lgdavis
Email
lgdavis@wpi.edu
Office
Salisbury Labs 210
Phone
+1 (508) 8316368
Affiliated Department or Office
History
Humanities and Arts
Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies
Education
PhD The George Washington University 2018
MA Dartmouth College 2009
BA University of Vermont with Honors 2005

I am a broadly trained interdisciplinary scholar of 19th and 20th American history and critical feminist studies. Along with Dr. Rebecca Moody, I serve as the co-founder and co-director of the Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies (GSWS) program. My scholarly and pedagogical interests vary widely, ranging from reproductive justice to sexual harassment law to the intersection of feminist theory and STEM. 

In the classroom, I teach a variety of history courses on late 19th and 20th century American social, cultural, and legal history, including "Race, Gender, and the Law," "Introduction to US Histories of Power and Protest," and "Topics in US Social History." As the director of the GSWS program, I teach a number of the program's core courses, including "Introduction to Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies" and, perhaps my favorite course, "STEM-inism." This course highlights the concepts, theories, and practices of feminism into its understanding of STEM-inism as a field of inquiry. It allows students of all identities to explore their own relationships to their fields of study and their future professions as well as analyze broader dynamics of power in specific industries and STEM disciplines. Finally, my inquiry seminars explore a range of topics, often influenced by student interests. Past and current seminars include "The Power of Manifestos," "Prison Films," "Feminist Movements," "Africana Studies," and "Queer Cinema." 

As a humanities professor at a STEM school, I have a unique opportunity to approach my teaching with a surprising amount of creativity and freedom. As a result, I view teaching as a true two-way (or even multi-directional) street; I love that I can listen to and respond to the interests of my students and offer classes that speak to their interests and their academic as well as professional needs. Several of my courses - STEM-inism, Queer Cinema, Mental Health - have stemmed from conversations with students about what they were missing.

My current project, tentatively titled "Tender Capitalism: Female Empowerment Coaches and the Commodification of Feminism, Friendship, and Freedom," explores the complex histories and impacts of white feminism in the context of the life coaching industry, examining the rapid rise of an unregulated and under-explored profession and analyzing its subtle utilization of neoliberal and white supremacist tropes to promote "wellness" and personal growth. My previous work on feminist pedagogy and methodologies has been published in Feminist Formations and Women's Studies Quarterly. I've also presented my work at the American Studies Association (ASA), American Association of Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), Modern Languages Association (MLA), and National Women's Studies Association (NWSA) conferences. 

I also have the good fortune to work alongside a talented, multidisciplinary group of scholars at WPI, including Francesca Bernardi (MA), Crystal Brown (SSPS), and Raisa Trubko (PH), exploring questions about student feelings of inclusion and belong as well as syllabus inclusivity. In this capacity, along with Rebecca Moody, I have led pedagogical workshops for STEM departments on syllabus inclusivity and teaching strategies to increase student feelings of belonging. 

Finally, I serve as the Inclusion Partner for the College of Arts & Sciences, acting as a liaison for WPI's Sustainable Inclusive Excellence plan. I also co-chair the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (DEIB) committee for the Department of Humanities & Arts. 

In my free time, I enjoyed collecting and cooking from a wide variety of cookbooks, cold plunging, and solving the New York Times crossword puzzle.

 

 

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 5: Gender Equality - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

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SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities - Reduce inequality within and among countries

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Scholarly Work

“The Politics of the Personal Essay: Reading Adrienne Rich in the Women’s and Gender Studies Classroom,” Feminist Formations 32, no. 1 (Spring 2020): 137-158.

“Stretching and Strategizing: Refashioning Queer Studies From the Outside In,” Women’s Studies Quarterly 50, no. 3/4 (Fall 2022): 282-285. 

“Liberation By Any Means Necessary”: The Revolutionary Writing of Angela Davis,” in Resisting Injustice: Contemporary Views on Angela Davis, ed. Sharon Lynette Jones (forthcoming)

Professional Highlights & Honors
Winner of the Romeo L. Moruzzi Young Faculty Award for Innovation in Undergraduate Education, 2023