Fall 2020

Women of Color and the Emergence of U.S. Third World Feminist Left

Listed in: American Studies, as AMST-380  |  History, as HIST-380  |  Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, as SWAG-380

Moodle site: Course


Lili M. Kim (Section 01)


(Offered as HIST 380 [US/TE/TS], AMST 380 and SWAG 380) This research seminar investigates the history of Asian American women and other women of color solidarities and activisms in the emergence of the U.S. Third World Feminist Left during the 1960s and 1970s. This movement saw ending imperialism and colonialism as a necessary part of their fight against racism, sexism, and capitalism in the United States and beyond and drew inspiration from Third World feminism and decolonization activities.  Third World feminism posits that women's activisms in the Third World do not originate from the ideologies of the First World and specifically centers Third World women's radicalism in their local/national contexts and struggles.  Organizations such as the Third World Women’s Alliance (TWWA) in New York City, which grew out of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), brought together Black, Puerto Rican, and Asian American women in the socialist fight to end imperialism, sexism, capitalism, and racism.  The images of revolutionary Third World women engaged in anti-colonial struggles in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East, especially during the Vietnam War era, inspired U.S.-based feminists of color and helped them embrace leftist Third World solidarity politics.  Utilizing the rich archival sources found in the Sophia Smith Collection (TWWA records, Miriam Ching Yoon Louie papers, National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum papers) as well as the Triple Jeopardy newspapers found in the Marshall I. Bloom papers at the Amherst College Archives and Special Collections, students will have an opportunity to work collaboratively to produce a substantial research project.

Enrollment limited to 15 students. Fall semester. Visiting Lecturer Kim.

If Overenrolled: Priority given to history, SWAGS, American Studies majors and other students who can demonstrate how this course fits in with their course of study and interests.


Attention to Issues of Class, Attention to Issues of Gender and Sexuality, Attention to Issues of Race, Attention to Issues of Social Justice, Attention to Research, Attention to Speaking, Attention to Writing, Online Only, Transnational or World Cultures Taught in English


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2020