WOW Panelists, 2013

Women on Wednesday

Women on Wednesday is a weekly noon-hour lecture series organized each semester by the Women’s Center that has become a signature program at St. Cloud State University. The goal of the program is to feature diverse women and their distinctive areas of expertise, which are figuratively and literally all over the map.  The topics we explore are as diverse as the women presenting them, but they address the political, economic, social and personal arenas that impact the status of women.

The 25-year old series originated as an informal brown bag lunch gathering and has evolved over the years to a more formal presentation-style series, bringing intelligent, savvy women from the local to the national level to speak to our campus community. The series is held in the Atwood Theatre in Atwood Memorial Center, from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. most Wednesdays throughout fall and spring semesters.  Admission is free and open to the public. 

The Women’s Center will celebrate 25 years on the campus of St. Cloud State University during the 2014/15 Academic Year.  The Women’s Center was born from activism of faculty, staff and students in direct and indirect ways and through persistence and passion for feminist-led social change.  Our mission to advance women and address gender inequity is accomplished in myriad ways, including advocacy (both individual and institutional), support services, educational programming, scholarships and systems change. Having an institutionally-supported office to help students (and employees) explore and address the ways in which gender influences every aspect of one’s life exists for only 18% of students at four-year universities and colleges in the U.S. It is in this context that the Fall 2014 Women on Wednesday series has been organized.

We explore the following questions: What are some of the most important issues that have impacted student’s lives in relationship to gender over the past 25 years?  What impact has the work of the Women’s Center had on individual students who worked, interned, volunteered or in some way affiliated with the Women’s Center?  What would St. Cloud State University look and be like without the Women’s Center. Who are some of our feminist leaders today?

The Women’s Center has hosted more than 750 women from all walks of life, areas of expertise, diverse identities and life experiences over the past 25 years.  There is no way to avoid the word “wow” upon reviewing the women who have presented and topics we’ve addressed.  Please join us at Women on Wednesday during the 2014/15 academic year as we continue to offer this unique and interesting forum for women’s voices.

Current Series

Fall 2014 Series Poster

Fall 2014 Series Booklet (Includes Session Descriptions and Speaker Bios)

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Pornland: How the Porn Industry has Hijacked Our Sexuality
Film and Discussion


Pornography has moved from the margins of society into the very mainstream of American culture. From Internet pornography to MTV, pop culture industries bombard us with sexualized images of idealized women and men that jump off the screen and into our lives, shaping our gender identities, our body image, and especially our intimate relationships. In this multimedia presentation based on her acclaimed book, leading anti-porn feminist and scholar Gail Dines argues that the dominant images and stories disseminated by the multibillion-dollar pornography industry produce and reproduce a gender system that undermines equality and encourages violence against women. In direct opposition to claims that porn has delivered a more liberated, edgy sexuality, Dines reveals a mass-produced vision of sex that is profoundly sexist and destructive - a vision that limits our ability to create authentic, equal relationships free of violence and degradation.

* Film contains explicit/violent content; suitable only for voluntary viewers over 18 years of age.

Filmmaker Info

A Media Education Foundation (MEF) Production written by Gail Dines and edited by Jason Young & Sut Jhally

Praise for the Film

"Dines understands both the economics and cultural power of the pornography industry perhaps better than anyone ever has."
- Jackson Katz | Author of The Macho Paradox: Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help

"If you think you know what pornography is -- a fantasy, a joke, perhaps gross but ultimately harmless, something that's 'always been with us' -- think again. Pornland is a stunning documentary, solid in its facts about what porn is now, unflinching in its presentation of them, yet restrained in its tone. Gail Dines is remarkably compassionate to the users, men and boys whose humanity is warped by the sophisticated, corporatized, immense power and money of today's sex industry. Women, men, parents -- ignore this brilliant film at your peril."
- Robin Morgan | Author, activist, and internationally renowned speaker

"For two decades, Gail Dines has been the leading feminist critic of an increasingly cruel and degrading pornography industry. This video demonstrates why her work is more important than ever. Dines' analysis helps us understand not just pornography but a pornographic culture that poses very real threats to girls and women, and exacerbates the worst sexist ideas of boys and men. Pornland gives us the tools to confront the toxic elements of popular culture, and challenges all of us to not back down."
- Robert Jensen | Professor of Journalism at the University of Texas

"This film featuring Gail Dines is a must see for anyone honestly interested understanding the porn industry and the pornification of culture. Gail's work has already transformed how many men and women think about the impact of pornography and helped change the framing of porn as "harmless" "just sex" to a major public health concern that has fused sex with violence. This film is a brilliant tool capturing some of Dines strongest points paired with images and footage that will not only increase viewers awareness but move them to take action."
- Cordelia Anderson, M.A. | Founder of Sensibilities Prevention Services | Author of Impact of Pornography on Children, Youth and Culture


Women on Wednesday Recordings - Fall 2014
September 17, 2014 From Zero to 40: Fighting Rape on Campus  
September 24, 2014 ExTermination: Abortion and Genocide MP3
October 1, 2014 Diversity Efforts to build bridges MP3
October 15, 2014 Intersectionality: Ethnic/Cultural Women at the Center  
October 22, 2014 Putting Queer Theory to Work: Activist Lesson from the Field and Classroom MP3
October 29, 2014 From the Closet to a Center: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Services on Campus MP3
October 30, 2014 Special Event: Speaking of Justice MP3
November 5, 2014 College to Career: One Woman's Journey MP3
November 12, 2014 Women in the Vanguard: Overcoming Gender-Barriers in the Workplace  
November 19, 2014 Four Generations of Title XI: Personal Stories of Women Athletes  
December 3, 2014 Pornland: How the Porn Industry has Hijacked Our Sexuality (Film and Discussion) MP3