual Violence, Advocacy and Prevention; James Robinson, Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity; Chris Ehrhart, Assistant Director of the LGBT & Ally Education Program, Leslie Gerrard, Counseling Center Staff Psychologist and Sexual Trauma Empowerment Program (STEP) Coordinator, Teresa Gonzalez, Title IX Officer for Faculty, and other campus leaders.

Panel: Thursday, October 29 Taylor 306, 3:30-6:00 pm

Faculty Panel on Films

In this panel discussion, faculty from Justice Studies, Political Science, and other units on campus will discuss how sexual violence is portrayed in films. Commentaries will cover both the three films that are part of this symposium as well as others. Changes over time, points of similarity, differences, and omissions will be highlighted. The audience will be encouraged to participate in these discussions and presenting their assessment of how sexual violence is portrayed in films on this topic.

Workshop: Monday, November 2 Taylor 306 3:30-6:00 PM

The Collins Center & Child Advocacy Center

Facilitated by Dr. Peggy Plass

Representatives from The Collins Center will be speaking about local initiatives in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County designed to respond to sexual violence experienced by adults and children. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and participate in a conversation about the ways in which our local community can best respond to the needs of survivors of this type of violence.

Satellite Presentation: Tuesday, November 17 Taylor 306 12:30-1:30 pm

Sexual Violence in South Eastern Europe

Dr. Julia Sardelic, Max Weber Postdoctoral Fellow at the European University Institute

Even though sexual violence has been used as a weapon of war for time immemorial, it has only been spotlighted and actively stigmatized for the past few decades. Much of the change in the international community's approach to wartime and post-conflict sexual violence has been driven by gruesome publicity that came out of the wars of Yugoslav succession in south eastern Europe. Dr. Sardelic will note points of continuity and discontinuity between wartime sexual violence and pre-conflict/post-conflict gender relations.

Visiting Scholars

Walter DeKeseredy: Ending Campus Sexual Violence: How Research on Men Can Help Inform Best Practices and Policies

Wednesday, October 7 Harrison 2105 6:30 pm

UPDATE: the correct location is Harrison 1261 

Dr. DeKeseredy is Anna Deane Endowed Chair of Social Sciences, Professor of Sociology and Director of the Research Center on Violence at West Virginia University. He has published 19 books and over 130 journal articles and book chapters on violence against women and other social problems. Among his many awards are the 2008 Linda Saltzman Memorial Intimate Partner Violence Research Award.

Aisling Swaine: Bringing Women, Peace, and Security, into Focus: Best Practices for Responding to Conflict-Related Sexual Violence

Thursday, November 12 Harrison 2105 6:30 pm

Dr. Swaine is Associate Professor of Practice in International Affairs, Elliot School of International Affairs, George Washington University. Dr. Swaine has spent over 14 years working at grass-roots as well as international policy levels on issues of women, peace and security, gender equality and gender-based violence (GBV) related to armed conflict, humanitarian and development settings.

Visiting Scholars sponsored by the CAL Visiting Scholars Program and co-sponsored with the CAL Diversity Council.


The Mask You Live In: Tuesday, September 29 Grafton-Stovall, 6:30 pm

The Mask You Live In follows boys and young men as they struggle to stay true to themselves while negotiating America's narrow definition of masculinity. Pressured by the media, their peer group, and even the adults in their lives, our protagonists confront messages encouraging them to disconnect from their emotions, devalue authentic friendships, objectify and degrade women, and resolve conflicts through violence. These gender stereotypes interconnect with race, class, and circumstance, creating a maze of identity issues boys and young men must navigate to become "real" men. Experts in neuroscience, psychology, sociology, sports, education, and media also weigh in, offering empirical evidence of the "boy crisis" and tactics to combat it. The Mask You Live in ultimately illustrates how we, as a society, can raise a healthier generation of boys and young men.

Discussion after the film

The Hunting Ground: Monday October 26 Grafton-Stovall 6:30 pm

From the makers of The Invisible War (2012) comes a startling expose of rape crimes on U.S. college campuses, their institutional cover-ups, and the devastating toll they take on students and their families. Weaving together verite footage and first-person testimonies, the film follows the lives of several undergraduate assault survivors they attempt to pursue-despite incredible push back, harassment, and traumatic aftermath-both their education and justice.

Film website:

Discussion following the film

Co-Sponsored by the University Program Board and The School of Writing, Rhetoric, and Technical Communication

Sex and Money: Monday, November 16, Grafton-Stovall 6:30 pm

Sex and Money: A National Search for Human Worth is a feature length documentary that follows a group of photojournalists as they travel in an RV on their second journey, this time across the United States, seeking to understand how the sexual exploitation of children has become the nation's fastest growing form of organized crime and what can be done to stop it. The goal of the Sex and Money documentary is to bring freedom to those enslaved.

Discussion after the film

Also of Interest...

Dominion Lecture

The New Networked Campus Anti-Rape Movement

Presented by Dr. Caroline Heldman

Monday, September 14 7:00 pm Festival Highlands Room

Reception following in the same location

Dr. Heldman will discuss the campus sexual assault epidemic and new efforts to combat it. She will examine the brief history of the new Campus Anti-Rape Movement and what is has accomplished since is inception in 2013. This lecture will emphasize best practices for activists who are interested in shifting rape culture on college campuses. Sponsored by The Madison Caucus for Gender Equality.

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