Vassar College Digital Library

Institutional Repository

Vassar College's institutional repository reflects the research and scholarly output of the Vassar College community.  It provides access to many collections, including a variety of senior theses and projects from disciplines ranging from American Culture to Urban Studies. 

In early 2022 Vassar College Libraries moved the institutional repository from Digital Window to the Vassar College Digital Library. This new method of access is a work in progress and will be officially launched in June 2022. The original Digital Window will remain accessible through July 1, 2022. 

American Jewish Summer Camp: Changing Identity in Community

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

I will explore how Eden Village Camp serves as a model of positive Jewish identity formation. Jewish identity is inherently dependent on social relationships, and Jewish summer camp provides a breeding ground of socialization where interactions happen in an intense...

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Assata Shakur: Embracing Community

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

Assata Shakur is a 65-year-old revolutionary. During the 1960s, Assata Shakur was a member of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army. However, on May 2, 2013, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), placed Assata Shakur on the...

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Black Women on the White Screen: How American Popular Culture affects the Visuality of the Black Female Body

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

In the past, poignant controlling images and stereotypes have run prevalent in the American historical framework. However, these tropes are routinely challenged by black feminists and black entertainers in contemporary popular culture. This thesis will garner a comprehensive analysis of...

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Catching Herself In the Middle: How Chinese-American Adoptees and Their Parents Construct Narrative and Ethnic Identity

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

Since 1992, over 85,000 children have been adopted from China by U.S. citizens (Miller-Loessi and Kilic 2001:246; U.S. Department of State 2013). Most of these adoptees are girls. They were abandoned as infants due the combined factors of patrilineal culture...

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Critiquing Institutional Diversity: Ethnic Minorities' Racial Identity Formations in Ideological and Physical Counter-Spaces

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

The term diversity within institutions has been used as a selling point for colleges and universities. Verbally, institutions pride themselves in committing to increasing 'diversity'. But what happens after more students of color enter historically White- serving institutions? Through a...

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Finding Feminism: The Ideologies of Hip-Hop from Black Women in Spaces of Higher Education

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

Hip-hop is the most affluent subset of Black Culture today. The globalization and mass appeal of hip-hop has made this genre bigger than music; it's style, it's dance, it's art, and even literature. Hip-Hop music is a genre that is...

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Formations of Queer Diaspora: Trauma and Empire

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

This thesis project is explores the contours of nation-state violence and the trauma-inflicted upon deviant populations transnationally. I will explore how fluid, relational experiences with violence evoke transnational diasporic formations which can begin to be actualized when we consider their...

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From Alternative to Integrative: An Exploration of Acupuncture Within the Western Medical Paradigm

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

I argue that our current health care system—which is based in Western medicine—is inadequate, not only because it is costly, but because it is failing to keep individuals healthy. I posit that this is due to a number of factors...

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Histories of Color in Critical Pedagogy: The Collective Re-Memory of Trauma and Resistance

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

In this paper I analyze learning communities of color of the past and present and how they resist the dominant White narratives of racial progress and consensus in their social studies teaching, both in curricula and in praxis/structure. I will...

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Individualization and Collectivity in Networks of Discursive Cyberspace: A case study on reddit

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

The diminishing of temporal and spatial boundaries in the contemporary age of connectivity has fully realized Beck, Giddens and Nash's "reflexive" modernity. This reflexive modernity refers to the diminishing control of traditional institutions on individual lives. In the shift towards...

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Liberty and Justice for Whom? Educational Reforms and Capital, Labor and Social (Im)Mobility in the Age of Neoliberalism

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

In this thesis, I wanted to examine the influence of neoliberal theory in the realms of public education and immigration within the US, and to tease out the implications that have resulted within each. From there, I attempted to understand...

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Mental Health in Ghana: The Impact of Stigma and Poverty on an Invisible Institution

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

The issue of mental health care is becoming a critical international concern. However, in many developing countries, mental illness remains stigmatized, resulting in significant impediments to the provision of mental health care services. This thesis is an investigation of the...

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Message from the Black Woman: Gendered Roles of Women in the Nation of Islam from 1995 to 2005

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

In this thesis I argue that despite the traditional gender roles assigned to women members of the Nation of Islam, these women are able to assert and employ their power both within and outside of the domestic sphere. Essential to...

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Miss Samoa: Navigating Gender, Politics, and Culture in the National Pageant

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

As a national pageant, Miss Samoa operates as a performative space where notions of gender, politics, and culture are negotiated and transformed. In this thesis, I examine how these concepts operate on an individual, local, and transnational level. Plus, the...

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Powerless Children: How U.S. Immigration Policies are Impacting U.S. Citizen Children

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

Although immigration policies directly implicate the undocumented individual, it is important to note that generally undocumented immigrants are not living in the U.S. alone- they have a family. Therefore, when undocumented parents are faced with orders of deportation, not only...

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Resisting Binaries? Multiracial Black/White Identity and the U.S. Racial Project

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

The multiracial population is growing rapidly in the United States. With President Barack Obama, a self-identified black man with white and black ancestry, as the face of our nation, and as the face of this growing population, it is evident...

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Sex Work, Theory and Praxis: A Study in Student Dialogue

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Authors
Department or Program
Abstract

Drawing from eight separately conducted student interviews, this thesis analyzes student perception of sex work and the relationship between theory and praxis in discussions surrounding sex work. Through these discussions and related research, I observed a general disconnect between sex...

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Speaking to the Silences: Black Women's Mediation of Historical Trauma and Healing

Publication Date
2014-January-01
Document Type
Department or Program
Abstract

Black women's trauma, which is largely unclaimed, un-mediated and unrecognized, is transgenerational. The physical, social, and psychological effects of holding on to a racialized history of trauma, caused by systematic and structural racism and sexism, continue to effect the identity...

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