A new job listing for Portland State University seeks to fill a teaching position with a “practitioner of feminist activism.”
The job listing, which is for the role of “senior instructor” in the university’s “Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies” program, states that they are looking to hire a candidate that is a “practitioner of feminist activism” who focuses particularly on the “feminisms” of women of color.
The department offers two majors, in Women’s Studies and in Sexuality, Gender and Queer Studies. We seek a colleague who is an experienced instructor and practitioner of feminist activism with particular attention to women of color feminisms, reproductive justice, and community-engaged learning. Teaching experience should include women of color feminist theories, contemporary feminist social justice activism, global reproductive justice, and/or introduction to women’s studies, using an intersectional lens of analysis.
The listing goes on to suggest that men would not be equally considered for the position. Why? Because the program is looking to hire someone whose scholarship and activism arises from their “lived experience.” According to the program’s faculty page, the department is staffed primarily with females.
Candidates should have experience teaching students from diverse backgrounds, including first generation students, low-income students, students of color, students with disabilities, and queer, trans, and gender non-conforming students. The department especially values candidates whose teaching, community engagement, and scholarship theorize from lived experience, and whose pedagogy is rooted in intersectional feminist praxis and epistemologies that challenge settler colonialism and white supremacy.
Portland State University is a hotbed for social justice activism. Protesters pulled the fire alarm at a free speech event on campus at the end of May. In February, protesters at the university smashed the sound system at a campus event featuring ex-Google employee James Damore.