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Feminism, Pacifism, and Political Violence in Europe and China in the Era of the World Wars

A part of the European History Workshop series at Indiana University.

March 4, 2016 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Professor Mona Siegel, California State University, Sacramento

Professor Siegel is a historian of modern France who has done pioneering work on feminism, pacifism, and memory in the era of the two world wars of the twentieth century. Her book, The Moral Disarmament of France: Education, Pacifism, and Patriotism, 1914-1940 (Cambridge UP, 2006) won the 2006 History of Education Society Outstanding Book Award, and her articles have appeared in numerous scholarly journals, including, for example, Journal of Modern History, Radical History Review, and French Historical Studies. Professor Siegel’s talk will examine international feminist collaboration between Western and Chinese women in the interwar decades, focusing in particular on the 1927-28 “mission to Asia” sponsored by the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF). Contrary to what existing historiography would lead us to suspect, neither feminist Orientalism nor colonial nationalism stood as a serious impediment to the formation of a truly international feminist alliance spanning Europe and Asia.  Instead, European and Chinese women’s varying experiences and memories of international conflict, and their conflicting understandings of the relationship between feminism, pacifism, and political violence, defined the limits of global feminist collaboration in the late 1920s. For copies of Professor Siegel’s paper, please contact Julia Roos ( or Roberta Pergher (

Generous support for Professor Siegel’s visit was provided by: The Department of History; Robert A. and Sandra S. Jewish Studies Program; Department of French and Italian; East Asian Studies Center; Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures; Department of International Studies, and the Department of Gender Studies.


October 15, 2020 - 4:00pm

Please join the USC U.S.-China Institute for a book talk with author David Lampton. His new book examines China’s effort to create an intercountry railway system connecting China and its seven Southeast Asian neighbors.