Lucia Birnbaum, PhD
Core Faculty, Women's Spirituality Program
Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum, Ph.D., U.C. Berkeley, 1964. Feminist and cultural history and/or vernacular history of women and other subaltern classes.
Lucia Chiavola Birnbaum, Ph.D., is a feminist cultural historian whose books and classes emphasize the african origins of all humans. african legacy on migration paths to all continents, from 70,000 BCE to the present, conveying values of caring and sharing, justice with compassion, equality, and transformation. These themes are underlined in her book, Dark mother. African origins and godmothers (San Jose, New York, Shanghai, iUniverse, 2001), whose Italian edition was entitled La Madre O-Scura by Mediterranea Media, 2005, and whose Cameroun, Guadalupe, Paris, international and French edition, 2007 was entitled, La Mere Noire. In 2008 she was given an award for her commitment and research by the Menaibuc international conference in Paris, "Grande Protectrice des Nations Negres".
Her recent research, located at the confluence of feminist cultural history and afrocentrist history, was presaged by Liberazione della donna. feminism in Italy (Wesleyan University Press, 1986, 1988) and by Black Madonnas. Feminism, religion, and politics in Italy (Northeastern University Press, 1994, 1997, 2000) followed by induction into the International african and African American Educators Hall of Fame, 1996, and given a Premio Internazionale di Saggistica S. Valitutti in Salerno, Italy in 1998. In 2005, a continuing series of anthologies of womanist~feminist writings was inaugurated: She is Everywhere! (San Jose, New York, Shanghai, (iUniverse). Volume two of this anthology (gathered by Annette Williams, Karen Villanueva, and Lucia) was published Spring 2009.
Lucia's awards range from honoring her as a "Founding Mother of the Women's Spirituality program", California Institute of Integral Studies, 2003- - Serpentina Award for Excellence in Women's Writing, Oakland, 2003- - Immigration Lawyers award. Pittsburg, Pa. 2003 for scholarship and activism. . . to many invitations to international conferences, e.g., Progetto Ammazone, Palermo, November 2008 sponsored by the University of Palermo and the Italian Parliament, on origins and implications of women's breast cancer: "Dwelling Places of Time in Myth and Cell." Spring 2009 Loyola University in Rome: "La Dea Madre in the Mediterranean." Fall 2009 conference of the American Italian Historical Association, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, "Legacy on African migration paths of caring, sharing, and healing."
Publication of Lucia's book in progress, Ancient Mothers of the Future. Transformational Legacy on African Migration Paths in the Mediterranean, is projected for 2010 by Laboratorio Poiesis, Alberobello, Italy.