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Class Awareness Month

Open Mic Event

This year Class Awareness Month is hosting an open mic event and we want YOU to perform! In keeping with the month's theme, we're looking for slam poets and spoken word artists whose works touch on issues of social class and academics - but it doesn't need to be explicit. So - got something to say? Sign up now! Email Brianne at bgallag1. The event will be Friday, November 16th at 8pm in Alice Paul Lounge.

Facebook Group

Join the Class Awareness Month Facebook group at:


Thursday, November 1, 2007--- Opening Panel, Scheuer Room, 4:30pm

The Opening Discussion Panel will compare the student body composition and interaction, as well as available resources from previous years in Swarthmore to the Swarthmore College we know today. The Panel is aimed the first event of many to follow in the CAM of November, which will promote awareness of social class and how it affects the academic world. Panelists are Robert Hawrylak '77, Valeria Jokisch '01, Grace Kaissal '10, and Susannah Gund '08.

Friday, November 2, 2007--- Wall Opening, Shane Lounge, Lunch Hours

All Swatties are invited to share their thoughts and experiences on a wall that will be posted in Shane Lounge from 11/1~11/15 and Science Center for the rest of the month. We will be providing scraps of cloth to write on. You may attach the cloth yourself, and a box will be provided for those wishing for anonymity. Other mediums of expression are enthusiastically welcomed. The opening of the wall will be held Friday, November 2nd during lunch hours.

Wednesday, November 7th, 2007--- Ring Discussion, Alice Paul 1st Floor Lounge, 10pm

How do you define "learning"? Do you think that your definition has been affected by your class or race? Do you think that there is a cultural stigma attached to different ideas of "learning" that incorrectly associates people with a particular class or racial group? How do you and other students negotiate the differences between your own definitions of learning and the one that gets you academic credit at Swat? Come to the Ring Discussion to explore these and many other questions. Wednesday, November 7th at 10 pm in Alice Paul 1st floor lounge.

Friday, November 9, 2007--- IntraClass Dialogue, Kohlberg [meet in coffee bar], 4pm

INTRA- AND CROSS-CLASS DISCUSSIONS This event will consist of three simultaneous intra-class discussion groups that will last around 45 minutes, to be followed by a single cross-class dialogue event. The three smaller conversations are meant to provide safe, supportive spaces where people from similar backgrounds can share their individual experiences.

The groups include the following: 1) Working class / struggling class (CLOSED to those who self-identify) 2) Straddling class / multi-class (OPEN to all) 3) Privileged class (CLOSED to those who self-identify) Afterwards, members from each of the smaller groups are encouraged to attend the more formalized cross-class dialogue. This is meant to promote Class Awareness Month's goal of increasing open and honest communication across class divides.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007-Film Screening "Educating Rita", Kohlberg 115, 7pm

Educating Rita is about a young working class woman, who decides to enroll in university, despite the pressures from her community that imply that she remain home to be a mother. This film highlights the struggles a woman would face because of what her socioeconomic background dictates is good for the family, which in this case, is not an education. This film portrays how class may dictate ones education.

Friday, November 16, 2007 --- Spoken word performance, Alice Paul 1st Floor Lounge, 8pm.

As part of Class Awareness Month's general aim of prompting Swarthmore students to think about and discuss issues of social class, spoken-word artists from the Philadelphia area are coming to Swarthmore. The speakers integrate art, self-expression, and activism. For more information about spoken word art in general, see this website:

Saturday Nov 17, 2007---Oral Storytellers, Kohlberg Third Floor, 11am-4pm

Oral Storytellers is unlike a one-time event, a panel, a discussion, or a movie; rather, it is a venue through which anyone from the Swarthmore community can feel free to speak openly on wider matters of class and education and respond more specifically to issues raised by the events put on during Class Awareness Month. Oral Storytellers will be available after every event for an hour to provide people with the opportunity to respond to matters specific to the event they have just attended and the chance to express more general thoughts that they feel can provide greater insight into opening up discussion on campus about class issues. Oral Storytellers will also be available for those who can't make it to certain events or can't stick around after the events by allowing individuals to anonymously borrow a tape recorder from one of the Oral Storytellers organizers through e-mail.

Monday, November 26, 2007--- Robert Granfield, Professor of Sociology at University of Buffalo, Time and Location, TBA

Class Awareness Month will be bringing Robert Granfield, Professor of Sociology at University of Buffalo to campus to talk about "Academic Language and Class in the Classroom". The speaker will be focusing on how class dynamics are played out in classes at universities, specifically with respect to academic language and "social capital", with an emphasis on working class students at elite institutions.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007--- Film Screening "The Brokaw Report", Science Center 158, 7pm

The Brokaw Report examines the problems faced by Americans under the age of 30 who have graduated from high school, but not from college. This film portrays how education may dictate class.

Friday, November 30, 2007--- Hunger Banquet, Upper Tarble, 6:30pm

Amnesty International and Class Awareness Month will be co-hosting a Hunger Banquet on November 29th (dinnertime, Upper Tarble), where all students and faculty are invited to dinner to join us in a live representation of the distribution of social class, followed by a speaker and possibly discussion (yet to be determined). The theme is action, not pity. For more information, please visit