Brooke Lober

brookelober [at]
Beatrice Bain Research Group
Appointment Dates:
(Aug 16, 2017 – May 11, 2018)
Research Project:
The Women Against Imperialism Oral History Project
During the last four decades, radical, grassroots, complexly interconnected movements in the U.S. and beyond have developed and practiced methods for social change through the politics of identity. While identity politics may produce exclusionary frameworks, social movements have also used identity to create ethical and liberatory modes of living and relating, to propose socially just resolutions to structural oppression, and to take public action to resist state repression and ideological dominance associated with neoliberalism. Taking shape within a network of leftist movements committed to decolonization, socialism, and communism, anti-imperialist feminist formations have utilized identity politics as a method to address violence and oppression from the smallest to the largest scales. Politicizing their status as women, anti-imperialist feminists of the late 20th century positioned themselves to contest the contemporary rise of the carceral state and the acceleration of state violence that accompanied capital’s globalization; worked to expose and oppose the growth of U.S. imperial reach; and fought for the possibility of a society free of racism, (hetero)sexism, and economic inequality—while instigating practices for sexual and gender freedom and egalitarianism that infuse queer and feminist movements. My current research, the Women Against Imperialism Oral History Project, was created to document and explore the politics and practices of late 20th century anti-imperialist feminism in the San Francisco Bay Area, a key node in radical, internationalist leftist networks of the 1980s. For this project, I am currently producing an archive of oral history interviews held at the Freedom Archives, a book, and a documentary film.
My research, teaching, and activism emphasize the study and practice of social movement cultural production in the overlap of feminism, antiracism, and anti-imperialism, with significant focus on feminist internationalism and Palestine solidarity. For my PhD in Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Arizona (2016), my dissertation, “Conflict in the Struggle: Anti-Imperialist Feminism, Palestine Solidarity, and the Jewish Feminist Movement of the Late 20th Century,” is an account of historical interactions among U.S.-based feminist movements, and the movement for international solidarity with the Palestinian freedom struggle—with close attention to the politics and practice of identity in the U.S. Jewish feminist movement of the 1980s and 1990s. I am a lecturer in Women’s and Gender Studies at Sonoma State University, and have previously offered courses at Occidental College and the University of Arizona. My writing has been published on the online forum Mondoweiss, and the journals Feminist Formations, and Women’s Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal.