American Studies Professor Gail Dines on Wheelock’s Education for Life


In this conversation with Wheelock College professor Gail Dines, we learn how applicable the ideas learned in the American Studies major are to the reality of living in America today. The focus is on learning how to work with children as they grow up in today’s image-based culture, plugged into video games, and getting a majority of their news from the Internet. Classes at Wheelock are much smaller than the classes you’ll find at other colleges, giving students the opportunity to really participate and engage in conversation. The education for life that you’ll receive at Wheelock is a powerful tool that equips you to be an agent of change who inspires a world of good, whatever profession you choose.

American Studies examines the culture and history of the United States through a variety of mediums and perspectives. A multicultural viewpoint provides a basis for understanding how America has developed as both a nation and a people. By exploring topics such as race, ethnicity, and gender, you will learn how the concept of America was born and how it continues to evolve.

Gail Dines is professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies and Chair of American Studies. Her research interests focus on the ways that media images shape gender and racial identities in the US. Of particular interest is the role pornography plays in legitimizing violence against women and children. Widely published, Dines is the co-editor of the best selling text-book, Gender, Race and Class in Media and co-author of Pornography: the Production and Consumption of Inequality.

As a radical feminist activist, Dines has been involved in organizing against the pornography industry and is co-founder of the recently formed National Feminist Anti-Pornography Movement. She sees her teaching as a way to create in students a radical vision of the unlimited possibilities of progressive social change in individuals, communities, and societies.