“Growing the Groundswell”

Registration is now closed for our 2017 Symposium in Philadelphia,  “Mythology, Women and Society:  Growing the Groundswell.”

We will meet at Pendle Hill Retreat Center for a program of scholarship and arts, and a community conversation about women, society and justice:

Our schedule includes such topics as The Mothers of #Black Lives Matter, Biblical heroines and queer theory, Algerian mythology, Eco-Justice, Hildegard von Bingen and Anatolian Great Mothers.

Come early on Friday for interest groups discussions about film and intuitive knowledge, and other topics of interest.  Those who register may apply for our Marketplace.

Update: Interest Groups will meet at 7:30 Friday evening, in the Brinton House

  1.  Film and Filmmakers will meet Friday evening.  They will offer a special screening of “As She Is,” a new film by Megan McFeely, who will participate in the group’s conversation about the feminine principle and individual power for change.  This is an authentic and beautiful documentary about a woman’s real quest into the unconscious to claim what was missing..to integrate the masculine with the feminine and give birth to herself. 
  2. Nondominant Ways of Knowing:  Intuition and Divination.  This group will consider the relationship between our women’s wisdom, intuition, and methods to divine insight.  Nancy Vedder-Shults will be on hand to discuss her new book, The World Is Your Oracle.
  3. Chant, Song, and (maybe) Dancing:  This group will get us centered through bringing our voices together. Weather permitting, we will meet outside where we can dance together.

For more information contact our Events team.

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About Our First Publication: Myths Shattered and Restored”

ASWM Anthology

The Association for the Study of Women and Mythology (ASWM) is  delighted to announce the publication of the first of our conference and symposia Proceedings anthology, Myths Shattered and Restored.   This anthology, edited by Marion Dumont and Gayatri Devi, features essays in archaeomythology, place-based wisdom of indigenous peoples, feminist and goddess-centered reworkings of western myths, the Dianic tradition, essays on cross-cultural investigations into goddess myths, and collective goddess deities, to list a few of the themes and topics explored in this collection.  As the Introduction says,

Today’s history becomes tomorrow’s myths. This exceptional collection of essays is a valued contribution toward contemporary feminist and womanist efforts to re-cover the herstory of mythology and to ensure that today’s herstory is not forsaken in tomorrow’s myths. The writings presented in this volume serve to strengthen and support the circle of women and men who share a scholarly passion for sacred myths about women.

Authors include Mara Lynn Keller, Joan Cichon, Arieahn Matamonasa-Bennett, Alexandra Cichon, Mary Beth Moser, Denise Saint Arnault, April Heaslip, Alexis Martin Faaberg, Natasha Redina, Savithri Shanker de Tourreil, Gayatri Devi, and Dawn Work-Makinne.

Purchase Myths Shattered and Restored at  Amazon or Goddess Ink

Posted in ASWM, Calls for Submissions, Publication, Research & Scholarship Tagged with: , , , , , ,

Pendle Hill evaluation 2017

                 PENDLE HILL  PARTICIPANT EVALUATION FORM

 

CONFERENCE TITLE:___________________________________________________________

NAME (optional):________________________________________________________________

DATES: ________________________   MEETING SPACE:_____________ BEDROOM #______

 

As a participant, my overall experience/impression of the Customer Service at Pendle Hill was: (please circle one number, with 1 being very poor and 10 being amazing)

 

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Please explain ________________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

 Please evaluate the level and quality of support you received from Pendle Hill.

    (Use the reverse side to continue your responses if necessary).

  1. Arrival

        Were you warmly greeted and given adequate information at the Pendle Hill orientation?

____________________________________________________________________________

Was the Pendle Hill orientation presented clearly? _______________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

         Was your personal room clean, orderly, and welcoming? __________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

         Did you get clear answers to your questions? ___________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________2. Support

        Requests handled courteously and expeditiously? ________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

        Were your facilities kept clean and tidy? ________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

        Comments on the meeting space, dining room, common areas and other Pendle Hill facilities?

____________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

Continued on the other side.

Comments on your bedroom and bath. ________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

        Comments on the teas, refreshments, snacks, if applicable.________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________

Comments on the food preparation and service__________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Were you given adequate departure support from Pendle Hill?  _____________________________________________________________

 

  1.  Things that Pendle Hill could have done better to facilitate your participation in your conference?

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  1.  Other comments. ___________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________  

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2017 Symposium Abstracts & Schedule

Abstracts 2017 symposium

2017 Schedule for Website

 

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Dr. Peggy Sanday To Explore Concept of “Matrixial” Cultures

“The Matrixial Foundation of Maternal Cultural Meanings in Myth and Ritual”

Keynote Presentation, ASWM 2017 Symposium

 

Minangkabau Women, via Indonesian Tourism Forum

Minangkabau Women, by Indonesian Tourism Forum

“In my long term study of and stay with the matrilineal Minangkabau of West Sumatra, Indonesia—off and on between the years l981 and 2007—I found that women have a social value and structural importance in the historical continuity of  their culture that is observable today in their individual autonomy and collective identity. The same is true of adult men, who reside with their wives while carrying out life-long social responsibilities to their maternal family.  This matrilineal society tends toward gender equality rather than gender (including male) dominance.

“The question I raise in this presentation is: What encourages the relative stability of this and other matrilineal egalitarian socio-cultural systems?  

Mosuo Women, via Chinancient

Mosuo Women, via Chinancient

“I address this question by reference to the symbolic similarities in the origin stories of selected matrilineal societies including the Minangkabau and the matrilineal Mosuo of China, whom I visited briefly at the end of 2016. In doing so I introduce a new term–“Matrixial”–that was coined by the Israeli scholar/artist Bracha Ettinger.

“This term challenges Freud’s concept of ” the “phallic” as a universal phase in psycho-social development.  (If this were the case, all societies should be male dominant, but as I have shown elsewhere they are not.) Ettinger’s concept helps us to appreciate the tremendous variation in human socio-cultural systems along with environment, history, food source and other factors, which have a profound impact on the organization of societies and on cross-cultural understandings.”

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Lisa Levart Presents “Art, Activism, and the Goddess”

Lisa Levart by_Myles_Aronowitz

Lisa Levart, by Myles Aronowitz

My own creative activism stands on shoulders of the feminist artists of the 1970’s.  Even after more than a decade of creating art that celebrates the divine feminine, it is my unshakable conviction that without imagery and words that reflect our female experience of the Divine, contemporary women will never see themselves for all their diversity, complexity and most powerful selves.

Lisa Levart is an award winning photographer and contributor to the Huffington Post, where she explores art, the divine feminine, women’s empowerment, and justice. Since 2001, Lisa has traveled across America creating portraits of women who are part of the rapidly growing Earth-centered spirituality movement, casting real women leaders as goddesses and heroines.

Brooke Medicine Eagle Photo by Lisa Levart

Brooke Medicine Eagle by Lisa Levart

Her book “Goddess on Earth, Portraits of the Divine Feminine” won the GOLD Nautilus Book Award in 2012. Goddess on Earth is also a traveling, multi-media installation that has been seen in a variety of venues across America. Lisa’s photographs have appeared in Fast Company, New York Magazine, Oprah Magazine, Time Magazine, The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Her passion includes photographing and supporting Maloto; a non- profit organization in Africa that helps feed and educate the women and children in northern Malawi.

Lisa’s special presentation for ASWM’s 2017 Symposium is “Art, Activism and the Goddess Movement.” Lisa will discuss and show the work of several feminist artists who have used Goddess imagery as an affirmation of female power and independence.

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2017 Symposium Presenter: Annie Finch

Annie-Finch-midview-fire-with-Spells-1-1024x737

We are a tribal species, meant to live in tribes.  At this point, anything that reminds us of our connection with each other is healing, and poetry can do that, through the meter and through the language and through the imagery. The combination of those three things is literally magical, I think.  It can change energy, it can change reality.

Annie Finch is an award-winning poet, performer, editor, critic, teacher, nonfiction writer, and verse playwright. She is the author of more than twenty books and chapbooks of poetry, plays, translation, literary essays, textbooks and anthologies.  The most recent of her six books of poetry is Spells: New and Selected Poems (Wesleyan University Press, 2013).

Annie’s poems have appeared in journals including Kenyon Review, Harvard Review, Paris ReviewPartisan Review, Poetry, Agni, Jacket, Fulcrum, Prairie Schooner, and Yale Review, and in anthologies such as The Norton Anthology of World PoetryThe Penguin Book of the Sonnet, and The Penguin Book of Twentieth-Century American Poetry.

Her collection Calendars (2003) was shortlisted for the Foreword Poetry Book of the Year Award, and Eve reissued in the Carnegie Mellon Classic Contemporaries series in 2010. Other honors include the Robert Fitzgerald Award and the Sarasvati Award for Poetry.

Posted in Arts, ASWM, Conferences & Symposia Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2017 Presentations: “Interactive Writing Ritual” with Annie Finch

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Among the Goddesses:

Interactive Writing Ritual for Healing and Justice

This interactive writing ritual is designed “to provide participants with closure and catharsis as we synthesize the gifts of the 2017 ASWM program through imaginative transformation. We will open by invoking goddesses of chaos, loss, mourning, justice, transformation, and peace.”  After the invocation, participants will be guided in a three part writing ritual of naming, releasing, and healing, designed to shift our stories into narratives of power. Our final group ritual will weave sacred dance, circling, drumming, and chanting with the words we have written, offering a focused and inspiring doorway out of the symposium into the rest of the world.  Please bring writing implements and any ceremonial attire you desire.

Annie Finch is a an award-winning poet, writer, and performer. Her many books of poetry and poetics include Spells: New and Selected Poems; Eve; and Among the Goddesses, awarded the 2010 Sarasvati Award in Poetry from ASWM.  Her column on woman-centered spirituality appears regularly in The Huffington Post, and she is currently completing her next book, A Witch’s Way.  Subscriptions to Annie’s Spells and Poetry Witch Musings are available at anniefinch.com.

 

Posted in Arts, ASWM, Conferences & Symposia Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,

Join Us at Pendle Hill for 2017 Symposium

Pendle Hill is a Quaker study, retreat, and conference center located in Wallingford, Pennsylvania, just outside Philadelphia.

Pendle Hill was established in 1930 as a Quaker study center designed to prepare its adult students for service both in the Religious Society of Friends and in the world. The founders envisioned the new school as “a vital center of spiritual culture” and “a place for training leaders.”

Today, Pendle Hill continues to be a vibrant experiment in adult religious education, through its conferences, publications, and online resources. At the heart of its programs are the foundational principles of “equality of opportunity and respect for individuals, simplicity of the educational and material environment, harmony of inward and outward actions, community in daily life and in the seeking of the Spirit.”

 

Brinton_House-670x445Our 2017 symposium sessions will take place in the historic Brinton House, overlooking the woods and pond, and located a short walk from the Main House where our meals will take place. Pendle Hill is located on 23 beautiful acres of grounds. We encourage you to come early to enjoy walking the mile long woodchip trail, through “miniature ecosystems” with140 species of trees and flowering shrubs.

Pendle Hill is located just outside Philadelphia, easy to reach by car, train, or plane. It’s a Five-minute drive from Media and Swarthmore College and 20 minutes from Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges.

 

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Anna Crusis Women’s Choir to Perform at 2017 Symposium

ANNABanner1215_0

At our 2017 symposium, ASWM members will be treated to a special concert by the Anna Crusis Women’s Choir (ANNA), Philadelphia’s own feminist choir.   We will also recognize the long time work of ANNA by presenting them with the 2017 Brigit Award for Excellence in the Arts. For over 40 years, the Choir has empowered, challenged and uplifted audiences with music that inspires, provokes, delights and informs.

ANNA is a premier performing arts group in the greater Philadelphia region, supporting critical causes including promoting peace, guarding reproductive rights, ending poverty, achieving gender equality, supporting the LGBTQ community, fighting rape and abuse – anywhere that music can bring a sense of empowerment.

At the same time, ANNA is committed to musical excellence and to the creation of new music by commissioning works from women composers. They have performed at such diverse venues as Carnegie Hall, the Tannenbaum Center for Interreligious Education at the United Nations, and the Women’s Rights Convention at Seneca Falls, NY. Their songs unite women of all economic backgrounds, sexual orientations, ages, and racial and religious heritages.  In their own words:

We believe in using music as a force for social change. We often focus our vision on women’s issues and lives in all of our diversity. We create an open and welcoming space for people who love lifting their voices in song and who share the belief that music is the currency of hope.

Posted in Arts, Awards, Events Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Dr Elinor Gadon Receives Demeter Award in 2016

E Gadon Photo 2

At our 2016 Conference, the ASWM Board of Directorspresented Dr. Elinor Gadon with the Demeter Award for Leadership in Women’s Spirituality.* The award recognizes Dr. Gadon’s lifetime contribution to understanding the cultural and visual history of religion and myth.

With this Award, we honor and cherish her long career of feminist scholarship, education, and inspiration for generations of women artists. As an art historian specializing in Indian art and beyond. Dr. Gadon has analyzed myth and visual imagery in their cultural context and has provided an informed transmission of images related to the sacred feminine and women’s experience.

Her 1989 book, The Once and Future Goddess: A Symbol for Our Time, is a visual chronicle of the history of the sacred female and her re-emergence in the cultural mythology of our time. This work introduced scholars, feminists, artists and interested women to the astounding array of images of the female divine, culled through rigorous research from cultures across history, up to and including the work of contemporary women artists. This ground-breaking beginning was followed by numerous articles and lectures across the globe about art, gender, and the goddess, especially in India.

The award honors her widespread teaching and lectures at universities and conferences across the globe. Through scholarly publications, lectures, and curation, Dr. Gadon has contributed her expertise on religion and gender to wider international audiences. Her leadership also includes training the next generation; she founded the first graduate program on Women’s Spirituality.

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*In a break with tradition, this year’s award was also awarded to Dr.Gadon’s good friend Dr. Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum..

Posted in ASWM, Awards, Research & Scholarship Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,

Dr. Lucia Birnbaum Receives 2016 Demeter Award

Dr. Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum

Dr. Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum

Alice Walker, author of The Color Purple, says of Dr. Lucia Chiavola BirnbaumYou are one of the most forward thinking, history conscious, and integrative thinkers… You are doing the work that truly turns the tide.”

In a break with tradition, the ASWM Board of Directors awarded both Dr. Birnbaum and Dr. Elinor Gadon the 2016 Demeter Award for Leadership in Women’s Spirituality. Dr. Birnbaum was honored in recognition of decades of visionary scholarship as a Founding Mother of Feminist Spirituality, Cultural History and Political Awareness. Her continuing intellectual leadership ,as a cultural historian, educator and mentor, focuses on questions about the origins of submerged cultures.

Beginning over thirty years ago with the English and Italian publications of Liberazione della donna: Feminism in Italy (1986, l988), and Black Madonnas: Feminism, religion, and politics in Italy (1993), Dr. Birnbaum’s work has enlightened and continues to inspire readers with knowledge concerning the hidden herstory of our quintessential African cultural heritage and foremothers.   Incorporating knowledge from history, anthropology, and genetics, she examines the transformative power of the image of the primordial Dark Mother and female divinity that was carried out of Africa on waves of human migration.

Read more ›

Posted in ASWM, Awards, Research & Scholarship Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,
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