Atia Sattar Named 2023 Floyd Covington Fellow

Collections Convergence Initiative

The USC Libraries Collections Convergence Initiative (CCI) has awarded Atia Sattar, an associate professor of gender and sexuality studies and writing at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, with its 2023 Floyd Covington fellowship. Through her fellowship, Sattar will more fully integrate library collections, including the ONE Archives at USC Libraries, into two undergraduate courses at USC.

Named for the long-time head of the Los Angeles Urban League, the Floyd Covington fellowship complements the USC Libraries' recent (2017) acquisition of the civil rights leader’s papers. It includes two tracks: one focused on integrating primary sources into classroom instruction, and another on encouraging the use of primary sources in faculty members’ ongoing scholarship. Previous fellows have included Li-Ping ChenNatalia MolinaMaddox Pennington, and Allissa V. Richardson.

See CCI director William Deverell's announcement below for details about Sattar's plans for her fellowship:

On behalf of the selection committee for the Sources of Social Justice: Floyd Covington Fellowship, I am delighted to announce this year’s winner, Professor Atia Sattar of the USC Dornsife Department of Gender and Sexuality Studies and Writing Program.

Professor Sattar’s Covington proposal outlines an ambitious restructuring of two undergraduate syllabi. These courses, “Health, Gender, Ethnicity” and “Feminist Science Fiction Studies,” will be modified as to the content offered by Professor Sattar, as well as the student exercises and research projects built into the courses. The committee was particularly impressed with the primary-source projects Professor Sattar’s students will take on at both ONE and Special Collections. Professor Sattar’s intellectual and pedagogical breadth, moving across history, science, healthcare, and technology (always considered through prisms of equity and inequity), ensure a richly-textured and thoughtful classroom experience. That the Library units, their collections and their curators, are going to play a fundamental role in these courses is exactly what the Covington Fellowship has been designed to support. Professor Sattar’s restructuring strategies for each course are outlined below. Given construction work at ONE Archives at present, that unit, collections, and personnel will have to be activated somewhat later. Meantime, Special Collections colleagues are ready to assist Professor Sattar with the revision work she can do in Doheny and with off-site collections.

SWMS 336: Health, Gender, Ethnicity. This course examines how gender, ethnicity, sexual identity, disability, national status, and class inter-relate with health outcomes, access, and attitudes in the US. Students will research the records of ACTUP Los Angeles at ONE Archives for an assignment asking them to select an artifact and analyze its significance to AIDS activism and healthcare. Further collections of relevance at ONE include the Transgender Information Resources Collection (to enrich readings on Trans healthcare), the John Money Papers (foundational to discussions of intersexuality and sexual reassignment), and the Los Angeles Regional Family Planning Council records, particularly its Sterilization Training Program (to accompany the documentary No Mas Bebes on immigrant women sterilized at LA County-USC Medical Center during 1960s–1970s).

GESM 120g: Queer Science Fiction Studies. Currently called “Feminist Science Fiction Studies,” this class introduces students to Feminist Science Fiction alongside the discipline of Feminist Science Studies. For Spring 2024, I will foreground queer identities and perspectives through their real and imagined relationships to science and technology. To this end, I will continue to collaborate with ONE Archives as students study the records of the National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals (NOGLSTP), and the Lisa Ben papers. I am particularly eager to get students familiar with materials at ONE archive that will be featured in the Fall 2024 exhibit “Sexual Science and the Imagination” through the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time Exhibition.

Warm thanks to Library colleagues who have generously assisted with this year’s Covington Fellowship program, and special thanks to committee colleagues Karin Huebner and Suzi Noruschat.

William Deverell, Director, Collections Convergence Initiative