Director: Dr. Didi Khayatt
Dr. Madiha Didi Khayatt received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the American University in Cairo, a Master of Arts degree from McMaster University, and a Master of Education degree from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education/University of Toronto, and her PhD from the University of Toronto. Dr. Khayatt was appointed to York University's Faculty of Education with a cross appointment in Women's Studies (now Gender, Feminist, and Women's Studies). Her teaching focused on feminist pedagogy, and her research included topics of race, class, sexuality, social justice, and same sex love between women in Egypt. Dr. Khayatt served as the Coordinator of the Women's Studies Programme at Glendon College from 1991 to 1993; Director of the Centre for Feminist Research from 1998 to 2001; and Advisor to the President on gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, and queer issues from 2002 to 2005. Professor Khayatt received the Canadian Association for the Study of Women and Education Achievement Award in 2008 for her contributions to feminist education and theoretical knowledge production.
The 1998 - 1999 year was a busy period for the Centre. Several conference were hosted by the Centre and included:
1) “Mothers and Sons Today: Challenges and Possibilities”;
2) The 12th Annual "Equity in the Classroom/Equity in the Curriculum" Conference; and
3) “Towards an Inclusive Curriculum: A Summer Institute on Equity in the Classroom."
In addition to these exciting conferences, the Centre's primary project was hosting the Jambalaya Network, an organization of women of colour in the academy. The CFR with the Status of Women and Centre for Race and Ethnic relations, had started this new network of Women of Colour, Visible Minority Women and Multicultural Women on December 10, 1998.
Other research networks, events and projects supported by the CFR included:
1) the Qualitative Research Network;
2) the Women in Conflict Zones Network;
3) the Comparative Study of the Issues Faced by Women as a Result of Armed Conflict: Sri Lanka and Post Yugoslav States - A Pilot Project, which organized presentations and conferences in Sri Lanka and Budapest;
4) the Community-Academy Partnership Project; and
5) the International Women’s Rights Project (IWRP).
During this time period, CFR worked with CWS/sf to publish a 150 page book entitled Feminism and Disability (along with York’s Office for Persons with Disabilities and York’s Centre for Human Rights and Equity). Professor Johanna Stuckey authored a 200 page book titled Feminist Spirituality: An Introduction to Feminist Theology in Judaism, Christianity and Islam and donated the proceeds to the Centre. CFR also hosted two visiting scholars, Dr. Amitabh Bhatnagar from India and Ms. Ritu Narayan from the United Kingdom.
The 1999 - 2000 academic year was incredibly busy for the Centre. The Centre witnessed the release of several important reports including the final report from the International Women’s Rights Project’s Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women Impact Study and Network as well as the report, “The Busy Woman’s Guide to the Internet.” The latter also began work on its second special issue on refugees entitled Big Business, Big Profits, Big Damages. In addition to these reports, the conference proceedings from "Towards an Inclusive Curriculum: A Summer Institute on Equity in the Classroom" were published.
The Centre also hosted The Red Lake Project - Informal Learning, Aboriginal Knowledge, and Educational Institutions: Women in Coalition Work, which continued on to its second year.
During this time, several significant events were also held at the Centre including:
1) the Thelma McCormack symposium in honor of Professor McCormack;
2) a one day workshop titled, "Social & Economic Advancement for Communities: Promoting Equity for Women through Partnerships” project;
3) the 13th annual Equity in the Classroom/Equity in the Curriculum conference; and
4) an associated seminar for the "Russian Report," which compared Canadian and Russian responses to Domestic Violence through a seminar.
Dr. Pirjo Markkola, Department of History, University of Tampere, Finland; Dr. Yasuko Yamashita, Bunyo Women’s University, Japan; Dr. Sharada Rath, India; and Dr. Chieko Seta National Institute for Multimedia Education in Chiba, Japan were visiting scholars at the Centre.
In 2000 to 2001, the Centre hosted the 14th annual “Equity in the Classroom/Equity in the Curriculum,” which continued its tradition as a two-day conference. Also as in previous years, CFR published several important reports including “The CEDAW Impact Study”, “Women and Disability” and “The Calling of Women, Gender, Religion and Social Refrom in Finland, 1860 - 1920”. Several projects from previous years, including the International Women’s Rights Project (IWRP), the Red Lake Project , and the Community/Academic Partnership Project continued to be hosted by the Centre.
Dr. Rickle Sanders from Temple University Philadelphia; Arja Inkeri Alho from University of Helsinki, Finland; Dr. Swati Shirwadkar, University of Pune, India; and Dr. Somer Brodribb, University of Victoria were visiting scholars at the CFR.