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Special Collections and Archives: Through the Decades with GSU Women: 1980-1989

This timeline chronicles significant events of women at Georgia State University.


Note: Dates of significance for Georgia Sate University are shown in boldface print.


National Coalition of 100 Black Women is founded.

Women become the majority of all U.S. college students, at 51 percent. The "gender gap" first shows up at the election polls as women report different political priorities than men.

The UN's Second World Conference on Women is held in Copenhagen.


The conference A Fabric of Our Own Making: Southern Scholars on Women, funded by the WEEA Program grant, is held at GSU March 4-7, and the Southeastern Women's Studies Association holds its annual meeting in conjunction with it.

GSU and FAA sponsor Created Equal, a workshop on equity education of children.

At the request of women's organizations, President Carter proclaims the first National Women's History Week, on International Women's Day, March 8. Sandra Day O'Connor is the first woman ever appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1993, she is joined by Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

Sharon Parker and Veronica Collazo found the National Institute for Women of Color. First project is to replace the phrase "minority women" with "women of color" in common usage.


The SGA Women's Life and Development Committee holds a Women's Studies Seminar in May.

Equal Rights Amendment ratification efforts fail despite 63% public support.

Over 900 women hold positions as state legislators, compared with 344 a decade earlier.


The Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (B.I.S.), approved by the College of Arts and Sciences in March 1982, is now offered in Women's Studies.     



Selected papers from the 1981 GSU conference are published by University of Alabama Press as Feminist Visions: Towards a Transformation of the Liberal Arts Curriculum, edited by Diane L. Fowlkes and Charlotte S. McClure.

Sex discrimination in the admission policies of organizations is forbidden by the Supreme Court, opening many previously all-male organizations to women.

EMILY's List (Early Money is Like Yeast: It Makes the Dough Rise) is founded to raise funds for feminist candidates. Geraldine Ferraro (D-NY) is first woman vice-presidential candidate of a major political party.

The non-partisan National Political Congress of Black Women is founded by Shirley Chisholm to address women's rights issues and encourage participation in the electoral process at every level.


Kay Crouch retires May 1st. Her article on "Sexual Harassment" is published in spring issue of Women's Studies Journal, the GSU women's group newsletter.


Marjorie F. Knowles becomes the first female Dean of the College of Law (1986-91). She is the second dean of the school since 1982.

The Supreme Court declares sexual harassment is a form of illegal job discrimination.

About 25% of scientists are now women, but they are still less likely than men to be full professors or on a tenure track in teaching. Only 3.5% of the National Academy of Sciences members are women (51 members); since the academy's 1863 founding, only 60 women have been elected.


Diane L. Fowlkes is co-chair, Program Committee, and Quilt Project Coordinator, National Women's Studies Association, for the meeting held in Atlanta at Spelman College June 24th - 28th.


Responding to the National Women's History Project, the U.S. Congress declares March to be National Women's History Month.


Marymal Dryden and Judith Allen Ingram [formerly Myrick], GSU's Division of Continuing Education, are awarded first-place by the Women's Division Creative Programming, National University Continuing Education Association, for the program "Black Women: Images, Style and Substance," (developed with Paula Dressel) and receive an award from the Bicentennial Leadership Project of the Council for the Advancement of Citizenship for the series "Women and the Constitution...a Gradual Inclusion?"


Dryden and Ingram coordinate the conference, Carrying the Torch: Women in the Civil Rights Movement, Trailblazers and Torchbearers, 1941-1965, held October 12-15. Co-sponsors are GSU and the King Center. Women veterans of the Civil Rights Movement are brought together with persons from the USA and Brazil to whom the torch could be passed.

A national conference Women and the Constitution: Bicentennial Perspective, co-sponsored by GSU and Emory University, is held at the Carter Center.

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