The JourMS project emerged as a thesis proposal for Martha Joy Rose at CUNY, The Graduate Center in 2014. A forthcoming master’s degree in Motherhood Studies was approved through the departments of Women’s and Gender Studies and the Digital Humanities. The process reported here, demonstrates the journal’s creation with Barbara Katz Rothman advising.
This website, and its journal and courses, hope to examine three new specific ideas: 1.Motherhood Studies; what is it, and how do we teach it? How would an academic journal contribute to the canons of the field, thus solidifying it as its own unique and important discipline? 2. M/otherness; the notion of relationship. The mother status is always in relationship to self and other. 3. Motheristing; a perspective inspired by “feminist” notions and the website “feministing.” What is the language specific to m/motherness?
There are many people to thank, and they cannot possibly all be named here, but a few mentions are: Laura Tropp for suggesting The Graduate Center as a place to study. Thanks to Jocelyn Fenton Stitt for offering the first graduate level “Mothering Studies” class online during the summer of 2013 which confirmed resolution to take this path. Thank you to Andrea O’Reilly for her vision and years of hard work to establish texts and teach Feminist Motherhood as a legitimate field of study. Thank you to Amber Kinser and Phyllis Chesler for being passionate authors who inspire daily. Thank you to Lynn Keuchle who’s been a steadfast supporter, friend and believer. I also appreciate the support and community CUNY, The Graduate School Department of Digital Humanities have given me. Thank you to the entire board of directors and advisory board for the Museum of Motherhood; you have given generously and always and 4-ever my HOP Girls. Thank you also to my brother for being a patient editor, and to my children, and my mother who have shaped me into the woman I am.
Barbara Katz Rothman said, “Birth is not only about making babies. Birth is about making mothers- strong, competent, capable mothers who trust themselves and know their inner strength.” Likewise, as we collectively give birth to Mother Studies, let us hope that by organizing this theory and praxis within a journal, it may contribute to an organized body of knowledge that people, in the academy and beyond, can leverage for their well-being.
Some of the process journal reports are password protected, due to the sensitive nature of some of the correspondence. They document sometimes intimate exchanges between teachers, associates, colleagues and myself throughout the course of this thesis project. However, if you are conducting research on Mother Studies or doing a report about the development of this project, contact me and I will be happy to share: MarthaJoyRose@gmail.com
March 24, 2015 (CUNY Advance Start Up Grant Submission)