A celebration of Elena Cornaro Piscopia, the first woman to obtain a doctorate that includes a visiting lecture and an original theater piece by Kairos Italy Theater.

2018 marks the 340th anniversary of the conferring of a doctorate degree to a woman for the first time in history. On June 25th, 1678 Elena Lucrezia Cornaro Piscopia, member of a Venetian patrician family, brilliantly defended her dissertation in front of university professors, political dignitaries, and common folks. This milestone in the history of women’s achievements has been immortalized in the central stained-glass window of the Frederick Ferris Thompson Memorial Library, at Vassar College.


Free public walking tours of Vassar College history to be offered Saturdays in October and November.

Free public walking tours of the architecturally renowned Vassar College campus will be held on two upcoming Saturdays: October 20 and November 3. On each day tours will begin at 10:00am and 1:00pm from the front entrance of the college’s Main Building, and run for approximately 90 minutes. Highlights will include such historic locations as Main Building, Thompson Memorial Library, and the Vassar Chapel.


Roxane Gay, as the 2018 William A. Starr Distinguished Lecturer, will be discussing her best-selling book Bad Feminist.

Roxane Gay is an essayist; contributing opinion writer for the New York Times; best-selling author of numerous books, including Hunger and Difficult Women; and a sought after cultural critic. Her New York Times best-selling book, Bad Feminist, was chosen as the common reading for the Vassar class of 2022. She will present the 2018 William Starr Distinguished Lecture at Vassar College on Wednesday, November 7th starting at 5:30 pm in the Chapel. The title of her talk is “Roxane Gay: With One N."


Join a discussion with James Schamus, award-winning producer, screenwriter, director, former CEO of Focus Features, and professor of film theory.

On October 25th at 5:30PM in the Sanders Classroom Auditorium, James Schamus will deliver “20 Fragments on Entertaining the Algorithm: Trauma, Attention, Narrative, Truth, Choice.” Schamus is a Professor of Film Theory at Columbia University, an award-winning screenwriter (The Ice Storm), producer (Brokeback Mountain), director (Indignation), and former CEO of Focus Features. Schamus’ production company, Symbolic Exchange, produced Kitty Green’s Casting JonBenet and Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire’s A Prayer Before Dawn. Other Symbolic projects include Rhys Ernst’s trans comedy Adam, Noble Jones’s The Tomorrow Man, and Andrew Ahn’s Driveways. This event is free and open to the public.


Linda Fairstein ’69, former sex-crimes prosecutor, wrote a NY Daily News article about the problems of “corroboration” in sexual assault cases.

Mitch McConnell and a cohort of fellow Republican senators announced their plans to vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh for a seat on the Supreme Court despite the compelling statement of Christine Blasey Ford, calling her testimony an “uncorroborated” accusation. Former sex crimes prosecutor Linda Fairstein ’69 explains why the use of that term is inappropriate and offensive.

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Jane Kamensky will discuss her current project, a history of the sexual revolution as revealed by the biography of feminist sex radical Candida Royalle.

Candice Vadala, aka Candida Royalle (1950-2015), worked as a singer and dancer in underground psychedelic theater, as an actress in golden age pornography, and later as a pioneering creator of feminist erotica. But it was her lifelong dedication as an amateur self-archivist, as a pitiless plumber of the self, that most intimately reveals the forces that shaped both her biography and her tumultuous era in history will be held on November, 29th at 5:30PM in Taylor Hall 203.


Vassar receives $2.5 million Mellon Foundation Grant for consortium on forced migration—Bard, Bennington, Sarah Lawrence to share funds

Starting this fall, Vassar will lead a four-college consortium focusing on the global refugee crisis, thanks to a $2.5-million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The grant will support the Consortium on Forced Migration, Displacement and Education, created by Vassar, Bard, Sarah Lawrence and Bennington colleges. The funds, which will be distributed over the next four years, will be used to develop curricula and other programs on the issue of forced migration.

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Tipping Points a juried exhibition by Paul Mpagi Sepuya will be held at the Vassar College James W. Palmer III '90 Gallery with the 2018 Society of Photographic Educators North East Chapter Conference.

Tipping Points - The juried exhibition by Paul Mpagi Sepuya will be held at the Vassar College James W. Palmer III '90 Gallery (College Center) in conjunction with the 2018 Society of Photographic Educators North East Chapter Conference. The show will feature approximately 35 works by photographers from the North East United States, many of them connected to colleges and universities.


Join communities across the United States in a national conversation on China with Vassar Professors and Alumni.

Vassar College will be a local site to host 2018 CHINA Town Hall meeting on October 9th, at 5:30PM in the Villard Room. CHINA Town Hall is a national conversation about China that provides Americans across the United States and beyond the opportunity to discuss issues in the relationship with leading experts. The 12th annual CHINA Town Hall will take place at 90+ venues across the United States and Greater China, and feature Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State and National Security Advisor, as the national webcast speaker.

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