Past Projects

Here’s a snapshot of past offerings. For an in-depth look of three projects, scroll below.

On Interpersonal Relationships:

  • Body-Centered Knowing: Mindfulness, Emotions, and Social Justice
  • Communication Culture and Identity Boundaries in League of Legends
  • Mindfulness Matters & Improving Dialogue
  • Unpacking Power and Privilege in Family and Interpersonal Communication
  • Seduction or Coercion: Problematic Languages of Masculinities
  • Daily Acts of Social Justice: Unraveling Gendered Violence through Mindfulness, Emotions, & Right-Sized Speech
  • Conflict in Private Communication

On Media:

  • Toxic Language in Video Games
  • Privacy, Consent, and the Issue of Asserting Agency
  • Consent & Empowerment on/through/for Social Media
  • Gender and Communication on the Internet
  • The Darker Side of Communication: Online Harassment and Incivility.
  • The Toxicity Meta(phor): Harassment and Hostility Norms in Overwatch.
  • Perfect Creep Score: The Toxicity of Twitch.TV chat during professional League of Legends matches.

On Community Issues:

  • Developing Social Resilience: Daily Acts of Social Justice through Self-Expression.
  • #INeedDiverseGames and the Queer backlash to GamerGate
  • Gender, Sexuality, and Digital Games.
  • Compassionate Community Betterment
  • Difficult Social Justice Conversations & Creating Classroom Conditions
  • Queer Classrooms: Leaky, Joyful, Creative
  • Mindful of Discomfort: Contemplative Practices for the Classroom
  • Reproductive Justice
  • Design in tension: The imagination (or not) of incarceration in digital games.
  • Towards a non-binary configuration of coalition: Feminism, queer theory, and Gamergate.

National Center for Women in Information and Technology Summit – 2019 | Workshop

Nashville, Tennessee

Elyse Janish & Nicole T. Castro

Who: Invited by NCWIT leadership, Elyse and Nicole, and an audience at maximum room capacity.

What: designed and led a workshop about language and identity.

Nicole & Elyse first presented basics about why and how language is connected to identity.

Next, they led the participants through scenarios to apply the concepts they’d learned to situations tailored to their workspaces.

Outcomes: workshop & engaged discussion covered issues such as

  • pronoun usage,
  • microaggressions, and
  • power systems that reproduce oppression.

Accessibility and Inclusion at Academic Conferences | Roundtable Discussion

Salt Lake City, Utah

Elyse Janish

Who: Elyse organized and co-led a roundtable of leaders from marginalized groups who are published experts in related fields.

Why: To explore how academic conferences participate in oppressive power structures that create an environment of hostility toward marginalized people.


  • A successful roundtable discussion
  • The roundtable participants and audience co-constructed a resource sheet.
  • The resource sheet can be distributed to conference organizers in order to draw attention to easily solved problems and provide recommendations for establishing better practices.

Embodied Resilience: Difficult Conversations Across Diversity of Race, Gender, & Other Identities | Workshop

A co-created archive of our concerns, priorities, and obstacles in having difficult conversations about identities.

Feminist Geography Conference | 2017

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Nicole T. Castro

Who: by selection committee invitation, Nicole and an engaged audience of academics and community members.

What: The hard conversations & questions like:

How do you tell a fellow feminist that their behavior is out of line with the ideals they promote?

How do you deal with racist or sexist comments that come up in important fieldwork relationships?

What stops you from speaking truth to power? from self-expression?


  • Group members took turns sharing their answers to the last question. We created a temporary archive of our concerns, priorities, and obstacles.
  • We mapped these into the concepts of “appropriate” and “inappropriate” behaviors, seeing the disparity and unreliability of these labels.
  • Nicole offered a simplified version of NonViolent Communication model & the group used one member’s shared experience to brainstorm concrete solutions.
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