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Midwest Women's Studies Association records

Identifier: IWA0649

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Scope and Contents

The Midwest Women's Studies Association records date from 1979 to 1992 (mostly 1985-1988) and measure 7.5 linear inches. They reflect Kathleen Hickok's dual role as Iowa State University's Women's Studies Department chair and as MWSA committee member. Most of the records in this collection were generated when the Iowa State University's Women's Studies Department hosted the MWSA in April 1986. The records are arranged in seven series: Conferences; Financial Records; Kathleen Hickok; Membership; Resources; Steering Committee; Women's Studies Conferences and Publications (not MWSA).

The Conferences series (1981-1989) primarily contains materials relating to the organization and evaluation of the MWSA's annual regional conferences. This series also contains documents pertaining to the MWSA's "sistership" program.

The Financial Records series (1986-1992) contains the accounts of the MWSA as an Iowa State University campus organization.

The Kathleen Hickok series(1985-1989) contains conference proposals and correspondence, and session notes authored by Kathleen Hickok. This series also contains papers concerning her work as regional coordinator for MWSA, 1985-1986.

The Membership series (1984-1989) contains membership lists and correspondence pertaining to member concerns. Researchers may be interested in the rapid development of women's studies departments in the Midwest, as reflected by the women's studies directories housed in this series.

The Resources series (1985-1986) provides a comparative overview of women's studies departments in the region. A speaker's list of feminist scholars and the topics on which they would be willing to speak is also included.

The Steering Committee series (1981-1987) includes regional business meeting notes and summaries, as well as communications between the regional branches and the main office of NWSA. The dramatic growth of women's studies as a discipline, as well as the excitement in feminist circles over this development, are captured here. Researchers will also be interested in the ways that feminists responded to the dual challenges of underfunding and overcommitment, as reflected in communications regarding the reorganization of the NWSA office and that organization's publications. Finally, a brief history of the founding of the Kansas University Women's Studies program suggests the ad hoc and activist foundations of feminist scholarship in the university setting.

Finally, the Women's Studies Conferences and Publications (not MWSA) series includes a few pamphlets and leaflets on other feminist activities in the mid-1980s.


  • Creation: 1979-1992


Conditions Governing Access

The records are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by donor has been transferred in part to the University of Iowa.

However, copyright status for some collection materials may be unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owner. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility and potential liability based on copyright infringement for any use rests exclusively and solely with the user. Users must properly acknowledge the Iowa Women’s Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, as the source of the material. For further information, visit

Biographical / Historical

The Midwest Women's Studies Association (MWSA) is one of the regional branches of the National Women's Studies Association (NWSA), providing member services for and furthering the mission of its parent organization. Organized in 1977, the MWSA currently represents hundreds of feminist scholars in Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, and Missouri. The MWSA holds an annual regional conference; it also supports, through sisterships, feminists who might not otherwise be able to participate in NWSA conferences. (More information concerning MWSA and NWSA can be found at the NWSA website,


7.50 linear inches

Photographs in box 1. boxes

Language of Materials



Regional branch of the National Women's Studies Association.

Method of Acquisition

The records (donor no. 311) were donated by Kathleen Hickok in 1997.

Bridgett Williams-Searle, 2000.
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Repository Details

Part of the Iowa Women's Archives Repository

100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)