Interdisciplinarity, like other words, such as neoliberalism or globalization, has wide but seemingly endlessly varied use. Indeed, it is often used indiscriminately to apply to everything from a change of focus that is outside the substantive content of a discipline to the radical reorientation of methods and methodology to the call to escape disciplinary confines altogether. As someone who had the good fortune to receive an interdisciplinary graduate education at Rutgers (Women and Politics, Public Law, and Africana Studies as subfields) and begin her career in an interdisciplinary unit (what eventually became, in fact, a Department of Interdisciplinary Studies), I am well acquainted with the many debates surrounding the much-touted, but also still too infrequent, trek of not only boundary crossers per se, but also those who live in borderland spaces that merge and, at times, blur disciplinary lines. As a radical Black feminist political scientist and lawyer, interdisciplinarity has been a vital necessity for both theory and practice. Rutgers provided an intellectual space in which interdisciplinary approaches were deemed critical to mapping a feminist political science. In this essay, I briefly share some of the possibilities opened up by interdisciplinary investigation and its central role in ushering in a new political science.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Gender Studies
- Sociology and Political Science