History Lecture Series

Challenging Gender

The 2019 History Lecture Series

Throughout the ages and around the globe, history has been shaped by those who dared to defy. Four UW faculty members shine a spotlight on those who challenged gender expectations and changed the cultural landscape.

Wednesday evenings, Jan. 9–30. All lectures begin at 7:30 p.m. and will be held in Kane Hall 130 (directions and parking information).

Series Pass (4 lectures)
General Public: $50
UWAA/UWRA member/Veteran: $40
Student: $15

Individual Lectures
General public: $15
UWAA/UWRA member/Veteran: $12
Current UW students: $5

Video will be posted after each lecture; links will be provided as they become available. Meanwhile, you can watch the 2017 and 2018 History Lecture Series videos online here.


The 2019 History Lecture Series speakers have each selected short lists of books and other media to enhance the lecture experience and inspire further exploration. Many of the books are available at University Book Store, where UWAA members enjoy a 10% discount. Download a printable recommended reading list for all lectures here.


Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019

Maids in Men’s Clothes: Joan of Arc and the Tradition of Female Saints

Charity Urbanski,Senior Lecturer of History, UW
Wearing men’s clothing protected Joan of Arc on the battlefield and exposed her to charges of heresy in the courts. Urbanski will explore why female saints who dressed as men for practicality and power were celebrated in certain circumstances – and punished in others.


Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019

Catherine the Great: Gendering Sovereignty in 18th-Century Russia

Elena Campbell, Associate Professor of History, UW

Catherine the Great wrested the crown away from her husband to rule over a deeply patriarchal society. Campbell discusses how Catherine used her gender as part of her political persona to attain and maintain power.


Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2019

Switching Gender: Love, Desire, and Ethical Debates in Mughal India

Purnima Dhavan, Associate Professor of History, UW

Why would a male poet talk in a female voice? Explore how Mughal poets used themes of love and desire to define a spiritually grounded life and explore gendered conduct in ways that still resonate today.


Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019

Women of the 1960s: Betty Friedan, Janis Joplin, Angela Davis

William Rorabaugh, Professor of History, UW

Three American women helped shape the Sixties, even as the decade shaped them. Discover the story of this tumultuous time through the experiences of feminist author Betty Friedan, counterculture icon Janis Joplin and radical African American intellectual Angela Davis.


UWAA and UWRA members receive discounts and advance registration for lectures.

Not a UWAA member? Join today!

For more information, contact the UW Alumni Association at 206-543-0540 or uwalumni@uw.edu.