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Posted on March 2, 2015

Audrey-Beth Fitch Women’s Studies Conference
“Stepping Inside the Personal, Public and Political Experience of (Dis)Abilities”
9:30 a.m.-4:45 p.m.
March 17, 2015
Cal U Convocation Center, North Wing

The discipline of Women’s and Gender Studies has begun to include an exploration of disability issues. In an effort to embrace this important change, the 10th annual Audrey -Beth Fitch Women’s Studies Conference focuses on issues encountered by people with disabilities and their family members.

Admission is free. Donations will be accepted to benefit the Autism Society of Pittsburgh. 

Conference schedule

  • 9:30-11 a.m.: “The Family Next Door
    This 83-minute film eloquently tells one family’s story of day-to-day life with four maturing children, two of them on the autism spectrum.  
  • 11-11:30 a.m.: Q&A session
    Film director Barry Reese and the film’s “Mom,” Donna, discuss “The Family Next Door” and experiences with the filmmaking process. 
    (Lunch break)
  • 12:30–1:45 p.m.: Panel discussion
    Two academics who have researched disability issues join two people who are living the experience. Topics include the impact and importance of self-care for caregivers; the gendered nature of caregiving, and how these expectations can impact men, women, children and families; and the everyday experiences, positive and negative, that arise for parents, caregivers and community members.
  • 2–3:15 p.m.:Square Pegs in Round Holes: Living with Autism in a Social World”
    Well-known speaker Rebecca Klaw shares her insights and leads a workshop focusing on the experience of living with autism and other disabilities. Klaw has trained consultants and direct care staff, teachers and parents in techniques that can drive developmental growth for individuals with autism spectrum disorder. 
  • 3:30-4:45 p.m.: “Autism and Poverty”
    Licensed psychologist Dr. Daniel Marston examines how social justice and political issues, such as class/socio-economic status, intersect with disability issues such as autism to affect individuals and families.

Contact us

The public is welcome. Parking is available in the Vulcan Garage, off Third Street near the campus entrance. 

Directions and campus map

For more information, e-mail Dr. Marta McClintock-Comeaux, director of Women’s Studies, at