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October 2017

BOOK LAUNCH AND RECEPTION: Placing Empire: Travel and the Social Imagination in Imperial Japan

October 9, 2017 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Kate McDonald (History, UCSB) With commentary by: Ken Ruoff (History, Center for Japanese Studies, Portland State University), and Sabine Frühstück (Modern Japanese Cultural Studies, East Asia Center, UCSB) Please join us to celebrate the publication of Kate McDonald's new book, Placing Empire: Travel and the Social Imagination in Imperial Japan. Placing Empire examines the spatial politics of Japanese imperialism through a study of Japanese travel and tourism to Korea, Manchuria, and Taiwan between the late nineteenth century and the early 1950s. In a departure from standard histories of Japan, this book shows how debates over the role of colonized lands reshaped the social and spatial imaginary of the modern Japanese nation. In turn, this socio-spatial imaginary affected the ways in which colonial difference was conceptualized and enacted. The book thus illuminates how ideas of place became central to the production of new forms of colonial

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ROUNDTABLE: Queer Resistance

October 11, 2017 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Dr. Pavithra Prasad is Assistant Professor of Communication Studies at California State University, Northridge. Her talk, “Alienation and Shape-Shifting in Vulgar Times,” offers a perspective on alienation and shape-shifting as an effective source of coalition building and resistance. Dr. Aimee Carrillo Rowe is Professor of Communication Studies at California State University, Northridge and the author of Power Lines: On the Subject of Feminist Alliances and Answer the Call: Virtual Migration in Indian Call Centers. Her talk, “A Queer Indigenous Manifesto: Creating Homeland, Cruising Aztlán,” tracks various decolonialized sites and creative practices to declare a queer commitment to Indigenous relations, lives and land. Sponsored by the IHC’s New Sexualities RFG, the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, the Carsey-Wolf Center, the Global Environmental Justice Project, the Dept. of Asian American Studies, the Dept. of Global Studies, the LGBTQ Studies Minor, and the Hull Chair

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November 2017

TALK: Discoveries in Japanese Literature: The Beginnings of a Translation History

November 1, 2017 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Michael Emmerich (Asian Languages and Cultures, UCLA) is the author of The Tale of Genji: Translation, Canonization, and World Literature (Columbia University Press, 2013), as well as more than a dozen book-length translations of works by Japanese writers including Kawabata Yasunari, Yoshimoto Banana, Takahashi Gen’ichirō, Akasaka Mari, Yamada Taichi, Matsuura Rieko, Kawakami Hiromi, Furukawa Hideo, and Inoue Yasushi. Sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, the East Asia Center, the Dept. of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies, the Dept. of History, and the IHC’s Reinventing Japan RFG.

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Research Focus Group TALK: The Chinese Typewriter: A History

November 7, 2017 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Chinese writing is character-based, the one major world script that is neither alphabetic nor syllabic. Over the past two centuries, Chinese script has encountered presumed alphabetic universalism at every turn, whether in the form of Morse Code, Braille, stenography, Linotype, punch cards, word processing, or other systems developed with the Latin alphabet in mind. Today, however, after more than a century of resistance against the alphabetic, not only have Chinese characters prevailed, they form the linguistic substrate of the vibrant world of Chinese information technology. In this talk, Stanford historian Tom Mullaney shows how this unlikely transformation happened, by charting out a fascinating series of experiments, prototypes, failures, and successes in the century-long struggle between Chinese characters and the QWERTY keyboard. Thomas S. Mullaney is Associate Professor of Chinese History at Stanford University, and Curator of the international exhibition, “Radical

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Highway, Automobility, and New Promises in 1960s Bombay Cinema

November 8, 2017 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

A fascination for color in the 1960s led to Bombay cinema’s mobilization of the hinterland as the site for a new future. With the development of Indian highways and an increase in automobility, a new map of India now occupied the cinematic imagination. This talk will explore the links between the infrastructure of automobile culture, the highway, industrial development outside the city, and 1960s Bombay Cinema. Ranjani Mazumdar is Professor of Cinema Studies at the School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University. Her publications focus on urban cultures, popular cinema, gender, and the cinematic city. She is the author of Bombay Cinema: An Archive of the City (2007) and co-author with Nitin Govil of The Indian Film Industry (forthcoming). Her current research focuses on globalization and film culture, the visual culture of film posters, and the intersection of technology,

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Ritual Music Culture of Bangladesh

November 9, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Saymon Zakaria will reflect on the rich array of musical forms and cultural performances that have developed around religious rituals in Bangladesh. He will explore the intersecting networks of religious sentiments evoked by Bangladeshi musical performers from diverse religious communities, including Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and Christian performers. Dr. Saymon Zakaria is Assistant Director of the Folklore Department in the Bangla Academy in Dhaka, Bangladesh. A scholar of Bangladeshi folklore, his publications include Pronomohi Bongomata: Indigenous Cultural Forms of Bangladesh (2011), an ethnographic study of the aesthetics and sociocultural formation of popular dramatic performances in Bangladesh. Most recently, he has brought to fruition the groundbreaking work of Carol Salomon following her untimely death in 2009 by serving as editor, along with UCSB doctoral student Keith Cantú, of City of Mirrors: Songs of Lalan Sai (2017), a compilation of songs by the

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Research Focus Group Talk: Buddhism and Sexuality: A Primer

November 15, 2017 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Although an ascetic religion that touts celibacy as the norm (at least for the clergy), Buddhism has a lot to say about sexuality. José Cabezón’s talk will focus on ancient South Asian sources and will present an overview of what classical Buddhist authors have had to say about sex. Based on his recently published book, Sexuality in Classical South Asian Buddhism (Wisdom Publications, 2017), the talk will explore the themes of sexuality in Buddhist cosmological writings, the Buddhist theory of sexual desire, the interventions that monks and nuns have used to counteract desire, Buddhist ideas of sexual deviance, and Buddhist sexual ethics. José Cabezón is Professor of Religious Studies and the XIVth Dalai Lama Professor of Tibetan Buddhism and Cultural Studies at UCSB. His wide-ranging research interests in various aspects of Tibetan religious traditions and religious studies include Madhyamaka philosophy,

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Vincent Hirribaren

November 29, 2017 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
6056 HSSB, 6056 HSSB. UC Santa Barbara

  Hiribarren addresses the issue of presentism in historical writing in an African context. The region of Borno in Nigeria is well known for being the cradle of Boko Haram and many analysts have tried to understand the reasons behind the numerous terrorist attacks since 2009, the kidnapping of the Chibok girls in 2014, or the renewed jihad in West Africa. Writing the history of the northeastern corner of Nigeria remains difficult because of the security situation - of course - but also because of the pressure exerted by the current events on academic writing. Can we write the history of Borno beyond Boko Haram?' Vincent Hiribarren is a Senior Lecturer in Modern African History at King’s College London and Co-founder of Africa4, a Libération blog. He received his MA from Sorbonne University and his PhD from University of Leeds.

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Research Focus Group Talk: One and Indivisible? Slavery, Federalism and Secessionism in the French-Haitian Revolution
Manuel Covo (History, UCSB)

November 30, 2017 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm

“The Republic is one and indivisible”: this principle was the founding dogma of the regime that emerged during the French Revolution. The Republic, however, still “owned” colonies and the plantation societies in the French West Indies could not be more at odds with the principle of universal equality. Was the regeneration effected by the Revolution compatible with the maintenance of a colonial empire? This paper will explore the heated colonial debates on French federalism, secessionism, and slavery in the age of Atlantic revolutions. Professor Covo is a historian of the transition from early modern to modern European colonialism in the long eighteenth century. He specializes in French imperialism, political economy and Atlantic revolutions, with a special focus on the impact of the Haitian Revolution on France and the United States. Sponsored by IHC’s Slavery, Captivity, and the Meaning of Freedom

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January 2018

Research Focus Group Talk: Cold War Curvature: Measuring and Modeling Gravity in Postwar American Physics
David Kaiser

January 24, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

A popular image persists of Albert Einstein as a loner, someone who avoided the hustle and bustle of everyday life in favor of quiet contemplation. Yet Einstein was deeply engaged with politics throughout his life; indeed, he was so active politically that the FBI kept him under surveillance for decades. His most enduring scientific legacy, the general theory of relativity – physicists' reigning explanation of gravity and the basis for nearly all our thinking about the cosmos – has likewise been cast as an austere temple standing aloof from the all-too-human dramas of political history. But was it so? By focusing on examples of research on general relativity from the 1950s and 1960s, this lecture will examine some of the ways in which research on Einstein's theory was embedded in, and at times engulfed by, the tumult of world politics.

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February 2018

Research Focus Group Conference: Queer Hemisphere: América Cuir

February 8, 2018 @ 9:00 am - February 9, 2018 @ 4:00 pm

Queer Hemisphere: América Cuir is a two-day conference comprised of six interdisciplinary graduate student panels, two keynote presentations, one by Prof. Sayak Valencia (author of Capitalismo Gore) and the other by performance artist Lorena Wolffer (Mapping Dissent), a keywords dialogue with Prof. Marcia Ochoa (UCSC), and a charla with UCSB Profs. Micaela Díaz-Sánchez and Cherríe Moraga. On the conference theme: This conference will bring together scholars from Mexico, Brazil, Peru, other Andean countries, as well as Latinx communities in the US, along with activists and performers, to analyze the challenges of studying gender and sexuality in the Americas, under the current threat of racist populism, state violence, and new forms of mobilization. Queer Hemisphere: América Cuir grows out of a UCHRI-sponsored working group by the same name. All are welcome. Sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center; the Latin American & Iberian Studies Program;

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Research Focus Group Talk: Recognizing (and not recognizing) the richness of children’s linguistic repertoires: A raciolinguistic perspective on identity and interaction in urban schools
Ramón Antonio Martínez

February 9, 2018 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

This talk draws on “raciolinguistic ” perspectives to explore how language and race were perceived, constructed, and invoked in a diverse urban elementary school in Los Angeles, California. Based on ethnographic and interactional data from a Spanish-English dual language classroom, the talk illustrates how “raciolinguistic ideologies” mediated the construction of racialized subjectivities and reified forms of language among a diverse group of multilingual children and their teachers. The dynamic translingual practices of these children are contrasted with the static notions of both language and race that predominate in the discourse around educational diversity. Foregrounding the relationship between language and racialization highlights the processes by which these children’s forms of semiosis were variously displayed, ignored, (mis)construed, and recruited in the construction of racialized identities. The talk concludes by addressing the role of an analytic focus on children’s linguistic practices and ideologies

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Research Focus Group Talk: Finding Echigo in Edo: Snow Country Migrants and their Urban Worlds
Amy Stanley

February 28, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

The Echigo province migrant was a familiar type in nineteenth-century Edo. Every year in the tenth month, snow country peasants would come down the mountains on the Nakasendō Highway and enter the city through Itabashi Station. They wandered down the main street in Hongō, where they were met by labor scouts who had learned to recognize their bewildered expressions and country accents. Many ended up in the city’s notorious boarding houses for laborers, where they were dispatched to rice polishers and bathhouses. Others found work in service with the help of migrants who had come before. Most went home eventually, but others stayed on in the city to become shop owners, peddlers, and even low-ranking samurai. This talk delineates the importance of regional connections and rural-urban migration in the development of Japan’s largest city, and considers how documents kept in

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March 2018

Research Focus Group Symposium: Cross-Currents: Navigating Translation
Cutcha Risling Baldy and Donald L. Fixico

March 2, 2018 @ 1:00 pm - March 4, 2018 @ 5:00 pm

Please join the American Indian & Indigenous Collective (AIIC) and keynote speakers Dr. Cutcha Risling-Baldy and Dr. Donald Fixico for three days of panels, presentations and discussions exploring the cross-current of translation writ large for Native and Indigenous peoples. Dr. Cutcha Risling Baldy, Assistant Professor of Native American Studies at Humboldt State University. Her research is focused on Indigenous feminisms, California Indians and decolonization. She has published in the Ecological Processes journal, the Wicazo Sa Review, and the Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education and Society journal. She has also published creative writing in the As/Us journal and News from Native California. Dr. Donald L. Fixico, Professor of History at Arizona State University. He is a policy historian and ethno-historian, focusing on American Indians, oral history and the U.S. West. His publications include: American Indians in a Modern World (2008); Treaties with American

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Research Focus Group Talk: LISO’s Annual John J. Gumperz Lecture
John B. Haviland

March 9, 2018 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

John B. Haviland will present a lecture on “K’alal Lajyak’bekon Notisia, ‘Bweno Ta Xinupunkutik’, Gloria a Dios, Háganlo Bien (When they told me ‘Well, we’re getting married’—Glory to God! Do it well!): Changing Tzotzil Discourses of Marriage.” Haviland is an anthropological linguist, with interests in the social life of language, including gesture, emerging sign languages, and interaction. His work concentrates on Tzotzil (Mayan) speaking peasant corn farmers from Zinacantán, Chiapas, Mexico, and on speakers of Guugu Yimithirr (Paman), especially at the Hopevale Aboriginal Community, near Cooktown, in northern Queensland, Australia. He has most recently engaged in two fieldwork projects: one an ongoing study of language origins based on extensive documentation of a first generation sign language (Zinacantec Family Homesign, or ZFHS) from Chiapas, Mexico; and the other with speakers of Amuzgo (Otomanguean), both in their home community in Oaxaca and

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Research Focus Group Workshop: The First Proslavery Novel? An Attribution and Analysis of the 1763 novel The Pregrinations of Jeremiah Grant, Esq. A West Indian, by Anonymous
Alpen Razi

March 19, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
4065 HSSB, HSSB, UC Santa Barbara

Brown-bag lunch workshop featuring work in progress by Alpen Razi, Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies at CalPoly. Sponsored by IHC’s Slavery, Captivity, and the Meaning of Freedom RFG.

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May 2018

The Lawrence Badash Memorial Lecture Series: Truman’s Bomb and the Making of the Atomic Presidency
Alex Wellerstein

May 9, 2018 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

When we think of the importance of the atomic bomb to the Truman presidency, we think of Truman’s weighty decision regarding the use of the weapon on Japan. But historians have known for decades that the narrative of “the decision to use the bomb” is largely mythical, and his actual role was mostly peripheral. But despite this, Truman did make several decisions during the war that would have vast consequences for the future of nuclear weapons, decisions that still resonate today. This talk will look at the making of the Atomic Presidency during the Truman administration: the regulations, norms, and procedures that invest the power to destroy the world in a single man alone, which continue to govern our world to this day. Alex Wellerstein is an Assistant Professor of Science and Technology Studies (STS) in the College of Arts

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RFG Talk: The Double Consciousness of Henry Box Brown in Four Acts
Matthew Rebhorn

May 21, 2018 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
2635 South Hall, South Hall, UCSB

If Henry Box Brown is known to contemporary audiences, then it is as the slave who achieved freedom by mailing himself in a box from Virginia to Philadelphia in 1849. While critics have explored this incredible event, less attention has been focused on Brown’s subsequent life as the performer of a moving diorama in England, a mesmerist, and a prestidigitator. Taking up his fascinating boxing experience, but also shedding more light on his later “acts,” as I call them, I argue that Brown used his performances of the black body to construct a new idea of “double consciousness,” Du Bois’s classic term for the psychological splitting of African-American subjectivity. By exploring the way that Brown used his performative acts to construct a conscious body—minding the body, as it were—I argue that he offered a new “onto-possibility,” as Jane Bennett calls

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June 2018

RFG Talk: LISO’s John J. Gumperz Memorial Lecture
Susan Gal

June 1, 2018 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

Discursive Strategies of Dominance: How Publics Are Homogenized Scholars have been noting for many years the increasingly polyphonous, fractured and heterogeneous discourses that have gained public visibility in this era of the internet, “superdiversity” and “globalization.” Yet, if we look around the world, we see many recent processes – equally remarkable – that move in a different direction: There is a closing down and homogenization of mass mediated political talk. Right wing parties in power in many European countries have destroyed opposition newspapers, TV outlets, billboards, internet sites. Often these discourses gain their authority as "the voice from nowhere" by aligning with the figure of the nation and claiming to speak for "everyone" who is "really" part of the nation.  The making of boundaries and exclusions follows, producing a homogenization of mass media, often controlled by the state. I explore

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October 2018

Research Focus Group Talk: Reforming the Centralised State: Decentralization Paradigms in the Drinking Water Sector in India and the Philippines
Satyajit Singh

October 16, 2018 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

This talk will examine decentralized reforms in the drinking water sector in India and the Philippines from a policy perspective focused on institutional design and implementation at the local level. It has been argued that institutional architecture for decentralized reforms is contested and requires better understanding of power and politics in shaping decentralization designs and outcomes. The paradigm of Indian decentralization is endogenous, and from this one can suggest that greater devolution in the water sector will lead to greater democratization across other sectors. However, given the biases of international development assistance in the Philippines, decentralization has taken the form of privatization in a Philippine province. While highlighting the important role that the provision of safe drinking water can play in poverty alleviation, Singh will suggest that privatized reforms have failed to address wider concerns related to the public goods

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Research Focus Group Talk: State Highway 31: A Road Trip through the Heart of Modern India
Edward Simpson

October 23, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

This talk will follow the route of State Highway 31 through western Madhya Pradesh, central India. The research is part of a larger project looking at the ideas behind the production of infrastructure in South Asia. This journey takes us through landscapes of sex work and opium, some of the oldest nationalist networks in the country, and along the fault-lines of long-running tensions between local communities. The road was one of a series built as a public private partnership and, as such, speaks of the reconfiguration of state relations with private capital and business. Toll booths become places of company ethos, for education, and for the creation of new kinds of citizens. The nexus of government and private enterprise takes us on a dizzying journey through the world’s tax havens and onto the decks of luxury yachts. Exploring the broader

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Research Focus Group Talk: Follow the Family: Kin Targeting in Counterinsurgencies
Amit Ahuja

October 29, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Lane Room, Ellison 3824, UC Santa Barbara

Why are counterinsurgency campaigns able to overpower some insurgencies and not others? Amit Ahuja’s lecture will compare two counterinsurgency campaigns in India with divergent outcomes: the counterinsurgency in the Punjab was able to subdue the insurgency, whereas the counterinsurgency in Kashmir has had limited success. Drawing on 105 interviews—54 with security force personnel and 51 with family members of insurgents—Ahuja will highlight the ability of the security forces to target a key vulnerability of an insurgency—insurgent family ties. Family ties bolster an insurgency. They are used to socialize an insurgent and offer a network of trust and emotional support. But as the phenomenon of insurgent family targeting by counterinsurgency campaigns indicates, family ties are also a vulnerability for an insurgency. Counterinsurgents target families to limit the exposure of civilians to violence, threaten active insurgents and deter potential insurgents, gather information

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November 2018

Research Focus Group Talk: Origin Story: The Narrative of James Williams and the Formation of the African American Slave Narrative
Teresa Goddu

November 1, 2018 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

This talk provides a material history of the American Anti-Slavery Society’s first sponsored slave narrative, The Narrative of James Williams (1838), and illuminates how its publication and the controversy that surrounded it shaped the development of the genre as a whole. Teresa Goddu is Associate Professor of English & American Studies at Vanderbilt University. She is the author of Gothic America: Narrative, History, and Nation (1997) and the forthcoming book, Selling Antislavery: U.S. Abolition and the Rise of Mass Media. Sponsored by the IHC’s Slavery, Captivity, and the Meaning of Freedom RFG and the English Department’s American Cultures in Global Contexts Center

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December 2018

Research Focus Group Talk: “I just needed a place to sleep”: Sex Offense, Housing Insecurity, and the Value of Surplus Sex
Terrance Wooten

December 7, 2018 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Registered sex offenders frequently report experiencing homelessness due to their stigmatized and heavily policed status. As a result, many have to rely on various sectors of the informal economy to survive in a system that is designed to keep them in perpetual motion while also demanding they be visible, discoverable, and traceable to a fixed location for public safety. In this talk, Terrance Wooten interrogates the ways in which the sex offender registry not only produces housing insecurity for sex offender registrants but also creates the conditions under which housing insecure registrants are forced to engage in survival sex in exchange for a place to sleep. Terrance Wooten is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Black Studies at UC Santa Barbara. He is currently working on his first book manuscript, tentatively titled Lurking in the Shadows of Home: Homelessness,

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January 2019

Talk: Journalistic Questioning and Sociopolitical Change: The Case of Marriage Equality in the U.S.
Steven E. Clayman

January 18, 2019 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

This paper explores the interface between interactional conduct and sociopolitical change, and makes the case for social action design as an underutilized and unobtrusive index of change. This approach is exemplified through the case of same-sex marriage, whose social standing shifted from marginality to mainstream acceptance within a relatively short period. Using journalistic interview data and in particular question-response sequences addressed to U.S. politicians regarding their position on same-sex marriage (e.g., Do you support legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide?), the paper charts measurable shifts in the manner in which positioning questions were broached and pursued by journalists across more than two decades, and considers how such behavioral shifts both reflect and contribute to the mainstreaming of marriage equality in the U.S. Political positioning questions and their sequelae thus provide a novel window into perceptions of the evolving sociocultural landscape on controversial

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February 2019

Talk: Category Accounts: Identity and Normativity in Sequences of Action
Chase Wesley Raymond

February 1, 2019 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

This study investigates the sequentially occasioned provision of what I term ‘category accounts’ in interaction. Category accounts tap into and make use of normative assumptions about identities and membership categories in order to explain away moments of what the participants view as category deviance. To introduce this concept, I focus on sequences in which speakers’ initiations of repair (e.g., Huh?) are oriented to as indicative of a problem of understanding. In the cases examined here, recipients of such initiations of repair treat divergence from some gender/sexuality norm as the source of the misunderstanding, which is revealed through their attempt to resolve the trouble by providing a category account, thereby closing the repair sequence and providing for the resumption of progressivity. These and similar accounting sequences are thus a means through which participants collaboratively normalize momentary departures from normativity, while at

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Raw and the Husky: Vocal Qualia and Gender Politics in Post-Millennium Tamil Cinema
Amanda Weidman

February 6, 2019 @ 3:30 pm - 4:45 pm

This talk will examine the reorganization of singing voices and vocal aesthetics in the music of Tamil cinema, contrasting the ideals for male and female voices from the 1960s and 1970s with new ideals that have emerged since the 1990s in the wake of India’s economic and cultural liberalization. Based on ethnographic research among playback singers, music directors, and sound engineers in the Tamil film industry, the talk will show how two now salient aesthetics of vocal sound, “husky” and “raw,” index different, and distinctly gendered, orientations to Tamil ethnolinguistic belonging and claims to global cosmopolitanism in the post-Liberalization context. In doing so, the talk will explore the structures of voicing that are afforded by particular ways of cultivating the sonic/material voice. Amanda Weidman, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Bryn Mawr College, is a cultural anthropologist with interests in music,

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Research Focus Group Talk: Photography as Embodiment? Questions of Representation and Duplication in the Cult of Sai Baba of Shirdi
William Elison

February 27, 2019 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Portraits of Sai Baba of Shirdi (late 1830s–1918) are everywhere to be seen in public space in Mumbai. Are these images sacred? According to the saint himself, historical exponents of his teachings, and many ordinary Mumbai residents, the answer is “Yes.” What does it mean to encounter divine power in a mass-reproduced image? Drawing on material from his just-released book, The Neighborhood of Gods: The Sacred and the Visible at the Margins of Mumbai (University of Chicago Press, December 2018), William Elison’s talk will trace rival logics in the cult of the saintly icon across three historical junctures. William Elison is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at UCSB who specializes in modern Indian religious practices and visual culture. In addition to his ethnography of Mumbai, The Neighborhood of Gods, he is the coauthor of “Amar Akbar Anthony”: Bollywood, Brotherhood,

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March 2019

6th Annual AIIC RFG Symposium: Decolonizing Our Lives
Alexis Bunten, John Gamber, Devon Mihesuah, and Stan Rodriguez

March 1, 2019 @ 8:30 am - March 3, 2019 @ 3:30 pm

The American Indian and Indigenous Collective IHC Research Focus Group's 2019 Symposium addresses and critically examines decolonization as a multi-layered project that is always-already in process. We, as Native and Indigenous peoples, and we as contemporary walkers upon these lands continue to participate (wittingly and unwittingly) in the colonial project. How can we best advance our decolonization as individuals and as communities? This is more than a rhetorical question. It is a call to action. In spring 2018, the Native community at UCSB and surrounding environs created the Decolonizing Our Lives Project (DOLP). Members of local Chumash communities, the UCSB Native community, and other communities of color at UCSB were invited to participate in DOLP. DOLP originally focused on decolonization by focusing on Indigenous foods to plant and eat, and by increasing communal activities that honor spiritual and physical Native

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Research Focus Group Event: A Talk with Sex Workers Outreach Project-Los Angeles

March 4, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Sex Workers Outreach Project-Los Angeles is a local chapter of SWOP-USA, a national grassroots social justice network dedicated to the fundamental human rights of sex workers and their communities, focusing on ending violence and stigma through education, community building, and advocacy. SWOP is committed to the safety, autonomy, and human rights of people in the sex trade, and stands in solidarity with the many social justice moments intersectional to our own, including but not limited to Black Lives Matter, disability rights, drug and immigration reform, gender equality and the LGBTQ movement, and the rights of the working class. In this presentation and workshop, members of SWOP-LA will discuss their advocacy work and community building, particularly in light of SESTA/FOSTA, recent legislation that has limited sex workers’ access to harm reduction resources, as well as how to build solidarity with workers from

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Research Focus Group Talk: Dred Scott & the Retroactive Invention of Citizenship
Carrie Hyde

March 8, 2019 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

How did Americans understand citizenship before it was defined in the 14th Amendment? If U.S. citizenship was only defined after abolition and emancipation, how did slavery shape American citizenship? Come and talk about these and related issues of race and civic belonging as Professor Carrie Hyde (UCLA) joins us for a brown bag discussion of the (pre-circulated) first chapter of her recent book, Civic Longing: The Speculative Origins of U.S. Citizenship (Harvard, 2018). Professor Hyde’s teaching and scholarship address the dynamic connections between US literature, law, and politics in the long nineteenth century. Her first book, Civic Longing, offers a new prehistory of citizenship. It examines the central role that fiction and other imaginative traditions played in shaping emergent conceptions of “citizenship” in the period before the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment (1868), when the law was not yet the default cultural

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April 2019

The Lawrence Badash Memorial Lecture Series: Science, Freedom, and the Cold War: A Political History of Apolitical Science
Audra J. Wolfe

April 17, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Why do so many U.S. scientists continue to lean on the language of apolitical science, even as political leaders display less and less interest in scientists’ claims to expertise, or even the existence of facts? In a new book, Freedom’s Laboratory: The Cold War Struggle for the Soul of Science, historian Audra J. Wolfe suggests the answer lies in Cold war propaganda. From the late 1940s through the late 1960s, the U.S. foreign policy establishment saw a particular way of thinking about scientific freedom as essential to winning the global Cold War. Throughout this period, the engines of U.S. propaganda amplified, circulated, and, in some cases, produced a vision of science, American style, that highlighted scientists’ independence from outside interference and government control. Working (both overly and covertly, wittingly and unwittingly) with governmental and private organizations, U.S. scientists tried to

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Research Focus Group Talk: Epistemological Revolution in Japan’s Long 1968
Miriam Kingsberg Kadia

April 17, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

A focus on student actors has often led historians of Japan to dismiss the idea of epochal change in “the long 1968.” This talk adopts the perspective of the older generation of Japanese social scientists to show these years as a watershed in the basis of authoritative knowledge. The existing historiography often presents these scholars as reactionary. I show how they, in concert with their colleagues abroad, actually anticipated and indeed accelerated epistemological revolution. Born in the two decades from 1900-1920, “transwar” social scientists assumed leadership of their disciplines in the 1930s and maintained intellectual hegemony across the chronological divide of World War II. They were linked by shared demographic characteristics and, more importantly, through a common commitment to objectivity. Transcending the domestic intellectual community, conviction in objectivity drew together a transnational network of scholars able to trust and engage

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Research Focus Group Talk: Border-Crossings at the Intersection of Narrated and Narrating Landscapes: Linguistic Brokers Witnessing and Enduring the U.S. Spatio-Temporal Politics of Migrant Worker Illegality in the American Heartland
Jennifer F. Reynolds

April 26, 2019 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

This talk explores bilingual women’s social and narrative positioning as informal linguistic brokers (or community interpreters) in a rural town dependent on the industrial processing of fresh kosher meat-products. Specifically, it addresses how these women as “community accountants” employed reflexive interdiscursivity and oriented to different modernist chronotopes to re-analyze the cultural politics of migrant labor (Bakhtin 1981; See Chávez 2015; Dick 2010, 2017; Perrino 2011; Reynolds 2017). Their accounts shed insight into what happens when legal recognition of migrant labor is withheld/deferred and how this influences the chronic conditions of exhaustion and ambivalence that shape the social reproductive and linguistic labor necessary in supporting a diverse international migrant workforce in transnationally intertwined rural political economies (Povinelli 2011; McElhinny 2016). The study combines ethnography with poetic approaches to narrative dialogically produced through interviews. Analyses feature two contrasting case studies of native

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May 2019

Research Focus Group Conference: China Rising

May 2, 2019 @ 3:00 pm - May 3, 2019 @ 5:00 pm

On May 2 and 3, UC Santa Barbara is hosting a group of scholars, Ford Foundation project officers, film makers and movement leaders on campus. This group from China, Brazil and Ecuador offers novel “southern” or subaltern perspectives on China’s massive contemporary presence in Africa, Middle East and Latin America. This process of Chinese engagement across the continents of the global south may represent one of the most significant global-scale transformations of our era, challenging us to think differently about south-south relations, environmental politics, area studies, history, geopolitics, and social change. This group of visitors to our campus utilize lenses of gender, sexuality and race to address these questions of culture, infrastructure and globalization to contextualize “China Rising” or “China Stepping out into the World.” 'CHINA RISING' CONFERENCE INAUGURAL EVENT 3pm-7pm: THURSDAY, May 2nd:  Multicultural Center Theater:  3pm: SCREENING OF FILM:

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Dirt on Rubbish: What Discard Tells us about Home Life in Roman Egypt
Anna Lucille Boozer

May 6, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

This paper explores activities of cleaning and disposing because they represent key principles of social organization. Close attention to discard behavior helps us to understand how people related to the material goods and places that once made up their object worlds – their material habitus (c.f. Meskell, 2005: 3). Human relationships to defilement, in particular, must be seen in in the context of how human identity as a rational being is established and maintained (Kristeva, 1982; Lagerspetz 2018). Unlike other social practices in the life history of settlements, rubbish disposal represents a critical component of the archaeological record (Rathje & Murphy, 2001). In this paper, I argue that a close examination of rubbish and waste depositions, along with the discarded items themselves, might be able to tell us about social values in the houses of Roman Egypt. Additionally, activities such

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Research Focus Group Talk: Land, Lineage, Embodied Practices, and the Khora of Migration: Himalayan Lives Between Nepal and New York
Sienna R. Craig

May 15, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

This presentation will explore what it means for people from Mustang, Nepal, including those who have migrated to New York, to care for each other, steward a homeland across time and space, remake home elsewhere, and confront distinct forms of happiness and suffering through these movements. How do people honor and alter their shared responsibilities and senses of connection to people and place through migration? How do different generations abide with each other, even when they struggle to understand each other? Craig recruits the Himalayan/Tibetan concept of khora—the embodied act of circumambulation as well as a Buddhist philosophical principle that reflects the nature of desire, interdependence, and cyclic existence—to theorize cycles of mobility and patterns of world-making between Nepal and New York. She will interrogate the ways in which migration impacts the bodies and heart-minds of individuals and households as

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“Disrupt and Advance”: The 25th Annual Conference on Language, Interaction, and Social Organization (LISO)
Brandy Gatlin, Lynn Hou, Wesley Y. Leonard

May 17, 2019 @ 9:00 am - May 18, 2019 @ 5:00 pm

The LISO conference promotes interdisciplinary research and discussion in the analysis of naturally occurring human interaction. Papers will be presented by national and international scholars on a variety of topics in the study of language, interaction, and culture. This year’s conference theme is “Disrupt and Advance.” We understand ‘disrupt’ broadly as actions or ideas that intervene in or challenge the established theoretical, institutional, or narrative frame. The emphasis on disruption is an intentional examination of disciplinary constraints. By including ‘advance’ we hope to encourage submissions that operationalize critique into praxis. We welcome papers that engage in a critique of disciplinary conventions or somehow broaden the scope of (inter)disciplinary research, presenting innovative models for paths forward. For more information visit Sponsored by the IHC’s Language, Interaction, and Social Organization (LISO) Research Focus Group, Graduate Division, Linguistics Department, Education Department, Sociology Department,

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Research Focus Group Workshop: Personhood: Do We Make It or Know It?
Jeannine DeLombard

May 17, 2019 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

This workshop will discuss the precirculated first chapter from Jeannine DeLombard’s current book manuscript, “Bound to Respect: Democratic Dignity and the Indignities of Slavery.” (Please click the "Download Reading" button above.) For many of us today, the artifice of legal personhood – the corporate person in particular – provokes outrage. Focusing on the legal fiction of slave personhood, this paper argues that in the 19th-century U.S., the greater danger came from naturalizing this artifice by attaching it to actual African American people, regardless of condition. This reconsideration of legal personhood contributes to current efforts by political theorists, legal historians, classicists, and philosophers to historicize the concept of dignity prior to the 20th-century human rights regime. DeLombard contends that what critic and novelist Ralph Ellison once called “the indignities of slavery” pertained less to the metaphysical value of humans than to the status of

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Research Focus Group Talk: Mediterranean Pathways: GIS, Network Analysis, and the Ancient World
Ryan Horne

May 20, 2019 @ 12:30 pm - 1:45 pm

We live in a world of maps and networks. GPS enabled phones allow us to instantly locate ourselves on the earth’s surface, guide us to stores or restaurants, or announce to the world our location through social media. Likewise, programs like Google Earth and desktop Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have revolutionized our engagement with maps, map-making, and have challenged traditional notions of space and place. The proliferation of GIS technologies and the “spatial turn” in digital humanities has also provided new avenues for challenging assumptions about the representations of past societies, the nature of empire, and the reach of imperial power. Despite their aesthetic beauty, traditional print maps, with clearly delineated static borders, often artificial naming conventions, and fixed viewpoints do not convey the complexity and uncertainty of the past. Ancient societies and empires were far from static; they were

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Research Focus Group Talk: Homes for Gods and Mortals: Film Screening and Discussion with the Director
Gayatri Chatterjee

May 29, 2019 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Homes for Gods and Mortals is a 2018 documentary by the acclaimed Indian film scholar Gayatri Chatterjee. It follows life in two small settlements neighboring the temple complex of Khajuraho, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Madhya Pradesh, India, that is famous for its ornate medieval architecture. The film focuses on the present-day residents of the villages—the nature of their embodied modes of worship and ritual performances—and the interaction of individual lives in a dynamic network around the temples. The film traces a continuous history of migration, settlement, and displacement and of material poverty amid spiritual riches. The film screening will be followed by a discussion with the film’s director, Gayatri Chatterjee, a film scholar based in Pune, India. She has taught and lectured widely in India, Europe, and the United States. She is currently based at Pune's Symbiosis School

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Color of Belonging: Skin Tone and Attitudes towards Ethnic Voting in India
Amit Ahuja

May 30, 2019 @ 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Lane Room, Ellison 3824, UC Santa Barbara

Ethnic voting is a feature of many multiethnic democracies the world over. The existence of an identity group does not guarantee the electoral solidarity of group members. Besides the desire to corner state resources, relations of fear and prejudice between groups are identified as prominent motivations for ethnic voting. But how members of a group treat each other, how they exercise their preferences and prejudices towards fellow group members also matter to group solidarity in elections, especially when a substantial number of the interactions that people have are with in-group rather than with out-group members. In this presentation, drawing on a survey of over 5200 voters conducted across two very different political contexts in India, Amit Ahuja will discuss the effect of one such prejudice—the universal bias against dark skin color—on attitudes towards the electoral solidarity of caste groups. Amit

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October 2019

Research Focus Group Talk: The Politics of Eros and Ecofeminism in India
Savita Singh

October 9, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
RFG Event

Herbert Marcuse (1898–1979), the German-American philosopher and political theorist who was a prominent member of the Frankfurt School of critical social theory, envisioned a new form of feminist socialism in which Eros, desire, the domain of the body and the passions, would be restored to its proper place as equal to Logos, reason. In this talk Savita Singh will explore the politics of Eros articulated by Marcuse through an analysis of the politics of ecofeminism in contemporary India. She will examine a range of anti-development struggles in India, from the work of ecofeminist activists Medha Patkar and Vandana Shiva to the Chipko movement to tribal protests in Odisha, and will suggest that these struggles give concrete expression to a Marcusean vision of a feminist socialism that seeks to establish a balance between Eros and Logos and between the forces of

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Research Focus Group Talk: Daylighting Conflict: Board Games as Decision-Making Tools
Janette Kim

October 10, 2019 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm

Janette Kim will join us to discuss Win-Win, a series of board games that play out climate risk scenarios. By designing interactions among players, objectives and resources, these games model the social justice implications of innovative financial and legal strategies. Equally important, they model the space of cities, offering unique ideas about the built environment in direct relationship to such dynamics. Together, these two interpretations of a ‘model’ serve as a new kind of decision-making tool—one that imagines new relationships among economies, publics and architectural design. Janette Kim is Assistant Professor of Architecture and Director of the Urban Works Agency at California College of the Arts, principal of design practice All of the Above, and founder of ARPA Journal. Her work spans across scholarship, research and design and focuses on political ecology and the built environment. Janette is author of

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Research Focus Group Talk: Approaching Classical Chinese Poetry in Early Modern Japan: Intralingual and Interlingual Translation Strategies in Japanese “Remarks on Poetry”
Matthew Fraleigh

October 18, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Residents of the Japanese archipelago have been avid readers of classical Chinese texts in a great many genres from the very origins of literacy down to the present day. To varying degrees over the centuries, they have also been enthusiastic creators of such texts. This talk examines how authors from the latter half of the early modern period (1603–1868) conceptualized and discussed the reception and composition of Sinitic poetry. What strategies did they use to make Sinitic poetry intelligible to a readership that did not speak Chinese? How did they understand these practices, and how should we think about them? What do their writings tell us about how they perceived the borders between the Japanese and Chinese languages? Matthew Fraleigh is Associate Professor of East Asian Literature and Culture at Brandeis University. His research concerns the literature of early modern

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November 2019

Research Focus Group Symposium: Celebration of Guru Nanak: 550th Birth Anniversary
Anshu Malhotra and Mark Juergensmeyer

November 12, 2019 @ 2:00 pm - 3:15 pm
RFG Event

This South Asia symposium celebrates the life of Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh tradition, on the 550th anniversary of his birth. The symposium will feature talks by two UCSB faculty members: Anshu Malhotra, Professor and Kundun Kaur Kapany Chair of Sikh and Punjabi Studies, will give a talk on “Guru Nanak in Popular Imagination,” and Mark Juergensmeyer, Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Global Studies, will share his reflections on “Global Sikhism.” Cosponsored by the IHC South Asian Religions and Cultures Research Focus Group and the Department of Global Studies

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The Lawrence Badash Memorial Lecture Series: Einstein’s War: How World War I Made Relativity
Matthew Stanley

November 13, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Einstein’s ascent to worldwide celebrity was, in large part, not his own doing. The 1919 confirmation of the German Einstein’s theory of general relativity by British astronomers soon after the end of the First World War made him an emblem of how science could rise above nationalism and petty patriotism.  But in fact international science – and relativity with it – was nearly shattered by the war. It was only the dedicated efforts of pacifist scientists, chiefly A.S. Eddington, that pulled both Einstein and his theory from behind the trenches and onto the front pages of newspapers around the globe. Matthew Stanley teaches and researches the history and philosophy of science. He holds degrees in astronomy, religion, physics, and the history of science and is interested in the connections between science and the wider culture. He is the author of

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Research Focus Group Talk: For He Gladdens the Earth: Consent and Conjugality in the Astral State
Marko Geslani

November 20, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
RFG Event

Traditional discussions of gender in Hindu traditions often begin with a critique of patriarchy in orthodox Brahmanical Dharmaśāstras, followed by a turn to potential feminist resources—for example, in goddess worship, Śākta traditions, and Tantra. One effect of this line of thinking has been a relative absence within Hindu studies of reflections on gender in relation to state power, a thematic hallmark of feminist postcolonial histories of South Asia. Geslani’s talk reframes the question of gender in premodern Hindu traditions by historicizing orthodox gender theories in relation to other contemporaneous interlocutors. He focuses on royal sexual politics as depicted in the astral sciences, Jyotiḥśāstras, which he argues are crucial texts for uncovering the ideology of the medieval state. When placed in relation to ritual and omenology, an astral theory of conjugality reveals the uniquely gendered power of royal bodies to naturalize

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December 2019

Workshop: The Unfree Trade of an Abolitionist Colony
Manuel Covo

December 2, 2019 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
6056 HSSB, 6056 HSSB. UC Santa Barbara

Manuel Covo will discuss a chapter from his current book manuscript. The chapter, entitled “The Unfree Trade of an Abolitionist Colony,” explores the economic challenges facing Saint-Domingue in the aftermath of abolition and argues that the war context and the food dependency had long-lasting consequences for the new Haitian society. The text will be pre-circulated; for a copy, email Sponsored by the IHC’s Slavery, Captivity, and the Meaning of Freedom Research Focus Group

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Research Focus Group Symposium: Ancient Archives and Public History: Dispatches from the Papyrological Lost and Found
Roberta Mazza and Anna Uhlig

December 5, 2019 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Old Mission Santa Barbara, 2201 Laguna Street

Book of the Dead of the Priest of Horus, Imhotep (Imuthes), ca. 332-200 B.C. From the poetry of Sappho to the New Testament, texts written on papyrus have been preserved for millennia by arid conditions in Egypt, excavated, and collected in archives. This timely colloquium examines the legal and ethical problems surrounding these papyrological archives. Roberta Mazza will tell the story of how ancient papyri of unknown provenance were acquired by the Museum of the Bible and are now at the center of a scandal and police investigation. Anna Uhlig will discuss how Egyptian mummies have been destroyed in the quest to "recover" ancient texts and how we can use the Tebtunis archive at UC Berkeley to honor the "missing mummies" lost to us in the name of scholarship. Roberta Mazza is Lecturer in Greco-Roman Material Culture at the University

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February 2020

LISO Research Focus Group Talk: John J. Gumperz Memorial Lecture
Kira Hall

February 21, 2020 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
1205 Education, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, UCSB

Accent, Interaction, and Intimacy on the Autism Spectrum Kira Hall University of Colorado Boulder If intimacy is collaboratively produced in interaction, as discourse analysts argue, then how do individuals with atypical interactional behaviors achieve it? This paper addresses a sociolinguistic practice noted for individuals on the autism spectrum but rarely analyzed: the sustained adoption of non-local dialect features. For sociolinguists who view second dialect acquisition as a social achievement importantly related to identity, this practice presents a paradox: How do individuals with such a purportedly “asocial” syndrome accomplish an activity that is intensely social? To address this question, the talk draws from data collected by a team of linguists and anthropologists at the University of Colorado Boulder for a multi-year project on accent imitation in the autism spectrum. Focusing on the life narrative of an autistic man raised in Montgomery,

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Research Focus Group Talk: Voices of Ancient Palmyra: Reflections
Carly Maris

February 27, 2020 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
6056 HSSB, 6056 HSSB. UC Santa Barbara

“Voices of Ancient Palmyra” began as an online public humanities project that explored how different publics engaged with ancient history and the destruction of ancient objects. The original goal was to encourage people of all ages and education levels to artistically rewrite words from ancient Palmyrene inscriptions, while learning about the history of the site. Artistic recreations were then uploaded to the website and social media. The project became a museum exhibition at the Fullerton Museum of Art at CSU San Bernardino, for which local artists created pieces that engaged with and reacted to ancient inscriptions. The project had three different phases or iterations: the digital exhibition, the physical art exhibition, and the immersive experience. Each phase had unique complications that arose in the process of bringing various publics, the museum, and the academy into conversation. In “Reflections” Maris explores

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March 2020

Research Focus Group Talk: Amritlal Thakkar: A Gandhian “Intervention” in the “Tribal Question”
Maharshi Vyas

March 4, 2020 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
RFG event

Debates on the “tribal question” constituted an important part of intellectual politics during the late colonial period in South Asia, especially during the decades leading to the Partition and Independence in 1947. Present-day "reservation" (affirmative action) policies for the "Scheduled Tribes" owe much to these debates. The “tribal question” was framed as a question that attempted to resolve how the British colonial government, and later the post-colonial Indian government, should engage groups of tribal communities that live in geospatially and socially marginalized conditions. This talk provides a critical analysis of the role of Amritlal Vithaldas Thakkar as an important interlocutor in these debates. Thakkar, a Gandhian activist, was hailed by many of his contemporaries as an exemplary champion of social service to the depressed castes and tribal communities. His intellectual battles with two other prominent figures—Bhimrao Ambedkar and Verrier Elwin—served

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POSTPONED Conference: Sino-Japanese Studies in the Twenty-First Century
with keynote lecture by Joshua Fogel, York University

March 14, 2020 @ 10:00 am - March 15, 2020 @ 2:00 pm

This conference has been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date. Email William Fleming for more information (   This conference is presented by the Transregional East Asia Research Focus Group and will feature a keynote lecture by Joshua Fogel, York University, and panels on Intellectual History, Literary Culture, and Japanese Sinology. Saturday, March 14th, 10:00 AM-5:30 PM, and Sunday, March 15th, 9:30 AM-2:00 PM, at the McCune Conference Room, 6th floor, Humanities and Social Sciences Building Conference participants include: XIAOWEI ZHENG (UC Santa Barbara) WILLIAM FLEMING (UC Santa Barbara) JOSHUA FOGEL (York University) ANDRE HAAG (University of Hawai'i) CHUNLING PENG (Chinese Academy of Social Sciences) DAIGENGNA DUOER (UC Santa Barbara) MANUEL COVO (UC Santa Barbara) NAOKI YAMAMOTO (UC Santa Barbara) HANGPING XU (UC Santa Barbara) JING WANG (UC Santa Barbara) WILLIAM HEDBERG (Arizona State University) XIAORONG LI

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August 2020

Research Focus Group Discussion: The New Human

August 1, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

This meeting at the 2020 Cognitive Science Society 2020 conference will explore the ways in which cognitive science is reshaping of key assumptions about the human mind. Literary scholars working on mental phenomena at ‘Literature and Mind’ center at UCSB note that, currently, progress in fields such as data driven machine learning and computer vision is providing unprecedented opportunities for the prospect of human-level artificial intelligence. But, as has been argued in computer science, the computational theory of mind, which claims that mental processes are computational processes, is insufficient to fully account for biologically evolved intelligence. For machine intelligence to take us all the way to human-level intelligence, we need explanations that span multiple levels of organization (neural, somatic, social) that take shape at multiple time-scales (evolution, development, life-long learning). The goal of this group is to provide a virtual

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October 2020

Research Focus Group Symposium: India “Right”: Making and Unmaking Indian Citizenship

October 14, 2020 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm
RFG Event

The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) was passed by the Indian Parliament on December 11, 2019. It amends the Citizenship Act of 1955 and creates an easier path for acquiring Indian citizenship for persecuted religious minorities—Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist, Christian, and Parsi—from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan who entered India before or on December 13, 2014. The Act does not encompass other (non-Islamic) neighboring countries, nor does it consider other persecuted minorities—for example, the Rohingya Muslims of Myanmar, the Ahmadiya and Shia of Pakistan, or the Tamils of Sri Lanka. While the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was able to pass the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) through Parliament without a hitch, it was unprepared for the massive protests against the Act that soon followed in a number of places in India. The protests were spearheaded by students from across universities in India.

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Research Focus Group Discussion: Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution

October 20, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Disability Studies RFG

REGISTER NOW In honor of National Disability Employment Awareness Month and the thirtieth anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Disability Studies Initiative is joining the Carsey-Wolf Center and the UCSB Library to host a virtual discussion with the directors of Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution (2020). In the early 1970s, teenagers with disabilities faced a future shaped by isolation, discrimination, and institutionalization. Located in the Catskills, New York, ramshackle Camp Jened exploded those confines. Jened was the teens’ freewheeling utopia, a place where summertime sports, smoking, and make-out sessions awaited everyone; campers experienced liberation and full inclusion as human beings. Their bonds endured as many migrated west to Berkeley, California, a hotbed of activism where friends from Camp Jened realized that disruption, civil disobedience, and political participation could change the future for millions. Co-directors and

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Research Focus Group Discussion: Let’s Talk Mediterranean: A Conversation with Sharon Kinoshita and Brian Catlos
Sharon Kinoshita and Brian Catlos

October 23, 2020 @ 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

REGISTER NOW On October 23, Sharon Kinoshita and Brian Catlos will join us for a conversation on the state of premodern Mediterranean studies. Together, Kinoshita and Catlos run the Mediterranean Seminar, an interdisciplinary research group that focuses on Mediterranean cultures and societies, and also the role of the Mediterranean in historical narratives of "the West." The seminar, which hosts a range of events (symposia, colloquia, workshops), has played a vital role in promoting Mediterranean studies in the United States. In recent years, they have co-edited the groundbreaking volume, Can We Talk Mediterranean?: Conversations on an Emerging Field in Medieval and Early Modern Studies (Palgrave, 2017). Sharon Kinoshita (Professor of Literature at UC Santa Cruz) is a specialist in Old French literature, medieval Mediterranean studies, medieval globalism, and postcolonial theories. She is the author of Medieval Boundaries: Rethinking Difference in Old

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Research Focus Group Meeting: The Future of Humanity from a Sustainability Point of View
Sangwon Suh

October 26, 2020 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

REGISTER HERE In this meeting, Professor Sangwon Suh (Bren School) will present research in progress about possible futures of human nature as it relates to selfishness and sustainability. This will be followed by discussion, moderated by Aili Pettersson Peeker. The meeting is open to all but we do ask you to register to attend so that we can spend our time in the meeting as productively as possible. After you've registered, you will receive a Zoom invitation as well as a 1,000-word document introducing the research that we ask that you read before the meeting. Please see the information sheet "Sustainability and the New Human IHC Research Focus Group Meetings" available on our IHC webpage for more information about this and the structure of the meeting. Sangwon Suh is a professor at the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management

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Research Focus Group Talk: “Cripistemologies of Pain”
Travis Chi Wing Lau

October 30, 2020 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm
Disability Studies RFG

REGISTER NOW Drawing together insights from disability theory, literary studies, and interdisciplinary pain studies, Lau's lecture contributes to what Alyson Patsavas has called "cripistemologies of pain" that prompt us to think from the position of pained lived experience to imagine radically different models of care that move beyond the reductive binary of either amelioration or annihilation of pain. Can we theorize a standpoint (or what Rosemarie Garland-Thomson has called "sitpoint") theory of pain that attends to its crip and queer chronicities while also working toward new forms of care and interdependence? Travis Chi Wing Lau's research and teaching focus on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British literature and culture, health humanities, and disability studies. Alongside his scholarship, Lau frequently writes for venues of public scholarship like Synapsis: A Journal of Health Humanities, Lapham's Quarterly, Public Books, and The Los Angeles Review of

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November 2020

Research Focus Group Discussion with Amanda Lucia about Her Book Reflections of Amma
Amanda Lucia

November 5, 2020 @ 5:20 pm - 6:30 pm

ATTEND DISCUSSION The meeting will be hosted by our South Asia RFG colleague William Elison, Associate Professor of Religious Studies at UCSB, as part of his seminar on Religion and Ideology in Modern India: Current Approaches. This seminar session will feature a discussion with Amanda Lucia about her book, Reflections of Amma: Devotees in a Global Embrace (2014), which provides an ethnographic analysis of transnationalism and gender in a global movement centered around Amritanandamayi, who is celebrated as Amma, “Mother,” and the “hugging saint.” Following is the UC Press’s description of the book: "Globally known as Amma, meaning "Mother," Mata Amritanandamayi has developed a massive transnational humanitarian organization based in hugs. She is familiar to millions as the “hugging saint,” a moniker that derives from her elaborate darshan programs wherein nearly every day ten thousand people are embraced by the

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Research Focus Group Workshop: Graduate Student Research

November 9, 2020 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

The Asian/American Studies Collective is excited to host two events showcasing graduate student research this quarter. Graduate students will be presenting their research as part of the Collective-sponsored graduate seminar ASAM 200. These workshops will be held on November 9th and December 14th from 11am to 1pm PST. Sponsored by the IHC's Asian/American Studies Collective Research Focus Group

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Research Focus Group Workshop: Embodied Ownership: Sheppard Lee and Proprietary Whiteness in Jacksonian America
Merav Schocken

November 10, 2020 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

REGISTER NOW This workshop will discuss a PRECIRCULATED chapter from Merav Schocken’s dissertation, “Functional Fictions: Practices of Self-Deception in 19th-Century America.” (Please click on the “Download Reading” button above to access the precirculated chapter.) The chapter explores the narrative practices of self-deception that underlie the consolidation of proprietary whiteness in Jacksonian America. Schocken focuses on Robert Montgomery Bird’s Sheppard Lee (1836), claiming that the novel registers, and seeks to reconcile, anxieties among upper-class whites about the inclusion of propertyless white men in the electorate. Looking at the novel’s representation of whiteness as a neutral category as embodied by its propertyless white protagonist, Schocken argues that Black subjugation constituted a central yet crucially unacknowledged means by which the white subject, regardless of class, affirmed his belonging to the white man's republic. Merav Schocken is a PhD candidate in English at the

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Research Focus Group Talk: Dismembering Classicism: Contesting Colonial and Classical Legacies in the Southwest
Kendall Lovely

November 12, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

REGISTER NOW Classicization in U.S. heritage narratives often involves the imposition of classical elements, derived from Greek and Roman civilization, onto narratives of colonial conquest in Southwestern borderlands and frontier spaces. Ongoing controversies surrounding statues of the conquistador, Juan de Oñate, reflect the ways in which the classical legacy remains prominent in public spheres of historical narrative. In providing a visual narrative of conquest linked to classical imagery, the Spanish history of the settling of the Southwest becomes implicated in broader U.S. historical narratives that valorize conquest as a civilizing force in the settling of the American West. While much of this classical imagery first appeared in Spanish sources, this paper traces specifically how these classicized narratives of Spanish conquest became appropriated and implicated in Anglo-American/U.S. historical narratives, as well as counter-narratives of Indigenous resistance. Kendall Lovely, a member of

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Research Focus Group Talk: Assistive Technologies and Erotic Adaptation: Queer Disability in the Renaissance
Simone Chess

November 13, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Disability Studies RFG

REGISTER NOW Simone Chess will focus on early modern disability, queerness, and adaptive technologies. Chess is Associate Professor of English and Director of the Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies Program at Wayne State University in Detroit. She is the author of Male-to-Female Crossdressing in Early Modern English Literature: Gender, Performance, and Queer Relations (Routledge, 2016) and coeditor, with Colby Gordon and Will Fisher, of a special issue on “Early Modern Trans Studies” for the Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies. Cosponsored by the IHC’s Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group and UCSB’s Early Modern Center REGISTER NOW

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Research Focus Group Workshop: Cowboys in the Colosseum
Brad Bouley

November 13, 2020 @ 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

REGISTER HERE Join us to workshop "Cowboys in the Colosseum: Papal Power, Cattle Rustling, and Meat Supply in Early Modern Italy," a chapter from Brad Bouley's current book project. Brad Bouley (Assistant Professor, Department of History) specializes in histories of religion and science in the early modern, especially Italian, context. He is author of Pious Postmortems: Anatomy, Sanctity, and the Catholic Church in Early Modern Europe (UPenn, 2017). His current project, The Barberini Butchers: Meat, Murder, and Warfare in Early Modern Italy, investigates papal food policies formed during the Counter Reformation in an effort to promote Rome as an early modern city. Sponsored by the IHC's Connectivity in the Premodern Mediterranean Research Focus Group REGISTER HERE Image: Claude Lorraine, Campo Vaccino, 1636

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December 2020

Research Focus Group Discussion with Radhika Govindrajan about Her Book Animal Intimacies
Radhika Govindrajan

December 3, 2020 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

ATTEND DISCUSSION This seminar session will feature a discussion with Radhika Govindrajan about her book Animal Intimacies: Interspecies Relatedness in India’s Central Himalayas (2018), which is an ethnographic study of the interspecies relationships between human and nonhuman animals in the mountain villages of the Central Himalayan state of Uttarakhand in India. Following is the University of Chicago Press’s description of the book: "What does it mean to live and die in relation to other animals? Animal Intimacies posits this central question alongside the intimate—and intense—moments of care, kinship, violence, politics, indifference, and desire that occur between human and non-human animals. Built on extensive ethnographic fieldwork in the mountain villages of India’s Central Himalayas, Radhika Govindrajan’s book explores the number of ways that humans and animals interact to cultivate relationships as interconnected, related beings. Whether it is through the study of

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Research Focus Group Workshop: Graduate Student Research

December 14, 2020 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

The Asian/American Studies Collective is excited to host two events showcasing graduate student research this quarter. Graduate students will be presenting their research as part of the Collective-sponsored graduate seminar ASAM 200. These workshops will be held on November 9th and December 14th from 11am to 1pm PST. Sponsored by the IHC's Asian/American Studies Collective Research Focus Group

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January 2021

Research Focus Group Talk: The Asian/American Studies Collective Winter Speakers Series
Simi Kang

January 12, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Zoom Meeting Link: The Asian/American Studies Collective is excited to announce our winter speakers series, which features an exciting lineup of scholars from across the UCSB campus. For each talk, an invited speaker will share their current research during the first hour and the second hour will be explicitly dedicated to creating space to allow graduate students to ask questions related to research and professionalization. Our first speaker is Dr. Simi Kang, a queer, mixed Sikh American community advocate, educator, artist, and scholar. Kang's work centers Southeast Asian American collaborative resistance to imagine environmentally and economically just futures in Louisiana. Kang is a Chancellor's Postdoctoral Fellow in UCSB's Department of Asian American Studies. Abstract: Every year, multiple times a year, Southeast Louisiana’s coast-dependent communities must make the impossible decision to remain in an environmental sacrifice zone or leave home

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Research Focus Group Panel: Sex Work in the Time of Covid
Sinnamon Love, MF Akynos, Chiqui

January 21, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

REGISTER NOW This panel will bring together the insight and expertise of three sex worker activists working and organizing in North America and Europe; including Sinnamon Love, BIPOC Adult Industry Collective, MF Akynos, Black Sex Workers' Collective, and Chiqui, Berlin Strippers Collective. It will be the first in a multi-part webinar conversation in 2020-2021 focused on sex work and sexual politics in the time of COVIC in a global frame. REGISTER NOW Cosponsored by the IHC's New Sexualities Research Focus Group and the MultiCultural Center

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Living Democracy Talk: Land Grab U: Land-Grant Universities and Indigenous Peoples
Tristan Ahtone and Robert Lee

January 22, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Land Grab U: Land-Grant Universities and Indigenous Peoples

Free to attend; registration required to receive Zoom webinar attendance link In 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Morrill Act, which distributed public domain lands to raise funds for fledgling colleges across the nation. The creation story told around this event is that land-grant universities were given the gift of free land. But the truth is much more complicated: The Morrill Act worked by turning land expropriated from tribal nations into seed money for higher education. In all, the act redistributed nearly 10.8 million acres from more than 250 tribal nations for the benefit of 52 colleges. Those lands, when grouped together, represent an area approximately the size of Denmark. Ahtone and Lee's presentation will both examine the land specifically used to found the University of California and also discuss the methods employed in this investigation of land expropriation, in

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POSTPONED – Research Focus Group Meeting: Art, Environment, and Sense-Making
Daniel Martini

January 25, 2021 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED At the last meeting of the Sustainability and the New Human RFG, Professor Suh discussed sustainability and behavior change. This talk will continue our conversation about the interdependence of humans and the environment by offering an ecological approach to how we understand the arts. At this meeting, PhD candidate Daniel Martini will share his dissertation research on how aesthetic appreciation (‘sense-making’) can emerge from both the rigidity of universal human cognitive structures and the massive influence of environmental variations. The presentation will be followed by a discussion moderated by Professor Colin Gardner. The meeting is open to all but we do ask you to register to attend so that we can spend our time in the meeting as productively as possible. Please register by January 21. After you’ve registered, you will receive a Zoom invitation

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Asian/American Studies Collective Winter Speakers Series
Diane Fujino

January 26, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Zoom Meeting Link: The Asian/American Studies Collective is proud to celebrate the publication of Dr. Diane Fujino's book, Nisei Radicals: The Feminist Poetics and Transformative Ministry of Mitsuye Yamada and Michael Yasutake. About the book While critiques of the model minority trope abound, this work has not dislodged the Nisei, or second-generation Japanese Americans, from the label of “Quiet Americans.” Working against the announced politics of Nisei assimilationism, this talk examines the feminist poetics of Mitsuye Yamada and the transformational “jubilee liberation” ministry of her brother, Rev. Michael Yasutake. Mitsuye Yamada’s sensitive writings are known for revealing tropes of silence in the lives of Japanese American women, often through critique of the complicated relationship with her own mother. Michael Yasutake moved from military resistance during World War II, to counseling draft objector during the Vietnam War, to explicit opposition

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Research Focus Group Talk: Cybercrime in Digital India: Jamtara’s Youth and OTT Production Cultures
Rahul Mukherjee

January 29, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

ATTEND DISCUSSION Continuing a trend set by Bollywood cinema since the mid-2000s, small towns and villages in India are being mined for their performative excess, comic potential, and cultures of violence by platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. Mukherjee traced this trend to Jamtara: Sabka Number Aayega (Jan 2020–), an over-the-top (OTT) crime drama from Netflix/Tipping Point that portrays real-life mobile phone phishing scams conducted by teenagers in the state of Jharkhand. The reliance on concept development based on localized research within an OTT production culture ensured that the innovative story and subject matter of Jamtara intrigued audiences. However, the later episodes, instead of focusing on the forensic and infrastructural intricacies of phishing, depicted gratuitous violence instigated by a local politician figure. The theme of cybercrime provided Jamtara a way to inflect earlier registers of crime with discourses around

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February 2021

Research Focus Group Discussion: Shifting Paradigms Around Neurodiversity

February 1, 2021 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Disability Studies RFG

Zoom Meeting Link: This discussion will focus on thinking about new paradigms in autism and neurodiversity. We will read the article titled "Throw Away the Master's Tools: Liberating Ourselves From the Pathology Paradigm," by Nick Walker (from Loud Hands: Autistic People, Speaking ) and the introduction to Autistic Disturbances (2018) by Julia Miele Rodas. If time permits, the discussion will also include Mad at School: Rhetorics of Disability and Academic Life (2011) by Margaret Price, which tackles mental illness/health, college students/faculty, psychology, mentally disabled persons, personal narratives, communication, and stereotypes. Sponsored by the IHC’s Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group Zoom Meeting Link:

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Research Focus Group Talk: Social Media and the Shape of “Man”
Alexander Cho

February 9, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Zoom Meeting Link: Inspired by Cho's ethnographic work with queer of color users of the platform Tumblr and using the Tumblr presence of Filipinx transfeminine visual and performance artist Mark Aguhar as a recurring touchstone, this work-in-progress talk’s provocation is that the assumptive ways in which a social media platform “should” be designed—singular identity, linear text exchanges, direct messaging, traversable connections, and more—in fact instantiate a model of “Man” that can be traced back to the epistemological violences of European colonialism. Relying on Sylvia Wynter’s invocation of the idea of homo oeconomicus as well as Lisa Lowe’s historical analysis of the colonial-era origins of the modern liberal subject, this talk excavates the assumptions of the specific manner in which “Man” is instantiated online and offers design examples that resist this logic, inviting us to imagine digital sociality from a

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AIIC 2021 8th Annual Symposium: Native Feminisms
Mishuana Goeman and Laura Harjo

February 19, 2021 @ 10:00 am - February 21, 2021 @ 3:00 pm

REGISTER NOW The Eighth Annual AIIC Symposium, “Native Feminisms: Centering American Indian and Indigenous Land and People,” seeks to focus Native feminisms by privileging the knowledge of Native women, girls, trans, non-binary, and two spirit people. As Mishuana Goeman shows, drawing attention to embodied experience, positionality, and spatiality foregrounds relationships between bodies, minds, spirits, and lands as methods of knowledge creation. Relevant topics to broader discussions of Native feminisms include: embodiment, futurity, spatiality, memory, trauma, ecological relationality, community knowledge, emergence, collective power, ceremony, decolonization, education, reclamation, and felt theory. The AIIC Symposium seeks to explore how Native feminist cartographies help us remap and reimagine the relationship between people, kin, communities, temporality, and the land. We hope to raise questions about public space and protest, environment and ecological knowledge, storytelling, violence, education, Indigeneity, decolonial thinking, gender, and multiraciality. We embrace non-linear,

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Research Focus Group Talk: Elemental City: Ecology, Media and Narratives of Crisis in Postcolonial Calcutta
Somak Mukherjee

February 22, 2021 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

This talk explores how the cultural politics of elemental media influence crisis narratives produced in relation to urban change. Taking Calcutta as a case study, Doctoral Candidate Somak Mukherjee argues that the crisis of postcolonial cities has a distinct ecological imaginary, borne of tension between mediated pairings of elements and more typical civic imaginaries such as civility, citizenship, community, development, or progress. Four examples of elements—earth, air, water, and fire—are used as representative figures to explore how their cultural registers comment on questions of method, archives, and media in thinking about urban space. The presentation will be followed by a discussion moderated by Surojit Kayal. The meeting is open to all but we do ask you to register to attend so that we can spend our time in the meeting as productively as possible. Please register by February 18. After you’ve registered,

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March 2021

Research Focus Group Roundtable: Disability Justice Conversation

March 2, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Disability Studies RFG

REGISTER HERE Join Gary White, UCSB's Disabled Students Program, Eric Kruger, UCSB's Disabled Students Program, Afiya Browne, UCSB's Multicultural Center, Sam del Castillo, Graduate Division and graduate student, and Shanna Killeen, Disability Studies Initiative RFG, for a conversation about accessibility and intersectional justice. This conversation will discuss information, tools, and resources for creating intentional and accessible spaces and community engagement. This conversation also aims to help us think through what this moment of remote work means for our communities. How do graduate students navigate access in an already inaccessible world? Our hope is to have an impactful conversation about resources and accessibility as a foundation and not an add on, and to help us imagine how creating accessible spaces benefits us all. Sponsored by the IHC's Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group, Muticultural Center, Graduate Center for Literary Research, Graduate

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Research Focus Group Talk: Kings and Cripples in the Arthurian World
Christopher Baswell

March 5, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Zoom meeting link: While the lived reality of disability in the Middle Ages was surely a wretched one, at the same time we encounter persistent associations between disabled and royal or aristocratic bodies in medieval culture, its imagery and narratives. Nowhere is this truer than in the Arthurian world, at whose core there lies a powerful but immobile figure, the Rich Fisher King. This talk looks at such linkage through Arthurian texts and illustrated manuscripts, especially the vast Lancelot Prose Cycle. Christopher Baswell is the Acting Chair of the Department of English and the Ann Whitney Olin Professor of English at Barnard College. He is also Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. Cosponsored by the IHC's Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group and the UCSB English Department Early Modern Center Zoom meeting link:

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Research Focus Group Talk: Cannabis and South Asia
Utathya Chattopadhyaya

March 9, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Zoom meeting link: Historical scholarship now conceives empire as a webbed uneven field of power relations and a multispecies enterprise. In other words, the anxious and breathless struggle of European imperialism to sustain itself subjected human, plant, animal, and insect bodies to its ambition to govern through logics of colonial difference. This paper argues that the cannabis plant in South Asia, in the nineteenth century, while being a subject of British revenue systems transformed into a race-d and gendered mode of explaining anticolonial insurgency by South Asian rebels. The intoxicating substance of the plant, in the discursive logic of empire, was seen to vitiate Asian bodies against European power. Cannabis also animated other imperial operations like the delegitimization of Indian sovereignty. Using the expansive reach of imperial periodical culture in the nineteenth century, this paper highlights the Asian and

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Research Focus Group Talk: The Blood Files: Epidemic, Medium, Milieu
Bishnupriya Ghosh

March 12, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

ATTEND DISCUSSION Epidemics make us keenly aware of our multispecies distributions: of changes to our microbial makeup, of the mediums (body fluids to the elements) that enable transmission. While our body makes us aware of fevers and aches, we need technical mediation beyond the everyday thermometer to track and understand changing microbial-human relations. Epidemic media—a range of technologies, microscopes to PCR machines—are the subject of Bishnupriya Ghosh’s book, The Virus Touch: Theorizing Epidemic Media. Drawing on two research sites thousands of miles apart yet embedded in the global biomedical complex—a retrovirus laboratory at the University of Washington, Seattle, and a modest clinical point of care at the Humsafar offices in Mumbai—Ghosh considers how the ordinary technology of the “blood file” (samples, data, and pictures) makes the medium intelligible as a milieu. Bishnupriya Ghosh is Professor of Global Studies and English

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Research Focus Group Discussion: Designing Disability
Elizabeth Guffey

March 15, 2021 @ 12:30 pm - 1:45 pm
Disability Studies RFG

ATTEND DISCUSSION We will be discussing Professor Elizabeth Guffey's introduction and chapter 1 to her latest book, Designing Disability (Bloomsbury, 2018). A Professor of Art & Design History, and Director of the MA in Modern and Contemporary Art, Criticism and Theory at State University of New York at Purchase, Professor Guffey co-edited Making Disability Modern (Bloomsbury, 2020) and is the founding editor of the peer-reviewed journal Design and Culture (Routledge). Cosponsored by the IHC’s Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group, the Department of English, and the Department of Comparative Literature ATTEND DISCUSSION

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April 2021

Research Focus Group Talk: Lingvo Internacia: The Esperanto Movement in China and Japan, 1905-1932
Joshua Fogel

April 8, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

REGISTER NOW In this RFG talk, Joshua Fogel will present on "Lingvo Internacia: The Esperanto Movement in China and Japan, 1905-1932." Joshua Fogel is Professor of History and Canada Research Chair at York University, Toronto. Sponsored by the IHC’s Transregional East Asia Research Focus Group REGISTER NOW

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Research Focus Group Meeting: Embracing Ecological Uncertainty through Narrative
Marco Caracciolo

April 19, 2021 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Uncertainty is a central psychological dimension of the ecological crisis. The science of climate change brings into view widely divergent scenarios; the discrepancy between these more or less catastrophic visions of the future undermines our ontological security (in Anthony Giddens’s terminology). Dr. Caracciolo argues that literary narrative has an important role to play in cultivating readers’ ability to live with uncertainty. He describes this process as a shift from a primarily negative understanding of uncertainty (as something to be avoided at all costs) to a more complex, nuanced appreciation. The presentation will be followed by a discussion moderated by Professor Sowon Park. The meeting is open to all but we do ask you to register to attend so that we can spend our time in the meeting as productively as possible. Please register by April 15. After you’ve registered, you will receive

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May 2021

Research Focus Group Workshop: A Disability Studies Perspective on Universal Design for Learning
Rachel Lambert

May 10, 2021 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Disability Studies RFG

ATTEND DISCUSSION Professor Rachel Lambert (Education, UC Santa Barbara) will offer a workshop on Universal Design for Learning (UDL). She will shed light on its development, including roots in Universal Design. She will describe the radical possibilities in UDL, as well as critiques. She will present some of her own work, which seeks to integrate design thinking as a process for educators to use UDL to (re)design curriculum, spaces and systems. Prior to the workshop, participants are encouraged to read chapter 4, "Universal Design," from Jay Timothy Dolmage's Academic Ableism: Disability and Higher Education (2017), available here. Cosponsored by the IHC’s Disability Studies Initiative Research Focus Group and the UCSB Disabled Students Program ATTEND DISCUSSION

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Research Focus Group Talk: Sri Sabhapati Swami and the “Translocalization” of Sivarajayoga
Keith Cantu

May 12, 2021 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Keith Cantú’s talk will center on the life and yogic literature of the Tamil yogi Sri Sabhapati Swami (Capāpati Cuvāmikaḷ, 1828–1923/4). The first part of the talk will consist of an overview of Sabhapati’s life and historical context, including his interactions and falling out with the founders of the Theosophical Society, his literature and visual diagrams in numerous prestige and Indian vernacular languages, his Śaiva yogic cosmology and perspectives on Hindu traditions and other religions, and his network of “admirers” and students across South Asia. Cantú will then shift to a more open-ended discussion about the theoretical framework of global “translocalization,” including evidence for pan-Indian “mesolocalization,” and will argue that in Sabhapati’s case this kind of framework is useful when analyzing the ways in which religious ideas travel and change when circulating between local, mesolocal, and translocal audiences in the

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Research Focus Group Talk: Willing Ethnic-Nationalists, Diffusion, and Resentment: A Micro-Foundational Account
Aseema Sinha

May 27, 2021 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
RFG Event

ATTEND DISCUSSION Using evidence concerning the consolidation of Hindu nationalism in India, Aseema Sinha presents new ethnographic data about the variety of popular support for the Hindutva project and proposes an interactive theory of social identity. This framework helps us understand how Hindu nationalism becomes embedded in society. She argues that Hindu nationalism in India could be fruitfully analyzed by focusing on the processes through which ideas of exclusive nationalism spread among middle classes and are expressed in micro-level psychological changes at the individual level. The consolidation of Hindu nationalism in India is being authored not only by parties and the state but also by societal actors, and more specifically ordinary middle-class Indians. Hindu nationalism has been spreading in micro-public spheres in times of apparent peace and between elections and with the participation of willing supporters, bystanders, and hardliners. Sinha

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June 2021

Research Focus Group Talk: Race, Caste, Hierarchy, Difference: Reflections on Isabel Wilkerson’s Caste
Vincent Wimbush

June 4, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

ATTEND DISCUSSION In Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, Isabel Wilkerson brings together the freighted categories of “race” and “caste” and argues that, while the two are not synonymous, they “can and do coexi st in the same culture and serve to reinforce each other.” Wilkerson suggests that racism is the visible manifestation of a hidden and insidious caste system, a system of social domination that uses human differences in order to construct a ranking of human value. “Race, in the United States, is the visible agent of the unseen force of caste. Caste is the bones, race the skin.” Wilkerson examines the “modern-day caste protocols” in the “inner workings of American hierarchy” in which she makes unsettling comparisons between America’s four-hundred-year-old racial hierarchies, India’s three-thousand-year-old caste system, and Nazi Germany’s racializing project of Aryanism. In this talk Vincent Wimbush

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