"Abstraction, Belief, Desire" by Pat Steir, 1981

“Abstraction,  Belief, Desire” by Pat Steir, 1981  

Continuities and Changes

The theme of the conference points us to perennial historical issues in two ways. First, after the past forty years of pathbreaking and creative scholarship, is women's history characterized by deep continuities over the very long term, or can we identify sharp turning points? What are the appropriate markers for change in women's history? Is a traditional timeline of history, periodized by political regimes and cultural revolutions, useful for understanding women's lives? Or should women's historians propose a new periodization for human history? A second dimension of our theme looks to the continuities and changes of our interpretations of women's history: how has the field changed? What (if any) have been persistent themes, issues or interpretations? How has interdisciplinary scholarship shaped women’s history, and how has women’s history contributed to discussions in other fields? What issues, challenges, and opportunities are posed by public history or classroom (at any level) audiences?  Special features of the conference include a keynote panel discussion on “Forty Years of Women’s History,” several sessions held at women’s history sites in the Twin Cities including a day-long pre-conference, and a series of sessions designed particularly for K-12 teachers. 

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