Our curriculum and symposium theme for 2013-2014 is Race & the Body: Boundaries, Expressions & Orientations. Over the 2014 academic year, we look forward to sustaining a campus wide conversation on the intersection between race and the body. We hope to partner with many of you on classroom and co-curricular educational opportunities related to the intersections of Race & the Body. Please contact us if you have ideas for programs, events, activities, etc related to this theme.
2012- 2013 – Race & Place: Movement, Space, Land, and Power
Aida Hussen (Returning to Our Original Places: History, Fantasy, and the Contemporary African American Novel): Dr. Aida Hussen is a Professor of English at UWMadison. She is currently working on a book project that examines representations of historical memory in African American fiction written since the Civil Rights Movement. Her research and teaching interests include African American literature, feminist and queer theory, and trauma theory. She has taught courses on black postmodernist literature, historical fiction about slavery, and contemporary feminist literatures.
Ching-in Chen & Jessica Vega-Gonzelez. (The Revolution Starts at Home): Public talk and Q&A. To effectively resist violence out there–in the prison system, on militarized borders, or during other clear encounters with “the system”–we must challenge how it is reproduced right where we live. It’s one thing when the perpetrator is the police, the state, or someone we don’t know. It’s quite another when that person is someone we call friend, lover, mentor, trusted ally. Join co-editor Ching-In Chen and activist Jessica Vega Gonzalez for a presentation and discussion about potentially life-saving alternatives for creating survivor safety while building a movement where no one is left behind.
Monica White (Reclamation, Reconnection, and Resistance: Black Farmers, Food Security, and Justice): Keynote Speaker for Race &… Symposium. Dr. Monica White is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Justice at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology at UW-Madison. She received her Ph.D. from Western Michigan University and is a former Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign’s Department of African American Studies. She studies community-based food systems in Detroit and looks at how local communities of color access healthy food and the transformation process communities undergo during periods of economic downfall. She also examines the history of agriculture in Detroit in relation to the history of urban agriculture to gauge land use in regards to food access.
Joy James (Women and Political Imprisonment: From Rosa Parks to Ramona Afrika): Joy James is aPresidential Professor of the Humanities and a professor of Political Science at Williams College. Professor James is also the author of Shadowboxing: Representations of Black Feminist Politics, Resisting State Violence: Radicalism, Gender and Race in U.S. Culture, and The New Abolitionists (Neo) Slave Narratives and Contemporary Prison Writings. In collaboration with the Havens Center, and co-sponsored by the Political Science, Afro-American Studies and Gender & Women’s Studies Departments, and Global Studies.
Criminal Queers (Film Showing and discussion with filmmakers): Criminal Queers visualizes a radical trans/queer struggle against the prison industrial complex and toward a world without walls. Remembering that prison breaks are both a theoretical and material practice of freedom, this film imagines what spaces might be opened up if crowbars, wigs, and metal files become tools for transformation. Follow Yoshi, Joy, Susan and Lucy as they fiercely read everything from the Human Rights Campaign and hate crimes legislation to the non-profitization of social movements. Criminal Queers grows our collective liberation by working to abolish the multiple ways our hearts, genders, and desires are confined.
Jose Antonio Vargas: The LGBT Campus Center and IJET hosted Jose Antonio Vargas, a Filipino American multimedia storyteller and journalist. In 2011, Jose Vargas wrote a piece in the New York Times Magazine called “My Life as an Undocumented Immigrant.” Ever since, he has been elevating the conversation around immigration and what it means to “Define American.” As a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, Vargas talks about this “double-coming out” through his lens as a gay man of color, and how the power of knowing our own, unique stories does more to add to the story of America than to hurt it. He was a senior contributing editor at the Huffington Post and has also worked for The San Francisco Chronicle, Philadelphia Daily News, and The Washington Post.
Rinku Sen (Walking the Talk: How Stories Help Us Change Our World): Rinku Sen is the President and Executive Director of the Applied Research Center (ARC) and the publisher of Colorlines.com. She is a leading figure in the racial justice movement and combines journalism and activism to create social change. Rinku has positioned ARC as a national home for media, research and activism on these issues. She is also is the author of Stir It Up, a primer on best practices in community organizing, and The Accidental American. Also co-sponsored by International Student Services, D-Squad, and the Progressive Magazine.
Tom Goldtooth (Walking with Mother Earth and Father Sky: A Message From the Heart): The Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) brought together leaders around the world to shape a plan to achieve a global ‘green economy’ in the context of sustainable development. Indigenous peoples from throughout the world converged in Rio for the Indigenous Peoples’ Global Conference on Rio+20 and Mother Earth, known as Kari-Oca 2. Tom B.K. Goldtooth, Executive Director of the Indigenous Environmental Network, participated in this historical gathering and brings a message that will determine the sustainable future of planet Earth. Tom Goldtooth is an environmental and economic justice leader and has been social change activist within the Native American community for over 30 years. He co-produced an award winning documentary film, Drumbeat For Mother Earth, which addresses the affects of bio-accumulative chemicals on indigenous peoples. In co-sponsorship with the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and United Common Ground at Madison College and in collaboration with Wunk Sheek, American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), Greenhouse Learning Community, and Wisconsin Alliance for Minority Participation in STEM (WiscAMP).
2011-2012 (Faith or Justice?: Ironies, Inequalities, and Ideologies):
Anthony Pinn (Body Language: Embodiment, Materiality and the Reframing of African American Religion): Anthony Pinn is the Agnes Cullen Arnold Professor of Humanities and Professor of Religious Studies at Rice University. He also serves as the Executive Director of the Society for the Study of Black Religion and co-chair of the American Academy of Religion’s Black Theology Group. He is the author of Varieties of African American Religious Experience and Why Lord? Suffering and Evil in Black Theology, as well as many other texts. His talk served as the kick-off for the MSC’s Race, Religion, and Representation symposium.
John Francis (Ragged Edge of Silence): John Francis is the author of two books, Planetwalker: 22 Years of Walking, 17 Years of Silence and The Ragged Edge of Silence: Finding Peace in a Noisy World. He was also a visiting professor at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. Through storytelling, music, artwork, discussion and interactive practice with silence, John Francis engaged participants in thinking about the connections between silence and listening, humanity and sustainability, and faith and justice.
Interfaith Youth Core: Two four-hour evening sessions with the goal of building strategic visions, interfaith literacy and skills toward effective leadership at UW.
Winona Laduke (Religion, Faith, and the Land from a Native Perspective): Winona Laduke is an internationally reknown activist working on issues of sustainable development, renewable energy and food systems. She is a two-time vice presidential candidate with Ralph Nader for the Green Party and the Program Director of Honor the Earth. She founded the White Earth Land Recovery Project, one of the largest reservation based non-profit organizations in the country, in her home community on White Earth reservation in northern Minnesota. Laduke is an inductee of the National Women’s Hall of Fame and one of Time magazine’s fifty most promising leaders in America under forty years of age in 1994.
Parvez Sharma (A Jihad for Love: Reflections on Film, Faith, Justice, and Revolution): Parvez Sharma is an award-winning, New York-based writer and filmmaker. His first feature, A Jihad for Love, is an international phenomenon that looks at the difficult themes of Islam and homosexuality in a post-September 11 world. Utne Reader named Sharma as one of its “50 Visionaries Who are Changing Your World” in a list led by the Dalai Lama. Sharma is a leading commentator on Islamic, racial and political issues. In early 2011, Sharma blogged about the revolution in Eqypt, providing a local perspective on international events. His commentary and interviews with friends on the streets of Cairo provided an intimate, detailed view of history, as the events unfolded.