Feminist Research on Gender and Sexuality Group
The Feminist Research on Gender and Sexuality (FROGS) Group focuses on cutting edge, critical research that prioritizes the study of social identities like gender, race, class, and sexuality as examined through a feminist lens. Specifically, the group focuses on research in three areas: critical body studies, radical sexuality studies, and activism/rebellion.
Members of the FROGS group include select undergraduate and graduate students at Arizona State University as well as faculty, community, and postdoctoral collaborators across multiple universities. Our goals are multiple: we want to inject a feminist perspective into traditional or even anti-feminist spaces; unite activist, pedagogical, and scholarly work; subvert the assumed hierarchies of "what counts" as feminist research; engage in creative and inspired forms of resistance; collaborate in new and imaginative ways; work in a permanent statement of opposition to policies and practices that promote xenophobia, sexism, racism, sizeism, and classism; and, finally, to engage, on multiple levels, the question of how to fight against inequalities, oppression, and injustices enacted onto the body and into the political and social sphere.
---New book chapter (with Kimberly) in Bisexuality: Theory, Research, and Recommendations for the Invisible Sexuality (March 2018)
---New articles: Understanding sexual desire in Sex Roles (with Ayanna), menstrual product ads in Palgrave Handbook of Critical Menstruation Studies (with Ela)
CURRENT CORE GROUP
Breanne Fahs is the director and founder of the research group and is currently Professor of Women and Gender studies at Arizona State University. Her work focuses on women's sexuality and sexual subjectivities, radical feminist histories, critical embodiment, and political activism. She has published widely on these subjects and has authored or edited nine books: Performing Sex (2011, SUNY Press), Valerie Solanas (2014, Feminist Press), The Moral Panics of Sexuality (2013, Palgrave), Out for Blood (2016, SUNY Press), Firebrand Feminism (2018, University of Washington Press), Transforming Contagion (2018, Rutgers University Press), Women, Sex, and Madness (2019, Routledge), The Palgrave Handbook of Critical Menstruation Studies (2020, Palgrave), Burn It Down (2020, Verso) and Unshaved (forthcoming 2022, University of Washington Press).
Micah Collins is an undergraduate at Arizona State University majoring in Queer and Sexuality Studies and minoring in Sociocultural Anthropology. They are the senior member of the group. Their research interests include how pornography and other highly sexualized medias influence the expectations of relationships and sex lives; how queer identities are labeled and presented through popular culture and within daily life; radical feminist thought; feminist veganism and vegetarianism and animal rights; how social norms impact and construct behaviors. Upon graduation, Micah plans to pursue a masters degree.
Farhat Ali is an undergraduate student pursuing concurrent degrees in Women and Gender studies and Political Science. She currently serves as the Co-President of the Women’s Coalition, a member of the Leadership Scholarship Program, and is the founder of the Period Project, a program that promotes menstrual equity and accessible health education in East Africa. Her passions include menstrual health education, literature surrounding Black feminist thought, as well as human rights and social justice advocacy. Upon graduation, she hopes to continue her education and pursue a career in advocacy and the immigration and human rights policy sector of the government.
Kiley Romano is a graduate student in the Social Justice and Human Rights program at Arizona State University. Kiley received her undergraduate degree from Northern Arizona University in Women's and Gender Studies with minors in Political Science and Italian. Her research interests include the incorporation of creative writing and art into trauma healing, women's reproductive and sexual agency, activism against sexual violence, and queer resistance within punk scenes.
Felicya Ptak is a senior undergraduate at ASU and a member of Gamma Rho Lambda, an all-inclusive (LGBTQ+) sorority founded at ASU Tempe. Their research interests include: radical softness and stigmas attached to vulnerability, queer and resilience theory, social signaling theory, trauma awareness, and environmental sexism. After graduation, they plan to begin working in non-profit work and eventually attend graduate school.
Carrie Rudel is a senior undergraduate at ASU Barrett and is majoring in Social and Cultural Analysis, specifically Queer and Sexuality Studies. Some of Carrie's research interests include sex worker rights, abject bodies and the feminine threat, queer cultural narratives, and sexual pleasure versus emotional fulfillment in the context of BDSM. She plans to get her Masters in Social Work and pursue a career as an LCSW. Carrie is also a singer/songwriter and writes poetry in her spare time.
ILLUSTRIOUS FROGS ALUMNI
Adrielle Munger is a writer, editor, and researcher in New York City. She is the research coordinator for the Redstockings Women's Liberation Archives for Action and is a member of National Women's Liberation. In addition to her pursuits in radical feminism and political history, Adrielle seeks to upend our dangerous relationship to the internet and the digital attention economy. She is currently writing an adaptation of Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus that focuses on our relationship to the internet—a cross-genre graphic novel that is a continuation of her undergraduate thesis and a project started in Dr. Fahs's class "Hate Speech, Manifestos, and Radical Writings" in 2011.
Stephanie Voelker graduated with her B.A. in Psychology and minor in Women and Gender Studies from Arizona State University in 2013. She also received her master's degree in Social Work at Arizona State University in 2020. Her research interests include: menstrual activism, alternative menstrual products, and reproductive justice in underserved populations. Together with Jax Gonzalez, she founded the Menstrual Activist Research Collective (M.A.R.C.) and has developed a series of workshops for faculty, students, and activists about how to promote alternative menstrual products and new menstrual narratives. Check out their work (and get involved) at: http://menarchists.wordpress.com/. Stephanie continues to develop menstrual health and sex ed curriculum in conjunction with Planned Parenthood Arizona and Arizona Family Health Partnership. She currently works for the Peoria School district as a school social worker.
Ela Przybylo is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Illinois State University. She is the author of Asexual Erotics: Intimate Readings of Compulsory Sexuality (Ohio State University Press, 2019) and co-editor of On the Politics of Ugliness (Palgrave, 2018). Ela is also a founding and managing editor of the peer-reviewed, open access, independent journal Feral Feminisms (https://feralfeminisms.com/). Her teaching and research examines intersectional approaches to asexuality and questions of digital publishing as they relate to feminism, anti-racism, and decolonialism. You can find her online at: https://przybyloela.wordpress.com/
Jax J. Gonzalez received their Masters in Sociology and Women’s, Gender & Sexuality studies at Brandeis University in 2016 and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Colorado-Boulder. As a first-generation college student and queer activist interested in personal identity at the intersection of education, embodiment, and health, their research project came about as a concern with examining how adolescents are socialized in the classroom to understand their bodies. Their masters research continued their undergraduate work with Dr. Breanne Fahs explored the impact of educator subjectivities in elementary school health curricula and how educators manage “teaching the taboo.” Their current project is a collaboration with pre-service teachers and high school sociology apprentices that explores how queer pedegogy impacts teacher identities. Together with Stephanie Robinson, they founded the Menstrual Activist Research Collective (M.A.R.C) and had developed a series of workshops and literature on menstrual activism for faculty, students and activists.
Decker Dunlop is an undergraduate student at Arizona State University pursuing a major in Women and Gender Studies. Their interests include investigating the covert character of whiteness, the relationship between globalization and neocolonialism, the assimilation of disruptive, transgressive acts into the mainstream, and the implementation of radical bathroom politics. After graduating, they intend to support the activist and humanitarian groups fighting the militarization of the border and the criminalization of migration.
Alexis Starks is a graduate student in the M.A. program in Communications at Arizona State University. She graduated in May of 2017 with a B.A. in Communication from ASU. She is interested in narratives of rape and the way that sexual violence against women gets erased in contemporary culture. Her other interests include social rhetoric, objectification of the female body in advertising and entertainment, women as weapons of war, LGBTQ rights, and dichotomization in social narratives.
Natali Blazevic graduated from Arizona State University in the spring of 2015 with a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and a minor in Women and Gender Studies. Her current research interests include: the portrayal of women in media and how media affects women viewers, women's affective experiences of disgust and how it impacts their body image as well as their psychological health, and the management of the female body by individuals and the culture at large. She is currently a graduate student in the field of School Psychology at the University of Arizona.
John Payton is a second-year graduate student at San Francisco State University in the Sexuality Studies MA program. Their research interests include the amplification and empowerment of multiply marginalized voices within and across the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality in archival spaces; queer theory; LGBTQ history; and Filipinx Studies. John is currently conducting oral history interviews for the creation of a Queer Filipinx archival space with a special interest in Filipino Drag Performance. Upon completion of the MA program at San Francisco State, John plans to enter a PhD program and pursue a life of research in academia.
Ayanna Shambe is a medical student at Saint Louis University. She completed her double bachelors degree in Women and Gender Studies and Biology at Arizona State University in 2019. Ayanna is currently working on research on AI implementation in electronic health records and healthcare providers’ communication impact on post-surgical outcomes. Her research interests also include: women’s health, medical education and how gender and race are encoded into space.
Michael Karger is a doctoral student in Justice Studies at Arizona State University. He completed his master's degree in Social Justice and Human Rights in 2016 and his undergraduate degree at ASU in political science in 2013. His research interests include: popular political discourses of suburban America and their impact on underprivileged classes; critical middle-class studies; sovereignty and citizenship; the relationship between technology, fantasy, and the state; and bisexuality studies.
Claire Halling is a recent (2020) graduate of Arizona State University with a degree in women and gender studies. She is currently a master's student in social work at the University of Washington. Her research interests include the social scripts surrounding women's sexuality, particularly with regard to pornography and sex work; as well as the ways gender is expressed and preformed through sexuality. Claire is currently doing research on trans and non binary experiences with menstruation.
Tatiana Crespo is a recent (2017) graduate of Arizona State University with a major in Interdisciplinary Arts and Performance. She is a composer whose songs reflect the Female Hispanic American experience through a variety of Latin rhythms on the accordion. She is also working on an installation project that deals with issues encompassing waste, femininity, and her experience as a Costa Rican immigrant in Arizona.
Madison Carlyle is a 2017 graduate of Arizona State University's M.A. in Social Justice and Human Rights program. In Spring 2015, she graduated with a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Oklahoma. Her interests include: knowledge production, radical movements, manifestos, and feminist theory. She plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Sociology and currently resides in Seattle, WA.
Kimberly Koerth earned master's degrees in English literature and women and gender studies from Arizona State University in 2019. They wrote their master's thesis on affect theory, sad girl theory, and digital support groups and also completed an applied project on trans inclusion in menstrual zines. Their other research interests include: bisexuality in pop culture, first experiences with menstruation, and non-binary gender identities. They currently work as a newspaper copy editor and freelance academic editor.
Crystal Zaragoza is a first generation queer Latinx that graduated from Arizona State University with a MA in Social Justice and Human Rights (2018) and a BA in Women and Gender Studies (2016). The lack of access to competent medical care Crystal and their family experienced, the racial discrimination their parents faced because they are Mexican immigrants, as well as their community organizing focused their social justice interests onto reproductive health. As the previous Health Justice Coordinator for Trans Queer Pueblo in Phoenix, Arizona, they worked with LGBTQ+ undocumented communities of color to transform oppressive health systems. Currently they work with Access Reproductive Care-Southeast in Atlanta, GA. They help Southerners navigate the pathways to access safe, compassionate, and affordable reproductive care by providing financial and logistical support and building power in our communities through advocacy, education, and leadership development.
Mam Marie Sanyang is an undergraduate at Arizona State University double majoring in Women and Gender Studies and Social Justice and Human Rights. She is also a masters student at ASU studying Social Justice and Human Rights. Her research interests includes sex work’s impact on individuals and societies, human trafficking, and international humanitarian work. She is a member of the United Nations Association of the USA, Arizona State University chapter. Upon graduation, Mam Marie plans to pursue a career with the United Nations.
Emma DiFrancesco most recently graduated from Arizona State University in May 2019 with a Master's in Legal Studies. She also has an M.A. in Social Justice and Human Rights (2017) and a B.S. in Sociology with a minor in Psychology (2015) from ASU. Her research interests include: corporate personhood and crime, the oppressive issues which surround capitalism, social inequality, and radical feminist thought."
Laisa Schweigert is a recent (2018) graduate of the M.A. program in Social Justice and Human Rights. She also graduated from ASU in 2016 with a B.A. in Psychology. Her research interests include current social justice movements and feminist theory; her masters thesis examines radical feminist group WITCH and its contemporary manifestations. She plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Sociology.
Jakob Salazar is a recent (2019) graduate of Arizona State University majoring in Sociology and minoring in Women & Gender Studies. His research interests include mainstream domestic politics, radical political movements, the history and nature of patriarchy, the philosophy of gender and sexuality; and the role of government in effecting social change. He is currently a second-year law student at Gonzaga University.
Liz Wallace graduated from Arizona State University in May 2016 with a B.A. in Women and Gender Studies and again in May 2018 with a M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on cultural studies and gender studies. Her research interests include: everyday forms of women’s resistance in relation to the body, the environment, and mental health; storytelling and poetry as means of political action as well as expression of voice; and the power/value system that measures women’s labor.
Chelsea Pixler Charbonneau graduated from Old Dominion University in May 2018 with a Masters in Humanities and a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies. In December 2013, she graduated with a B.A. in Women and Gender Studies along with a minor in Sociology from Arizona State University. She recently completed an internship with NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, where she served as the Community Organizing Intern in Hampton Roads, VA. Her research interests include: taboos surrounding abortion, menstruation, body hair, and breastfeeding in public; the importance of self-care for activists; and ethical fashion as an eco-feminist issue.
Corie Cisco graduated from Arizona State University in May 2016 with a Master's in Interdisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Literature and Gender Studies. She also received her undergraduate degree in English, Creative Writing and Religious Studies. Her interests include: gender representation in literature and popular culture, the performance of identity, equitable access to information and proactively serving diverse populations. She is currently pursuing an additional Master's degree in Library and Information Science at the University of Arizona. Corie is working as a Program Coordinator Senior at The Design School and utilizing her research experience to better serve the multi-faceted population of students at Arizona State University. In 2018, she authored a visual poetry book called "She" in collaboration with her sister, Sydney Cisco. They are currently working on a feminist children's book, which is projected to be completed in 2020.
Marli Mayon graduated with a B.A. in Social and Cultural Analysis (Women and Gender Studies) from Arizona State University in the spring of 2020. Her research interests include sexual violence primary prevention strategies, anti-racism community-based solutions to white supremacy in the age of Trump, politics of sex work, and bodily autonomy from a reproductive justice framework. Marli is in the process of becoming a trained birth worker and plans to begin a Master of Social Work program at Arizona State University this year.
Laura Martinez is a 2016 master graduate of the Social Justice and Human Rights at Arizona State University where she also received her B.A. in Women and Gender Studies in 2015. She completed the Information and Library Science masters program in 2018 at Syracuse University and currently teaches English in South Korea.
Rachel Caldwell is a recent (2021) graduate of Arizona State University and was a Spirit of Service Scholar and Dean’s Circle Scholar who received concurrent degrees in Political Science and Women and Gender Studies, as well as a minor in History and certificate in Disability Studies. She has interned in various parts of government, performed research for the Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict and the Center for Social Dynamics of Complexity at ASU, and has held leadership positions on the Barrett Honors College Council, Undergraduate Student Government-Tempe and Sun Devil Mock Trial. She hopes to eventually obtain a dual JD/PhD in Sociology while concentrating on gender and sexuality studies. Her research interests lie at the intersection of gender, disability, law and policy.
Spencier Ciaralli is a doctoral candidate in the Sociology Department at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). Her dissertation title is “The Climax of the Story: Queering Women’s Sexual Histories and Pleasure Narratives” which sits at the intersection of gender and sexuality, with particular interests in gender embodiment and resistance, exploration of queer pleasure, and interrogation of heteronormativity. Her overarching research interests include exploring sexual pleasure and kink narratives within minoritized identities, queer epistemologies and narrative methodologies, femme bodies and pleasures as political, and interrogation of heteronormative patriarchal institutions. She is the president of Q Grad, an LGBTQIA+ Graduate Student Association at CWRU, as well as the LGBTQ+ chair of the For a Better CWRU Taskforce. Spencier is currently the project manager and data analyst of the Cancer Survivors Research Program (NIH Grant RO1-CA-78975), and a recent AAUW fellowship recipient. Spencier has published in The Journal of Aging and Health and The Journal of Psycho-Oncology.
Atlas Pillar is a recent (2019) graduate from Arizona State University, with a BS in Nonprofit Leadership Management and certificates in Women & Gender Studies and Advanced Grant Writing. He was named the "Outstanding Graduate" of the graduating class of the School of Community Resources and Development in the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions. Atlas’s prerogative is to help populations and communities who are unfairly disadvantaged and marginalized by our society and infrastructures. Pursuing this goal, Atlas served as the Co-Chair to ASU’s Downtown Phoenix Committee on Diversity and Inclusion from 2017-2019. Additionally, Atlas was one of the Watts College's Undergraduate Research Scholars, participating in research with the Center for the Study of Race & Democracy that examined the capacity to which works and units at ASU address issues of diversity, inclusion, discrimination, equity, and social justice. Currently, Atlas works at Good Works Grant Writing as a Grant Specialist and Social Media Manager. He anticipates returning to ASU in 2022 to obtain his Master's degree in Data Analytics and Program Evaluation. As an alumni FROGS member, Atlas's research interests include: biological essentialism, compulsive identities, evolving semantics of community or population specific language, unnatural binaries, rankism conditioning, body expectations, and more
Eva Sisko is a 2014 graduate of Arizona State University who majored in women and gender studies. Her research interests include: the divisive nature of the sex positive vs. radical feminist dichotomy, the importance of radical feminist activism, and how female sex workers define and navigate their personal relationships at the interface of political/legal body policing. She plans to pursue graduate study in women and gender studies in 2017.
Nic Santos is an Air Force Veteran and an undergraduate at Arizona State University majoring in Social Cultural Analysis with a focus on Queer and Sexuality Studies. She has her A.A. in Foreign Culture and Language, and her research interests include sex work law, abject bodies, female objectification, the impact of sex work on culture, and the narratives of LGBTQ in government and military.
Carissa Cunningham is a doctoral student at Rutgers University in Political Science. She completed her undergraduate degree in political science at Arizona State University in 2017. Her research interests include: female combatants in freedom fighter or terrorist organizations, feminism as it relates to political studies, and homeless youth in the Phoenix area.
Camille Edelstein is an undergraduate at Arizona State University majoring in Forensic Psychology and minoring in Women and Gender Studies and Anthropology. Her research interests include reproductive justice, catcalling and its effects on self image, rehabilitation and recidivism of criminals (focusing on sex offenders), and sexual pleasure. Upon graduation, Camille plans to pursue a Master's degree.
Amanda Garcia graduated from Northern Arizona University in 2015 with a major in Humanities and minor in Sociology. Her research interests include: interpersonal relationship violence (particularly public education and prevention awareness) and gender-neutral parenting. She plans to work in the field of domestic violence victim advocacy before ultimately pursuing graduate study in Social Justice and Human Rights.
Marisa Loiacono graduated with her B.S. degree in Psychology from Arizona State University in May 2013. She worked for two years for the State of Arizona as a case manager for the Department of Child Safety, where she helped parents struggling with substance abuse, mental illness, and poverty get the services they need to provide safe and appropriate environments for their children. She also worked with families within the foster care and family court system until 2015, when she moved to counseling as her main focus. She is now providing counseling services to the terminally ill and to geriatric patients as an employee of AZ FACTS of Life Behavioral Health, a nonprofit based in Phoenix, AZ.