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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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Humanities Decanted: Making Art Work: How Cold War Engineers and Artists Forged a New Creative Culture
W. Patrick McCray

March 4, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 4:45 pm

REGISTER NOW Free to attend; registration required to receive Zoom webinar attendance link Join us online for a dialogue between Patrick McCray (History) and Alan Liu (English) about McCray’s new book, Making Art Work: How Cold War Engineers and Artists Forged a New Creative Culture. Audience Q&A will follow. Despite C. P. Snow’s warning, in 1959, of an unbridgeable chasm between the humanities and the sciences, engineers and scientists of that era enthusiastically collaborated with artists to create visually and sonically interesting multimedia works. This new artwork emerged from corporate laboratories, artists’ studios, publishing houses, art galleries, and university campuses and it involved some of the biggest stars of the art world. Less famous and often overlooked were the engineers and scientists who contributed time, technical expertise, and aesthetic input to these projects. These figures included the rocket engineer-turned-artist Frank

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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: https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/87492220092?pwd=RExPbnl0N3d0ZVR2ZGpEdkJ1cHdPQT09 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: https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/87492220092?pwd=RExPbnl0N3d0ZVR2ZGpEdkJ1cHdPQT09

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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: https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/81976204749?pwd=ekZ2UUtFd0U0Znh6bFpIcXFXWUs5QT09 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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Medieval Studies Annual Colloquium: Global/Premodern/Race

March 21, 2021 @ 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

Register by emailing global.premodern.race@gmail.com by March 19, 2021 This symposium brings together scholars working in Iberian, Middle Eastern, and Medieval Studies to engage in a critical discussion concerning race—reevaluating both its utility as a category of analysis in the premodern world and how it has structured medieval and early modern studies as academic fields. Participants include: PAMELA PATTON (Art History, Princeton University) M. LINDSAY KAPLAN (English, Georgetown University) HANNAH BARKER (History, Arizona State University) MOHAMAD BALLAN (History, SUNY Stonybrook) AMBEREEN DADABHOY (Literature, Harvey Mudd College) JOSH COHEN (Committee on the Study of Religion, Harvard University) ABDULHAMIT ARVAS (English, University of Pennsylvania) TERENCE KEEL (African American Studies & Institute for Society and Genetics, UCLA) KATHY LAVEZZO (English, University of Iowa) Sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center; Medieval Studies; Early Modern Center, English Department; Center for Middle Eastern Studies; College of Letters

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April 2021

Living Democracy Talk: Lessons of the Hour—Frederick Douglass
Isaac Julien and Mark Nash

April 16, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

REGISTER NOW Free to attend; registration required to receive Zoom webinar attendance link Artist and filmmaker, Isaac Julien, and writer and curator, Mark Nash, will screen excerpts from Julien's film "Lessons of the Hour—Frederick Douglass" in a presentation that will explore the importance of looking to history and biography to articulate contemporary cultural movements. Isaac Julien's moving image practice draws from and comments on a range of artistic disciplines including film, theatre, photography and performance. Julien is a Distinguished Professor of the Arts and Nash is a Professor of Arts at UC Santa Cruz where they run the Isaac Julien Lab, a platform for the innovation of visual and sonic languages for production and the critical reception of moving image, video art, and installation work by examining historical and contemporary art practice. Sponsored by the IHC’s Living Democracy series and the

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Humanities Decanted: Race Characters: Ethnic Literature and the Figure of the American Dream
Swati Rana

April 29, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 4:45 pm

REGISTER NOW Free to attend; registration required to receive Zoom webinar attendance link Join us online for a dialogue between Swati Rana (English) and Stephanie L. Batiste (English) about Rana’s new book, Race Characters: Ethnic Literature and the Figure of the American Dream. Audience Q&A will follow. A vexed figure inhabits U.S. literature and culture: the visibly racialized immigrant who disavows minority identity and embraces the American dream. Such figures are potent and controversial, for they promise to expiate racial violence and perpetuate an exceptionalist ideal of America. Swati Rana grapples with these figures, building on studies of literary character and racial form. Rana offers a new way to view characterization through racialization that creates a fuller social reading of race. Situated in a nascent period of ethnic identification from 1900 to 1960, this book focuses on immigrant writers who

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Conference: Fallout: Chernobyl and the Ecology of Disaster
Sara Pankenier Weld and Sven Spieker

April 30, 2021 @ 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

The interdisciplinary conference “Fallout: Chernobyl and the Ecology of Disaster” examines the 1986 nuclear accident at Chernobyl to consider its afterlife in culture and the arts. Situated at a watershed moment during the Cold War, Chernobyl spawned an unprecedented quantity of global responses from scientists, writers, filmmakers, and artists, and it has become a key moment for the global environmental movement. This conference views the accident and its aftermath in the context of broader global ecologies of disaster and considers how catastrophe is coded and understood — or fails to be understood — through the prism of science, art, literature, and film. How do all these disciplines and discourses confront the disaster, and where do they converge to produce the fiction, or the truth, of what we call “Chernobyl”? The conference brings together scholars and other experts in Comparative Literature,

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May 2021

Living Democracy Talk: What We Can Do For Each Other
Cristina Rivera Garza

May 6, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
What We Can Do for Each Other: Wake Work in Our Times

REGISTER NOW Free to attend; registration required to receive Zoom webinar attendance link One of the greatest threats against democracy and justice is indolence--defined as a form of militant indifference based on the lack of empathy for the suffering of others. Cristina Rivera Garza will explore how taking part in and contributing to transnational emotional communities in Mexico and the U.S., many based on shared experiences of social suffering and the grieving that comes with it, may help us leap out of ourselves and into the heart of the bond we share with human and non-human beings alike. Audience Q&A will follow. Cristina Rivera Garza is Distinguished Professor of Hispanic Studies and Creative Writing and Director of the PhD in Creative Writing in Spanish Program at the University of Houston. She is an award-winning author, translator, and critic. Her recent publications include The Taiga

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