Fisher Center 2020-2021 Speaker Series: What's in a Name?

"Black Lives Matter" or "All Lives Matter?" Global warming, climate change, or climate emergency? Translation, interpretation, or appropriation? Anthropocene, Capitalocene, or Chthulucene? She/he, ze, or they? Emancipation, decolonization, or liberation? Entrepreneuralism, precarity, or sharing economy? Prostitute, whore, or sex worker? Revolt, insurrection, or coup? Planet, ice planet, or ice dwarf? In 2020 - 2021, the Fisher Center wants to talk about how we talk about what we talk about. Names matter. We want to know when, where, why, and to whom.

The stakes regarding shifts in meaning and uncertain definitions -- of today's language politics -- are high. In the seventeenth-century, the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes associated the instability of the meaning of words with civil war. He concluded that avoiding civil war required an absolute authority who would determine what words mean. Is our setting of globalized personal media where fake news seems to reign a contemporary digital version of Hobbes's state of war? Or is this what democracy looks like? Can we communicate if we each have our own names for everything or is there something necessarily shared, common, and collective about names? If so, do names generate commonality or does commonality precede naming?

The Fisher Center is excited to consider projects that interrogate practices of naming and renaming. How do names become settled or attached to particular objects, persons, and places? Who gets to change them and by what means? How do aliases, pen names, user names, nicknames, pet names, anonymity, and multiple use names challenge conventional modes of identification? What sort of power relations and potentials for resistance do they open up? In what ways do names identify and in what ways do they mask or obscure? How are place names sites of political struggle? Projects might investigate the effects of labels, the histories of branding, the raced and gendered codings associated with proper names, the contestations effected by improper names.

Endowed to further the study of gender and justice in the liberal arts, the Fisher Center welcomes applications from researchers in the humanities, arts, sciences, social sciences, and performing arts that demonstrate commitment to interdisciplinary discussion and collective inquiry. We encourage proposals from a wide range of perspectives that reflect on the stakes of calling something one thing rather than another.

Werner  Vanguri

April 21

7 p.m., Zoom (Meeting ID: 980 1722 9790, Passcode: 908620)

Maggie Werner and Star Vanguri

Unpacking the Portmanteau: Blend Words as Ideographs

This presentation demonstrates the rhetorical aspects of the portmanteau (blend word) by examining the blend "Megxit," used for a variety of reasons but most commonly to refer to the stepping back from royal duties by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. We consider the significance of the name's form (its structure as a portmanteau) and function (its use as a media-circulated term for an event), as well as its ideological value (the belief system it conveys). Drawing on Michael McGee's conception of the ideograph as a "one-term sum" of an ideological orientation, we suggest that when portmanteaus function as ideographs--as Megxit does--they force conceptual associations between source terms that may not otherwise exist and present them in a playful and innocuous way, making the portmanteau an ideal form to disguise hate speech and racist ideology in a fun, media friendly package.


Rob Carson

All Mod Cons: Conspiracy, Community, Consent

This presentation demonstrates the rhetorical aspects of the portmanteau (blend word) by examining the blend "Megxit," used for a variety of reasons but most commonly to refer to the stepping back from royal duties by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. We consider the significance of the name's form (its structure as a portmanteau) and function (its use as a media-circulated term for an event), as well as its ideological value (the belief system it conveys). Drawing on Michael McGee's conception of the ideograph as a "one-term sum" of an ideological orientation, we suggest that when portmanteaus function as ideographs--as Megxit does--they force conceptual associations between source terms that may not otherwise exist and present them in a playful and innocuous way, making the portmanteau an ideal form to disguise hate speech and racist ideology in a fun, media friendly package. The prefix con- that we see in many English words comes to us from a Latin root that means "together with." (Etymologically speaking, a convention is a place where we "come together"; a collaboration is a project where we "work together"; a conspiracy is an occasion where we "breathe together"; and so on.) In this paper I consider how some of these "cons" might have resonated differently in Shakespeare's time, in the earliest days of the modern era, than they do for us today. As a philosophical movement, modernity was inextricably linked to the rise of individualism, the birth of the subject, and the binary of subject and object. Our experiences of togetherness, I contend, were dramatically altered by the very premises of modernity. As we seek to put some of the worst elements of modernity behind us, I propose that there are valuable things to be learned from a reassessment of pre-modern togetherness.


April 7

7 p.m., Zoom (Meeting ID: 959 8065 9534, Passcode: 552849)

Elizabeth Johnson

Pandemic Pharmaceuticals and Paradoxes of Ocean Governance

While environmentalists foretell the "ends of the ocean," so-called Blue Economy policies tout the oceans' abundance and depict a future in which biomedical innovation will bring human and ecological health into harmony. As biomedical industries embed lively marine materials ever more tightly into human health networks, these divergent ocean futures are becoming increasingly difficult to ignore -- and reconcile. This presentation examines the tensions among conservation science, biopharmaceutical governance and economic policy with a focus on a nonhuman "savior" of the coronavirus pandemic: the horseshoe crab.


Iskandar "Izul" Zulkarnain

"What's the Buzz?: Practices and Politics of Internet "Buzzers" in Indonesia

"Buzzer," a term used to characterize an individual hired to amplify/attract attention to a certain message/product on social media, has come to the forefront in Indonesia's public discourse, mostly due to its role in political campaigns, misinformation and disinformation. Focusing on overlaps in the construction of Indonesian buzzers and global micro-celebrity/influencer culture, this presentation frames the former as the "evil twin" of the latter with its own complexities specifically tied to the development of Indonesian digital culture. A look into the mechanism and "industrialization" of buzzers illustrates a shift in practices from marketing auxiliary to digital "dark op" foot soldiers. This presentation highlights the importance of considering the Indonesian buzzer phenomenon in light of its interconnections with cultural contexts specific to the country, rather than merely conflating it into the framework of internet influencers and micro-celebrities.


February 10

Vanessa Wills

The 'F' Word: How Should We Talk About the Far Right?

7 p.m., Zoom (Meeting ID: 953 4845 6831, Passcode: 024344)

The January 6 coup attempt has newly enlivened debate about the applicability and appropriateness of the term "fascism" to describe some of the right-wing elements that sought to overturn the results of the 2020 election. What are the implications of longstanding historiographical controversies regarding the use and meaning of this term with respect to philosophical considerations about the meaning, explanatory power, and ethical import of "fascism" as a social category?

Vanessa Wills is assistant professor of philosophy at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and is on the editorial board of Spectre Journal. Her research focuses on how economic and social arrangements inhibit or promote the realization of values such as freedom, equality and human development.

Albena Azmanova

August 19

Albena Azmanova

Pracarity and subversion: the new language of radicalism

Contemporary capitalism has generated forms of suffering which the familiar language of injustice, centered on inequality and exclusion, fails to capture; to be genuinely radical, we need new categories, argues Albena Azmanova in her new book Capitalism on Edge: How Fighting Precarity Can Achieve Radical Change Without Crisis or Utopia. Dr Azmanova is Associate Professor of political theory at the University of Kent in Brussels. We will discuss some of the new categories she has introduced in her work: precarity, the metacrisis of capitalism, and pragmatic subversion as a strategy for radical change.

Priscilla Wald

September 23

Priscilla Wald

CONTAGION: COVID-19, the Outbreak Narrative, and Why We Need to Change the Story

7 p.m., Zoom (Meeting ID: 919 2260 0214, Passcode: 002682)

The way we talk about diseases has consequences. SARS-CoV-2 is the name of a pathogen--a diseasecausing microbe--but if COVID-19 is a "newly emerging infection," it is also a newly emerging, though familiar, story: the latest version of "the outbreak narrative." In this talk, Prof. Priscilla Wald will discuss how we imagine the threat and why we react so fearfully, and which problems merit our attention and resources. Wald is R. Florence Brinkley Professor of English and Professor of Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies at Duke University. She is the author of Contagious: Cultures, Carriers, and the Outbreak Narrative (Duke University Press 2008) and Constituting Americans: Cultural Anxiety and Narrative Form (Duke University Press 1995). She is currently at work on a monograph entitled Human Being After Genocide.

October 7

Mercy Sherman, Willa Dow, Skye Morgan

7 p.m., Zoom

Woodworth fellows presentations (students).

Naminata Diabate

October 21

Naminata Diabate

Naming and Naked Protest: Naked Agency, Ndong, Genital Cursing, or Adjanou?

7 p.m., Zoom

A scholar of sexuality, race, biopolitics, and postcoloniality, Naminata's research primarily explores African, African American, Caribbean, and Afro-Hispanic literatures, cultures, cinema, and new media.

Lance A. Twitchell

November 18

X'unai Lance A. Twitchell (Du Aani Kawdinook)

Haa Saax'ú Tóonáx Woosh Wutudzikóo: We Know Each Other Through Our Names: Peoples, Places, and Identity in Indigenous Language Revitalization

7 p.m., Zoom

Lance A. Twitchell carries the Tlingit names X'unei & Du Aani Kawdinook, and the Haida name K'eijaakw. He is from the Tlingit, Haida, and Yup'ik native nations, and speaks & studies the Tlingit language. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and a Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in American Indian Studies from the University of Minnesota.

X'unei is a multimedia artist in poetry, fiction, drama, non-fiction, Northwest Coast Native design, and traditional & contemporary music. His grandfather Silas Dennis Senior was his first teacher, and his grandmother Dorothy Dennis lives in Skagway, Alaska, where Lance was born. He is an Assistant Professor of Alaska Native Languages at the University of Alaska Southeast, and lives in Juneau with his wife, son, and daughter.

2019-2020 Speaker Series: The Drowned World: Water, Politics, and the Future

Water is a conduit for connection, the undercurrent of life. Struggles over water animate social justice movements from Flint, Standing Rock, and Seneca Lake to Palestine, India, and New Zealand. What role does water as a resource play in the struggles for a better world? How does one recover submerged histories and afterlives--of slave trade, piracy, lawlessness, and statelessness? How is the sea as a ground of colonial violence implicated in the liberatory imaginings of the oceanic? "The Drowned World" names the loss of hope, the breakdown of sociality, and apocalyptic visions that accompany climate change, while at the same time drawing out the hybrid entanglements that inspire us to imagine new flows of life and currents of possibility.

January 29

Book Launch - Associate Professor of English Alla Ivanchikova's Imagining Afghanistan: Global Fiction and Film of the 9/11 Wars (Purdue UP, 2019)

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

The launch will include comments from Etin Anwar (Religious Studies), Kevin Dunn (Political Science), Michelle Martin-Baron (Women’s Studies) and Robinson Murphy (Environmental Studies).

About Imagining Afghanistan (from the publisher's website):
“Afghanistan” serves as a lens through which contemporary cultural producers contend with the moral ambiguities of twenty-first-century humanitarianism, interpret the legacy of the Cold War, debate the role of the U.S. in the rise of transnational terror, and grapple with the long-term impact of war on both human and nonhuman ecologies.

Post-9/11 global Afghanistan literary production remains largely NATO-centric insofar as it is marked by an uncritical investment in humanitarianism as an approach to Third World suffering and in anti-communism as an unquestioned premise. The book’s first half exposes how persisting anti-socialist biases—including anti-statist bias—not only shaped recent literary and visual texts on Afghanistan, resulting in a distorted portrayal of its tragic history, but also informed these texts’ reception by critics. In the book’s second half, the author examines cultural texts that challenge this limited horizon and forge alternative ways of representing traumatic histories. Captured by the author through the concepts of deep time, nonhuman witness, and war as a multispecies ecology, these new aesthetics bring readers a sophisticated portrait of Afghanistan as a rich multispecies habitat affected in dramatic ways by decades of war but not annihilated.

February 12

Tiffany Lethabo King

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Tiffany Lethabo King is an Assistant Professor of African-American Studies and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Georgia State. She will be discussing her new book, The Black Shoals: Offshore Formations of Black and Native Studies (Duke UP 2019)

About The Black Shoals (from the publisher’s website):
In The Black Shoals Tiffany Lethabo King uses the shoal—an offshore geologic formation that is neither land nor sea—as metaphor, mode of critique, and methodology to theorize the encounter between Black studies and Native studies. King conceptualizes the shoal as a space where Black and Native literary traditions, politics, theory, critique, and art meet in productive, shifting, and contentious ways. These interactions, which often foreground Black and Native discourses of conquest and critiques of humanism, offer alternative insights into understanding how slavery, anti-Blackness, and Indigenous genocide structure white supremacy. Among texts and topics, King examines eighteenth-century British mappings of humanness, Nativeness, and Blackness; Black feminist depictions of Black and Native erotics; Black fungibility as a critique of discourses of labor exploitation; and Black art that rewrites conceptions of the human. In outlining the convergences and disjunctions between Black and Native thought and aesthetics, King identifies the potential to create new epistemologies, lines of critical inquiry, and creative practices.

February 26

Fisher Center Faculty Research Fellows

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Robinson Murphy (Environmental Studies): Climate Change and the Death Drive
Taylor Brorby (English), The Fracking of My Body

March 4

Helen M. Rozwadowski

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

How Ocean History Can Help Save Our Planet

Helen M. Rozwadowski, Department of History and Founder of the University of Connecticut’s Maritime Studies program, will give a talk called “How Ocean History Can Help Save Our Planet.” Her talk considers how the long-standing and persistent Western view of the ocean as a timeless place, apart from humanity, contributes to oceanic degradation. Historical investigations reveal that this perception is far from universal, either across cultures or across time. Many cultures, from the distant evolutionary past and continuing in the present, have engaged intimately with the ocean’s surface, depths, and living residents. Today we are in the midst of a re-discovery of the ocean as a profoundly historical place rather than a timeless one. The humanities offer the prospect of better understanding of the complexities of the past and present human relationship with the ocean, promising to equip us better to deal with the future.

Professor Rozwadowski’s books include Vast Expanses: A History of the Oceans (2018) and Fathoming the Ocean: The Discovery and Exploration of the Deep Sea (2005).

March 25

Fisher Center Faculty Research Fellows

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Ricky Price (Political Science): Invasive Cultures in the Finger Lakes: From the Sullivan Campaign to Harmful Algae Blooms
Susan Cushman (Biology): TBA

April 8

Fisher Center Faculty Research Fellows

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Tara Curtain (Geoscience)
Lisa Avron (Predoctoral Fellow)

Christina Sharpe

September 18

Christina Sharpe

The Ethics of Dust

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Sharpe is Professor of Humanities at York University and Distinguished Visiting Professor at Ryerson University. Professor Sharpe is the author of two books: Monstrous Intimacies: Making Post-Slavery Subjects (2010) and In the Wake: On Blackness and Being (2016) both published by Duke University Press. The Guardian named In the Wake one of the best books of 2016. Professor Sharpe is currently working on a monograph called Black. Still. Life.

Nick Estes

October 23

Nick Estes

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Estes is a citizen of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe and an assistant professor of American studies at the University of New Mexico. As an activist and researcher, Professor Estes has concentrated on indigenous resistance in an era of climate change, with particular attention to the water protectors of Standing Rock. He is the author of Our History Is the Future: Standing Rock Versus the Dakota Access Pipeline, and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance.

Vandana Singh

October 30

Vandana Singh

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Singh is a physicist and award-winning science fiction writer. Professor Singh is Chair of the Department of Physics and Earth Science at Framingham State University in Massachusetts. Singh also serves on the Advisory Council of METI (Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence). She is the author of numerous short stories and novellas.

Fisher Center 2018-2019 Speaker Series: On the Move

Celebrating its 20th anniversary throughout the 2018-19 academic year, the Fisher Center for the Study of Gender and Justice hosted artists, scholars, authors and activists to examine contemporary concerns surrounding mobility, movements and migration.

Cynthia Wu

February 6

Cynthia Wu

When Home Is Another Prison: Movement and Stasis in a Draft Resister's World War II Diary

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Cynthia Wu's work focuses on how racialized masculinities are produced through investments in physical or psychosocial difference, queerness and non-normative affiliations. Her books, Chang and Eng Reconnected and Sticky Rice, establish this research trajectory by examining Asian American and Asian-raced men's unsettling intimacies in the face of pressures that dictate conformity, respectability and upward economic mobility.

Dressed in black, Alice Sheppard leans on her elbow, rests her face in her hand, and gazes softly into the camera.  Her wheelchair back bar is visible behind her. Photo by Beverlie Lord/Satsun Photography.

Alice Sheppard in
her chair. Photo
by Beverlie Lord/
Satsun Photo-

February 20

Alice Sheppard

Unrolling Disability Culture and Aesthetics: A Meditation on Intersectional Disability in Dance

7 p.m., Deming Theater, Gearan Center for the Performing Arts

Alice Sheppard studied ballet and modern dance with Kitty Lunn and made her debut with Infinity Dance Theater. Sheppard joined AXIS Dance Company, an Oakland-based company where she toured nationally and taught in the company's education and outreach programs. Since becoming an independent artist, Sheppard has danced in projects with Ballet Cymru, GDance, and Marc Brew Company in the United Kingdom and Full Radius Dance, Marjani Forte, MBDance, Infinity Dance Theater, and Steve Paxton in the United States.

An award-winning choreographer, Alice creates movement that challenges conventional understandings of disabled and dancing bodies. Engaging with disability arts, culture and history, Alice's commissioned work attends to the complex intersections of disability, gender, and race. Alice is the founder and artistic lead for Kinetic Light, a project based collaborative working at the intersections of architecture, dance, design, identity, and technology to show how mobility - literal, physical, and conceptual - is fundamental to participation in civic life.

March 6

Mimi Sheller

The Politics of (Im)Mobility: Bodies, Borders, Cities, Planets

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

March 13

Marcela Romero-Rivera, Hannah Dickinson, and Laura Salamendra

Stencling for the Revolution: The Geneva Women's Assembly Aesthetic Strategy

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

March 27

Emina Musanovic and Ashwin J. Manthripragada

Infrastructures of Movement: Bridges and Borders

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

April 10: Disruptive Movement

Katryn Evinson

A Politics of Interruption: The Case of Txitxarro Terrorist Attack

Elizabeth Wells

Throwing Nutshells: Idiocy, Social Control, and the Illegibility of Intelligence in George Eliot's The Mill on the Floss

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

April 24: Moving through Identity

Charity Lofthouse

Moving Inhabitations: Listening to Music as Tripartite Engagement and Identity Performance

James McCorkle

Fugitive Lines: The Experimental Black Poetics of Fred Moten, C.S. Giscombe, and NourbeSe Philip

April 25 - 27

Faculty Dance Concert

Includes performance by Fisher Center Faculty Fellow Cadence Whittier: Tethered

April 25 & 26, 7:30 p.m. and April 27, 2 p.m., Gearan Center for the Performing Arts

September 28

Laura Rowley

Crafting the Revolution: DIY skills for activists

4:30 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Laura Rowley will lead "Crafting the Revolution: DIY skills for activists," a hands-on poster, card and silkscreen workshop.

Angela Davis

October 18

Twentieth Anniversary Lecture: Angela Davis

Futures of Feminism

4:30 p.m., Vandervort Room

Angela Davis is an international icon for her decades of struggle against oppression. In 1970, she was on the FBI's "Ten Most Wanted List" for trumped-up charges connected with a courthouse attack in Marin County, CA. An international movement formed to "Free Angela Davis." After serving sixteen months in prison, including solitary confinement, she was acquitted of all charges. A long-time member of the Communist Party, in 1979 she was awarded the Lenin Peace Prize from the Soviet Union. In addition to her activism on behalf of prison abolition, anti-racism, feminism, and Palestinian self-determination, Angela Davis is the author of numerous books, including the classic, Women, Race, and Class. She is Distinguished Professor Emerita at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

November 14

Charisse Burden-Stelly

The treacherous terrain of movement building: Anti-radicalism, anti-blackness, and U.S. imperialism

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Charisse Burden-Stelly is an assistant professor of Africana studies and political science at Carleton College. Co-author of W.E.B. DuBois: A Life in American History, Burden-Stelly holds a Ph.D. in African Diaspora Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and has published scholarship recently in Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, Culture, and Society.

December 5

Noriko Manabe

How Sound Shapes Demonstrations, and How Demonstrations Shape Sound: Case Studies in the U.S. and Japan

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Noriko Manabe is an associate professor at Temple University's Boyer College of Music and Dance. Her research centers on music and social movements and on popular music. Manabe's first monograph, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: Protest Music After Fukushima, addresses the different roles of musicians in the performance spaces of cyberspace, demonstrations, festivals and recordings. The book won the John Whitney Hall Book Prize (for the best book in Japanese studies) from the Association for Asian Studies and Honorable Mention for the Alan Merriam Prize (for the best book in ethnomusicology) from the Society for Ethnomusicology.

Futures of Revolution: Fall 2017-Spring 2018

Chris Harris

February 21

Chris Harris

Wasun's Comrade Music: African-Canadian and Indigenous Revolutionary Hip Hop and the War of Position against Neo-liberal Capitalism in 21st Century Canada

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Chris Harris is a musician and organizer in the Black community in Toronto. From 2000-2009, Chris was the lead youth organizer at the Black Action Defense Committee (BADC), launching the Freedom Cipher Program (2007-2009). Freedom Cipher was a revolutionary anti-racist youth movement inspired by the Black Panther Party. It organized former Bloods and Crips into a "Hood2Hood" campaign to end gang violence in Toronto's Westend. It organized young black women into "Set It Off" girls groups to close the educational attainment gap in Westend high schools. Since 2005, Chris (a.k.a Wasun) has released three revolutionary hip hop albums: What Must Be Done? (2005); The Prison Notebooks (2010); Comrade Music (2015).

He is completing a doctoral dissertation at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, on the history of revolutionary nationalist/communist activism in Toronto's Black Left from the '60s Canadian Black Power movement to the Black Action Defense Committee in the first decade of the 21st century. In 2015 Chris launched the Antonio Gramsci-inspired radical adult education institute, Freedom Justice Academy, as a legacy of the Freedom Cipher Program ( FJA organizes healing, mentorship, and leadership training programs for indigenous and Black federal ex-prisoners in this era of mass incarceration.

Ada Ferrer

March 7

Ada Ferrer

Cuban Revolution

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Ada Ferrer is Juilius Silver Professor of History and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University. She is the author of two award-winning books: Insurgent Cuba: Race, Nation, and Revolution, 1868-1898 and Freedom's Mirror: Cuba and Haiti in the Age of Revolution. She is currently working on two projects: the first, tentatively titled Cuba: An American History, is a new popular history of Cuba from the arrival of Columbus to the death of Fidel Castro. The second is Visionary Aponte: Art and Black Freedom, a contemporary art exhibit she is co-curating and that will also result in a book by the same name.

Abstract: Inspired in part by Carolyn Steedman's classic exploration of the relationship between a historian and her working class mother in Landscape for a Good Woman, this presentation explores connections between family stories of revolution and migration, academic histories of the Cuban Revolution, and the elusive power of recognition that potentially links both.

Carole Elizabeth Boyce Davies

September 13

Carole Elizabeth Boyce Davies

Caribbean Left: Diasporic Circulations

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

The recipient of the 2017 Frantz Fanon Lifetime Achievement Award from the Caribbean Philosophical Association, Carole Boyce Davies is a professor of Africana studies and English at Cornell University. She is the author of the prize-wining book, Left of Karl Marx: The Political Life of Black Communist Claudia Jones (2008) and the classic Black Women, Writing and Identity: Migrations of the Subject (1994). Her most recent book is a study of transnational migration and Caribbean culture, Caribbean Spaces: Escape Routes from Twilight Zones (2013). She is currently studying the political leadership of black women in the African Diaspora.

Professor Boyce Davies launches this year’s theme, Future of Revolution, by putting the revolutionary work of Caribbean women at the center of our inquiry.

Artemy Magun

September 27

Artemy Magun

Spontaneity and Revolution

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Artemy Magun is a Professor at the European University at Saint-Petersburg and a Visiting Professor at Bard College (Fall 2017). He is the author of Negative Revolution (2013) as well as multiple books and articles available only in Russian. Professor Magun is the editor of the social and political philosophy journal, Stasis. He is a member of the art and philosophy collective, “Chto Delat” (What is to be Done?).

Professor Magun will consider the legacy of the 1917 Russian Revolution from the perspective of spontaneity. What is the role of spontaneity in the future of left political movement?

Sarah Raymundo

October 18

Sarah Raymundo

The Bells of Balangiga: Resonances of the Philippine National Democratic Revolution Toward Socialism

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Sarah Raymundo teaches at the University of the Philippines, Diliman Center for International Studies. She is a Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence and Faculty Fellow at the CUNY Graduate Center’s Center for Place, Culture, and Politics. Professor Raymundo chairs the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Committee for International Relations, which steers the International League of Peoples Struggles (ILPS) Commission 11. She is the Chairperson of the Philippines-Venezuela Bolivarian Friendship Association and the Vice Chairperson of the Philippine Anti-Imperialist Studies (PAIS). She publishes a regular column, “Blood Rush,” on, an online alternative platform, which advocates “journalism for the people.”

Professor Raymundo will discuss US imperialism, the anti-imperialist class war in Philippine history, and the ongoing revolutionary armed struggle.

Bruno Bosteels

November 29

Bruno Bosteels

Viewing the October Revolution from the Land of Zapata

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

This talk will assess the Russian 1917 revolution from the perspective of revolutionary events in Latin America.

Bruno Bosteels is a Professor in the Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures at Columbia University. His books in English include The Actuality of Communism (Verso) and Marx and Freud in Latin America (Duke). He is a past editor of the journal, Diacritics, and the editor and/or translator of half a dozen books by the French philosopher Alain Badiou.

No Place Like Home: Fall 2016-Spring 2017

How is it that home inspires longing and fear?

Spring 2017

April 5

Kate Hardy, Ph.D.

Unproductive bodies, undesirable citizens: reconceptualizing displacement in austerity London

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

London promised that hosting the Olympics would result in "homes for all." The reality has the deterioration of the real-life housing situation of many East Londoners.

This talk draws on participatory action research with the Focus E15 campaign who have been organizing those facing homelessness and displacement. The homeless are disproportionately female, with dependents (children under 16) and health or disability needs. These citizens are rendered undesirable and unproductive as a result of the disavowal and misrecognition of reproductive labor and the marginalization of people with impairments in the labor market.

March 22

Mike Bonanno

Making Meaningful Mischief

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Can pranks, mischief, and creativity change the course of history? Mike Bonanno of the notorious "Yes Men" will answer that question and more in a lively talk that begins with a brief history of tricksters and progress, and ends with lively autobiographical lessons he's learned in over 20 years of comic creative direct action.

Filmmaker Mike Bonanno is one half of the progressive prankster duo known as The Yes Men. Their outrageous satirical interventions at business events, on the internet, television, and in the streets form the basis of three award-winning feature documentary films, The Yes Men and The Yes Men Fix the World, and The Yes Men are Revolting. They are the founders of a nonprofit training program for creative direct action called the Yes Lab.

February 22

Dorothy Chansky

Home and the Range (of Performative Representations)

7 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

"Home" carries cultural clout as an adjective in the overused "home cooking." Likewise, it is freighted with meaning when it is marshaled to help designate a kind of work and a stereotyped worker in "homemaking" and "homemaker." This freight and clout are often illdefined-- even reductive--yet they travel unremarked widely in advertising, education, theatre, and film as labels meant to shorthand value. This talk considers the questions that motivated Chansky's recent book, Kitchen Sink Realisms: Domestic Labor, Dining, and Drama in American Theatre, where the driving concern is how mainstream notions about facets of domesticity--those with the clout and freight noted above--are deployed in American plays and performance art, either with an eye to shoring up or to subverting received opinion about them. Chansky will also discuss Yoko Ono's Kitchen Piece (1960-61, 1966, and 1970), considering how venue and genre--like "home" and artistic disciplines, a slippery concept--inflects readings and understandings of representations of domesticity.

Fall 2016

September 6

Stephanie Kenific '17

Our Schools: Building an Anti-Bias Classroom

5:00 p.m., Community Room of the Geneva Public Library

2016 Woodworth Fellow and William Smith senior Stephanie Kenific '17 leads a participatory workshop on anti-racist and intersectional curriculum in public schools. Stephanie is currently engaged in reshaping the Common Core Learning Curriculum to serve anti-racist and feminist principles in the context of a 9th grade English classroom. This workshop will be her first public presentation of the ongoing project and will take the form of a complete lesson. Attendees can expect to engage in critical discussion regarding language, race, and radical education. A model fish-bowl conversation with HWS students will activate Stephanie's curriculum and provide a model for action-based intergroup dialogue in the classroom.

September 28

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

You Can't Fix a Broken Foundation": Black Women's Housing in the 1970s

7:00 p.m., Geneva Room

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Assistant Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, is the author of From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation. In the words of Cornel West, ““This brilliant book is the best analysis we have of the #BlackLivesMatter moment of the long struggle for freedom in America. Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor has emerged as the most sophisticated and courageous radical intellectual of her generation.”

Her talk will draw from her work in progress, Race for Profit: Black Housing and the Urban Crisis of the 1970s, which looks at the federal government's promotion of single-family homeownership in Black communities after the urban rebellions of the 1960s. She considers the impact of the turn to market-based solutions on  Black neighborhoods, Black women on welfare, and emergent discourses on the urban “underclass.”

October 26

Frank B. Wilderson III

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Frank B. Wilderson III, Professor of Drama and African American Studies at the University of California at Irvine.

Frank Wilderson is an award-winning writer, activist, and critical theorist who spent five and a half years in South Africa, where he was one of two Americans to have held an elected office in the African National Congress during the country’s transition from apartheid. He also worked clandestinely as a member of the ANC’s armed wing Umkhonto We Sizwe (MK). He is the author of Incognegro: A Memoir of Exile and Apartheid, which received the American Book Award, the Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Legacy Award, the Eisner Prize for Creative Achievement of the Highest Order, and a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship. He is also the author of a book on cinema, politics, and race: Red, White, & Black: Cinema and the Structure of U.S. Antagonisms (Duke University Press, 2010). His poetry, creative prose, critical, and film production are predicated on the notion that slavery did not end in 1865; the United States simply made adjustments to the force of Black resistance without diminishing the centrality of Black captivity to the stability and coherence of civil society. This assumptive logic has helped catalyze a new school of thought in the academy and beyond, called Afro-Pessimism.

His talk will interrogate the ethics of thinking “home” as a cognitive map- and gender as an ensemble of spatio-temporal capacities that exceed and anticipate all sentient beings. These presumptively generic maps and capacities are void of coherence when the adjective “Black” precedes them—an injunction which is more paradigmatic in nature than performative. His talk will explore how this injunction prohibiting Black recognition through- and incorporation into the domestic scene is necessary for domesticity and gender to be tangibly constructed within political economy as well as for the fortification and extension of their imaginative labors within the libidinal economy; in short, how and why anti-Blackness is a prerequisite for world-making at every scale of abstraction, even the body and the home.

November 9

Premilla Nadasen

Labor of Love: Social Reproduction and the Politics of Care

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

The "caring economy" has often been used to describe the labor of social reproduction--both paid and unpaid labor in the home.  But is the language of care a useful framework to analyze this work?  And if so, from whose perspective?  This paper will examine the politics of care in movement for household workers' rights in the 1970s.  Paid domestic workers were emotionally invested in the work, yet they never saw it as a labor of love.  Their claim for rights was based in a language of entitlement and erasing rather than highlighting the artificial distinction between work inside and outside the home.

Premilla Nadasen is an associate professor of history at Barnard College and a scholar-activist who writes and speaks on issues of race, gender, social policy and labor history.    She is most interested in visions of social change, and the ways in which poor and working-class people, especially women of color, have fought for social justice.  She has published extensively on the multiple meanings of feminism, alternative labor movements, and grass-roots community organizing.  She is the author of the award-winning Welfare Warriors, which documents the welfare rights movement claim to a basic minimum income in the 1960s.  Her most recent book is Household Workers Unite (Beacon 2015), a history of domestic worker activism in the post-war period.

December 7

Trinh T. Minh-ha

Trinh T. Minh-ha presents her 2015 film "Forgetting Vietnam"

7 p.m., Fish Screening Room, Gearan Center for the Performing Arts

"Forgetting Vietnam" features the encounter between the ancient as related to the solid earth, and the new as related to the liquid changes in a time of rapid globalization. In conversation with these two parts is a third space, that of historical and cultural re-memory -- or what local inhabitants, immigrants and veterans remember of yesterday's stories to comment on today's events. Through the insights of these witnesses to one of America's most divisive wars, Vietnam's specter and its contributions to world history remain both present and all too easy to forget. Touching on a trauma of international scale, "Forgetting Vietnam" is made in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the end of the war and of its survivors. Minh-ha is a prize-winning filmmaker, writer and composer who has made eight films and authored 14 books.

Gender, Climate, and the Anthropocene: Fall 2015-Spring 2016

February 24

Kathryn Yusoff

Towards the Idea of a Black Anthropocene

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

This talk traces the historiography of Colonial Man to Anthropocene Man in order to frame the "Geology of Mankind" as a privileged subjective space of biopolitical consideration. By looking at the originary moments of the Anthropocene--Columbian 1610 "Exchange,"19th Century Industrialisation, 1950s Great Acceleration (and the Nuclear isotope marker)--I show how coloniality is materially inscripted into the Anthropocene. In parallel, I question the decolonizing turn in Anthropocene discourse, challenging claims for an "ontology without territory" and "settler moves to innocence." In moving towards the idea of a Black Anthropocene, I suggest that race might be considered as foundational to the production of global world space. Similarly, there can be no address of the planetary failures of Modernism or the master subject - "Man" - without a commitment to overcoming colonialism.

Kathry Yusoff is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Geography at Queen Mary University of London. Her work focuses on political aesthetics, social theory and abrupt environmental change. Her current book addresses questions of 'Geologic Life' within the Anthropocene. Drawing on insights from contemporary feminist philosophy, critical human geography, and the earth sciences, she is interested in the opportunities the Anthropocene presents for rethinking the interactions between the earth sciences and human geography.

March 30

Zoe Todd

Indigenizing the Anthropocene: Prairie Indigenous Feminisms and Fish Co-Conspirators

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

1610 is a possible start date of the Anthropocene is 1610, one that coincides not only with the movement of species between continents in expanding global trade routes, but also with the genocide of 50 million Indigenous people in the Americas. Taking this date as the starting point of global environmental change as well as a marker of violent colonial impacts on the Americas, I examine the intertwined experiences of humans and more-than-human beings. I focus on the experiences of Indigenous peoples in what is today known as Canada, dwelling on the stories and histories of generations of women in my Metis (Indigenous) family and the fish they shared territory with. Resisting the urge to flatten discourses of the Anthropocene to a universalizing human species-paradigm, I insert the micro-dramas of Metis women and the fish that Indigenous peoples in my family relied on to re-narrate the changes we associate today with the Anthropocene-as-global-narrative. What can humble prairie fish teach us about how to face uncertain futures together?

Zoe Todd (Metis) is from Amiskwaciwaskahikan (Edmonton) in the Treaty Six Area of Alberta, Canada. She writes about Indigeneity, art, architecture, decolonization and healing in urban contexts. She also studies human-animal relations, colonialism and environmental change in northern Canada. She is a lecturer in Anthropology at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada and a PhD Candidate in Social Anthropology at Aberdeen University, Scotland.

April 13

Marcela Romero Rivera

The Creaturely Archive: Women Artists Document the Mexican (Un)Dead

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

During the past 10 years, Mexico has felt the violent effect of its neoliberal economic program, of which drug trafficking and the war against it are but the most obscene incarnation. Artists like Natalia Almada and Teresa Margolles shed light on indexical traces of this violence as it is inscribed on individual bodies and the social tissue. These artists tread on what Eric Santner calls "the creaturely."

Marcela Romero Rivera is a Fisher Center Faculty Research Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Spanish and Hispanic Studies.

Rob Maclean

Black Life Matters: On the Black Radical Imagination and the Anthropocene

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

Soon after activists started calling attention (on social media) to the murder of Trayvon Martin in the late spring of 2012 (and he was only the latest...) the idea that "Black Lives Matter" became an object of intense media scrutiny and political contestation. This talk thinks through some of the implications of the symbolic power conveyed by the assertion that black life (in America and in general) matters by staging a dialogue between the turn towards the Anthropocene in recent academic discourse and the critical theorization of the "human" enacted in the black radical tradition.

Rob Maclean is a Fisher Center Faculty Research Fellow.

September 23

Elizabeth Povinelli

Before Biopower and After: Geontopower

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

This talk explores the belated emergence of geontopower--power organized around the division between life and nonlife -- in the wake of the anthropocene and the impact on how we conceptualizer late liberal power.

Elizabeth Povinelli is Franz Boas Professor of Anthropology and Gender Studies at Columbia University where she has also been the Director of the Institute for Research on Women and Gender. Her writing develops a critical theory of late liberalism in support of an anthropology of the otherwise. Her first two books examine the governance of the otherwise in late liberal settler colonies from the perspective of the politics of recognition. Her last two books examined the same from the perspective of intimacy, embodiment, and narrative form.

November 4

Frederic Neyrat

Cosmophagy. Cinema and the Anthropocene

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

The truth of the anthropocene is cosmophagy, that is to say the destruction of non-human dimensions. Eco-apocalyptic cinema renders this situation 1) in prophesizing an anthropophagic horizon (a short circuit of humankind) and, 2) in trying, sometimes, to reveal outsides, an otherness able to block the cosmophagic machine.

Frederic Neyrat is a French philosopher and former program director at College international de philosophie in Paris. He completed his dissertation under the direction of Jean-Luc Nancy. Neyrat is a Lecturer in Comparative Literature at University of Wisconsin Madison, concentrating in contemporary philosophy, environmental humanities, and theory of images. The author of ten books and numerous articles, Neyrat explores biopolitics, ecopolitics, animality, fluidity, and catastrophe. His most recent work develops a new existentialism that regenerates the place of the outside.

Jennifer Cazenave

Cinema in the Aftermath of the Catastrophe

The response to Professor Neyrat will consider how cinema and philosophy (particularly in France) were impacted by the experience of the Holocaust. It will also consider how the term "catastrophe" has been appropriated to designate genocides, particularly in film studies.

Jennifer Cazenave is a Fisher Center Research Fellow and Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow in French and Francophone Studies.

November 11

Not An Art Collective Lecture

The Natural History Museum

7:00 p.m., Fisher Center, Demarest Hall 212

The Natural History Museum is both a campaign and a counter-institution. On the critical side, it challenges fossil fuel industry greenwashing in museums that communicate science to the public. On the positive side, it borrows the vocabulary of natural history museums to tell a sort of "people's history of natural history," amplifying key climate justice narratives and campaigns. It has a mission to affirm the truth of science, and to model the museum of the future.

Not An Alternative is a Brooklyn-based arts collective that operates at the intersection of art, activism, and theory. Through engaged critical research and design, the group uses tools culled from the fields of art, architecture, exhibition design, and political organizing to produce interventions that disrupt and remodel material and symbolic space. By creating participatory points of entry for arts audiences and everyday citizens alike, we aim to affect popular understandings of events, symbols, institutions and history, not through a typical head-on (or head-butt) approach to activism, but through the occupation and redeployment of popular vernacular, semiotics, and memes. Not An Alternative's performances, installations, presentations, and actions have been featured within art institutions such as Guggenheim (NY), PS1/MOMA (NY), Tate Modern (London), Victoria & Albert Museum (London), MOCAD (Detroit), and Museo del Arte Moderno (Mexico City), and in the public sphere, where they collaborate with community groups and activist mobilizations.

December 9

Changing climates: political and aquatic

Nicholas Beuret

A Tale of two Climate Conferences (or how many last chances will we get?)

The 2009 international climate change conference in Copenhagen was described as humanity's last chance to stop climate change. Apparently despite the failure of the 2009 talks we have another last chance this year at the Paris climate talks, although many argue that these talks will inevitably also fail to produce an international agreement to limit climate change.

The failure of these conferences is not a matter of political conflict as is often suggested. Rather, as I outline through insider accounts, the situation of impasse is the result of the limits of political realism vis-a-vis what scientist Dr Kevin Anderson has called the brutal numbers and tenuous hope of climate change. As such climate change politics is crippled by the increasing gap between what is politically possible and what is scientifically necessary, producing an affective atmosphere of despair within environmentalist and scientific circles.

Nicholas Beuret is the Fisher Fellow for Gender, Climate, and the Anthropocene. His research interrogates the politics and philosophy of ecological catastrophe. Beuret has been active in environmental and social justice movements for more than 20 years and was involved in the campaign to secure the world's first climate change legislation in the UK and at the 2009 international climate change talks in Copenhagen.

Elizabeth Johnson

Our Futures with Jellyfish: Dreams of Ecological Apocalypse and Everlasting Life

Jellyfish have recently taken on a pivotal role in visions of the future of life on Earth. On one hand, in light of climate change, rising sea temperatures and ocean acidification, scientists have warned of a coming "jellyfish apocalypse." On the other, biotech and stem-cell researchers insist their bodies contain the secrets to everlasting life. This talk offers a critical analysis of how these two antipodal visions of the future are held in tension in the science of jellyfish bodies and ecologies. It considers how thinking with jellyfish might figure in alternative visions of a future transformed.

Elizabeth Johnson is a human-environment geographer teaching Environmental Studies at HWS. She writes on the growing role of the biosciences as part of strategies for generating technological production without ecological limits.

Campus War Machine: Sex and Debt - Fall 2014-Spring 2015

February 4

Nirmala Erevelles

Empire's Other's Other: Crippin' the Political Economy of Erasure in the Academy

7:30pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

A Professor of Social and Cultural Studies in Education at the University of Alabama, Erevelles's teaching and research interests lie in the areas of disability studies, critical race theory, transnational feminism, sociology of education, and postcolonial studies. Specifically, her research focuses on the unruly, messy, unpredictable and taboo body - a habitual outcast in educational (and social) contexts. Erevelles asks: Why do some bodies matter more than others? In raising this question "why," the tenor of her scholarship shifts from description to explanation to highlight the implications exploitative social/economic arrangements have for making bodies matter (or not) in particular historical and material contexts. Erevelles argues that disability as a central critical analytic can have transformative potential in addressing issues as varied as inclusive schooling, critical/radical pedagogies/curricula, HIV/AIDS education, facilitated communication, school violence, multicultural education, and the sex curriculum. Her insistence on an intersectional analysis foregrounds the dialectical relationship between disability and the other constructs of difference, namely race, class, gender, and sexuality and its brutal implications for (disabled) students in U. S. public schools and (disabled) citizens in transnational contexts. Additionally, transforming her theoretical leanings to committed praxis, she deploys the lens of disability studies to urge her students to think harder, deeper, and more courageously outside the confines of normative modes of education and social theory that only seek to discipline bodies rather than empower them.

February 18

Martha Biondi

The Black Revolution on Campus: Re-envisioning Higher Education

7:30pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Black students and their allies on campuses across the country organized to transform higher education in the United States. Their efforts were surprisingly successful even as they faced intense resistance.

Bio: Martha Biondi is a Professor of African American Studies and History at Northwestern University, where she currently serves as chair of African American Studies. She is a scholar of Black radicalism and postwar social movements.

March 25

Lori Marso

Pleasures and Dangers in Feminist Film

7:30 p.m., Fisher Center, 212 Demerest

Lori Marso will engage Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex to explore the complex varieties of women’s agency and forms of resistance depicted in three films: Chantal Akerman’s 1975 Jeanne Dielman, David Fincher’s 2014 Gone Girl, and Lars von Trier’s 2013 Nymphomaniac. In these films, female agency is linked to sexuality and violence. It is depicted as stemming from a range of affects—boredom, melancholy, anxiety, anger, desire, paranoia, revenge, frustration—produced under conditions of patriarchy. In each film, emotional intensities simmer until at some point, they produce violent outbursts or ugly actions. Why should feminists take an interest in these seemingly clichéd films about women who might easily be dismissed as crazy, vengeful, and slutty? Presented on screen, these women’s stories, and spectator experience of them, do not so much veer between pleasure and danger, but rather sit at the apex of their conjunction. Read with Beauvoir, we can see that the films capture the ambiguities, intensities, and pathologies of women’s feelings and varieties of agency. The women’s ugly actions, as well as the feelings at their source and the feelings that ensue, make trouble not only for patriarchy, but also for the stories of “victim versus agent” that we feminists sometimes tell ourselves.

Lori Marso is a professor of political science at Union College. The author of numerous articles, Marso’s books include Simone de Beauvoir’s Political Thinking, (Un)Manly Citizens: Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s and Germaine de Staël’s Subversive Women, and Feminist Thinkers and the Demands of Femininity.

October 8

Andrew Ross

Debt Resistance in a Creditocracy

7:30pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

In a creditocracy, everything has to be personally debt-financed, and most of are burdened with debts that can never be paid off. Our elected officials have proved unable to protect citizens from economic harms directly imposed by the creditor class. Under these circumstances, is debt resistance justified? What form should it take? Andrew Ross draws on his experiences as a debt activist to ask how popular democracy can be salvaged.

Bio: Andrew Ross is a social activist and Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis at NYU. A contributor to the Guardian, the New York Times, the Nation, and Al Jazeera, he is the author of many books, including Bird On Fire: Lessons from the World's Least Sustainable City, Nice Work if You Can Get It: Life and Labor in Precarious Times, Fast Boat to China--Lessons from Shanghai, No-Collar: The Humane Workplace and its Hidden Costs, and The Celebration Chronicles: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Property Value in Disney's New Town. His most recent book is Creditocracy and the Case for Debt Refusal, available from OR Books.

November 5

Alexis Pauline Gumbs

Difficult Miracle

7:30pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

A queer black troublemaker, a black feminist love evangelist, a prayer poet priestess, Alexis Pauline Gumbs has a PhD in English, African and African-American Studies, and Women and Gender Studies from Duke University. Alexis was the first scholar to research the Audre Lorde Papers at Spelman College, the June Jordan Papers at Harvard University, and the Lucille Clifton Papers at Emory University, and she is currently on tour with her interactive oracle project "The Lorde Concordance," a series of ritual mobilizing the life and work of Audre Lorde as a dynamic sacred text. Alexis has also published widely on Caribbean Women's Literature with a special interest in Dionne Brand. Alexis is the author of an acclaimed collection of poems 101 Things That Are Not True About the Most Famous Black Women Alive. She has several books in progress including a book of poems, Good Hair Gone Forever, a scholarly monograph on diaspora and the maternal, and an educational resource called the School of Our Lorde. Alexis is the founder of Brilliance Remastered, a service to help visionary underrepresented graduate students stay connected to purpose, passion, and community, co-founder of the Mobile Homecoming Project, a national experiential archive amplifying generations of Black LGBTQ Brilliance, and the community school Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind.

November 19

Lezlie Frye

Crack Babies and the Making of Disability as Racial Damage

7:30pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

To demonstrate the precise ways in which disability becomes embedded in U.S. racial projects over the past four decades, Frye performs a close reading of popular, legal and medical accounts of "crack babies" generated in the U.S. between the mid- 1980s and 90s.

Bio: Lezlie Frye is the Predoctoral Fellow at the Fisher Center for the Study of Women and Men at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. She is a doctoral candidate in the American Studies Program, Department of Social and Cultural Analysis, New York University.

October Offerings: Strategies and Tactics for Combatting Rape Culture

October 23
7:00 - 8:30 p.m., Stern 103

Rape: A Legal Realist Perspective

Janet Halley, Royall Professor of Law, Harvard Law School

Professor Halley has a Ph.D. in English Literature from UCLA and a J.D. from Yale Law School. She has taught at Tel Aviv Buckmann School of Law and in the Law Department of the American University in Cairo. She is the author of Split Decisions: How and Why to Take a Break from Feminism (Princeton 2006), and Don't: A Reader's Guide to the Military's Anti-Gay Policy (Duke 1999). With Wendy Brown, she coedited Left Legalism/Left Critique (Duke 2002), and with Andrew Parker she coedited After Sex? New Writing Since Queer Theory (Duke 2011). Her current book projects are The Family/Market Distinction: A Genealogy and Critique and Rape in Armed Conflict: Assessing the Feminist Vision and its Law. She is co-director of the Trafficking Roundtable and of the Up Against Family Law Exceptionalism Conference, an international collaboration dedicated to studying the role of the family and family law in colonization, decolonization and contemporary globalization. She was recently awarded the Career Achievement Award for Law and the Humanities by the Association for the Study of Law, Culture and the Humanities.

October 29
7:00 - 9:00 p.m., Geneva Room

NO! The Rape Documentary

Film screening and discussion with director, Aishah Shahidah Simmons

NO! explores the international atrocity of heterosexual rape and other forms of sexual assault through the first-person testimonies, scholarship, spirituality, activism and cultural work of African-Americans. This award-winning, internationally-acclaimed, groundbreaking documentary features riveting stories from Black women rape survivors who defy victimization.

Aishah Shahidah Simmons is an award-winning Black feminist lesbian filmmaker, writer, international lecturer, and activist. An incest and rape survivor, Ms. Simmons is the creator of the Ford Foundation-funded, internationally acclaimed, award-winning film NO! The Rape Documentary. Ms. Simmons teaches in the Women's Studies and LGBT Studies programs at Temple University. An Associate Editor of the online publication The Feminist Wire, Ms. Simmons' cultural work and activism have been documented extensively in a wide range of media outlets including The Root, Crisis, Forbes, Left of Black, In These Times, Ms. Magazine, Alternet, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Essence Magazine, NPR, Pacifica Radio Network, and BET.

September Series: Strategies and Tactics for Combatting Rape Culture

Week 1

Wednesday, September 3
4:30 - 6:00 p.m., Bartlett Theater

Sexual Consent and Bystander Activation
MOSAIC New York Performance and Discussion

Week 2

Monday, September 8
12:00 - 1:20 p.m., Fisher Center

"Getting Hot": Establishing a Sexual Violence Hotline at HWS
With Fisher Center Woodworth Fellow Carly Petroski

Wednesday, September 10
4:30 - 6:00 p.m., Fisher Center

Rape Happens Here: Consciousness-raising Session
Facilitated by Michelle Martin Baron and Maggie Werner

Week 3

Tuesday, September 16
4:30 - 6:00 p.m., Fisher Center

Unpacking Bystanders: from Spectator to Activist
Movement choir facilitated by Cadence Whittier

Week 4

Tuesday, September 23
7:00 - 8:30 p.m., Geneva Room

Campus Rape Culture: drugs, class, and relationships
Lecture and discussion with Kimberly Williams, Ph.D

Sex without consent--rape--is sometimes shrugged off by friends and even by survivors themselves as something that was deserved for making bad decisions for alcohol. There is self-blame. There is the shame and blame of friends--"what were you thinking?!" We may think, even though we don't want to admit it, that some people deserve it, that they even asked for it. The "drunken hook up" is discussed as almost comical. And rape too often is mentioned in the same breath as the "walk of shame." How have we gotten to this point? What can we do about it?

The author of numerous books and articles on gender, health, drugs, and relationships Kimberly Williams is an educational consultant who has taught at Cornell, Dartmouth, Syracuse, and Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Wednesday, September 24
4:30 - 6:00 p.m., Fisher Center

Campus Mapping: Visualizing Power, Space, and Control
Facilitated by Jessica Hayes-Conroy

Week 5

Tuesday, September 30
4:30 - 6:00 p.m., Fisher Center

Dismantling the Machine: Institutions and Activism
Facilitated discussion with HWS students and faculty: Tallie Ben Daniel, Lucia Cardone, Aly McKnight, Paul Passavant, Maggie Werner, Chris Woodworth, and others.


April 21

Brianne Gallagher
Fisher Center Predoctoral Fellow

7:00pm, Fisher Center, Demarest 212

"De–militarizing Game Culture and New Rehabilitation Technologies: From Virtual Iraq to U.S. Veteran Resistance through Art and Poetry"

The U.S. military is extending popular video game culture, currently used to train soldiers for combat, into virtual therapeutic technologies to treat soldiers diagnosed with Post–Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injuries. This talk demonstrates how these new virtual therapeutic programs depoliticize the violent affects of the wars on soldiers’ bodies within gendered formations of power.  Specifically, it examines how the virtual therapeutic gaming technology Virtual Iraq reaffirms dominant ideas of masculinity by reinforcing the belief that talking about trauma is a sign of feminine weakness and that playing video games is “fun” and “virtually cool” through the militarization of entertainment culture. The presentation also turns to specific examples of veterans’ sites of resistance to the de–politicization and feminization of trauma, particularly the Combat Paper Project and the Warrior Writers Project initiated by members of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW). How do veterans seek alternative ways of healing from war trauma by de–linking themselves from masculine and militarized game cultures and by instead creating counter–public communities through art, poetry, activism and creative modes of becoming?

April 30

Kathy Davis
Senior Research Fellow, VU University, Netherlands

7:30 p.m., Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Feminism as Traveling Theory: the Case of Our Bodies, Ourselves

My lecture concerns the international trajectory of the well-known feminist classic book on women and health, Our Bodies, Ourselves.  Beginning in the 1970’s, this book not only had an enormous impact on feminism in the US, but it has been taken up, translated and adapted by women across the globe. Drawing upon Edward Said’s concept of “traveling theory,” I will explore the world-wide travels of Our Bodies, Ourselves, showing how the book was transformed in the process of its many border crossings. I will argue that Our Bodies, Ourselves  has not only been US feminism’s most successful and popular  “export,” but that it can provide some useful insights for scholarship within gender studies  – in particular, for how we think about history, the politics of knowledge, and transnational feminism.

Kathy Davis is currently senior research fellow at the VU University in the Netherlands. She has held visiting chairs and research fellowships at Wellesley College, Columbia University, the Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Studies at Harvard University (United States) as well as the Maria Jahoda Chair for International Women’s Studies at Bochum University in Germany and visiting professorships in Frankfurt and Vienna. Her research interests include: sociology of the body,  intersectionality, travelling theory and transnational practices;  biography as methodology.  She is the author of many books, including Reshaping the Female Body (Routledge, 1995), Dubious Equalities and Embodied Differences (Rowman & Littlefield, 2003), Embodied Practices: Feminist Perspectives on the Body (Sage 1997), and  co-editor of The Handbook of Gender and Women’s Studies (Sage 2006) and Transatlantic Conversations: Feminism as Traveling Theory (Ashgate, 2011). Her book The Making of Our Bodies, Ourselves: How Feminism Travels Across Borders (Duke, 2007) was the recipient of several prizes. Her most recent book, Dancing Tango: Passionate Encounters in a Globalizing World is soon to be published with NYU Press.

September 19

Kathryn Bond Stockton
Distinguished Professor of English, University of Utah

7:30 p.m., Sanford Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

“Sameness, Underwear, Pleasure, and Need: What Does Queer Theory Ask Us to Do?”

This talk reminds us of how “queer theory” (which will be both defined and explained) changes our thinking on “same-sex” relations (yes, via underwear and so much more—Fight Club, femmes, big toes, ideals) and thus unsettles our easy notions of “gay,” “transgendered,” and “straight” lives. Then, taking off from these interventions in sexual thought, this talk explores how queer theory, which elevates pleasure, takes on matters of power and loss, even as they touch on money and need. How might we think about the power to lose? Can a queer hedonistic ethic lubricate our practice of redistribution? Can it help us fight structural inequalities while affirming luxury?

Bio: Kathryn Bond Stockton is Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Utah, where she teaches queer theory, theories of race, the nineteenth-century novel, and twentieth-century literature and film. Her most recent books, Beautiful Bottom, Beautiful Shame: Where “Black” Meets “Queer” and The Queer Child, or Growing Sideways in the Twentieth Century, published by Duke University Press, were both finalists for the Lambda Literary Award in LGBT Studies (2007 and 2010), and she has also authored God between Their Lips: Desire between Women in Irigaray, Bronte, and Eliot (Stanford University Press). Stockton has received the Crompton-Noll Prize, awarded by the Modern Language Association, for the best essay in gay and lesbian studies and, in 2011, she taught at Cornell University’s School of Criticism and Theory, where she led a seminar on “Sexuality and Childhood in a Global Frame: Queer Theory and Beyond.” This past year she was awarded the Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence, the highest honor granted by the University of Utah.

September 25

Miss Indigo Blue
Headmistress, The Academy of Burlesque, Seattle Wash.

7:30 p.m., Winn-Seeley Theatre, Winn-Seeley Building

"Amazon Damsels in Bondage"

I am in love with bodies. I am utterly infatuated with those that use their bodies and their sexuality as a means of artistic, spiritual and political expression. Burlesque performers embody ideas about women, sexuality, pleasure, and mischief using melodrama, storytelling, curiosity and the theatrical conventions of comic strip-tease. Burlesque audiences participate in this expressive interaction, with vocalizations, gestures, laughter, and shock. In this talk I will demonstrate a Burletta (Burlesque act) then dissect it with the audience, offering a collaborative deconstruction opportunity between artist/viewer, participant/observer, student/teacher.

Bio: That sultry bombshell on stage is more than your garden-variety Burlesque dancer: She's Indigo Blue – entertainer, instructor, and entrepreneur. With a strong dance and theater background and extensive experience as an exotic dancer, Miss Indigo Blue always brings sensuality, musicality, eroticism, and humor to her carefully crafted routines. Her creative and hilarious surprises, erotic dance skills, detailed and authentic retro 1930’s-1960’s costuming, and naughty reduxes of popular characters like Holly Golightly, Carmen Miranda and Wonder Woman earned her critical acclaim and award. She is now best known for her lavish wardrobe and perfectly executed classic acts, including tributes to Burlesque Legends Wild Cherry and Ricci Cortez.

Seattle's burlesque stalwart, Miss Indigo is one of the most sought after performers in the world. She has headlined Internationally in Helsinki, Stockholm, Basel, Vancouver, Toronto, Dublin, London, Amsterdam, and throughout Australia. With The Atomic Bombshells she has also appeared in Shanghai and throughout Portugal. She currently headlines as a soloist and is a proud cast member of Lily Verlaine Productions and The Atomic Bombshells. She has an extensive national following, having taught, headlined and otherwise performed in too many major cities to list.

October 21: Co-presented with Media and Society

Dr. Steven Kurtz
Co-founder of Critical Arts Ensemble (CAE)

7:15 p.m., Vandervort Room, Scandling Center

“Biotechnology, the arts, and civic knowledge”

Recent events around biological data-mining, Monsanto seed patenting and biowarfare concern all realms of civil societies today. Such events impress deeply into our contemporary lives, indelibly into our bodies, and into those of future generations. Indeed, this is testament to the complexities surrounding the realms of biotechnology today: why has it become so difficult to acquire knowledge about substances that we put into our very own bodies, or to which our bodies are exposed? What are some of the factors that have enabled all registers of biotic life (ecological, microbial, and human and animal) to become the basis for capital production? What does ‘biosecurity’ mean in a world after 9/11, and who bears the costs of achieving ‘security’ in a culture of fear? How has the militarization and privatization of scientific institutions fostered or deepened structural injustices leading to societies marked by greater inequalities?

These are but some of the questions raised by Critical Arts Ensemble’s (CAE) recent artworks on biotechnology and civic knowledge, such as Free-Range Grain, a work that lets audiences test whether foods labeled “organic” have been genetically modified; Gen Terra, a piece that highlights tensions at play between the for-profit ventures and ethical considerations (e.g., ‘risk assessments’) in transgenics; and Marching Plague, a work that illuminates the economic, national, and technological ideologies that undergird germ warfare.

Using CAE’s works as a grounding focus, Kurtz’s talk will explore some of these topics, while also discussing why critical interventions into issues surrounding the biotechnological landscape today so often incite resistance and discipline by legal, government and corporate bodies.

This event was made possible by the generous co-sponsorship of the Department of Environmental Sciences, the Department of Art and Architecture, the Department of Public Policy, the Department of Political Science and the Office of the Provost.

November 6

Andrea Dezsö

7:30 p.m., Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Lessons From My Mother: How to Prevent a Female Cold, Catch a Husband and Avoid a Frog Growing in Your Stomach

I created the embroidered body of artworks titled Lessons From My Mother after moving to the United States and recognizing that many of the popularly held beliefs about health, hygiene, relationships and gender roles from my native Hungarian culture in Transylvania were widely at odds with commonly held beliefs in America. Having rejected embroidery as a girl in Romania’s communist school system because of the gender expectations surrounding it, I decided while living in New York to teach myself embroidery and execute this series of works because the medium felt appropriate for commenting on the traditions, roles and observations I sought to present. This talk will present the Lessons From My Mother embroideries and provide a brief historical and cultural context for the works.

Bio: Andrea Dezsö is a visual artist who works across a broad range of media including drawing, painting, artist's books, cut paper, embroidery, animation, sculpture, site-specific installation and permanent public art. Dezsö's large-scale permanent public art has been installed in two New York City subway stations and at the United States Embassy in Bucharest, Romania. Community Garden, Dezsö's mosaic in the New York City subway was awarded Best American Public Art in 2007. Dezsö is an award-winning illustrator whose work has been featured in many books, magazines, and CD covers, and by The New York Times, Sony Music, and Candlewick Press. Dezsö exhibits in museums and galleries around the world, and teaches widely. She is assistant professor of art at Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass. Dezsö is represented by the Nancy Margolis Gallery in New York where her exhibition "Without Myself" will be on view between September 12 - October 19, 2013.

November 13

Jasbir Puar

7:30 p.m., Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

A Body with New Organs: Becoming Trans, Becoming Disabled

In this paper I historically situate the most current intersectional flavors of the day, “trans” and “disabled,” through their emergence as the latest newcomers to the intersectional fray. I look at how their parallel yet rarely intersecting epistemological constructs—both come into being, or becoming, in the early 90s in the academy as well as in broader political terms and movements—require exceptionalizing both the trans body and the disabled body in order to convert the debility of a non-normative body into a form of social and cultural capacity, whether located in state recognition, identity politic formations, market economies, the medical industrial complex, or subject positioning. I argue that the potential politics of trans disability are seemingly only perceived in terms of the intersectional “trans-disabled subject” or the “disabled trans subject.” Using assemblage theory to advance the relationships between trans and disability beyond an intersectional rubric of subject identification, I elaborate a politics of conviviality through engagements with the medicalization of the body that might de-exceptionalize the transgressive tendencies of trans and disabled in favor of a shared politics.

Bio: Jasbir K. Puar is associate professor of women's & gender studies at Rutgers University. She has also been a visiting lecturer in the department of performance studies at NYU and a visiting fellow at the Institute for Cultural Inquiry in Berlin. She received her Ph.D. in ethnic studies from the University of California at Berkeley in 1999 and an M.A. from the University of York (UK) in women’s studies in 1993. Her research interests include gender, sexuality, globalization; postcolonial and diaspora studies; South Asian cultural studies; and theories of assemblage and affect. Puar is the author of Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times (Duke University Press 2007), winner of the 2007 Cultural Studies Book Award from the Association for Asian American Studies, which has been translated into French as Homonationalisme. Politiques queers après le 11 Septembre, (Editions Amsterdam, 2012).

Puar's forthcoming monograph, Affective Politics: States of Debility and Capacity, takes up questions of disability in the context of theories of bodily assemblages that trouble intersectional identity frames.



April 17

7 p.m., Stern 203: Speaking the Commons

Professor Hannah Dickinson

"Shared Violence: Complicating the Personal in Personal Writing"

This presentation draws on interviews with undergraduates to explore the social relations and affects that shape student writing about violence. While the genre of the personal narrative compels students to depict their experiences with violence as individually and uniquely injurious, study participants' talk constructs violence as structural, socially constituted, and held in common.

Alex Pittman

"Untimely Demands: or, the Recitations of Sharon Hayes"

As it rotates around works by the artist Sharon Hayes, this presentation explores how untimeliness (or that which does not coincide with the present) impacts the sense of the social in feminist and political theories. It asks how Hayes's performances of recitation -- performances that condense scenes of collective instruction with acts of disruptive historical quotation -- variously organize and disorganize political imaginaries of commonality in this contemporary moment.

April 24

Professor Bonnie McCay

"Whither thou goest? How fishermen and fish are coping with climate change"

7 p.m., Geneva Room

Climate change has warmed the waters of the Atlantic ocean along the northeast coast of the United States, and fish and shellfish are directly affected. Their distributions and ranges have changed markedly over the past two decades. I have been part of interdisciplinary teams studying this within the framework of "coupled human and natural systems" (CHANS) as well as human adaptation to environmental change. In theory, fish and shellfish should move in response to shifts in their optimal temperatures, and fishermen might move as well, because they are not tied to land, as a farmer would be; they can just get in their boats and follow the fish. However, the stories emerging from our research show more complex outcomes, especially for the Atlantic surfclam fishery. Important human factors include the economics and marketimplications of following the fish, but also the effects of conservation-oriented regulations, the organization of the industries involved, and the nature of the fishing ports and peer group communities of fishing people.

Bio: Bonnie McCay is Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, in the Department of Human Ecology of the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. Her graduate training was in environmental anthropology at Columbia University (PhD 1976), and her research and teaching have focused on challenges and policies for managing common pool resources such as fish and shellfish, with particular attention to intersections of ecology, community, and social institutions of science, law and property. She has done field research in Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, Canada, in the Middle Atlantic region of the U.S., and in Baja California, Mexico, with funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation, the Sea Grant College Program, the National Park Service, and the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station.

Professor McCay's books include "The Question of the Commons," "Oyster Wars and the Public Trust," and "Enclosing the Commons."

April 26

Christine Chin

Open Studio: New Work by Christine Chin

7 p.m., Carriage House, 2nd Floor

Professor Christine Chin invites the campus community and the public to see new in-progress works that she developed in relation to the Fisher Center research themes. In an informal studio setting, audiences are welcome to talk with the artist, learn about her process, and give impressions and feedback on her visual interpretation of biotechnology and the commons.

May 6

Fisher Center Fellows

Closing Roundtable with the 2012-2013 Fisher Center Fellows

4:30-6:30 p.m., Fisher Center

As the semester ends, the Fisher Center will host a roundtable discussion with all of the 2012-2013 Fellows. Each of the Fellows will reflect on the impact that the research themes and the interdisciplinary group itself has had on their research and instruction. A brief Q&A will follow. Some of the questions addressed at this roundtable will include: If you were to provide a brief, one or two sentence definition of the common(s), how would you do it? What questions and ways of thinking about gender, collectivity, and the common are important to your discipline? How has participating in an interdisciplinary group expanded, complicated, or confirmed your understanding of one or all of these terms? What sorts of of questions or problems are you still trying to work through as this research group disperses?

September 19

Silvia Federici

"Feminist Autonomy, Global Crisis, and the Question of the Commons"

7 p.m., Sanford Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Inaugurating the Fisher Center's 2012-2013 focus on Gender, Collectivity and the Common, is a feminist activist and scholar long associated with asserting the inextric ability of feminist issues from questions of the common.

Bio: Silvia Federici is a long time feminist activist, teacher and writer. Emerita Professor at Hofstra University, she has also taught at the University of Port Harcourt in Nigeria. Federici is the author of numerous essays on feminist theory, women's history, political philosophy and education.

November 14

Kaushik Sunder Rajan

"The Scandal of the Trial: HPV Vaccines, Knowledge / Value, and Experimental Subjectivity"

7 p.m., Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

In April 2010, the Indian Council for Medical Research halted the experimental administration of Gardasil, a vaccine developed by Merck to prevent human papilloma virus infection, to tribal girls in Bhadrachalam, in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. This controversy points to the politics around pharmaceuticals and health in India today. What is their relation to global logics of biocapital? What kinds of experimental subjectivity get produced as a consequence?

Bio: Kaushik Sunder Rajan is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago. He is the author of Biocapital (Duke, 2006) and editor of Lively Capital (Duke, 2012).

December 5

Michael Hardt

"The Right to the Common"

7 p.m., Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

The right to the common is becoming a central demand of many contemporary social struggles. The first task of this lecture is to define the common and articulate its characteristics in distinction from boththeprivateandthepublic. Thesecondtask is to explore the ways in which different social movements, including Occupy, are oriented toward the common.

Michael Hardt is the chair of the Literature Program at Duke. He is co-author with Antonio Negri of Declaration as well as the Empire trilogy (Empire, Multitude and Commonwealth). He currently serves as editor of The South Atlantic Quarterly.

Digesting Gender: The Politics of Food - Fall 2011-Spring 2012

Psyche Williams-Forson

"When the 'World on a Plate' Visits Your Table: Culinary Conundrums of Gender, Nationality, Memory and Marriage,"

October 19, 7:30-9 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Abstract: The World on a Plate is a phrase that has often been used to discuss the amalgamated ways that American food culture has evolved. In particular, when we think about African American culinary history it is necessary to consider the various cultures and histories that have influenced its existence. Building off these historical discussions, Psyche Williams-Forson turns to the contemporary moment to detail some of the ways in which African/African American food cultures have intermingled. In this talk she describes the meeting of African American and Ghanaian cultures and cuisines inside her household and the complex gender issues at play as she and her Ghanaian husband negotiate culinary practices. By reflecting on the tensions involved when other women cook for her husband, Williams-Forson uses theory and auto-ethnography to question how the broad sociopolitical forces of gender, race, class, and Diaspora play out around meals in her home.

Bio: Psyche Williams-Forson is associate professor of American Studies at the University of Maryland College Park and an affiliate faculty member of the Women's Studies and African American Studies departments and the Consortium on Race, Gender, and Ethnicity. She is an Associate Editor of Food and Foodways journal and author of the award-winning book (American Folklore Society), Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs: Black Women, Food, and Power (2006), which examines the complexity of black women's legacies using food as a form of cultural work. Her new research explores class, entrepreneurship, consumption, and citizenship among African Americans by examining domestic interiors from the late nineteenth-century to the early twentieth-century.

She is the author of several articles and book chapters and the recipient of numerous fellowships including a Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, and the Winterthur Museum and Library.

Public Screening and Discussion of The Garden

(2008 Film, Directed by Scott Hamilton Kennedy)

November 16, 7:00-9 pm, Sanford Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Film Synopsis: The fourteen-acre community garden at 41st and Alameda in South Central Los Angeles is the largest of its kind in the United States. Started as a form of healing after the devastating L.A. riots in 1992, the South Central Farmers have since created a miracle in one of the country's most blighted neighborhoods. Growing their own food. Feeding their families. Creating a community. But now, bulldozers are poised to level their 14-acre oasis.

The Garden follows the plight of the farmers, from the tilled soil of this urban farm to the polished marble of City Hall. Mostly immigrants from Latin America, from countries where they feared for their lives if they were to speak out, we watch them organize, fight back, and demand answers:

Why was the land sold to a wealthy developer for millions less than fair-market value? Why was the transaction done in a closed-door session of the LA City Council? Why has it never been made public?

And the powers-that-be have the same response: "The garden is wonderful, but there is nothing more we can do."

If everyone told you nothing more could be done, would you give up?

The Garden has the pulse of verité with the narrative pull of fiction, telling the story of the country's largest urban farm, backroom deals, land developers, green politics, money, poverty, power, and racial discord. The film explores and exposes the fault lines in American society and raises crucial and challenging questions about liberty, equality, and justice for the poorest and most vulnerable among us. Visit the film website.

Carole Counihan

"Gender and Food Activism in Italy"

February 15, 7:30-9 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Abstract: This talk will ponder whether and how gender plays a role in contemporary Italian food activism. The literature on food and gender suggests several forces that may affect men's and women's participation in food activism, for example, women's identification with feeding; the male-female division of food labor; gendered sensory, corporeal, and emotional relations to food; and gendered meanings surrounding food. This talk uses ethnographic interviews conducted in 2009 with leaders of several Italian Slow Food chapters and in 2011 with a range of food activists in Cagliari, Italy, to ask how their gendered experiences with food in Italian culture might contribute to or detract from efforts to make the food system more just, more sustainable, more responsive to local communities, and of higher quality.

Bio: Carole Counihan is Professor of Anthropology at Millersville University in Pennsylvania. She has a BA in history cum laude from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Massachusetts. Dr. Counihan's research centers on food, culture, gender, and identity in the United States and Italy. Supported by a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, she authored A Tortilla Is Like Life: Food and Culture in the San Luis Valley of Colorado (University of Texas Press, 2009), which is based on food-centered life histories collected from Hispanic women in the town of Antonito, Colorado. Counihan is also author of Around the Tuscan Table: Food, Family and Gender in Twentieth Century Florence (Routledge, 2004) and The Anthropology of Food and Body: Gender, Meaning, and Power (Routledge, 1999). She is editor of Food in the USA: A Reader (Routledge 2002), with Penny Van Esterik, of Food and Culture: A Reader (Routledge 1997, 2008), and with Psyche Williams-Forson of Taking Food Public: Redefining Foodways in a Changing World (Routledge 2011). She is editor-in-chief of the scholarly journal Food and Foodways. Counihan has been a visiting professor at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy since 2005, and she has also been a visiting professor at Boston University and the University of Cagliari (Sardinia), Italy.

Film Screening and Discussion with Lucia Berliner '12 and the Fisher Center's 2011 Woodworth Fellow

March 14, 7:30-9 pm, Sanford Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Film Synopsis: Berliner's film will investigate the basic means for survival—food. By focusing on the creation, actualization, and beneficiaries of Healthy Food for All, a unique program initiated by Remembrance Farm and the Cornell Cooperative Extension, the film will demonstrate demand and compassionate supply create by a network of small businesses and individuals vested in making a difference.

Bio: Outside of the classroom, Media & Society / Psychology major Lucia Berliner '12, plans socially conscious events and programs on campus such as ArtFest, a Japan relief fundraiser, and EcoFusion, a free after school program designed to connect middle school children to various facets of environmental stewardship.  A lifelong Hudson River activist, Berliner was born and raised in the Hudson Valley where she has always been fortunate enough to have access to healthy local foods, a goal she hopes to help make a reality for all people.

Julie Guthman

"Having Your Cake and Eating It Too: Reflections on the Origins and Character of Contemporary Food Activism,"

April 11, 7:30-9 pm, Geneva Room Warren Hunting Smith Library

Abstract: In this talk I will reflect upon how food activism has become "feel good politics". Drawing on nearly a decade's work with students who enrolled in the food and agriculture track in UC Santa Cruz's Community Studies major, I have found that most contemporary food activism in the US consists of teaching others how to eat and grow food rather than contesting state or corporate practices. This, I argue, is a convergence of neoliberalism's politics of the possible, the governmentality of healthism, and the desire for connection. While such activism affords those enrolled the pleasures of doing good by eating well, it largely neglects the deep social injustices propagated in the production and consumption of food.

Bio: Julie Guthman is an Associate Professor at the University of California at Santa Cruz where she teaches courses primarily in global political economy and the politics of food and agriculture. Since receiving her PhD in 2000 in Geography from the University of California at Berkeley, she has published extensively on contemporary efforts to transform the way food is produced, distributed, and consumed, with a particular focus on voluntary food labels, community food security, farm-to-school programs, and the race and class politics of "alternative food." Her first book, Agrarian Dreams: the Paradox of Organic Farming in California, (University of California, 2004), won the Frederick H. Buttel Award for Outstanding Scholarly Achievement from the Rural Sociological Society and the Donald Q. Innis Award from the Rural Geography Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers. Her new book, Weighing In: Obesity, Food Justice, and the Limits of Capitalism (University of California, 2011) challenges many of the taken-for-granted assumptions about the so-called obesity epidemic, including that it can be addressed by exposing people to the "right" food.

Gender, Isolation and Imprisonment - Spring 2011

Michael Leo Owens

"Apparitions of Full Citizens: When Should the Civic Imprisonment of Felons End?"
February 9, 2010 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Michael Leo Owens (Ph.D. State University of New York-Albany, 2001) is Associate Professor of Political Science and Religion and a research partner for the Vulnerability and the Human Condition Initiative at Emory University. He is also the co-organizer of the Atlanta Reentry Mapping Network for the Urban Institute, a research initiative by scholars and community stakeholders to study together the spatial distribution and social dynamics of ex-prisoner reentry in metropolitan Atlanta. The author of God & Government in the Ghetto: The Politics of Church-State Collaboration in Black America (University of Chicago Press, 2007), Dr. Owens's current projects include Prisoners of Democracy, a multi-method study of punitive public policies and attitudes in the United States that impede the reintegration of ex-felons as democratic citizens. In recognition of his past research, Dr. Owens was awarded a 2006-2007 Visiting Fellowship to the Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; a 2004 Norton Long Young Scholar Award from the Urban Politics Section of the American Political Science Association; and the 2000 Young Scholar Award from the Urban Affairs Association and Sage Publications. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Housing Institute; the Governing Board of the Urban Affairs Association; the Executive Council of the Urban Politics Section of the American Political Science Association; the National Academic Advisory Board of City Hall Fellows; and the Editorial Review Boards of the Urban Affairs Review and Journal of Urban Affairs. Before joining the Emory faculty, Dr. Owens conducted public policy research for the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government and the New York State Temporary Commission on Constitutional Revision. He also served on the legislative staff of the New York State Senate.

"Letters from the Dead" One-Woman Show featuring Carol Lawes
March 9, 2011 at 7:30 pm, The Headless Sullivan's Theater, 427 Exchange Street

Letters from the Dead began as a collectively-created image event commemorating the murder of thousands of youth killed in inner city violence in Toronto's Caribbean diaspora. The event comprises a silent funeral procession in the street. Bringing together the messages from the dead and media reports on violence, and the losses of living, the performance traces one woman's attempt to bury her grandson and convey his demands for justice in the present.

Honor Ford-Smith

"Memory, Urban Violence and Performance,"
Rountable discussion

March 10, 2011 at 9 am, The Fisher Center for the Study of Women and Men (Demarest 212).

Honor Ford-Smith is a scholar, theatre worker and poet. She was educated in Jamaica at St Andrew High School and after studying theatre began teaching at the Edna Manley College for the Visual and Performing Arts in Kingston. She became co-founder and artistic director of Sistren (Sisters), a theatre collective of mainly working-class Jamaican women that works in community theatre and popular education. Currently Sistren continues to carry out community performance and education in Kingston, Jamaica. Ford-Smith was also a member of the Groundwork Theatre Company, created in 1980 as the repertory arm of the Jamaica School of Drama; it became an autonomous company in 1987.

She researched, edited and contributed to Sistren's book "Lionheart Gal: Life Stories of Jamaican Women," published in 1986 and re-issued, with a new afterword by Ford-Smith, in 2005. A collection of poems, "My Mother's Last Dance," appeared in 1996. Among her many theatre projects have been the collectively created "Fallen Angel and the Devil Concubine ," a dramatic adaptation of "My Mother's Last Dance," and "Just Jazz," an adaptation of Jean Rhys's "Let Them Call It Jazz." Her most recent publication is "3 Jamaican plays: a postcolonial anthology" published by Paul Issa Publications, Kingston, Jamaica in 2010.

Ford-Smith moved to Toronto, Canada in 1991, receiving her doctorate in education from the University of Toronto in 2004. Her PhD dissertation "Performing nation: the pedagogy and politics of postcolonial Jamaican performance" for OISE- University of Toronto is a discussion of the ways in which performance operates as an embodied language for decolonization and the construction of the postcolonial nation. She continues to write, to work in performance and to teach at York University in Toronto where she is an Associate Professor in the Community Arts Practice program under the Faculty of Environmental Studies.

Leo Srole/ Fisher Center Lecture:

Khalilah L. Brown-Dean

"Once Convicted, Forever Doomed: The Politics of Punishment in the U.S."
April 20, 2011 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library.

Khalilah L. Brown-Dean is the Peter Strauss Family Assistant Professor of Political Science and African American Studies at Yale University. She is a Resident Fellow of the Institute for Social and Policy Studies and a Research Fellow at the Macmillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale. Dr. Brown-Dean received her Ph.D. in Political Science from The Ohio State University in 2003 and a B.A. in Government from The University of Virginia in 1998. Brown-Dean's current research agenda focuses on the political dynamics surrounding the American criminal justice system. Her book manuscript (under contract with the Yale University Press), Once Convicted, Forever Doomed: Race, Ex-Felon Disenfranchisement, and Fractured Citizenship, explores the tension between crime control policies and notions of citizenship. Brown-Dean is completing a second book manuscript, Diversity and Democracy, that evaluates the quest for democratic inclusion through the lens of ethno-racial identity. She was named a 2009 Justice Advocacy Senior Fellow by the Soros Foundation's Open Society Institute and is a past recipient of the Arthur Greer Memorial Prize for Outstanding Research. Brown-Dean has served as a political analyst, advisor, and commentator for CNN, PBS, NPR, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Crisis Magazine, the Comcast Network, and several governmental agencies, community organizations, and international media outlets.

Gender, Isolation and Imprisonment - Fall 2010

Loïc Wacquant

"Engendering the Punitive State: Workfare and Prisonfare in Post-Civil Rights America"
September 22, 2010 at 8 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Loïc Wacquant is professor of Sociology and Research Associate at the Institute for Legal Research, Boalt Law School, University of California at Berkeley, where he is affiliated with the Program in Medical Anthropology, the Global Metropolitan Studies Program, the Center for the Study of Race and Gender, the Designated Emphasis in Critical Theory, and the Center for Urban Ethnography. He is also a researcher at the Centre de sociologie européenne in Paris. Wacquant is the author of over one hundred scholarly articles published in journals of sociology, anthropology, criminology, social theory, social policy, philosophy, psychology, and urban and cultural studies, and translated in a dozen languages. Among his books are An Invitation to Reflexive Sociology (1992, with Pierre Bourdieu, translated in 19 languages), Les Prisons de la misère (1999, translated in 16 languages), Body and Soul: Ethnographic Notebooks of an Apprentice Boxer (2000/2004, translated in 7 languages), The Mystery of Ministry: Pierre Bourdieu and Democratic Politics (published in 5 languages in 2005), Das Janusgesicht des Ghettos (2006, translated in 3 languages), Urban Outcasts: A Comparative Sociology of Advanced Marginality (2008, translated in 6 languages), and Punishing the Poor: The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity (forthcoming with Duke University Press in Spring 2009, translated in 6 languages).

Juanita Díaz-Cotto

"Latinas and Imprisonment in the U.S."
October 20, 2010 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Juanita Díaz-Cotto, Ph.D., was born in Puerto Rico and raised between Puerto Rico and New York City. Active in human rights struggles for over thirty years - including those of women, lesbians and gays, prisoners, and people of color inside and outside the U.S. - she considers herself very much both an activist and an academic. Dr. Díaz-Cotto is author of: CHICANA LIVES AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE: Voices from El Barrio (2006) (winner of an International Latino Book Award and a ForeWord Magazine Book Award); GENDER, ETHNICITY, AND THE STATE: Latina and Latino Prison Politics (1996); and editor, under the pseudonym of Juanita Ramos, of COMPAÑERAS: Latina Lesbians (An Anthology)/Lesbianas latinoamericanas (3rd ed., 2004) and SINISTER WISDOM 74: Latina Lesbians (2008). Dr. Díaz-Cotto is a Professor of sociology, women's studies, and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at the State University of New York at Binghamton. She is also Director of the Latin American and Caribbean Area Studies Program. Dr. Díaz-Cotto has given lectures and presentations in Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Ireland, Italy, México, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, South Africa, and over 40 cities in the United States. Her lectures and presentations have covered a wide range of issues including: criminal justice/prisons; Latinas/os and women of color in the U.S.; Latin American feminisms; race and ethnicity; gender, sexuality, and heterosexism; class and income inequalities; oral history and ethnographic research; and community organizing.

Jasmine Alinder

"Representational Battlegrounds: Photography from Japanese American Incarceration to Abu Ghraib"
November 10, 2010 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Jasmine Alinder is an Associate Professor of History and Co-Coordinator of Public History at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She published Moving Images: Photography and the Japanese American Incarceration (University of Illinois Press, 2009), which is due out in paperback in the fall of 2010.  Her current research, with support from an American Council of Learned Societies Charles Ryskamp fellowship, focuses on photography and the law. She received her Ph.D. in the History of Art from the University of Michigan in 1999.

Michael Leo Owens

"Apparitions of Full Citizens: When Should the Civic Imprisonment of Felons End?"
February 9, 2010 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Michael Leo Owens (Ph.D. State University of New York-Albany, 2001) is Associate Professor of Political Science and Religion and a research partner for the Vulnerability and the Human Condition Initiative at Emory University. He is also the co-organizer of the Atlanta Reentry Mapping Network for the Urban Institute, a research initiative by scholars and community stakeholders to study together the spatial distribution and social dynamics of ex-prisoner reentry in metropolitan Atlanta. The author of God & Government in the Ghetto: The Politics of Church-State Collaboration in Black America (University of Chicago Press, 2007), Dr. Owens's current projects include Prisoners of Democracy, a multi-method study of punitive public policies and attitudes in the United States that impede the reintegration of ex-felons as democratic citizens. In recognition of his past research, Dr. Owens was awarded a 2006-2007 Visiting Fellowship to the Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; a 2004 Norton Long Young Scholar Award from the Urban Politics Section of the American Political Science Association; and the 2000 Young Scholar Award from the Urban Affairs Association and Sage Publications. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Housing Institute; the Governing Board of the Urban Affairs Association; the Executive Council of the Urban Politics Section of the American Political Science Association; the National Academic Advisory Board of City Hall Fellows; and the Editorial Review Boards of the Urban Affairs Review and Journal of Urban Affairs. Before joining the Emory faculty, Dr. Owens conducted public policy research for the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government and the New York State Temporary Commission on Constitutional Revision. He also served on the legislative staff of the New York State Senate.

Regina Kunzel

"Criminal Intimancy: Prison and the Uneven History of Modern American Sexuality"
March 9, 2011 at 7:30 pm, Geneva Room, Warren Hunting Smith Library

Regina Kunzel is the Paul R. Frenzel Land Grant Chair in Liberal Arts and Professor in the Departments of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies and History at the University of Minnesota. Kunzel earned her Ph.D. at Yale University. An historian of the 20th-century U.S., Kunzel focuses on gender and sexuality and the intertwined histories of deviance and normalcy. Her book, Criminal Intimacy: Sex in Prison and the Uneven History of Modern American Sexuality (University of Chicago Press, 2008) was awarded the American Historical Association's John Boswell Prize, the Modern Language Association's Alan Bray Memorial Book Award, the Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sexuality Bonnie and Vern L. Bullough Award, the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Studies, and was a finalist for the American Studies Association's John Hope Franklin Prize. Kunzel is also the author of Fallen Women, Problem Girls: Unmarried Mothers and the Professionalization of Social Work, 1890 to 1945 (Yale University Press, 1993), as well as articles on the history of prison sexual culture, single pregnancy, and gender and professionalization, and her work has been published in The American Historical Review, GLQ, Radical History Review, Journal of Social History, and anthologies. Kunzel co-authored a special issue of Radical History Review, "The Queer Issue: New Visions of America's Lesbian and Gay Past," No. 62 (Spring 1995). Kunzel has received fellowships from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Social Science Research Council.


Hannah Landecker

January 26

If cells animate life, how do imaging technologies breathe new life into cells? And, if visual imaging media change, does cell life become reanimated in new ways too?

University of California, Los Angeles Associate Professor of Sociology and of Society and Genetics Hannah Landecker addresses the intersection of cinema and life science, beginning with early uses of cinematography in experimental biology in the first decades of the twentieth century. Drawing on feminist science studies about biology, embodiment, materiality, and the technologization of life, she asks: What role did (or does) time-lapse imaging play in modern life science, particularly against a background of techniques of fixation and formalization that tend to kill or abstract living things in order to understand them? How then do these imaging techniques serve as a conduit between scientific and popular notions of life? Author of numerous articles and chapters, she received the Suzanne J. Levinson Prize: (best book in life sciences and natural history) for her recent book, Culturing Life: How Cells Become Technologies.

Words and Other Bodies in Motion

Shelley Jackson

Shelley Jackson

February 19

What happens when monsters become reanimated almost two centuries later? When bodies and words are put in motion anew?

Writer Shelley Jackson will illustrate a discussion of itinerant language and the living dead with passages from or about works, including her groundbreaking hyperfiction Patchwork Girl and her current project SKIN, a "mortal work of art" published in tattoos on the skin of 2095 volunteers, some from countries outside the United States, including Argentina, Jordan, Thailand and Finland. Described as "among the most provocative of feminist hypertexts," and as a "brilliant hypertext parable of writing and identity," Patchwork Girl is about the "female companion to Frankenstein's monster whose 'birth takes place more than once. In the plea of a bygone monster; from a muddy hole by corpse-light; under the needle, and under the pen.'" She is author as well of the novel Half Life, the short-story collection The Melancholy of Anatomy, hypertexts My Body and The Doll Games, children's books with her own illustrations, including The Old Woman and The Wave and Sophia, The Alchemist's Dog. Her short stories and essays have appeared in numerous anthologies and journals including Conjunctions, The Paris Review, Bookforum, The Believer, The LA Times, The Village Voice and Cabinet Magazine. She is co-founder (with artist Christine Hill) of The Interstitial Library and headmistress of the Shelley Jackson Vocational School for Ghost Speakers and Hearing-Mouth Children. The recipient of a Howard Foundation grant, a Pushcart Prize, and the James Tiptree Jr. Award, she has degrees from Stanford and Brown and teaches in the graduate creative writing program at the New School University. She lives in Brooklyn and at

Moving Words Workshop with Shelley Jackson
Friday, February 20
12 - 3 p.m.
R.S.V.P. to to reserve a spot.

Anime Events

March 2, 3, 4

Anime Film, Grave of the Fireflies, Monday, March 2, Sanford Room, 6:30 p.m.
Taking place toward the end of World War II in Japan, Grave of the Fireflies is the poignant tale of two orphaned children, Seita and his younger sister Setsuko, who try to survive amidst widespread famine and the callous indifference of their countrymen. Some critics consider it one of the most powerful anti-war movies ever made. Animation historian Ernest Rister compares the film to Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List and says, "it is the most profoundly human animated film I've ever seen."

Panel discussion follows film with Professors Les Friedman, Lisa Yoshikawa and Leah Shafer, and students.

Anime Film, Tekkonkinkreet, Tuesday, March 3, Sanford Room, 6:30 p.m.
Tekkonkinkreet centers on a pair of orphaned street kids - the tough, canny Kuro (Black) and the childish but mysteriously intuitive Shiro (White) - as they deal with Yakuza attempting to take over Takara Machi (Treasure Town). Tekkonkinkreet is a pun on "tekkin concrete," the Japanese term for reinforced concrete; it suggests the opposition of the concrete city against the strength of imagination. This film won the 2008 Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year, the Grand Prix award at the Anima 2008 festival, the prestigious Best Film Award at the 2006 Mainichi Film Awards, and was named the number one film of 2006 in the annual "Best of" roundup by the New York Museum of Modern Art's Artforum magazine.

Panel discussion follows with screenwriter Anthony Weintraub, and Japanamerica author Roland Kelts.

Pop Culture from a Multipolar Japan

Roland Kelts

Roland Kelts

March 4

Is there something more to the U.S.'s fascination with Japanese anime and manga? How are anime films and manga comics cultural channeling zones, opened by the horrors of war and disaster and animated by the desire to assemble a world of new looks, feelings and identities?

Professor at the University of Tokyo, Sophia University and the University of the Sacred Heart Tokyo, Roland Kelts addresses the movement of Japanese culture into the West as sign and symptom of broader reanimations. With uncertainty now the norm, style, he argues, is trumping identity, explaining, in part, the success of Japanese pop and fashion, design and cuisine in the West. As Western mindsets encounter a rapid decline in longstanding binaries - good/evil, woman/man, black/white - Japan's cultural narratives evolve in borderless, unstable worlds where characters transform, morality is multifaceted, and endings inconclusive. Animation allows an aesthetic freedom wherein these transformations and gender ambiguity may be given fuller play than in live action films. Nothing appears fixed. No surprise, perhaps, argues Kelts, coming from the only people to have suffered the immediate transformations of two atomic bombs and the instant denigration of their supreme polar father: the Japanese Emperor. Author of Japanamerica: How Japanese Pop Culture has Invaded the US, Kelts is also a contributing writer and editor for A Public Space and Adbusters magazines, and a columnist for The Daily Yomiuri. His articles have appeared in The Village Voice, Newsday, Cosmopolitan, Vogue and The Japan Times. He is the editor in chief of Anime Masterpieces, an anime lecture and screening series. Kelts divides his time between New York and Tokyo.

Films, panels and lecture are co-sponsored by Comparative Literature, Media and Society, The Young Memorial Trust for International Peace and Understanding, and Anime Central, and presented in association with Anime Masterpieces, a project of Gorgeous Entertainment.

La Cuchilla (The Razor)

Astrid Hadad

Astrid Hadad

March 25
Smith Opera House

What happens when cultural stereotypes and iconic images are brought to life live on the stage, cabaret style?

With a baroque sharp-edged brilliance, Mayan-Lebanese artist Astrid Hadad embodies multiple images of woman: the passionate, the rebellious, the naive, the dreamer and the "femme fatale," venomous or scorned. Her unique musical styles include rock-infused Mexican ranchero music, cumbia, La rumba . . . etc. Her method of reinterpreting, performing, and creating popular music has been termed "Heavy Nopal." She points her artistic blade with "Astrident" humor at machismo, fundamentalism, and the powerful elite. This is a show that earned Astrid the title of "walking museum of popular culture," and is not to be missed for either her music or costumes. The show relieves depression, revives the weak, intoxicates (without alcohol) the sober, and excites the hedonistic. Pure animation. Hadad holds a degree from from the Centro Universitario de Teatro de la Ciudad de Mexico. As an actress, she has participated in telenovelas: "Teresa", "Yo no creo en los hombres," "gente bien," and a wide variety of programming on international channels such as "HBO ole." Her filmic work includes a significant role in Solo con tu pareja and the documentaries Hasta el ultimo trago corazon and the prize-winning Astrid Hadad la Tequilera. Hadad has performed in China, France, Peru, Canada, and Lebanon, and her eclectic discography includes: El Calcetin, Corazon sangrante, Heavy Nopal, en vivo, La Cuchilla, Pecadora, and ?OH! Diosas. The most recent of these shows have inspired her newest project "Divinas Pecadoras" (Divine Sinners).

During her 25 year career, Astrid Hadad has redefined and restored the tradition of cabaret in Mexico.

Astrid Hadad, La Cuchilla (The Razor), Miercoles, 25 de Marzo, Smith Opera House, 7:30 p.m.

?Que ocurre cuando estereotipos culturales cobran vida en el escenario cabaret? Con filoso brillo de figura barroca, Astrid Hadad encarna a las mujeres amantes e insumisas, ingenuas, sonadoras o "femmes fatales," venenosas abandonadas en su estilo ranchero mexicano que integra el rock, la cumbia, la rumba etc. Empuna su Cuchilla con humor "estridente" para burlarse del machismo, de los integrismos y de los poderosos. Un espectaculo por el cual la nombraron "Museo ambulante de las culturas populares". Entonces, no se pierde la vista. Un espectaculo "quita depresiones," estimulo para los alicaidos, borrachera sin alcohol para los abstemios excitacion orgasmica para los gozosos. Animacion pura. Astrid Hadad es egresada del Centro Universitario de Teatro de la Ciudad de Mexico. Como actriz ha participado en las telenovelas: "Teresa," "Yo no creo en los hombres," "Gente bien" y diversos programas de cadenas internacionales como "HBO Ole". En cine tuvo una participacion especial en la pelicula Solo con tu pareja y en los documentales Hasta el ultimo trago corazon y el premiado Astrid Hadad: La Tequilera. Sus espectaculos la han llevado a China, Francia, Peru, Canada y Libano. Su discografia incluye El Calcetin, Corazon sangrante, Heavy Nopal en vivo, La Cuchilla, los mas recientes: Pecadora y ?OH! Diosas, siendo estos ultimos los que la motivan a realizar su ultimo espectaculo "Divinas Pecadoras".
A lo largo de su carrera de mas de 25 anos Astrid Hadad ha renovado el ambiente cabaretero nacional.

Co-sponsored with Spanish and Hispanic Studies, and Intercultural Affairs.

(Re)Animating the Cyborg

Jillian Burcar

Jillian Burcar

April 22

Is the cyborg an everyday animation? Or does the cyborg act as our cultural cartographer, charting reanimations of current and future deepest desires, fears, hopes and dreams?

Fisher Center predoctoral fellow Jillian plumbs cyborgian histories and biographies as they have been brought to life through word and image, sight and sound, signs and symptoms. In the cyborg's theatre of creation where gender, technology and consumer culture combine as its most elemental life-giving forces, there transpires a larger exchange of identity and transformation. But Burcar asks: Is the cyborg narrative dictated by a heteronormative sex and gender system? Does the cyborg offer alternatives to normative models of reproduction? Shelley Jackson's Patchwork Girl (a novel written in hypertext), David Mack's Kabuki (a comic book series) as well as Chobits (a Japanese manga and anime) will provide a starting point to address these questions. However, it is only by examining these stories, as well as the shape these stories take, that the most important question can be explored: what animates the cyborg's narrative and how might it continue to be reanimated?

Burcar is a Ph.D. candidate in Literature and Creative Writing (fiction) at the University of Southern California (USC), a hybrid program where she does critical studies while producing creative work. She will complete both the Visual Studies and Gender Studies Graduate Certificates at USC. She has also been honored with the Mildred Fox Hanson Award and Virginia Middleton Summer Award as well as many others. Recently, she has given several talks on comics-related topics across the country.

Fall 2008, Animation

Elaine Scarry
Thinking in an Emergency

(Listen to Audio)

Do emergencies animate our thinking or send us into suspended animation? Or does our thinking animate emergencies themselves?

Walter M. Cabot, Professor of Aesthetics and the General Theory of Value at Harvard University, Elaine Scarry examines first temptations in emergencies (whether medical, legal or civil) to over-ride our normal procedures of deliberation, consultation, and consent. She asks: What practices of thinking are active and legitimate in the three mental realms of sensation, creation, and deliberation under emergency conditions? What crucial role is played by habit in each? Described in the New York Times Magazine as a public intellectual of interpretive daring, Scarry trains literary criticism's analytic power onto matters of social, cultural, and political concern as a civic duty. Author of numerous books and articles, including the widely acclaimed The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World, as well as On Beauty and Being Just, Dreaming by the Book and Who Defended the Country?, Scarry's work has long concerned itself with imagination, representation and justice - with what, in short, breathes life into life in what ways. She has been awarded Best American Essays of 2007 ("Rules of Engagement: Why Military Honor Matters") and honoured with a Guggenheim Fellowship in addition to a number of distinguished visiting faculty posts. Scarry's recent essays include "Citizenship in Emergency," "Imagining Flowers: Perceptual Mimesis," "Resisting the U.S.A. Patriot Act" and "Philosophy and Human Rights."

Colin Milburn
Everyday Nanowars

(Listen to Audio)

When is war a science fiction? How do comic books and video games animate military nanotechnologies?

Colin Milburn discusses the digitally-animated worlds of nanowar video games, focusing on how the playability of high-tech soldier avatars and "smart materials" weaponry incarnates a logic of global politics turning nanowar into an everyday concern. At the same time, Milburn observes how such worlds challenge players to navigate the "crisis mode" of the male warrior in the era of digital matter. Milburn looks at how these technologies animate one another, from writings of military scientists and technological forecasters who present the notion of nanowar less in terms of a speculative risk than as a clear-and-present danger (a prophetic scenario rendered already inevitable) through to the more than three dozen recently issued videogames animated by military nanotechnology's hyperbolic rhetoric and imagery. Holding one Ph.D. in the History of Science and a second in English, University of California, Davis, Assistant Professor of English Colin Milburn's recent works include Nanovision: Engineering the Future, a forthcoming book Mondo Nano: Fun and Games in the World of Digital Matter, and articles "Science from Hell: Jack the Ripper and Victorian Vivisection," (Science Images and Popular Images of the Sciences), "Nano/Splatter: Disintegrating the Postbiological Body," (New Literary History). "Syphilis in Faerie Land: Edmund Spenser and the Syphilography of Elizabethan England,"(Criticism), and "Monsters in Eden: Darwin and Derrida," (MLN).

Richard Move

When impresario, curator, director, choreographer, dancer, and actor Richard Move steps onto the stage as dance legend Martha Graham, one has to ask: Who is animating whom?

Described as more Martha Graham than Martha Graham, Move's Martha@ was created in 1996 as an homage in word and dance. Reviewed as a "sophisticated, dead on, letter perfect parody. A dandy education in modern dance" and Move himself as "a perfect repository of all her glamour and camp genius," Martha@ has received two New York Dance and Performance Awards (a.k.a. "Bessie" Award), and been featured on the BBC's Bourne to Dance and Arts Express, MetroArts 13, and the PBS Television Program City Arts-The Best of Dance, which received an Emmy Award for "Outstanding Fine Arts Program." In 2005, the film Ghostlight starred Move as Martha to wide acclaim, and in the Spring of 2006, Move made his debut as 'Martha Graham' with The Martha Graham Dance Company on their 80th Anniversary Celebration. Move is the subject of a forthcoming British documentary Making Martha, and recently opened MoveOpolis!: Hostile Takeover, performance installations of collisions of sexual desire and violence, masculinity and femininity in real and imagined worlds.

David Mack
The Alchemy of the Art of Alchemy

(Listen to Audio)

Is there alchemy to making life graphic? Does making life graphic have the power to enchant and/or transform? Acclaimed graphic novelist David Mack discusses these questions and more as he reads from his latest Kabuki novel, The Alchemy, and speaks on graphic art more broadly. Reflecting on his own process as artist and writer, Mack will explore graphic art storytelling as a sequential art fused in a multi-media crucible of imagination, history, culture, personal stories, passions, desires, mythologies, and wonder about who one is and if one can "evolve into something beyond...original programming." Regarded as re-imagining comic book art and storytelling, David Mack's Kabuki series takes readers into an underworld of secret societies and government operatives as it draws on Japanese culture and history to extend the metaphor of masks and gender performance to questions of humanity and the "fragility of perceived reality." Best known for his creator-owned project, Kabuki, (published first by Image Comics and now by Marvel's ICON imprint), Mack's work has enjoyed international acclaim for its innovative storytelling, painting techniques, and page design; the series is now under screen adaptation. David Mack has also written and drawn Daredevil for Marvel Comics, authored the children's book The Shy Creatures, and is currently adapting sci-fi author Philip K Dick's books to graphic novels for Marvel.

Spring 2008, Gender and Memory

Pagan Kennedy
Sex and Drugs and Memory

(Listen to Audio)

One pill makes you remember and the other changes your gender? Is science the new future of autobiographical memory? Author, journalist and zine artist Pagan Kennedy will talk about how drugs developed in the 20th century forever changed the rules of remembering our lives and living in a human body.

Her talk will spring out of her two latest books. Her novel, Confessions of a Memory Eater (2006), revolves around a drug that restores autobiographical memory; the main character becomes "addicted" to his own memory. Her biography, The First Man-Made Man (2007), tells the story of the first person in the world to undergo a female-to-male sex change in 1950s Britain. Together these works tackle questions of autobiographical memory, from our own desires to relive the past through to ways we seek to obscure or rewrite autobiographical memory to bring it into line with a sex change.

Pagan Kennedy is the author of nine books and a contributor to dozens of publications, including The New York Times Magazine, Boston Magazine, Dwell, and Details. She has won an NEA fellowship in fiction, a Smithsonian fellowship, a Barnes & Noble Discover Award, a place on the New York Times Notable Book list, and a Massachusetts Book Award Honor in Nonfiction. She is currently a columnist for The Boston Globe Ideas section.

Charmaine Royal
Genomics and Ancestry: Implications For Social Identity and Social Justice

(Listen to Audio)

Is DNA the new personal memory bank? Is genomic ancestry testing memory's future -- a new kind of personhood? Associate Research Professor of the Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy at Duke University Charmaine Royal directs her talk to advances in human genetics and genomics as increasingly revolutionizing science, medicine, and society.

Royal is concerned with genomic ancestry's potential role in social justice, and the challenging issues that arise when social identity is traced by genomics. What happens to personal memory (memories of you and family genealogy) when genomic codes reveal ancestral lineage either coincident with or contrary to family lore? What happens to social histories of race and social identity?

In an attempt to highlight some of the emerging issues relevant to social identity and social justice, and to help provide frameworks for assessing them, Charmaine Royal's presentation will focus on the application of genetics and genomics in genomic ancestry testing and in health disparities research.

Author and co-author of numerous publications, Charmaine Royal has published most recently Race and Ethnicity in Science, Medicine, and Society, The Ethical and Social Implications of Exploring African American Genealogies, Genetic and Social Environment Interactions and Their Impact on Health Policy, and The Role of Genetic and Sociopolitical Definitions of Race in Clinical Trials.

Marianne Hirsch
The Generation of Postmemory

(Listen to Audio)

Do photographs act as testimonial objects between today and yesterday, this generation and previous ones, memory and postmemory, personal and cultural recollection, gender and generation?

Professor of English and Comparative Literature and Director, Institute for Research on Women and Gender of Columbia University, Marianne Hirsch will look at postmemory and the place of photographs as a medium of transmission of memories from one generation to the next. Postmemory describes the relationship of the second generation to powerful, often traumatic, experiences that preceded their birth but that were nevertheless transmitted to them so deeply as to seem to constitute memories in their own right.

Focusing on the remembrance of the Holocaust, Marianne Hirsch elucidates the generation of postmemory and its reliance on photography as a primary medium of trans-generational transmission of trauma. Identifying tropes that most potently mobilize the work of postmemory, she examines the role of the family as a space of transmission and the function of gender as an idiom of remembrance.

Author of the forthcoming book, Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of a Czernowitz in Jewish Memory and History (with Leo Spitzer) and her book-in-progress The Generation of Postmemory: Gender, Visuality and the Holocaust, Marianne Hirsch also edited Gender and Cultural Memory, Special Issue of Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society (Fall 2002) and earlier the well known book Conflicts in Feminism (with Evelyn Fox Keller). This lecture is co-sponsored by Genocide Series.

Elissa Rosenberg

(Listen to Audio)

If scientists decode memory in living cells, how do architects code memory in space and time? Is putting one foot in front of the other akin to moving about history's memory?

Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Virginia, Elissa Rosenberg will explore the geography of memory, that is, the spatiality of history and the ways in which memory is evoked and mediated through our relationship to physical place. She looks at the ways in which walking inscribes the body in place, and how our relationship to place, in turn, instigates a particular kind of remembering. She will discuss two memorials in which the encounter with place unfolds over time through the act of walking, through extremely different styles of walking and through different modes of engagement with their sites.

These are: Passages: Homage to Walter Benjamin, designed by Israeli artist Dani Karavan at Benjamin's burial site in Portbou, Spain, and Memorial to the Departed Jewish Citizens of the Bayerische Viertel, Bayerische Platz, Berlin an installation by German artists Renata Stih and Frieder Schnock commemorating the disappearance and murder of some 6000 Jewish neighborhood residents.

Elissa Rosenberg is the author of "Gardens, Landscape, Nature: Duisburg-Nord" in The Hand and the Soul: Ethics and Aesthetics in Architecture and Art, "The Geography of Memory: Walking as Remembrance," and "Suburban Sublime: Herman Miller Cherokee" in Between Form and Circumstance: Re-Thinking the Contemporary Landscape: The Recent Practice of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates. This lecture is co-sponsored by Environmental Studies and Architectural Studies.

Cynthia Current
Making Memory: Fingerprinting to Genomics, Literature to Biocultures

(Listen to Audio)

Are new technologies - cell phones, ipods, nanotechnology - new genres of memory and life? Are stem cells, 'immortal' cell lines and genomics a new literary genre of life, gender and personhood? Fisher Center pre-doctoral fellow Cynthia Current will examine how new combinations of life, technology and culture gestate in science and literature. She is interested in how science, technology and literature do more than mediate or represent forms of life.

Memory, race and gender are created anew, she argues, in what today are being called 'biocultures' - minglings of science, technology, and literature. Cynthia Current is completing a PhD in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a certificate in Women's Studies from Duke University.

Her dissertation, "Fingerprinting to Genomics: Technologies of Race and Gender in American Literature," explores the implications of technology on identity formation in American literature from 1880 to 1910. A concluding chapter draws such concerns into recent debates on human genomics. She has a forthcoming essay, "Innovation and Stasis: Technology and Race in Mark Twain's Pudd'nhead Wilson," and served as a co-editor of The North Carolina Roots of African American Literature: an Anthology of Nineteenth-Century African American Writing.

Fall 2007, Gender and Memory

Alison Landsberg
Illicit Liaisons and Prosthetic Remembering in the Silent Western
(MP3 Audio)
How does cinema become part of what one takes to be cultural or personal memory? Associate Professor of Literature and Film at George Mason University Alison Landsberg tackles this and related questions as she examines how mass cultural technologies - cinema and experiential museums - make it increasingly possible for one to "have" memories of events through which one did not live, memories carrying nonetheless important ramifications for one's subjectivities, politics and ethics.

Her talk draws on how "the frontier" was represented in some silent westerns, including depictions of domestically oriented, paternal white men and powerful, agentive Indian women. Equally striking, these films presented interracial intimacy and desire between white men (called "squaw men") and Indian women, romances that would never be tolerated "indoors," in the racially divided United States of the early twentieth century.

Jackie Orr
daddy does cybernetics: Diary of a Mental Patient
(MP3 Audio)
Is panic disorder a memory trace of the madness of an era? Are we but memoried bodies of yesteryear's fears and anxieties?

Professor of Sociology at Syracuse University Jackie Orr's performance "daddy does cybernetics" is an historical, somewhat hysterical, story of U.S. Cold War culture caught between the threat of contagious panic and the government-sponsored imperative to "Keep Calm!"

Helen DeMichiel
The Gender Chip Project
The Fisher Center hosted filmmaker Helen DeMichiel and her "Gender Chip Project," a work that is being hailed as an important resource for addressing the disparity of representation of women in the science, technology, engineering and math fields, starting at 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 4 in the library's Geneva Room.

DeMichiel, director of the National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture, interviewed several women majoring in the sciences at Ohio State University, and followed their college careers to produce this portrait of five women dedicated to making their chosen fields better.

Turtle Gals
The Only Good Indian Is...
(mp3 audio)
Turtle Gals Theatre Troupe presents a staged reading of stories, song and laughter to crack open culture's iconic memory of "Indians on Display." Dramatizing encounters between turn-of-the-20th-century Aboriginal performers and their 21st-century counterparts, Turtle Gals revisits Aboriginal performers from the 1880s in wild west shows through silent film, burlesque, opera, vaudeville and Hollywood.

Wayne Koestenbaum
Hotel Theory
(mp3 audio)
Writer, poet, scholar and critic Wayne Koestenbaum 's new book Hotel Theory is a work of nonfiction and fiction residing beside one another, column-by-column, page-by-page.

Theory is the name of the hotel, a place where "certainty falls apart, or where stupor gets an airing." "Heidegger," writes Koestenbaum, "was my hotel," illuminating his nonfiction of "hotel consciousness" as an examination of "never dwelling anywhere," a philosophical meditation into history and being, where short takes - like short-term memory's limited space and practice of rehearsal or need to dwell - run alongside the fictional narrative of Hotel Women, a "dime novel" story of Lana Turner and Liberace whose real life troubles mingle with their fictional ones.

Spring 2007, Art, Gender and Activism

Erika Suderburg
Screenspace: Projecting a Body Politic
A filmmaker, visual artist and writer, Suderburg examines the politics of representation and its gendered spaces by discussing her film projects, "Somatography," a 2000 film of storytelling in relation to queer and leftist Los Angeles; and "Decline and Fall," a more recent look at how individual, the institutionalized collective (military, party affiliated or affinity group) and body politic operate within Empire's boot print.

Sudhanva Deshpande
Street As Stage
Listen (mp3)
Jana Natya Manch (People's Theatre Group) is India's pioneering street theatre group, formed in 1973. Also known as Janam (meaning 'birth'), this group of self-trained actors has to its credit more than 7,500 performances of about 100 street and proscenium plays in about 140 towns and cities of India. Janam visits with performances, workshops, a talk and a film screening.

Toshi Reagon
Songs: weapons in your pocket
Reagon, a singer, guitarist, and songwriter, has been described as "a natural born rock goddess whose sound is a cipher of bluesy wails and shouts, and steely guitar power chords." Her sixth album, the newly released Have You Heard (with her band BIGLovely), "calls the listener back to the heart of rock and roll with a voice overflowing with raw emotion, funk-driven sound rich with lyrics about kindness, compassion, and peace and love."

Seónagh Odhiambo
Sand and Bone
A choreographer and dancer, Odhiambo defines dance as a point of contact through which ideas, inspiration, movement and meaning can travel. Her pieces address how barriers of difference may generate a sense of unfamiliarity and discomfort, weighting the body with histories of burdensome oppressions. Breaking through these barriers, to her, means finding ways to destabilize cultural forms of expressive movement while bringing traditions into contact so they can breathe new life into one another.

Fall 2006, Art, Gender and Activism

Ananya Chatterjea
Dancing My Politics
Listen (mp3)

Dancer, choreographer, activist and associate professor, Chatterjea retraces her journey from a classical Indian dancer to a contemporary choreographer to show the scope of questions dancing bodies can raise around identity, representation and politics.

Climbing PoeTree
Art - our WEAPON, our MEDICINE, our VOICE, our VISION
Listen (mp3)

Garcia and Penniman are poets who moonlight as street artists, and art activists who deploy their weapons of mass imagination to co-teach poetry and political education to prisoners and young people through the Osborne Association, East Harlem Tutorial Program, the Youth Leadership Project of the Incarcerated Mothers Program, and the NYC Public School system.

Susan Griffin
Ecologies of Soul: Restoring the Connection Between Self and World, Art and Society
Listen (mp3)

Writer and poet Griffin interweaves her experience as a writer, a woman and an activist for social justice with historical narrative to examine how both identity and the creative process participate in larger social ecologies.

Mark LeVine
Heavy Metal Islam: The Untold Struggle of Islam's Generation X
Listen (mp3)

Rock musician and professor, Mark Levine is a leader of the new generation of historians and analysts of the modern Middle East and Islam. He argues that counters to the violence that defines global politics are to be found in youth culture and a world music scene that blends political dissent and virtuosity.

Jennifer L. Pozner
Broadcasting, Bombs and Babes: Women's Activism for Media Justice
Listen (mp3)

Media critic and founder and director of Women In Media & News (WIMN), a women's media analysis, education and advocacy organization, Jennifer Pozner asks: Why isn't war reported as a women's issue - and whatever happened to the Afghan women the Bush administration supposedly waged war to "save"?And, what practical steps can we take to improve the media landscape for women… and for all of us?

Spring 2006, Gender, Religion & Politics

Sharon Welch
Making Peace in an Age of War
Welch, professor of Women's and Gender Studies and chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Missouri-Columbia, will address the ethics of peace, power and justice from a variety of perspectives. Welch brings to her deep thinking on social justice materials from the arts, particularly Jazz and theater, from education, and from Christian, humanist, Buddhist and Native American traditions. Her talk will focus on the current challenges and opportunities facing the peace movement nationally and internationally. The workshop will provide space for students and community members to reflect together on ways to move the peace agenda forward. Welch is the author of After Empire: The Art and Ethos of Enduring Peace; Sweet Dreams in America: Making Ethics and Spirituality Work; A Feminist Ethic of Risk: Revised Second Edition and Communities of Resistance and Solidarity: A Feminist Theology of Liberation. She is currently developing workshops on global citizenship and alternatives to war.

Clyde Wilcox
Evangelical Women and Feminism
Professor of Government at Georgetown University Clyde Wilcox will speak on the ways gender, religion and politics are incarnated in two very different activist women's groups in the United States today: Concerned Women for America and the National Organization of Women. Wilcox writes on public opinion and electoral behavior, religion and politics, gender politics, the politics of social issues such as abortion, gay rights, and gun control, interest group politics, campaign finance, and science fiction and politics. He has authored, coauthored, edited, or co-edited more than 20 books.

Laurie Zoloth
Feminism and Abundance
Laurie Zoloth is Professor of Medical Ethics and Humanities and of Religion at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine and director of bioethics at the Center for Genetic Medicine. Her talk will use Levinas's observation that we have an obligation to be bodies for one another to develop a theory of donating. Zoloth is past President of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities and is a member of the National Advisory Council and the Planetary Protection Advisory Committee for NASA; the Executive Committee of the International Society for Stem Cell Research; and is Chair of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Bioethics Advisory Board. Dr. Zoloth has published extensively in the areas of ethics, family, feminist theory, religion, science, Jewish studies, and social policy and has authored chapters in 27 books. Her book, Healthcare and the Ethics of Encounter, was published in 1999. Her current research projects include work on both the ethics of ordinary life, and emerging issues in medical and research genetics.

Fall 2005, Gender, Religion & Politics

Janet Jakobsen
Religion and Sexuality: What's War Got to Do with It?
Director of the Center for Research on Women and Professor of Women's Studies at Barnard College, Janet Jakobsen will consider how issues of religion, gender, and sexuality are implicated in the current U.S. war in Iraq. Examining the specific religious genealogy of the type of "freedom" espoused by the Bush administration to legitimate the war, Jakobsen shows how this freedom becomes embodied in particular forms of violence, including that of the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison. Jakobsen is the author of "Working Alliances and the Politics of Difference: Diversity and Feminist Ethics," co-author (with Ann Pellegrini) of "Love the Sin: Sexual Regulation and the Limits of Religious Tolerance," and co-editor (with Elizabeth Castelli) of "Interventions: Activists and Academics Respond to Violence." She is currently working on a book project, Sex, Secularism and Social Movements: The Value of Ethics in a Global Economy. Previously, she was a policy analyst and lobbyist in Washington, D.C.

Vasudha Narayanan
Re-presenting Hindu Women: Texts, Contexts, and Realities
Professor of Religion at the University of Florida and a past President of the American Academy of Religion (2001-2002), Vasudha Narayanan will discuss how Hindu women have been depicted in a variety of ways by texts, scholars, and observers. She will examine multiple frames of reference of Hindu women, and address issues of cultural and political contexts and agency, including the audiences for these descriptions, both in India and the United States. As part of her pluralist project, Narayanan studies temples across South-East Asia and elsewhere to elaborate Hindu traditions as a global religion. Narayanan has authored numerous books.

Lesley Dill
A Word Made Flesh
Artist Lesley Dill explores what she sees as a risky subject matter - religion and spirituality. Her subject leads her to explore religion and faith's compelling nature and embodiments in our hearts and minds, our bodies and words. In her photography, printmaking, sculpture and performance, Dill brings her visual work into conversation with literary figures such as Emily Dickinson, Pablo Neruda, and Franz Kafka, to illuminate the relation of words and flesh as indeterminate, as a "moving harmony of effect." Described as "bracing in its variety, … powerful in emotive effects, yet fragile, almost ethereal, in its physical aspects," Dill's interdisciplinary work is seen as a "meeting of art and poetry… rich in texture and temporal associations," a meeting where we re-encounter gender, language, corporeality, image and spirituality. Dill's work has been widely exhibited and collected and can be found in the collections of the George Adams Gallery, Albright Knox Art Gallery, Cleveland Museum of Art, the Kemper Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, among others.

Spring 2005, Rights, Health & Globalization

Barbara Allen
Environmental Justice, Environmental Health: Women's Voices from Cancer Alley
Barbara Allen, director of the science, technology and society program at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, will explore issues of carrying out citizen-oriented environmental science in Louisiana's petrochemical corridor, often called Cancer Alley. This important social justice arena highlights the role of women activists, feminist scientists and issues of public and environmental health in a heavily polluted region. At stake in these debates is whose knowledge gets counted as science and how those decisions ultimately impact law and policy. The politics of doing science is highlighted in the powerful alliance of environmental health activists with women scientists in this poor region of the U.S., where regulation is lax, government often corrupt, and poverty and illiteracy are pervasive. Allen will portray the story of science and justice through the voices of the tenacious and visionary women of this embattled place.

Sandra Steingraber
Contaminated Without Consent: A Human Rights Approach to the Environment
Ecologist, author and cancer survivor Sandra Steingraber is an internationally recognized expert on the environmental links between cancer and reproductive health. As a biologist and a writer, Steingraber researches environmental contamination and cancer by following connections between "objects we use and the places they come from." For Steingraber, the environment includes human bodies, with a focus on women and reproduction. Her research and writing dovetail in her commitment to changing practices of manufacturing and of consumption, from industry through to agriculture. Connecting poetry and biology, research and writing, her collected works have been described as "an intricate weaving of scientific data, personal stories, and an intensely lyrical style." Currently an interdisciplinary distinguished visiting scholar at Ithaca College, Steingraber has been on faculty at Cornell University, a fellow at the University of Illinois and at Radcliffe, and served on President Clinton's National Action Plan on Breast Cancer.
Co-sponsored with Writers Reading

Zdravka Todorova, Fisher Center Predoctoral Fellow
The Myth of U.S. Social Security Crisis and Its Importance for Women Around the World
Feminism and Economics
What's all the fuss about U.S. Social Security? Why should we examine attempts to dismantle one of the U.S.'s most successful policies as an international women's issue? Feminist economist Todorova discusses the importance of Social Security for American women, and warns of how framing this debate strictly in financial terms may influence policy formulation internationally.
Co-sponsored with William Smith Dean's Office. Event in recognition of International Women's Day.

Robert Nixon
What is a War Casualty?
Robert Nixon, the Rachel Carson professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will explore the hidden, human costs of so-called "smart" wars: the casualties exacted by the slow, calamitous toxicity of the post-war environment. He argues that in an age of "precision warfare," there is a moral imperative to overhaul preconceptions about what a war casualty looks like and to challenge the military body counts that consistently underestimate (in advance and in retrospect) the true impact of waging high-tech wars. His concern is with the inbuilt imprecision of "precision warfare"- with the way it misfires environmentally. He asks: Who is counting the staggered deaths that civilians suffer from depleted uranium ingested or blown across the desert? Who is counting the deferred fatalities from unexploded landmines or from chemical residues left behind by bombing? These residues turn into foreign insurgents, infiltrating rivers and poisoning the food chain. Who is counting the deaths from genetic deterioration-the stillborn and mutilated infants whose genetic codes have been scrambled by war's toxins? Using the legacy of Agent Orange and the ongoing controversy over depleted uranium, Nixon examines the centrality of gender to any examination of war's belated, discounted dead. Author of numerous works, his forthcoming works are "Environmentalism and postcolonialism," and "An autobiography of touch," a study in masculinity.

Vandana Shiva
Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability and Peace
Vandana Shiva, physicist and interdisciplinary researcher, founded The Research Foundation For Science, Technology and Environmental policy to do participatory action-oriented ecological research with people. Recognized internationally for her leadership and groundbreaking research, Shiva has been a key voice in ecofeminism, biodiversity conservation, aquaculture, sustainable agriculture and food security. She is concerned with the impact of Intellectual Property Rights on life as extolled by the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property under General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. In her view, this is one of many issues put forth from the perspective of India's rural poor, who are experiencing further marginalization as "beneficiaries" of India's structural adjustment program dictated by the International Money Fund and World Bank. Working with movements against genetic engineering in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Ireland, Switzerland and Austria, Shiva has directed her critical efforts toward globalization. Shiva initiated an international movement of women working for food, agriculture, patents and biotechnology called Diverse Women for Diversity, served as adviser to governments in India and abroad, as well as non-governmental organizations, and is the recipient of numerous awards. Her forthcoming book is "Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace."
Co-sponsored with Progressive Student Union

Fall 2004, Rights, Health & Globalization

Lisa Duggan
Love American Style: Symbolism and Citizenship in Contemporary Marriage Politics
Associate professor of American studies, history, and gender and sexuality studies at New York University, Lisa Duggan explores marriage politics and its role in the 2004 U.S. election. What does the emphasis on marriage promotion in the context of welfare reform, same-sex marriage rights, and the role of candidates' wives reveal about the symbolic vs. the material functions of marriage in national politics? Drawing on national census statistics on marriage and the pervasive publicity surrounding marital crises, Duggan inquires into what they tell us about public and private life. In her article "Holy Matrimony!", Duggan raises the political curtain on the real heart of the matter - intimate freedom and political equality. In Twilight of Equality: Neoliberalism, Cultural Politics and the Attack on Democracy she calls for incisive reinvention of the connections amongst political, economic and cultural issues informed by global feminism for a full-scale counter to neoliberalism's furthering of race, gender, sexual, economic and political inequalities.

Ruth Vanita
Love's Rite: Same-sex Marriage in India
Ruth Vanita is a religious studies scholar, poet, writer and translator who asks: Who defines marriage - individuals, communities, the state or all three in conjunction? A professor of liberal studies and women's studies at the University of Montana, she demonstrates that same-sex unions have been celebrated in several Hindu traditions and communities. Indian marriage law allows communities to contest the definition of marriage with the state. She argues that even if the state defines marriage so as to deny some couples their rights, community recognition may socially validate unions as marriages. Interested in the legal, religious and historical dimensions of same-sex marriages and unions, Vanita extends her study to pre-modern unions, such as that related in a 14th century text on two women having a child together with divine blessing. She is editor of Queering India, as well as founding editor of Manushi: A Journal about Women and Society.

Kathleen Lahey
Winning Same-sex Marriage in Canada: Celebration and Concerns
Leading feminist legal scholar, tax scholar, expert on law and sexuality, and professor and Queen's National Scholar of Queen's University, Kathleen Lahey addresses the celebrations and concerns that attend Canada extending marriage to same-sex couples in 2003. Lahey examines the political and legal context that made this possible, expanding on the current status of same-sex marriage in provinces that have yet to come on board, and showing how developments in Canada are germane to challenges in the United States and Europe. Her examination tackles concerns raised by feminist critics of marriage and Canadian policy responses to them, as well as the question of whether marriage has better served gay than lesbian couples. Founding editor of Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, author of Are We 'Persons' Yet? Law and Sexuality in Canada, co-author of Same-sex Marriage: The Personal and the Political, Lahey's work has resulted in ground-breaking studies of the discriminatory impact of taxation on women, race-based groups and sexual minorities and landmark legal submissions.

Rev. Irene Monroe
Casting a Suspicious Eye: Same-sex Marriage, White Queer Hegemony and Black Ministers' Homophobia
Feminist and public theologian, Ph.D. candidate and Ford Foundation fellow at Harvard Divinity School, the Rev. Irene Monroe directs her attention to how African American and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities need to become compadres in the struggle for liberation. Without this alliance, racism in the United States will continue to keep these communities at odds and uphold a white queer hegemony and black ministers' homophobia. As an African American feminist religion columnist, Monroe highlights how religious intolerance and fundamentalism not only shatter the goal of American democracy, but also aid in perpetuating other forms of oppression. A self-described public theologian, Monroe is a regular columnist for A Globe of Witnesses, and has a biweekly column "The Religion Thang" for Newsweekly. Monroe has received awards and honors for her writing and speaking, including The Cambridge Peace and Justice Award and the Harvard University Certificate of Distinction in Teaching.

Laura Flanders
Feigning Feminism, Fuelling Backlash: Gender Politics in the Age of Bush
Journalist, author and radio host Laura Flanders tackles how the age of George W. Bush may not only be bad for feminism and women's rights, but also for our health. Her most recent book The W Effect: Bush's War on Women investigates Bush's media slogan, the "W is for Women," to reveal how W's administration far from advancing women-friendly politics has brought about, instead, a reversal of "the gains that women have made, not just in the last decade, but over much of the 20th century." In the context of global trends, Flanders argues the "Bush era is shaping up to be a crunch moment for human equality" and that prompts us to review not only our "relationship to women's rights, but our understanding of human interdependence." In another recent book Bushwomen:Tales of a Cynical Species, Flanders investigates the women in Bush's Cabinet, an investigation hailed as "fierce, funny and intelligent."

Nechama Tec
Resilience and Courage: Women, Men, and the Holocaust
Sociologist and professor emerita at the University of Connecticut, Nechama Tec speaks about the different experiences of Jewish women and men during the Holocaust. Her work, which entails analysis of her interviews with Holocaust survivors, has been regarded as "the best and most comprehensive gender analysis of Jewish Holocaust survivors and resistors to date." As survivors reflect on their experiences, Tec charts the contours of gender relations in different ways. Her perspective illuminates Nazi anti-Jewish gender policies and ideology involving "special degradation and murder of Jewish men" and the implications for Jewish women, who often stepped in to aid families and friends. In detailing the everyday, Tec's study offers insight into "life in extremis" and of the different gender implications and responses under "extreme, violent and unpredictable worlds." Herself a Holocaust survivor, Tec's recent book Resilience and Courage has received the National Jewish Book Award, and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Co-sponsored by the Human Rights and Genocide Forum.

Earth Spirit, Earth Action
Starhawk is one of the most respected voices in modern Goddess religion and earth-based spirituality. She travels internationally teaching magic, the tools of ritual, and the skills of activism. Starhawk draws on nature to explore how the Earth is our greatest teacher and healer, whether we want to heal personal hurts, or heal the wounds society inflicts on Earth and human beings. Seeing connections to Earth as our deepest source of hope, renewal and strength, Starhawk presents ways to combine the powers of earth-based spirituality with political action. Starhawk draws on her experiences as an organizer with Code Pink: Unreasonable Women for Peace, her work with Jewish and Palestinian women in the West Bank and Gaza, and her many years as an innovator in the Goddess revival and eco-feminist movements. Her talk culminates in a ritual for the Earth on William Smith Green. She is the author or co-author of 10 books.

Spring 2004, Global Education, Educating Globally

Andrew Boyd
Culture Jamming 101
Grassroots publicist, activist, and author Andrew Boyd uses guerrilla theater, media stunts, and creative direct action to fight social and economic injustice and inequalities. Hailed as a "master satirist" and "committed humorist," Boyd's creativity, wit, and energy electrify his lectures and workshops as much as they mobilize his direct action. As Phil T. Rich, he was one of the driving forces behind Billionaires for Bush (or Gore), the Million Billionaire March, and now His street theater and media stunts such as 100 Musical Chairs (a human bar-graph of economic inequality), and Precision Cell Phone Drill Team (corporate executives in power suits on military style maneuvers) derive from his intellectual approach of "grabbing a powerful idea from culture or the academy, turning it inside-out, putting a handle and a grin on it, and sending it back out there." Founder and director of the arts and action program United for a Fair Economy, he is also author of The Activist Cookbook, a source-book for activist workshops, and, most recently, Daily Afflictions: The Agony of Being Connected to Everything in the Universe, and "Truth is a Virus: Meme Warfare and the Billionaires for Bush (or Gore)," a chapter in Cultural Resistance. His writings on global resistance movements and their use of the Internet have been featured in The Nation and the Village Voice. Boyd teaches at New York University, and his current book-in-progress is Enlightened Machismo.

Zarqa Nawaz
Putting Fun Back into FUNdamentalism (films and talk)
Canadian Muslim filmmaker and journalist Zarqa Nawaz has created a trilogy of films she calls "terrordies" - comedies about terrorism - to confront stereotypes associated with Muslims. Her production company FUNdamental Films' motto "to put fun back into fundamentalism" supplies the title of her talk in which Nawaz will introduce her films and discuss their development. Described as having a "satirical bent of mind," her films deploy loads of wit to examine stereotypes of Muslims as terrorists, wife abusers and religious extremists. Her film BBQ Muslims was inspired by the media flurry and finger pointing at the Muslim community for the Oklahoma City bombing, and Death Threat by the "fatwa (decree) issued by religious clerics against Salman Rushdie and Bangladeshi author Taslima Nasreen for their writings" (Radhika, 2003). Nawaz has worked as a freelance writer/broadcaster with CBC radio, and as associate producer on a number of CBC programs, including Morningside. She has also worked with CTV's Canada AM, and CBC's The National, and won the Chairman's Award in Radio Production for her radio documentary, The Changing Rituals of Death. Her films have premiered at the Toronto International Film Festivals, and have acquired cult status. Her current work is on a feature film, Real Terrorists Don't Belly Dance, where she continues to break down repressive and oppressive views of Islamic religion and of Muslim women and men.

Nelly Peñaloza Stromquist
21st Century Women: Confronting Postmodernity and Globalization
Professor of Education at the Rossier School of Education and affiliated scholar in the Center for Feminist Research and Gender Studies at the University of Southern California, Nelly Stromquist researches issues related to international development, education and gender. Specializing in questions concerned with gender, equity policies, educational innovations, and adult education in developing countries, particularly Latin America and West Africa, Stromquist is a foremost author on the question of education and globalization, and she also writes on literacy for women's citizenship. From her critical feminist approach, Stromquist examines postmodernism and globalization, including their implications for pedagogical and political practice within institutions of higher education. Her new book focuses on how transnational corporations directly and indirectly hold political influence on education and culture, and on transformations in ideas of education and of the university. Stromquist has most recently published Education in a Globalized World: The Connectivity of Economic Power, Technology, and Knowledge, and co-edited Distant Alliances: Promoting Education for Girls and Women in Latin America.

Rabab Abdulhadi
Critical Pedagogy, Cultures of Resistance, and Thought Police: Teaching Gender and Sexuality in the Time of War
Assistant professor in the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality at New York University, Rabab Abdulhadi will examine the place of pedagogy in oppositional cultures. Drawing on her research in the United States, Palestine and the rest of the Arab world, including Iraq, she will focus on the function of criticism and critical thinking when policing mechanisms are tightened. Abdulhadi thus inquires into oppositional cultural spaces under current conditions of national security. Her doctoral dissertation was a comparative study of the changed meaning of Palestinianness before and after the creation of Palestinian self-rule areas in parts of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Abdulhadi is currently director of a collaborative research initiative on gender and sexuality studies between the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality at New York University and partners in the Middle East, Central Asia, Southern Africa, South East Asia and Latin America. Her publications include editor of a special issue of International Journal of Sociology on Arab sociology, articles including, "Where is Home? Fragmented Llives, Border Crossing, and the Politics of Exile;" "Nomadic Existence: Gender, Exile and Palestine;" and "The Palestinian Women's Autonomous Movement: Emergence, Dynamics, and Challenges." She is currently completing two books, Cultures of Resistance and the Post-Colonial State, and The Limitations of Nationalism: Gender Dynamics and the Emergent Palestinian Feminist Discourses.

Yunxiang Gao
Cinema, Sports, Gender and Nation State During the Anti-Japanese War, 1931 to 1945
During the Anti Japanese War (1931-1945), "national emergency" intensified the Chinese nationalists' efforts to control and strengthen the citizen's body through sports and physical education for the purpose of redefining gender ideology for new citizenry and construct a strong militant nation. The Fisher Center predoctoral fellow, Yunxiang Gao, will give a talk on "Cinema, Sports, Gender and Nation State During the Anti-Japanese War from 1931 to 1945" at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 4, in the Fisher Center, Demarest 212. Refreshments will follow. Nationalistic Chinese of every political stripe recognized the raw power of cinema and illustrated press of the early 1930s, and harnessed these tools for wartime nation building. Using the traditional role of public theater in setting gendered body ideology, nationalists promoted the movie actress Li Lili as an "athletic star" and transformed her sexualized film image into a pure athletic body. As the model of the physically fit woman suitable for China's wartime needs, the increasingly popular "athletic star" in cinema served as a discourse for competing wartime institutional powers in constructing different visions of the strong nation. Later, from 1944 to 1946, Li Lili visited the United States and sought to create new image for herself in a new environment, but had to struggle against the persistent controlling forces constraining her.

Fall 2003, Global Education, Educating Globally

David Holbrooke '87 and Timothy "Speed" Levitch
Live from Shiva's Dance Floor (film and talk)
Producer David Holbrooke presents his new short documentary, featuring tour guide, philosopher and "revolutionary rock and roll scribe" Timothy "Speed" Levitch. Premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, "Live from Shiva's Dance Floor" has been described as the most "revolutionary proposal" for the World Trade Center site, albeit one not "on the table of the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. or the Port Authority … ." In the documentary, Levitch ("The Cruise") takes viewers on a tour of New York City and examines New Yorkers' "philosophy on the life, death and rebirth of ground zero." Directed by Richard Linklater ("Slacker," "Waking Life"), the documentary has been making the rounds at a number of film festivals. Producer Holbrooke's media experience includes NBC Sports, CNBC, CNN and PBS, and he is founder of the television and film production company Giraffe Partners. Levitch writes for Entertainment Weekly, The Village Voice and other outlets, and recently published "Speedology: Speed on New York on Speed."

Setha Low
After the Trade Center: Searching for Spaces of Security and Hope
As professor of environmental psychology and anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, Setha Low focuses on cultural aspects of design and the anthropology of space and place, including the "landscape of fear." Since 9/11, she has turned her research to questions of imagining the public culture of the future for learning and democracy. Using her ethnographic research from Battery City Park, along with interviews with and artwork of NYC schoolchildren, Low will address concerns over public space, education and culture within a country driven to increasing levels of surveillance. Her most recent book, "Behind the Gates: Security and the New American Dream," offers insight into life inside the "suburban fortresses" of gated communities, illuminating Americans' expressed need for security and the accompanying tradeoffs of insularity, restrictive rules and little change in safety.

Tom Tomorrow (a.k.a. Dan Perkins)
The Modern World of Tomorrow
Offering a provocative dissection of social and political issues, cartoonist and social/political satirist Tom Tomorrow has tackled everything from welfare and the Presidential "sexgate" through consumer culture and the current interminable search for weapons of mass destruction. His work has been described as "cynical, opinionated, sarcastic, self-aware, very funny" and "right on the mark." Using a multimedia presentation, Perkins discusses politics and "media double-speak" as he shows his work. Two-time winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism award for cartooning and recipient of numerous other awards, Perkins has published five anthologies of cartoons, including his latest book, "The Great Big Book of Tomorrow." His comic strip, This Modern World, has been featured in more than 100 media outlets across the country, including The New York Times, US News and World Report, Mother Jones and

Marjorie Heins
Cyberspace and Censorship of Youth
Marjorie Heins directs the Free Expression Policy Project, a think tank on artistic and intellectual freedom. Her talk tackles censorship arguments based on assumptions of protecting youth and children from indecent information or corrupting influences. Deftly navigating what is considered an "ideological minefield," Heins will take a deeper look at cyberspace and the question of freedom of expression. A former director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Arts Censorship Project, Heins has served as co-counsel in a number of Supreme Court cases, including National Endowment for the Arts v. Finley and Reno v. ACLU (the challenge to the 1996 Communications Decency Act). Her work over the past decade has challenged censorship based on stereotypes about sexuality, gender, youth and representations of violence in art and entertainment. Her most recent book, "Not in Front of the Children," has been presented with the American Library Association's Eli M. Oboler Award for the best published work in the field of intellectual freedom.

Vijay Prashad
The Darker Nations: Polyculturalism and Empire
Associate professor of international studies at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., Vijay Prashad examines how the cultural politics of imperialism serve to obscure cultures intertwined with one another. In contrast is the cultural logic of polyculturalism, to make visible the entanglements of differing cultures as alive. Prashad explores the cultural logic of the Caribbean and West Asia, drawing on examples of how working class people in the time of empire have struggled against the more static notion of multiculturalism. Prashad's work is said to revolutionize understandings of diversity, offering original insight in an area of debate often mired in the "conservative conceits of ethnic essentialism." Prashad has published widely. Two of his books, "Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting" and "Karma of Brown Folk," have been recognized by The Village Voice as among the top 25 books of the year. He also writes frequently in South Asian and North American periodicals, as well as for the Web.

Spring 2003, Laboring Under Globalization

When the HEN crows: Music, Poetry and Puppetry as Movements for Justice
Singer-songwriter and co-founder of HEN Foundation Jolie Rickman, singer-songwriter Colleen Kattau, performance poet and playwright Lenelle N. Moïse, and puppeteer Bernice Silver are part of a "consciously diverse team of artists whose activism inspires movements against oppression and for peace-with-justice." Critically acclaimed musician, widely recognized activist, and music coordinator for "Democracy Now," Rickman has recorded two albums. She also appears with singer/songwriter of New Song and Nueva canción and labor activist Kattau on "Sing it Down: Songs to Close the School of the Americas." Moïse is an out Haitian-American "rallying, manifesto-spinning" activist, and winner of the 2002 New World Theatre Poetry Slam. Recently heralded the "queen of puppetry" by the University of Washington for her lifelong work as a socially conscious puppeteer, Silver is also featured in the Puppeteers of America video The Queen of Potpourri. HEN artist-activists will perform works directed at economic justice and peace-with-justice; they will also run a workshop, "Calling All Artists."

Raka Ray
Grappling With Modernity: Kolkata's 'respectable classes' and the imperatives of domestic servitude
Associate Professor of Sociology and South and Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, Raka Ray studies how the institution of domestic servitude has, since the late 19th century, been constitutive of middle-classness such that even the segment of the middle class that sees itself as the vanguard of the Indian "global modern" cannot imagine a modern home without a servant. For Ray, the "servant problem" can be read as a metaphor for the changes wrought by middle class India's confrontation with a new economic and social order. Ray's areas of scholarship also include women's movements in the Third World. She is currently co-editing Rethinking Class and Poverty: Social Movements in India in a Transnational Age.

Martin Summers
Diasporic Brotherhood: Freemasonry and the Transnational Production of Black Middle-Class Masculinity
Historian Martin Summers is an assistant professor at the University of Oregon. Examining transatlantic links of Freemasons of African descent, Summers studies fraternalism as one avenue by which middle-class and elite African Americans, African Caribbeans, and Africans formed collective, diasporic gender identity. His talk will address how Freemasonry provided black men a space in which they could lay claim to a middle-class male subjectivity in more universal terms even as it served to construct a specifically racialized masculinity in the African diaspora. Summers' scholarship focuses on race, class and sexuality in the formation of masculine identity. He is currently completing his book Manliness and Its Discontents: The Transformation of Masculinity Among the Black Middle Class, 1900-1930.

Ursula Biemann
The Global Geography of Female Labor
In pursuit of her ongoing investigation into the role of gender and migration in the logic of global capitalism, film maker and lecturer at HGKZ, the School of Contemporary Art, Zurich, Ursula Biemann has visited a number of particularly telling sites: border areas, free trade zones, and entertainment cities catering to military camps. Her presentation is based on the video essay Performing the Border, set in a Mexican border town where U.S. industries assemble high-tech equipment for the global market. Looking at the complex ways in which artificial border space is produced through the performance and management of gender relations, her talk links the metaphorical meaning of the border with the material reality of working women in the transnational space.

H2O, Art Opening and Reception
H2O is an art exhibition focusing on water and the human body-water contained in our bodies and the water that contains our bodies-actual ponds, rivers, bathtubs as well as bodies of water that populate our dreams and imaginations. With activists deeming water the global issue of the 21st century, H2O's composition is three parts ecology of body, land, and mind to one part global commons. Organized by Jo Anna Isaak, HWS professor of art, this exhibition features the work of 23 artists, including the environmental aesthetic photographs of HWS Associate Professor of Art Mark Jones. H2O artists Bonnie Rychlak, Carol Cole and Mark Jones will deliver opening remarks, and student docents will illuminate works for visitors. H2O will be on display in the Houghton House Gallery, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, March 28-April 21.

Beverly McIver
Mammy How I Love You
Painting and drawing throughout her life, Beverly McIver has explored questions of her own identity and of African-American women. Her clown portraits are self-portraits, exploring both her "desire as a youngster to become a professional clown and [her] ambivalent feelings about being black." Her current work continues this exploration through racial stereotypes imaged in black face and an Afro wig. In these, she has depicted what she refers to as Aunt Jemima, the nappy-headed nigger, and the mammy, each a part of herself. McIver's mother has been a personal reference in this new work, as she spent her entire life cleaning houses and raising white children to clothe and feed McIver and her sisters. Recognized with a Creative Capital Grant and a 2001 John Guggenheim Fellowship, McIver has been traveling with her mother to photograph and videotape domestic workers, using these to create photographs and paintings of herself in blackface. McIver's recent solo exhibitions include Faces in Phoenix (2001) in Phoenix, All of Me (1999) at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, and Renee & I (1993) at Duke University. She received a 2000 Anonymous Was a Woman fellowship, and is currently a Radcliffe Institute Fellow. McIver is an associate professor of painting and drawing at Arizona State University.

Fall 2002, Laboring Under Globalization

Cynthia Enloe
Is There a 'Post-9/11 Sneaker'?: Feminist Clues about Women Workers and Globalized Security
As a professor of government and the director of the women's studies department at Clark University, Cynthia Enloe studies the impact of militarism, state policies and politics on the lives of women throughout the world. Her works have been incisive on the level of militarization in our lives - from those who make fighter planes to those who are employees of food, toy, or clothing companies and in cultural products from camouflage-design condoms and Star Wars pasta shapes. Her talk drew on her long-standing interest in the politics of globalization as it shapes - and relied on - women's feminized factory work. Enloe was a Radcliffe Fellow in 2001, and has been the recipient of a Fulbright Research Grant, a visiting professorship at Wellesley College, and an Honorary Professorship of Political Science at the University of Wales. Enloe serves on several editorial boards including Signs, and International Feminist Review of Politics. Her most recent books include Maneuvers: The International Politics of Militarizing Women's Lives, and a new edition of her classic Bananas, Beaches, and Bases. Sept. 19

Saskia Sassen
Countergeographies of Globalization:Trafficking in Women
Saskia Sassen is the Ralph Lewis Professor of Sociology at the University of Chicago, and Centennial Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics. Countergeographies, for Sassen, entail shadow areas of labor economy, sometimes found operating alongside labor migration. Her talk explored the gendered economy of globalization by looking at women's labor and migration within these countergeographies, as, for example, in prostitution and in worker recruitment for foreign labor markets. Her most recent books are Guests and Aliens and the edited book Global Networks/Linked Cities. She is co-director of the Economy Section of the Global Chicago Project, a Member of the National Academy of Sciences Panel on Urban Data Sets, a Member of the Council of Foreign Relations, and chair of the newly formed Information Technology, International Cooperation and Global Security Committee of the SSRC. She is currently completing her forthcoming book Denationalization : Economy and Polity in a Global Digital Age. Oct. 16

Mallika Dutt
New Visions for Human Rights in the New Century
Mallika Dutt is founding executive director of Breakthrough, an international organization dedicated to promoting public awareness and dialogue about human rights and social justice through the use of education and popular culture. She produced the music video Mann Ke Manjeeré (Screen Award 2001; MTV nominated best Indipop video), a video aimed at raising issues about violence against women, women in non-traditional occupations and women's access to public space. Using Breakthrough's music videos and drawing on her activism for more than two decades, Dutt discussed uses of popular culture and media to promote human rights and women's rights globally. Dutt received her law degree from NYU Law School, and holds a master's degree from Columbia University. She has been program officer for human rights and social justice at the Ford Foundation's New Delhi office, associate director of the Center for Women's Global Leadership, and director of the Norman Foundation. Dutt taught women and the law at Hunter College, wrote "Claiming Human Rights: Feminism of Difference and Alliance," and co-authored the manual Local Action Global Change: Learning About the Human Rights of Women and Girls. Oct. 23

Michael Kimmel
Globalization and its Mal(e)contents: Class, Race, and Gender After 9/11
As a sociologist and author at S.U.N.Y at Stony Brook, Michael Kimmel has been at the forefront of pro-feminist perspectives on men's lives, and has brought his perspective to our campus on previous visits. His talk described some of the ways in which globalization displaces traditional masculinities and explore some forms of gendered resistance, specifically, the mobilization of far right neo-Nazi White Supremacists in the U.S., Scandinavia, and Britain. His extensive scholarship on the history of masculinity and of the politics of manhood includes Manhood in America: A Cultural History and Men's Lives (with Michael Messner). His most recent book is The Gendered Society. Nov. 20

Spring Semester 2002, body politics in a changing world

Chris Smith recently completed his Ph.D. in media and cultural studies, and is currently a visiting professor at Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California. His talk addressed hip-hop music videos, bodies, and the politics of the American dream. His research focuses on 20th century American history, innovation management, and consumer spending trends fostered by new technology. Smith's published work includes "Naming the Illuminati" (with John Fiske) in the edited volume of Music and the Racial Imagination and "Freeze Frames: Frozen Foods and Memories of the Postwar American Family" in the edited volume Kitchen Culture in America: Representations Food, Gender and Race. He has also written extensively about popular culture for publications such as Elle, Interview, The Source, XXL and Vibe. April 17

David Savran is a professor of theater at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His talk examined cultural and sexual tensions inherent in the concept of middlebrow culture in America and why it has been judged so contemptuously by most critics. Savran argues that theatre is one of the most distinctive forms of middlebrow and illustrates his argument with an analysis of the marketing of the wildly successful Tony Award-winning musical, Rent. He has written extensively on American theatre and cul ture, sexuality, and the social history of masculinity. Recent publications include the edited volume The Masculinity Studies Reader; Taking it Like a Man; The Playwright's Voice; and, Communists, Cowboys, and Queers. April 9

Terry Tempest Williams, nature writer and environmental activist, writes bravely and with deep compassion on the political, cultural and geographical ecology of the well being of our bodies and our Earth. Her writings have brought to political attention environmental issues around women's health, and have served to catalyze environmental efforts for Redrock Canyon and an environmentally sustainable world. Williams has testified before the U. S. Congress on environmental risks to women's health, has served on the President's Council for Sustainable Development, and has received the National Wildlife Federation's Conservation Award for Special Achievement. Her published books include Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place; Leap; and, most recently, Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert. Her lecture was co-sponsored by Writers Reading. March 24

Professor Amina Wadud, of the philosophy and religious studies departments at Virginia Commonwealth University, discussed Islamic women and the Qur'an. As a scholar of Islamic studies, Wadud has investigated the intricacies of various aspects of Muslim women's lives such as reproductive health issues and educational equality throughout the world. Her knowledge provides new and critical insight into the changing dynamics of the world since September 11. Wadud is the author of Qur'an and Woman: Rereading the Sacred Text from a Woman's Perspective. March 6

Kate Rigg, A native of Toronto and graduate of Manhattan's Juilliard School, Kate Rigg is a comedian who performs character and stand-up comedy in New York, Los Angeles, and Toronto. Born to an Indonesian mother and Aussie father, Rigg is best known for her routine Chink-O-Rama. Her routines include dance and transformations of popular songs and carry a strong political statement as she parodies the stereotypes often imposed on people of Asian descent. Rigg performed the routine somebody's kid, which focused on individual experiences in the multicultural landscape of the new millennium. The act included Beat poetry, character comedy, and intimate monologues accompanied by a wildly adaptable and multi-textured soundscape provided by Julliard graduate and virtuoso Lyris Hung on electric violin and strings. February 13

Fall 2001, 2001 Space Odyssey: Gender Journeys and Gendered Spaces

b.h. Yael, a Toronto-based video artist, spoke about the complexity of "belonging" and will illustrate her talk with clips from Fresh Blood and her short films The Mission and December 31, 2000. Yael is an instructor at the Ontario College of Art and Design. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally and deals with issues of identity, authority and family structures, while at the same time addressing the fragmentary nature of these identities and memories. Yael's work most often involves non-linear and hybrid forms, including dramatized and fictional elements combined with first person narration, autobiographical, and documentary elements. November 28

Micaela di Leonardo, professor of anthropology, gender studies, and performance studies, and graduate director of gender studies at Northwestern University, spoke on the ethnography of New Haven, Conn. Her work deals with race, gender, ethnicity, and class formation in research and anthropology. She is concerned with the embeddedness of gender and race/ethnicity in anthropological history, and an effort to reorient and channel research in these domains. Di Leonardo is the author of Exotics at Home: Anthropologies, Others, American Modernity, co-editor of The Gender/Sexuality Reader: Culture, History, Political Economy, and editor of Gender at the Crossroads of Knowledge: Feminist Anthropology in the Postmodern Era. November 7

Les Moran, a Reader in Law at the University of London, spoke on the use of 'gay space' as safe space by lesbians, gay men, and straight women, drawing empirical evidence from his work at Manchester University on homophobic violence. He focused on findings that challenge assumptions found in existing work on homophobic violence. He has written extensively on matters relating to gay issues in the law. Moran is one of a multi-disciplinary team undertaking the largest study of lesbians, gay men, violence, and safety in the United Kingdom. He is currently editing a special edition of Law and Critique which is a critical reflection on hate crime, and a volume of essays on law and film. He is completing a book provisionally titled Queer Violence. He was a research associate at the Fisher Center for fall 2001.October 24

Bonnie Spanier, a molecular biologist and associate professor of women's studies at SUNY Albany, discussed the evidence in the biological sciences of distortions that have come from societal beliefs about sex, race, and sexuality differences. Spanier investigates how science is shaped by culture. She is a consultant on the benefits of bringing feminist insights into the natural and social sciences. Her recent book, Im/Partial Science: Gender Ideology in Molecular Biology, documents how cultural beliefs about inherent difference have skewed understanding nature at the molecular and cellular levels and inadvertently supported hereditarian views.October 17

Evelynn Hammonds spoke about science and race. Hammonds is an associate professor of the history of science in Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Program in Science and Technology. Her work deals with the history of science, medicine, and public health in the U.S., and race and gender in science. Hammonds' publications include Childhood's Deadly Scourge: The Campaign to Control Diphtheria in New York City, 1880-1930 and "Gendering the Epidemic: Feminism and the Epidemic of HIV/AIDS in the United States, 1981-1999." October 4

Christopher Lane, a professor of English at Northwestern University, discussed British explorer Mary Kingsley's Travels in West Africa and her letters and essays. He will focus on Victorian debates about women explorers and feminist interpretations of Kingsley's relationship to West African women. He is the author of The Ruling Passion and The Burdens of Intimacy, as well as editor of The Psychoanalysis of Race. He is currently completing a book titled Civilized Hatred: The Antisocial Life in Victorian Fiction. Lane was previously an associate professor of English and director of psychoanalytic studies at Emory University. September 26

Michelle Wright, an assistant professor of English at Macalester College, and William Jones, an assistant professor of history at Rutgers, took a look at why 400-year-old racist stereotypes still flourish. They will also examine some contemporary manifestations of racist debate. Wright is interested in discourses on race and technology, as well as queer and black feminist issues in the literature of the African Diaspora. Her current project looks at comparative black theories of subjectivity in African-American, black British, Afro-German, and black French literature and non-fiction. Jones is working on a book titled The Tribe of Black Ulysses: African American Men in the Industrial South. His work and published articles focus on African Americans and organized labor. September 10

Spring Semester 2001

Barry Grant focused on Kubrick's film 2001: A Space Odyssey, using the film to illustrate links between science, technology, gender, and science fiction in the forum "2001: Space, Science, and Technology." January 31

Rebecca Goldstein discussed how her conception of science differs from the highly technologistic understanding of human evolution portrayed in the film. Grant is a professor of film studies and dramatic and visual arts at Brock University, in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. Goldstein has written four books and has won two Whiting Awards. January 31

Adrienne Davis gave "Deconstructing the Plantation: The Geography of Slavery's Sexual Dynamics." She is a professor of law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she teaches property, contracts, and feminist and critical race theory. Her work demonstrates how property and contract law incorporate and influence social norms with regard to race, gender and sexuality in the 19th century. February 8

Michele Wallace discussed "The Problem of the Visual in Black Culture." As a professor of English, film studies, and women's studies at the City College of New York, and professor in the Ph.D. program at the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center, she lectures and writes about feminism, gender, art, and culture, and the effects of sexism and racism on black women. February 24

Jane Plitt is the author of Martha Matilda Harper and the American Dream, about Martha Matilda Harper, who created an international chain of beauty shops. Plitt' presentation focused on "Using Business for Social Change: The Harper Method." A women's rights advocate, she started the Rochester chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners, and worked to end sex-segregated restaurants and want-ads in N.Y. State. In 1979, she founded her own business consulting and labor arbitration firm. March 7

Mary Katzenstein, a professor of government at Cornell University, gave "Obeying the Law, Violating the Norm: Feminism in the Church and Military." She has been published on women's movements in India, the United States, and Europe. She has written or co-edited Beyond Zero Tolerance: Discrimination and the Culture of the U.S. Military, Faithful and Fearless: Moving Feminist Protest Inside the Church and Military, India's Preferential Policies: Migrants, the Middle Classes and Ethnic Equality, and Ethnicity and Equality: The Shiv Sena Party and Preferential Policies in Bombay. March 28

James Garbarino traced the developmental pathways of criminally violent youth and focus on risk factors, including maltreatment, difficult temperaments, mishandling, and social toxicity, for his presentation "Lost Boys: Pathways from Childhood Sadness to Adolescent Violence." Garbarino is a professor of human development and co-director of the Family Life Development Center at Cornell University. He has served as consultant to the National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse, National Institute for Mental Health, American Medical Association, National Black Child Development Institute, and others. He has also written several books, including Lost Boys: Why Our Sons Turn Violent and How We Can Save Them, and Children in Danger: Coping With The Consequences of Community Violence. April 9

Congressman Barney Frank, who presented "Frankly Speaking," was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1980. He graduated in 1962 from Harvard College. He has served as the chief assistant to Mayor Kevin White of Boston, and as administrative assistant to U.S. Congressman Michael J. Harrington. In 1972 Frank was elected to the Massachusetts Legislature, where he served for eight years. In 1979 he became a member of the Massachusetts Bar. Frank has taught at the University of Massachusetts-Boston, the John F. Kennedy School at Harvard, and Boston University. He has written numerous articles on politics and public affairs, and in 1992 his book, Speaking Frankly, was published. April 12

Fall Semester 2000

Jacquie Soohen, documentary film-maker, will presented several films on gender issues. A symposium, "Activism, the Arts, and the Academy, " of panelists discussed their work on behalf of individuals who suffer discrimination because of their gender or their sexual orientation. Panelists included Jacquie Soohen, documentary film-maker; Sky Gilbert, gay theater activist; and Lee Hayes, black feminist musician and member of Malaika. Sky Gilbert performed, in drag, a reading of his work in "Digressions of a Naked Party Girl, " and Malaika, an African-Canadian feminist band, performed. September 8

Leslie Heywood, an English professor from SUNY Binghamton, speak on issues relating to the female body image. Heywood has written on female athletics, women's bodybuilding, anorexia, and feminist approaches to cultural studies. She recently received the SUNY Binghamton Award for Excellence in Teaching. September 20

Judith Ortiz Cofer, a native of Puerto Rico, presented "A Casa of My Own." She has written several books, including An Island Like You: Stories of the Barrio, The Latin Deli, The Line of the Sun, and Silent Dancing. She centers her lectures in bi-culturalism and the creative process on her belief in freedom of expression. October 23

Jacqui Alexander, chair of the department of Gender and Women's Studies at Connecticut College, examined how gender intersects with race, class, and sexuality in "Geographies of Dispossession and Belonging: The State, the Erotic, and the Project of Nation-Building." Originally from the Caribbean, she recently received a Guggenheim Fellowship to research Kongo spiritual practices there. November 1

Michael Ray Charles, an artist and professor at the University of Texas at Austin, spoke and showed slides of his own artwork to illustrate his points about "Popular Images of Black Men." His work deals with depictions of African-Americans in American popular culture. November 15

Karen Barad, who teaches physics, philosophy, women's studies, and critical social thought at Mount Holyoke College, gave "Performing Culture/Performing Nature, or How Matter Comes to Matter." She is the author of numerous articles on physics, feminist epistemology, science philosophy and cultural studies, and feminist theory. November 29

Spring 2000

Argentina Teran de Erdman, who grew up in Mexico, discussed "Machismo and Marianismo in Latin America." She has degrees in law and international relations, has worked as a professor of political science at various universities in the U.S .and abroad, and was for 10 years Mexican consul in Chicago. April 5

Michael Messner is associate professor of sociology and gender studies at the University of Southern California. He is co-editor of two standard readers on gender, Through the Prism of Difference and Men's Lives. His own work deals with the sociology of sports. April 19

Valerie Walkerdine joined the series with "Growing Up Girl." Professor of critical psychology at the University of Western Australia, Walkerdine is well-known for the rigor and profundity of her studies of pre-adolescent working class girls. May 1

Barrie Thorne presented "Women's Studies and the Challenge of Interdisciplinarity." Professor of sociology and women's studies at Berkeley, as well as co-director of the Center for Working Families there, Thorne's best-known book is Gender Play: Girls and Boys in School, a thoughtful ethnographic study of gender relations in American elementary education. May 17

Winter 2000

Dan Keding, a professional story-teller whose tales about growing up on the South side of Chicago are profoundly relevant to the complicated nature of growing up male. Jan. 12

Ann Cooper Albright, a performer, feminist scholar, and associate professor in the dance and theater program at Oberlin College, discussed "TechnoBodies: Muscling with Gender in Contemporary Dance." Jan. 19

George Chauncey, a professor of history at the University of Chicago, presented "The Strange Career of the Closet: Gay Culture, Consciousness, and Politics from the Second World War to the Stonewall Era." Feb. 13

Judith Halberstam discussed "Millennial Masculinities." She is an associate professor of literature at the University of California at San Diego who specializes in a wide range of topics, including Victorian culture, queer theory, postmodern culture, Gothic literature and the horror film, and gender studies. Mar. 1

Spring 1999

"Works by Women" Chorale Concert. March 4
The Colleges Chorale performed the music of famous female artists at a concert on campus as well as in New York City.

Feminist Theory Conference. March 9
Students in Feminist theory class hosted the forum "Pop, Porn, the Presidency...and Yo' Mama."

Film Series, "Gender Troubles." April 7 through May 28
A Spring film festival that featured films from eight countries.

Gender and Globalization Conference. May 8
A day-long symposium that converged feminist economist thought with current international monetary policies.

Looking Forward, Looking Black. April 30 - May 24
An art exhibit that reflected on the black body over the past century and looks forward to the new millennium.


The Fisher Center Lecture Series includes a variety of speakers each term who deliver an evening lecture and, the following morning, lead a discussion group within their area of expertise.

Preparing Students to Lead Lives of Consequence.