Gender Order and Gender Confusion.
Intimacy of Violence.
Sexual Violence as a Weapon of War.
Sexual Violence in the Holocaust.
Women in the Military.
In Event: International Committee Talkshop II: Pedagogies of Dissent in A Global Context
Fri, November 10, 2:00 to 3:45pm, Hyatt Regency Chicago, Horner, Third Floor West Tower
The image of the zombie as a figure is iconic. The zombie is Frankenstein’s monster, the figure through which Mary Shelley transgressed women’s roles in the 1800s by writing about it. In the 1970s, the zombie figure was articulated through imagery of the wives of Stepford – she was zombie-like submissive woman. Today it has multiple meanings from the person controlled through voodoo rituals, to the brain eating human chasing monster, to the warm heart zombie that falls in-love and becomes human again. The zombie is a resurrected figure through which alterities are reinforced, imagined, and disrupted. It raises ontological questions regarding who and what counts for as the human. The living dead are also social and historical figures that rise up, haunt and stalk the living. The living dead encompass when a history of colonization, genocide, death, slavery, an American apartheid furthered by racism, sexism, and classism, and transnational migration and diasporic subjectivities, are reanimated for the living as the living dead. At times the living dead makes visible ghostly matters. Zombies are not just about the danger – they represent societal concerns, anxieties, and hopes for another kind of future. In neoliberal modern colonial economic systems, are zombies a mechanism of survivance? They raise questions regarding the haunting – sociological, imaginary, and historical – creating a scene of witnessing. Through the living recuperation, recovery, reclamations, appeals to witnessing are made possible. Dr. Fukushima and Dr. Pillow offer reflections and a framework, through a course they team taught at University of Utah – Zombie Futurities. In analyzing the course curriculum, the context in which we were teaching, and the narratives of social death and zombification circulating in politics and media, we put forth a pedagogies of the zombie. A pedagogies of the zombie is methodology of teaching that centralizes decolonial feminisms, anti-racist theory, and gender, to understand how subjects and practices create social death, the living, dead, and hauntings, that may be contended with in the classroom.
Annie Isabel Fukushima, University of Utah
Wanda Pillow, University of Utah
This event is by invitation only. Please contact Dr. Fukushima at email@example.com if you have questions or would like to be a part of this discussion. This event is being recorded.
Purpose: The salons create a space for discussion, sharing, and connections. For this salon, I would love to invite all of us to be in a conversation regarding pedagogies, documentation and migration. Here, I recognize the current climate, and that when considering migration, documentation, and teaching, that we are not only discussing DACA, where migration and notions of documentation have a range of contested meanings. But, we are also recognizing that DACA, undocumented, and other forms of documentation have shaped our students lives, our own lives and pedagogues, and our communities (recognizing community is multifaceted and complex). Questions we seek to grapple with: What does it mean to teach / learn in the current moment on migration / emigration / immigration and transnational connections? What can be learned from the transnational/diasporic/migratory subject? What is currently being made invisible? How do you teach about migration? How does documentation, undocumented, and the dualities of legality/illegality emerge in the classroom and/or spaces of learning?
Format: The salon will be 90 minute recorded conversation. It will be edited then published to the Institute of (Im)Possible Subjects websites (Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, and our under construction edited multimedio web publication).
To begin our conversation, we could listen to Sonia Guiñansaca “Bursting of photographs after trying to squeeze out old memories”. https://soundcloud.com/pbsnewshour/sonia-guinansaca-reads-bursting-of-photographs-after-trying-to-squeeze-out-old-memories
Then we will discuss the works of Ruby Chacon.
Location in Salt Lake City
2130N Hoopes Seminar Room, Marriott Library, University of Utah.
For Silhouette’s Remote participants Call-in information
Tue, Oct 17, 2017 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM MDT
Please join my meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone.
You can also dial in using your phone.
United States: +1 (872) 240-3311
Access Code: 947-035-901
First GoToMeeting? Let’s do a quick system check: https://link.gotomeeting.com/system-check
About folks invited to be in conversation:
Leticia Alvarez (Utah)
Crystal Baik (California)
Dalida Maria Benfield (Massachussetts)
Ruby Chacon (California/Utah)
Jose Manuel Cortez (Utah)
Cindy Cruz (California)
Annie Isabel Fukushima (Utah)
Sarita Gaytan (Utah)
Juan Herrera (California)
Alonso Reyna (Unconfirmed?) (Utah)
June 24 – 25, 2017
Seoul, South Korea
Tethered subjectivities encompass immigrants who are legally, socially, and politically bound to dualities of citizen/noncitizen, legal/illegal, freedom/social death, and more. Our efforts via action research, public pedagogy and south- south rescensions are to creatively engage and transform both our capillary relations of our migration through and from Asia, and sites and subject-locations for new solidarities.
Tethered Subjectivities and Human Trafficking in These Migratory Times
Saturday, June 24, 10AM – 12PM, Korea University
LG-Posco Hall, 4th Floor, 432
Speakers: Annie Isabel Fukushima, Hyesil Jung, Kanokwan Uthongsap
Border Crossings, (Non) Citizenship, and Rights
Sunday, June 25, 9AM – 10:50AM, Korea University
Hyundai Motor Hall, B2 Level B206
Speakers: Sudarat Musikawong, Malinee Khumsupa, tammy ko Robinson
June 24, 2017 1:00PM-3:00PM
College of Education
Additional Collaborators: Cha-u-ri Lee, Dohee Lee, Duhyun Ko, Lilly Ju Hee Lee, Salai Suanpi, Sun Mee Won, Watcharaporn Ruenroeng
FRIDAY, April 21
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. CHECK-IN
4:00 – 5:30 p.m. KEYNOTE PANEL
Impact of Militarization and Migration on Indigenous Communities
Moderator: Professor Erin Suzuki, Literature, UC San Diego
Keynote speakers: Professor Perse Hooper Lewis and Dr. Kalamaoka’ina Niheu
Professor Perse Hooper Lewis is a citizen of the Yomba Band of Shoshone Indians, located in the beautiful mountains of central Nevada. A settler to San Diego, she has spent her career serving the local tribal and urban communities on a variety of issues related to education, health, community development, and culture. A proponent of sovereignty and self-determination, Perse works with Indian-serving nonprofits and tribes to ensure program design, implementation, and evaluation reflect the needs and strengths of the community. In addition to her consulting duties, she holds a full-time position at the University of San Diego as the Tribal Liaison and a Professor of Practice in the Ethnic Studies Department.
Dr. Kalamaoka’ina Niheu, MD is a co-founder and convener for `Aha Aloha. She is a founding member and Kauka (Physician) for Onipa`a; Hui Kalo, the Hawai`i wide traditional taro farmer’s association, a Medical Officer in the Polynesian Voyaging Society Hokule`a, a Board Member of `Ahahui o; Kauka, and has served as Hawai`i Representative to the United Nations as a member of the Pacific Caucus. As one of approximately 800 Indigenous Peoples who gathered in Alta, Norway in 2013 she helped craft the Alta Outcome Document as an extension of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Her published works include “Pu`uhonua: Sanctuary and Struggle at Makua, Hawai`i” and “The Effect of the Military on the Health of Native Hawaiians.”
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. DINNER and COMMUNITY PANEL
Community Panel: A panel with recently resettled refugees from Syria, Sudan, and the Congo
7:30 – 9:00 p.m. COMMUNITY HOUR/BAZAAR
“African Band with Dance Kings and Queens.” A 15-minute performance by the local Congolese choir and dance troupe
Tabling with local community organizations, artisans, craft-makers, and UCSD undergraduates.
SATURDAY, April 22
9:00 – 10:00 a.m. CHECK IN
10:00 – 11:30 a.m. CONFERENCE PAPER PRESENTATIONS – SESSION 1
Panel 1. Militarized Citizenship
Joining the Military as Migration: Indigenous Soldiers in the Mexican Military, Ivan Sandoval-Cervantes, Sociology and Anthropology, University of Texas at El Paso
The Local Imaginaries Leading to Militarized Youth, Heather Rae-Espinoza, Department of Human Development, Cal State Long Beach
Divergent Paths towards Militarized Citizenship: Korean International Male Students’ Military Service in S Korea and in the US in their Pursuit of Mobility and Citizenship, Hee Jung, Migration and Social-Integration Research Center, Konkuk University; and Ga Young, Education Policy Studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Every Breath You Take: Asbestosis, the U.S. Navy, & The Militarization of Chamoru Diasporic Bodies, Antoinette Charfauros McDaniel, Independent Scholar
Discussant: Simeon Man, History, UCSD
Panel 2. Feminist Epistemologies and Everyday Survival
Marching Beggars: Militarism and Social Welfare in U.S.-Occupied Okinawa, Asako Masubushi, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Toronto
Because Food is the Essence of the Everyday; or, the Palestinian Hearth and Everyday Survival, Lila Sharif, Asian American Studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Migratory Times: Militarisms, Displacements & Death Worlds, Annie Fukushima, Ethnic Studies, University of Utah
Thug Love and Arab-Region Militarism: The Affective Logic of Migrating Investors and Megaprojects, Paul Amar, Global Studies, UC Santa Barbara
Discussant: Kamala Visweswaran, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Panel 3. Refugeetude, Labor, and Citizenship
The Latinization of Los Angeles, Central American Refugees, and Identity, Alexis Meza, History, UC San Diego
Race, Nation, and the Immigration of Korean War Adoptees, Susie Woo, American Studies, California State University, Fullerton
Refugeetude: When Does a Refugee Stop Being a Refugee, Vinh Nguyen, Department of Culture and Language Studies, University of Waterloo
Imagining Inhumanity and North Korea: Emotional Citizenship in Paul Yoon’s Snow Hunters, Joseph Han, Department of English, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Discussant: Anita Casavantes Bradford, Chicano/Latino Studies & History, UC Irvine
Panel 4. Colonial Violence, Militarism, and Mobility
Rehabilitating the Golden Triangle: The Long Strive to Move From a Drug-Based Economy to New Forms of Neoliberal Development, Josto Luzzu, Department of Gender and Cultural Studies, University of Sydney
Time and Haste in Differentiation of Settler/Native Mobilities in North America, Carrie Alexander, History, UC Davis
Permissible Militancy and Racialized Hierarchy: Diasporic Korean Militarism and the Nebraska Youth Military Academy, 1908-1914, Youngoh Jung, History, UC San Diego
Nicaragua was Spanish for Palestine: Israeli Covert Arms and Counterinsurgency for the Contras, 1978-1985, Gavriel Cutipa-Zorn, American Studies, Yale University
Discussant: Victor Bascara, Asian American Studies, UCLA
Panel 5. Military Technologies, Counterinsurgency, and Cyber Resistance
Tracking Mobility: Techno-Paranoia and Benevolent Dictatorships, Christopher Patterson, Humanities and Creative Writing, Hong Kong Baptist University
Economy of Excess: The Value of Military Waste Materials, Davorn Sisavath, Anthropology and Asian American Studies, California State University, Fresno
Militarized Sexuality: Queer Fantasies, Slash Fiction, and Cyber Resistance, Keva Bui, Department of English, Dartmouth
Creating ‘Positive Peace’ in the ‘Pivoting Pacific, Sylvia Frain, Peace & Conflict Studies, University of Otago/ Te Whare Wānanga Otāgo, Dunedin/ Otepoti, Aotearoa New Zealand
Discussant: Charles Thorpe, Sociology, UCSD
Panel 6. Militarization, Securitization, and Border Imaginaries
Migrating Islands and Reframing Environmental Refuge(e)s, Olivia Quintanilla, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Urban Security Regimes and Border Militarization in Southern Mexico: Preliminary Findings from Tapachula, Chiapas, Krys Mendez Ramirez, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
La Leyenda Negra: Racial Imaginaries of Haiti and the US/Mexico Border, Katherine Steelman, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
The 4.3 Massacres, Anti-Base Activism in Jeju, and the Haunting Metaphor, Esther Choi, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Discussant: David Pedersen, Anthropology, UCSD
12:00 – 2:00 p.m. LUNCH and WALKING TOUR.
City Heights has become a hub for the resettlement of refugees from around the world, from Vietnam to Somalia to Iraq. Take this hour-long walking tour to learn about the history of refugee resettlement in the city.
2:30 – 4:00 p.m. CONFERENCE PAPER PRESENTATIONS – SESSION 2
Panel 7. Comparative Settler Colonialisms, Subimperialisms, and Refugees
Racialized Encounters: Vietnamese Refugees and Native Chamorros on Post-1975 Guam, Evyn Le Espiritu, Rhetoric, UC Berkeley
Decolonization and Subimperialism: Okinawa Postwar Emigration to Latin America, Symbol Lai, History, University of Washington
Asian Settler Colonialism: Resettlement of Vietnamese Refugees on Tongva Land, Saramosing Demiliza and Tiffany Tran, Asian American Studies, UCLA
Cultural Formations of Uchinanchu and Shima On the Move, Ayano Ginoza, Asian Studies, University of Redlands
Discussant: Daphne Taylor-Garcia, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Panel 8. Queer(ing) Refugees and Militarized and Heteronormative Kinship
From Destruction and Flight among Queer-Identified Syrian Refugees, Sofian Merabet, Department of Anthropology, UT Austin
That Childhood Fantasy of Returning to My Family’: Migration and Queer Kinship in Transnational Korean Adoption Narratives, S Moon Cassinelli, Department of English, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Militarized Kinship: Black women, surveillance and place-making in San Diego, Christina Carney, Department of Women’s & Gender Studies and Department of Black Studies, University of Missouri
The Transnational Legacy of Sexual Enslavement and Militarized Heteronormativity in Fox Girl, Sam Ikehara, Department of English, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
Discussant: Jillian Hernandez, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Panel 9. War Trauma and Memories Across Generations
Trauma Through the Generations: Education, Identity, and Resilience Amidst Social Violence, Yvonne Kwan, Sociology, Dartmouth
The Search for Healing in Lan Cao’s The Lotus and the Storm, Jeff Gibbons, Department of English and Philosophy, US Military Academy, West Point
“You’re Korean, Don’t You Care About Your Own People?”: The Korean Diaspora Politics of LiNK’s “People Over Politics” Campaign. Lisa Ho, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Medicating Trauma: Dis-ease and Contested Medicinal Care in Mukherjee’s “Fathering,” Catherine Nguyen, Comparative Literature, UCLA
Discussant: Khatharya Um, Asian American Studies, UC Berkeley
Panel 10. Militarism and Migration in the Postwar City
How Do Refugees Not See Race?”- SF East Bay Refugee Perspectives on Race, War, and Migration, Jennifer KA Tran, American Studies and Ethnicity, University of Southern California
Militarized Settlement and Refuge in Albuquerque, New Mexico (1940s-1970s), Christina Juhasz-Wood, Women’s Studies, University of New Mexico
Phục Quốc: Vietnamese Exile Politics After the Fall of Saigon, Y. Nguyen, Sociology, Northwestern University
Militarized Miami: Counterinsurgency and the Refugee City, Emma Shaw Crane, Department of Social and Cultural Analysis, NYU
Discussant: Kirstie Dorr, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Panel 11. Policing Migrants Under Neoliberalism
The Legacy of Reagan’s Cold War on Immigrants: Immigration Detention and the Power of Storytelling, Kristina Shull, History, UC Irvine
Debt: Peonage, Payments, Poetics, Calvin Walds, Literature, UC San Diego
Italian colonial expansion and the Criminalization of Migration in the Mediterranean Sea, Maysam Taher, Middle Eastern Studies, NYU
Dead on Arrival: Mexican and Central American Asylum Claims in the Age of Authoritarian Neoliberalism, Alfonso Gonzales, Ethnic Studies, UCR
Discussant: Nigel Hatton, Literature, UC Merced
Panel 12. Settler Colonial Visuality, Digital Activism and Decolonial Epistemologies
Digital Repositories and Social Reproduction: Gendered Publics and Ongoing Resistance in Palestine, Rana Sharif, Department of Gender Studies, UCLA
Perceiving Otherwise: Settler Colonial Visuality & Re-encountering Kimsooja’s An Album: Sewing into Borderlines, Crystal Baik, Department of Ethnic Studies, UCR
Donald Trump’s Wet Dream: The Frontrera Film Noir Landscape of Alex Rivera’s Sleep Dealer (2008), Felipe Quintanilla, Department of Spanish & Linguistics, Franklin & Marshall College
Multimedia Submission – Images at the Border, Justin De Leon, Lizeth Maria Ruiz-Herrejon, and Jessica Garcia, Ethnic Studies, UCSD
Discussant: Lan Duong, Dept. of Media and Cultural Studies, UC Riverside
4:00 – 5:30 p.m. BREAK
5:30 – 6:30 p.m. DINNER
6:30 – 7:00 p.m. Film Screening: Nứớc (Water/Homeland) by Quyên Nguyen-Le
Set in the California drought, Nứớc is a six-minute experimental film about a Vietnamese American teen who attempts to piece together and understand their mom’s experience as a Vietnam War refugee. (Q&A with filmmaker after screening)
7:00 – 9:30 p.m. INTERACTIVE ART & ACTIVISM WORKSHOP with GABRIELA Los Angeles (Alliance of Filipina Women)
Building Solidarity & Resistance Against U.S. Militarism & Forced Migration Through People’s Art
GABRIELA is a grassroots organization and alliance of Filipina women founded in 1984 in the Philippines. GABRIELA Los Angeles is a member organization of the first overseas chapter GABRIELA-USA. They aim to educate, organize, and mobilize Filipino women to fight for their rights and welfare through education, organizing, campaigns, cultural art, and collective action. GABRIELA recognizes that the issues Filipino women face across the globe are rooted in the Philippines and works together to advance the movement for national liberation and genuine democracy in the Philippines.
SUNDAY, April 23
10:00 -11:30 a.m. PANEL WITH HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT ACTIVISTS: “Take Back Our Education.”
Maridel “Da” Andrada — Anakbayan San Diego. Anakbayan is a comprehensive national democratic mass organization of Filipino youth and students from all walks of life who are fighting for national democracy, social justice, and equality in the Philippines and around the world.
Melissa Castañeda – Las Fotos Project, Tijuana. Las Fotos Project is a community-based photography program whose mission is to bring about positive change for teenage girls facing adversity. It provides a creative outlet for students, encouraging them to express their artistic talents and explore their imagination.
12:00 – 1:30 p.m. LUNCHEON WITH LOCAL REFUGEE & IMMIGRANT GROUPS/ORGANIZATIONS
The goal of the luncheon is to share stories, cultivate new relationships between community members, and forge partnership between local groups with faculty and students at UCSD.
“Redefining Justice: Envisioning New Approaches in Anti-Trafficking Work,” the 15th Annual Freedom Network USA Human Trafficking Conference, will use a social justice lens to imagine what justice looks like in the anti-trafficking movement. To achieve justice is to talk about inequalities in our society and how injustices can create vulnerabilities to human trafficking and continue to disadvantage trafficking survivors. For the trafficked person, justice might look like the conviction of a trafficker, having access to various benefits, or the development of preventative efforts so that no one else experiences what they went through. What does justice look like to anti-traffickers? It might be through the criminal justice system, the civil legal system or restitution. It may be prevention or looking beyond the legal system or the development of new resources to protect survivors, victims, and potential victims. We look forward to exploring these issues during on April 5 -6, 2017 in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area. Registration opened on December 2016.
Download a PDF version of the newsletter: humanrightssection_asa_spring2017newsletter
A Brief Message from the Editors
We appreciate everyone who contributed to this newsletter on human rights in a new era. The content included in this newsletter responds to the context of a Trump presidency and its national and international implications; the contributors provide insights into human rights research, teaching, and advocacy nationally and abroad. The contributors paint a picture of the social and intellectual obligations of sociologists to contend with the human, notion of rights and human rights in this era.
Please see the final page of this newsletter for information on how to submit your pieces, and thank you in advance!
Annie Isabel Fukushima, University of Utah
Hollie Nyseth Brehm, Ohio State University
Awards & Anouncements
Human Rights (Section) In a New Era – Thoughts from Your Section Chair
by Joachim J. Savelsberg, University of Minnesota
Human rights scholars, like many, have been in a state of shock as of late. A growing number of nations openly dismiss basic principles of democracy, international solidarity and human rights. Turkey, the Philippines, Syria, and Russia are among them, and the forces that threaten the same principles are gaining ground in Western democracies as well, including the United States.
We are in shock all the more, as many expected global scripts of rationality and human rights to spread into all corners of the globe. And indeed, recent decades have witnessed systematic efforts to build institutions in response to grave human rights violations, a “justice cascade,” and an unprecedented wave of apologies by heads of state for injustices done in the names of their countries. Yet, denial has also been rampant, at times strategically planned in response to acknowledgment, and supported by a calculated reluctance to intervene.
The shock is further intensified as new trends are not just imposed from above, but at times supported by grassroots movements and tolerated by large segments of the population in many countries. It seems to me that we are facing a popular revolt against elites (yes, including scholars) and technocrats by those who feel that massive structural changes leave them on a downward trajectory, those who cannot hold their own in times of massive economic globalization and technological change. These times remind me of the 19th century industrial revolution, the structural transformation it constituted, the displacements it caused and the at times violent reactions, like those described by German playwright Gerhard Hauptmann in his “Die Weber” (about the 1840s violent uprisings of displaced weavers in Silesia).
In these times policy programs and political rhetoric become widely accepted that (1) dismiss knowledge, replacing it by ideological falsehood, (2) denigrate minorities and (3) advance protectionism. All three trends repeat developments of the 1930s in Germany, the country in which I was born, raised and educated. The denigration of minorities, its catastrophic outcome, foremost against Jews, is well known; “attitude is everything; knowledge is garbage” became a slogan in institutions of higher education; and employees from industries that benefitted from protectionist trade policies joined the Nazi party more than others.
What can we do? Most of us are U.S. citizens. Many of us are also members of social movements. And to us as engaged citizens, President Obama gave good advice in his farewell speech in Chicago, just two days ago as I was writing this text. I recommend rereading his speech. There is much we may want to take to heart.
But what can we do in our special role as scholars of human rights? We, after all, have tools to our avail that others are lacking. We must use our tools of scholarship to continue to observe, measure, and explain human rights violations and responses to them. My first sociology professor at the University of Cologne in the 1970s was René König, German émigré to Switzerland during what he called the 12 years of the so-called Thousand-Year Empire (yes, it was a short period, but the destruction during short periods can be beyond imagination). He insisted that we confront ideology with rigorous scholarship and social scientifically based knowledge. There are certainly different ways of knowing the world out there, but a real world there is, a world with human joy and suffering. We have to decide what methods of knowledge production we want to trust more than others. This decision is value-based, and I made my decision. I follow René König by pleading for methods of scholarship. Especially as human rights scholars, the current times increase our raison d’être. We have to live up to our obligation to generate knowledge about human rights, their abuses and their protections.
On a personal note, while our lives will be affected by recent political trends in the US and around the globe, they will not be absorbed by them. I, for one, am determined to continue to appreciate the blessings of my private life, all while living up to my obligations as a scholar and as a world citizen and a citizen of this country.
For us as an association I see two ways forward. First, let’s tap into our collective imagination. Some of you have responded imaginatively to my request for ideas on the monitoring of human rights violations in a new age of uncertainty and threat. This edition of our newsletter presents those contributions we received to our membership. I consider this a start, a collection of ideas that may bear rich fruit if we all take them seriously and follow up.
Second, let’s carry on with our year-to-year business. We have good things to look forward to in the life of our section, its newsletter and the 2017 Annual ASA Meetings in Montreal.
Regarding the newsletter, we have been served superbly well by Rusty Shekha in recent years, and we owe him great thanks. Rusty had to step down at this point for reasons we surely respect. He will be succeeded by an outstanding new editorial team, consisting of Hollie Nyseth Brehm at the Ohio State University (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Annie Isabel Fukushima at the University of Utah (email@example.com). I profoundly thank Annie and Hollie for agreeing to take on this job. As we move forward, please send any postings, such as announcements of recent publications, awards, or conferences to the new editors, as they detail above.
Further, we joined forces with the Section for the Sociology of Law to offer two co-sponsored panels at the 2017 Annual Meetings in Montreal. The topic will be: Human Rights and Law from Above and Below – Comparative Perspectives. One of these is an invited session, the other was open to submissions. Together they form a mini-symposium. The organizer of the open submission session is Frank Munger—great colleague, section member in both Human Rights and Law, and former editor of the Law & Society Review. In addition, we will hold our customary roundtables. The organizer of the roundtables is Lynette Chua of the University of Singapore. We trust that these roundtables will be at least as engaging as they were last year. Great thanks to Lynette and Frank! Also at the Annual Meetings, we have joined forces with the Section for the Sociology of Law and the Section on Crime, Law, and Deviance to organize what promises to be a spectacular party on the terrace of an old hotel (Hotel William Gray), a very manageable and most interesting walk through old Montreal from the conference site. We owe Eran Shor at McGill great thanks for identifying this site.
Again, let’s continue to make our section grow in size and relevance. It is an honor serving as your chair.
Human Rights Scholarship in the Time of Trump
by Michael Schwartz, Stony Brook University
I hope there will be many responses to Joachim Savelsberg’s invitation for section members to apply their evidential and analytic expertise to the task of answering the threats to human rights emanating from the Trump Administration. This can be an occasion when social scientists fulfill the mandate first articulated by W.E.B. Du Bois: that sociology should have as its mission “unleashing social truths,” “empowering change,” and “liberating humanity.”
Toward that end, I want to point to some very narrow and applied work that already looms as instrumental in protecting (and hopefully even extending) human rights in “the Time of Trump.” This is not work I feel I am qualified to do; but my idea is that we all should be thinking in this way, and hope that by circulating these ideas, they will reach other scholars with the energy and expertise needed to implement them. That is, we need to act collectively to “unleash the social truths” that social science has to offer, and therefore empower the practitioners and activists who need these insights to defend or extend human rights.
So here are a couple of ideas about what kind of scholarship might be immediately useful:
The Trump Muslim Ban is going to be the subject of a sustained struggle, despite the resounding February 10 repudiation of Trump’s draconian Executive Order by the Ninth Circuit Court. We can expect a whole raft of future moments, including some or all of the following: the evidentiary hearing (where the specific cases will have to be made); the various future appeals (where more conservative judges may be key); the now looming almost-certainty of a new Executive Order, which will need substantive challenge and on-the-ground resistance.
Despite the heartening mobilization of protest, legal challenge, and even state governments against this, there is nevertheless a dangerous lack of precision—or in many cases a lack of general information—on who has been impacted by the ban and in what ways it has harmed or endangered their welfare. And—maybe more important—tracing out the harmful human rights consequences of this or of a modified ban for the concentric circles of people in the U.S. and globally.
At least some of us are equipped to fill this evidential and analytic void. And if we can provide some clear answers, this work will be utterly central to the legal dispute—the Circuit Court decision specifically mandates an investigation and adjudication of the economic and personal damage of the ban (and a comparison with its “beneficial” impact on “national security”). Nevertheless, the State of Washington, the ACLU, and the growing army of lawyers working the many cases have dreadfully fragmentary evidence.
We are in a position to provide comprehensive information that could be crucial to the judicial process. And this same information would be invaluable to the individuals and groups who are in the line of fire, all the activists mobilized to protect those impacted, and the broader public which is looking for ways to resist Trump’s attacks.
Here are a few of the important measurement issues that someone (or a research team) with real skill and expertise could help to answer:
- How many people are in the pipeline for visas from the seven outcast countries—have already applied, but not yet granted—and where are they located? Is Homeland Security continuing to process them now that court injunction has been validated; or are they—in some venues—illegally imposing the ban?
- How many current residents of the United States are here on student, visitor, or work visas from the outcast countries; how has the ban (or its threat) impacted their safety and welfare; and how can they be forewarned or forearmed against current or pending dangers?
- What is the magnitude of U.S. business and personal travel for people from these countries; what is the magnitude of business and personal travel of U.S. residents/citizens to these countries? How disruptive is the reality or threat of the ban to their safety and welfare? How can they be informed of agencies or groups they can connect to?
- Can we use already-developed research strategies to measure and analyze the full extent of disruption (to commerce, personal lives) that this ban can or would accomplish? Looking at the direct impact on those banned, on their families, on their businesses or occupations, and then outward to the people who rely (personally or economically) on this set of concentric circles? One example I know of was the cancellation of an already-planned academic conference on Middle East history and culture, a disruption of the lives and scholarship of hundreds of scholars, most of whom were not the direct targets of the ban.
Careful (or even quick but accurate) research on these and all the related issues will be very useful for the lawyers active in the (already) myriad legal cases being contested; allow the people directly and indirectly to contact each other and act collectively; and provide useful tools for rallying the broad opposition by demonstrating that these human rights violations reach right into most people’s lives.
And here is another, quite different, but also urgent application of our research skills. As the media are starting to report (not enough to be sure), Homeland Security has begun an onslaught of raids into Latino communities (unfortunately pioneered and defended by the Bush and Obama administrations), summarily detaining and deporting long-time residents (many with young children who are U.S. citizens) who have done nothing to provoke their expulsion. The terrorized communities have been organizing resistance to these raids, and there is real promise that this resistance can become the enactment of the sanctuary movement.
Human Rights (and particularly immigration) scholars have a great opportunity to supply usable knowledge to this resistance/sanctuary movement. The U.S. has a long history of immigration exclusion, as well as a long history of civil disobedience as a strategy for resisting various forms of expulsion. This history needs to be mined for useful insights into what succeeded and what failed in the past, and how these lessons can be applied to the current situation. This kind of work is exemplified by the superb David Bacon article circulated to the section by Bryan Rich. But this is only a start on what we need to do. We need to cull more insight from this history, and all become analysts of the many moments of resistance going on right now. Our analytics skills are needed to transmit lessons learned from one locale to others, as they try to defend communities against this developing reign of terror.
As social scientists we don’t often have an opportunity to contribute to “empowering change,” let alone “liberating humanity.” But, this is one of those moments. What we have to contribute can make a difference. And I think that Du Bois would say that when the opportunity appears, it becomes an obligation.
So I thank Joachim for creating a forum in which we can contribute, and I hope that the folks in the Human Rights section treat the opportunity as an obligation.
 Aldon Morris, The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. DuBois and the Birth of Modern Sociology (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2015).
 State of Washington et al v Donald J. Trump et al, “Motion for Stay of an Order…” Order No. 17-35105; D.C No 2:17-cv-00141 Filed February 9, 2017, found at https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3457898/2-9-17-9th-Circuit-Order.pdf
 Democracy Now, ‘ICE Raids Speed into Overdrive: Advocates Say Obama’s Deportations Reaching 100 MPH under Trump,” (February 2, 2017), found at https://www.democracynow.org/2017/2/10/ice_raids_speed_into_overdrive_advocates .
 David Bacon, “What Donald Trump Can and Can’t Do to Immigrants,” NACLA Newsletter, (February 6, 2017), found at http://portside.org/2017-02-10/what-donald-trump-can-and-cant-do-immigrants
What Is To Be Done? Response to Schwartz
by Louis Edgar Esparza, California State University-Los Angeles
The task of sociologists, and especially sociologists of human rights, has not changed, though it may now be more urgent. United States institutions violate international human rights standards and norms as a matter of course, though some may now worsen. Here I offer my colleagues suggestions for research, the classroom, and for us:
Understand, conceptualize, and reconcile some well-known data regarding the US criminal justice system with international human rights standards, including the following stubborn trends:
- The United States currently holds two million people behind bars;
- That is more than any nation today;
- That is more than any nation in history;
- Of these, a disproportionate number are African American;
- Work behind bars is remunerated below the federal minimum wage;
- The United States continues to practice capital punishment;
- The United States continues to practice solitary confinement;
- The United States continues to hold individuals without trial;
- The United States continues to collect personal data without a warrant;
- The United States continues extrajudicial killing via drone strikes.
Use data on social indicators that reveal the place of the US among peers:
- The United States ranks 24th of 36 OECD countries on share of women in government;
- The United States ranks 29th of 36 OECD countries on life expectancy at birth;
- The United States ranks 35th of 36 OECD countries on income inequality;
- The US ranks 35th of 36 OECD countries on rate of poverty;
- 75% of OECD countries grant some form of paternity leave. The US is not among these;
- The United States is the only OECD country that does not grant maternity leave for at least 12 weeks.
For the Classroom:
- Inform classrooms of resources for undocumented, refugee, and immigrant students;
- Make time to listen to students who are processing the changes undergoing in our society;
- Place domestic human rights abuses in the context of US human rights abuses abroad;
- Provide instruction on media literacy.
- Provide an unambiguous and unqualified defense of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), especially for marginalized peoples;
- If you are placed in a situation where you are instructed to violate the UDHR, do not follow it;
- Practice self-care;
- If you have the resources, you may choose to donate to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, or similar groups of your choice in your local area.
Two hundred people were arrested at the president’s inauguration on 20 January 2017. Many – including six journalists – faced felony rioting charges, up to $25,000 in fines, and 10 years in prison. Some of these charges have since been dropped, but this is part of a long trend in the criminalization of protest, which now includes journalists. Resistance to worsening trends could use all the assistance possible.
 Esparza, Louis Edgar and Rhiannan Price. 2015. “Convergence repertoires: anti-capitalist protest at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.” Contemporary Justice Review.
The Mexico City Policy: An Impediment to the Achievement of Women’s Right to Life
by Elizabeth Heger Boyle, University of Minnesota
In sub-Saharan Africa, an estimated 580 women die from pregnancy-related complications for every 100,000 live births. For women in this region of the world, the lifetime chance of dying from pregnancy complications is 1 in 38. This reveals a violation of women’s basic right to life.
President Trump’s reinstatement and possible expansion on January 23 of the 1984 Mexico City Policy exacerbates this problem. The Mexico City Policy bans US aid to any organization that provides abortions (broadly defined) or even refers to abortion as an option for women. The Mexico City Policy was initially introduced under President Reagan and has been reinstated by all Republican presidents since then. George W. Bush exempted various services, such as post-abortion emergency treatment, from the ban, but Trump’s Executive Order made no such distinctions.
Ironically, over time, regions with high exposure to the Mexico City Policy have tended to have greater abortion rates, likely because access to modern contraception goes down when the policy is applied. Furthermore, abortion rates have not significantly decreased in the Global South since Reagan first instituted the policy, but they have declined notably in the Global North where there are no such restrictions. Apart from a lack of access to modern contraceptives, Trump’s expansive Executive Order could mean less funding for many hospitals in Sub-Saharan Africa, affecting public health in many other realms as well.
There is no reason for reinstituting the Mexico City Policy—the 1973 Helms Amendment already prevents the use of US tax dollars for abortion-related services or devices domestically and abroad. It is important that we continue to press the new administration to ensure rather than impede women’s basic human rights.
Bendavid, Eran, Patrick Avila, and Grant Miller, “United States Aid Policy and Induced Abortion in Aub-Saharan Africa,” Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Sept. 27, 2011 (online publish date): Vol. 89, pp. 873-880C, http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/89/12/11-091660/en/.
Kaiser Family Foundation. 2017. http://kff.org/global-health-policy/fact-sheet/mexico-city-policy-explainer/
Sedgh, Gilda, et al. 2016. “Abortion Incidence between 1990 and 2014: Global, Regional, and Subregional Levels and Trends.” The Lancet 388(10041): p. 258-267.
In Defense of Public Goods
by LaDawn Haglund, Arizona State University
With the election of Donald Trump to highest office in the United States, it seems a new era has dawned. As sociologists of human rights, the range and depth of threats posed by the new administration are breathtaking. We as a society have much to lose: decades of environmental protections guarding the rights of current and future generations, safety nets designed to prevent illness or hardship from sinking people into total despair, checks on the power of the rich to extract disproportionate resources from our shared societal wealth while restricting the rights and remuneration of workers, and a large body of regulations enacted to help prevent discrimination against non-majority populations.
Though analyses of how we came to this point continue to flood both professional and social media, I would like to focus on one aspect that is not new, but is often ignored: the assault on public goods. By public goods, I do not mean narrowly-defined “pure public goods,” which can only be provided by the state (think military and public infrastructure). I am referring to public goods that could potentially be privatized, though not in ways that are accessible in a just and equitable manner (think education, health care, social security, or meaningful remunerative work).
Scholars of human rights will immediately see the parallels with fundamental human rights. Societies create public goods to support the normative ideals embodied in human rights because without them, life for both individuals and the community as a whole is degraded, undignified, and at times lethal. Countless dedicated activists, communities, legal advocates, and public servants achieved these protections, safety nets, checks, and regulations over the course of generations of struggle.
Notwithstanding current shortcomings in achieving the ideals laid out by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it is still possible to acknowledge the threats posed by the all-out assault on public goods waged by Congressional Republicans, right-wing media and think tanks, corporate lobbyists, and wealthy donors. This campaign—which has existed since the New Deal but gained traction with the “rollback neoliberalism” of Reagan and the 1994 Republican-dominated Congress—would have us ignore legitimate motivations for pursuing public goods. Instead, we are urged to rally against “government waste,” “burdensome regulations,” and “restrictions on liberty” while demonizing human vulnerability. These framing strategies are designed to win the hearts and minds of a critical mass of people so that the idea of a useless and rapacious state becomes a self-evident, common sense maxim.
Unfortunately, this strategy has blossomed into a full-blown offensive against public goods, and its proponents are now at the helm of the battleship. Sociologists are—implicitly or explicitly—at the center of the political storm, given their expertise in analyzing inequality, injustice, power, and privilege as they manifest along cleavages of race, class, gender, sexuality, and religion. This provides us with a unique opportunity to clarify not only how radical reversals of policy became possible, but also where and how they might be blocked, and how rights- and life-affirming alternatives might be advanced.
In Closing the Rights Gap, Robin Stryker and I asked several questions of relevance to this historical moment: “How is it that individuals and institutions come to accept a new set of norms or principles? When and why do they begin to act in ways that support these principles?” As with all social transformations, the current situation was brought on by identifiable actors who took concrete steps, utilizing a range of mechanisms and strategies, over time and in dialogue with existing political and institutional realities, to promote a set of norms reflecting their own goals, values, and interests. In this process, they sought to shape the perceptions and desires of the population at large around new normative frames that vilified state action, and to encourage people to act on those beliefs by supporting those who perpetuated the emergent discourses. From this point of view, our current situation did not originate with Donald Trump, nor is he the only agent of threat.
Similarly, the struggle to maintain the integrity of our hard-fought public goods, as well as to promote further spaces and processes where justice and dignity are upheld and fulfilled, is being waged by a range of actors intervening in analogous but opposite ways. Some of the mechanisms and strategies highlighted in our and others’ work include informational mechanisms geared toward providing evidence in support of a course of action (which, in the current zeitgeist, may include “alternative facts” and misinformation); symbolic mechanisms that employ framing or symbolism to inspire support (compare “Make America Great” baseball caps with “Pussyhats”); power-based mechanisms designed to mobilize pressure for change (lobbying and protest are common examples); legal mechanisms that utilize courts to uphold official norms; and cooperative mechanisms (such as dialogue and participatory spaces).
As sociologists, we have much to offer in all of these areas. As researchers, our role is crucial in asking the right questions, providing empirical evidence for the answers, and crafting solutions based on the best possible evidence. We can defend public goods by providing systematic, accessible evidence to the public, grassroots organizations, courts, Congress, and state legislatures that exposes the conditions that necessitate public goods, as well as documents the benefits they impart. While acknowledging the failings of our social institutions, we can illuminate the problems they are designed to address in ways that matter to people and appeal to our shared humanity. Otherwise, the dominant narrative of the rapacious state (and beneficent markets) will dominate.
Of course our work, and in fact much sociological inquiry, threatens those who benefit from existing injustices, and these actors have great incentives to cast aspersions on critics. As teachers, we must continue arming our students with critical reasoning skills and well-supported data and information, despite increasing attacks on the integrity of our scholarship by the media, “freedom schools,” and the privatization of education.
Yet, in the age of “alternative facts,” we can no longer expect our expertise to be enough. We also need counter-narratives to blanket assertions that the problem is the state. Policies and institutions such as the EPA, anti-discriminatory legislation, social safety nets, and shelters for vulnerable people – whether displaced, victimized, or otherwise at risk – did not arise out of thin air, or as some would have us believe, out of a desire to take money from hard working people. Moreover, creating a caring society is not the sole responsibility of charity organizations, but also of state actors and institutions working with communities. Alternative discourses of justice, compassion, and empathy that foreground the importance of public goods can restore the legitimacy of harnessing the state for societal wellbeing.
Narratives are also not enough, as our research indicates. Mobilization, legal challenges, and cooperative building of alternatives are also crucial. We are at a crossroads, where a multi-directional defense of public goods will be required to advance human rights. As scholars and teachers, we have much to offer in all of these areas, and a lot to lose if we stand by silently and watch our hard-sought knowledge be ignored, distorted, or dismissed. This period of crisis presents an opportunity to move beyond the glaring shortcomings of previous institutional and social arrangements to foster the emergence of a more just, inclusive, and rights-responsive society.
LaDawn Haglund is the author of Limiting Resources: Market-Led Reform and the Transformation of Public Goods (2010, Penn State Press) and co-editor (with Robin Stryker) of Closing the Rights Gap: From Human Rights to Social Transformation (2015, U.C. Press).
Using Sociology to Promote and Protect Human Rights
by Erik Larson, Macalester College
The recent and potential dramatic electoral shifts fueled by right-wing populism in the United States and Europe pose challenges to human rights. Fundamentally, these outcomes challenge the universality of human rights, particularly as the basis for government action, favoring a more ethnonational understanding of rights protection and provision.
In such an environment, how can sociologists respond effectively? There are certainly instances in which our professional commitments correspond to human rights principles—threats to academic freedom such as silencing researchers from presenting findings among a community of scholars or denying scholars access to data are also instances of interfering with rights to opinion, expression, and assembly.
Beyond these instances, we may see our work of gathering and presenting data as vital to promoting the monitoring and realization of human rights. In doing so, we need not duplicate the efforts of organizations with core human rights missions. Their collection and documentation of violations and provision of this compiled information to organizations that review human rights practices will often be more efficient, immediate, and effective than what we as scholars could achieve through primary data collection.
Yet, we as individual scholars and a collective profession have much to offer. Drawing as much on the inspirational work of many colleagues as on my own research on the growth of indigenous rights as a transnational phenomenon, the following non-exhaustive list catalogs some of these contributions that sociologists can continue to make:
- Examining primary data in illuminating ways. Whether drawing on methods of analysis that can help uncover unexamined relationships or deploying theoretical ideas to provide new explanations, sociologists studying human rights can generate insights that provide focus to understanding the situation of human rights.
- Understanding social determinants of rights realization. Moving beyond the immediacy of rights violations, examining the conditions that result in achievements of human rights can reveal a range of mechanisms that affect how individuals pursue rights and how other actors, such as governments and corporations, structure activities in ways that more effectively consider the human and distributive consequences of action.
- Viewing situations from a human rights framework. Connecting the social conditions that we study—the gaps and inequalities—to human rights ideals could demonstrate the connections between people in different situations that much contemporary political rhetoric seeks to deny.
- Seeing organizational processes that affect human rights. Acknowledging that not only governments are relevant human rights actors and examining how private sector and civil society organizational processes connected to organizational environments, networks, and movements can uncover means through which unsupportive government actions can be countered effectively.
- Finally, explaining how human rights have become more influential. The history of human rights shows both increasing institutionalization in the international environment and autonomy on the part of human rights experts, suggesting that there is potential for new alliances to continue to challenge threats to the well-being and dignity of people.
Creating Inclusive Human Rights Classrooms
Adapted from Sie Center QuickFacts “Creating Inclusive Classrooms in International Studies”
by Marie Berry, University of Denver
We enter 2017 in a highly charged political moment. There are important conversations happening at universities across the U.S. about creating and preserving our classrooms and campuses as spaces where all students—regardless of gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, ability, immigration status, citizenship, or any other category of difference—feel welcome and encouraged to learn. At many colleges, it has also become apparent that international studies schools and classrooms face a series of unique issues related to inclusiveness and diversity—issues which likely apply to many human rights classrooms as well. These issues range from the fact that most students in international studies programs in the U.S. are from the West (and advantaged backgrounds), yet many aim to do work in the Global South among the most disadvantaged, to the fact that many international studies topics (e.g., development, human rights) have been accused of (neo)colonial orientations. While these issues have long been important, the current political environment has created an acute need to address them because many members of university communities—students, staff, and faculty—feel under threat.
Together with colleagues, I solicited feedback from a small group of current Master’s students on simple but potentially impactful ways that all faculty can begin to work towards creating inclusive classrooms where all students feel welcome and encouraged to learn about global issues. Based on the feedback from students, I offer this initial list with the recognition that it is not sufficient or comprehensive; rather it offers points of entry where faculty teaching on international issues can easily infuse principles of diversity and inclusion into their courses.
- Diversify assigned readings:
Work to ensure our course readings reflect a diversity of perspectives and authors from different backgrounds—including women, people of color, and scholars from the Global South. This is particularly important in international studies courses in order to actively disrupt the tendency to anoint Western scholarship and perspectives as the gold standard. Instead, ask whether there are places on our syllabi where local voices, scholars from marginalized groups, and scholars from the regions under discussion could be assigned. Even when these voices do not dispute traditional scholarship, normalizing diverse voices on our syllabi can allow more students to recognize their backgrounds as generating useful and legitimate perspectives on an issue. This tool is a useful way to get a quick estimate of diversity.
- Talk explicitly about inequality, power and privilege (without burdening those on the margins):
Many students of international studies—and human rights in particular—aspire to careers in the global arena. In order to do this work effectively, many are eager to better understand their own privilege and bias. One way to integrate these discussions into a variety of courses is to center the idea of intersectionality—the recognition that all people have multiple identities that are bound up with power hierarchies and that intersect and overlap in ways that create discrimination, advantage, or both in different situations. There are many resources to help facilitate these discussions, which require preparation (see here to get started and watch Kimberlé Crenshaw’s new Ted Talk). These conversations are important for white, Western students aiming to do work in the Global South in the current political environment. They are also important for students of color who may be interested in joining the Foreign Service or working for international human rights NGOs, where they may experience unique challenges related to their own identity (see an excellent related discussion here).
Further tip: be conscious of not putting the burden of this discussion on students with marginalized identities. This can make them feel like “tokens of diversity” being asked to do more emotional and intellectual labor than those occupying dominant identities, such as their white, cis-gender, straight, Christian, U.S.-citizen classmates.
- Bring current events—including domestic ones—into the classroom:
While most international studies (and many human rights) classes focus on the international, students are eager to bring recent domestic examples into the classroom as well. Perhaps more urgently than ever, what international studies faculty have been teaching for years—on fascism, authoritarianism, political violence, politicized ethnicity, populism, human rights, and so forth—can no longer pretend to only apply to “over there.” For instance, classes that highlight authoritarian regimes would do well to integrate class discussions on how current political discourse in the U.S. shares (or doesn’t share) similarities with the rise of authoritarian regimes elsewhere.
- Model inclusive language on your syllabi and in your lectures:
Language is a powerful tool for either facilitating or combating inequality, discrimination, and oppression. As such, here are some preliminary tips informed by suggestions from our graduate students:
- Consider adding a note to our syllabi affirming all gender expressions and identities and encouraging students to reach out to us if they wish to be referred to by a different pronoun;
- Avoid asking students questions about their race or ethnicity—questions like, “what are you?”—even if asked with good intentions—can make students feel singled out and uncomfortable;
- Note any accommodations for students with differing abilities, medical issues, religious observances, and so forth. Invite students to talk to us if they feel unsafe or discriminated against in any way;
- Avoid using phrases like, “Hi guys” or “us Americans” or “that’s insane” as each phrase is exclusionary or dismissive in certain ways;
- While this may seem obvious, avoid referring to people as “illegals” or “illegal immigrants”; “undocumented” or “unauthorized” are preferred terms;
- Look to work by Gary Howard and others for additional ways of approaching inclusive language.
These suggestions are intended as accessible “first steps” for faculty to create more inclusive classrooms. After the recent spate of Executive Orders, many students also now need specific resources, ranging from advice on their visas or work status, to guidance on whether they should participate in civil resistance efforts, to targeted mental health care resources like crisis hotlines or counseling services. Since faculty (and our syllabi) are often a first point of contact with students, we have an important opportunity to signal our willingness to serve as an ally and resource. Initiatives like We Stand With Our Students provide students the names and contact information of faculty allies and make coordinating efforts to support our students during these difficult times more straightforward, and I invite further suggestions.
By James Rule, University of California, Berkeley
For many Americans, the most catastrophic loss of innocence concerning their country’s human rights policies came in the spring of 2004, with publication of photos of Iraqi captives under military detention at Abu Ghraib Prison in Iraq. Time will not soon erode the impact of those images—and I emphasize that images is what I have in mind here. The photo of the hooded prisoner forced to stand for hours in a precarious position, or the one of a female U.S. military guard holding an Iraqi prisoner on a leash—these stripped away all doubt about the lengths American forces were prepared to go in prosecuting their ill-conceived and ill-fated invasion of Iraq. Once these photos started appearing on front pages, everything changed. By all accounts, this country’s standing in world opinion suffered sweeping collapse—from which, some would say, it has never recovered.
Note the gap between the force of those images and that of other forms of intelligence about American actions in Iraq. Since at least the middle of 2003, reliable reports had been emanating from Iraq of unconscionable (and under international law, illegal) treatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib. Among those making such reports was the International Red Cross. In July of that year Amnesty International cited the U.S. military for subjecting prisoners there to “cruel, inhumane and degrading” conditions. In November, AP distributed a report by reporter Charles J. Hanley documenting abuse of U.S. prisoners in Iraq, including at Abu Ghraib.
Early in 2004, the military itself began to acknowledge questions about such abuse. On January 13, one of the MPs in duty at Abu Ghraib reported abusive actions to military investigators. Three days later, the U.S. Command in Baghdad issued a one-paragraph press release on such an investigation. Three days after that Ricardo Sanchez, the Commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, ordered a criminal investigation. Things moved slowly. Sanchez later noted, under oath in Congressional testimony, that “Red Cross reports warning of abuse … [at] Abu Ghraib … became lost in the Army’s bureaucracy and weren’t adequately addressed.” But at the end of April, CBS’s “60 Minutes” and The New Yorker published the graphic photos that no one can forget. After that, the scandal, including both the original events and the subsequent reluctance to act on them, became national and international obsessions.
We social scientists seek out, document, and analyze empirical observations—often in the hope of convincing our fellow citizens that the things we focus on are not as they should be. Here we are not too different from investigative journalists, human rights workers, or activists representing disfavored groups. To pursue our roles, we put forward models of a better world, and we expect others to be as disturbed by discrepancies between these visions and the facts we document as we are. But if we are candid, we need to admit that we do not in any complete way understand why some of the discrepancies revealed by research ignite the public consciousness, and other are simply ignored. Nor do we know why images—or at least, the right images, at the right moments—galvanize publics in ways that the most thoroughly-researched reports often do not.
This is no counsel of despair, for I hold there is a positive conclusion to be drawn. Shouldn’t we be paying attention to the complex social chemistry that determines what makes particular images—and for that matter, particular research studies—electrifying in particular contexts? Can’t we find ways of analyzing what makes a particular image, or a particular report, capable of searing itself into public attention? We know that moments exist when a single spark can set off a conflagration of public indignation or action. But we don’t know what distinguishes those moments.
Developments in Monitoring and Measuring Human Rights Violations
by Christopher N. J. Roberts, University of Minnesota
Monitoring and measuring human rights violations are among the most crucial—and challenging—of activities for human rights researchers. Human rights violations typically occur beyond the gaze of researchers, activists, and monitoring groups. They are often perpetrated in locations that are too dangerous, geographically remote, or politically inaccessible for the collection of “fresh” data on the ground as those abuses occur. But developments in digital technology, the ubiquity of camera-equipped mobile devices, and widespread access to the Internet offer new opportunities for the production, collection, and analysis of data surrounding human rights violations.
This commentary provides a brief overview of several new “open source investigation” initiatives that have already transformed the way that many journalists and human rights organizations investigate violations. Harnessing these developments in data collection and making use of them in the research context raises its own challenges. Still, there are enormous opportunities for sociologists of human rights to innovate in the theory, method, and analytic techniques associated with the monitoring and measuring of human rights violations.
Never before have individuals so isolated had such a large global audience to turn to for help. Today, people in conflict zones post videos, photographs, and offer narrative accounts of human rights abuses on social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and WhatsApp. A number of organizations seek to offer guidance for those creating user generated content. WITNESS, for instance, is one such initiative that focuses its efforts on training citizen activists around the world in the safe and effective use of video to document and expose human rights violations around the world.
The ability to use such data to improve the lives of the abused and hold accountable the appropriate violators, however, depends on the intensive efforts of investigators who must authenticate, process, analyze, and interpret the staggering quantities of data that are now publicly available on the Internet. To date, journalism collaboratives and human rights organizations have taken the lead. First Draft News and the Verification Handbook, for instance, are resources for journalists, activists, academics, and aid providers for authenticating, handling and using user-generated content. Similarly, Citizen Evidence Lab is an initiative that offers a series of guidelines, publications and studies oriented towards advancing best-practice techniques for authenticating user-generated content. Its partner-organization Amnesty International has already employed digital verification techniques to authenticate user generated evidence and corroborate accounts of civilian killings in Syria as well as the existence of mass graves in Burundi.
Although it is increasingly common for journalists and activists to put to use user-generated digital content, one of the most innovative and noteworthy projects involving researchers and students is The Human Rights Investigations Lab at UC Berkeley. Students who participate in this lab learn cutting edge user-generated data authentication techniques from leaders in the field. Using specialized software and querying tools, they systematically gather and process evidence associated with human rights and humanitarian violations in order to be of use for researchers and criminal prosecutions.
These developments in data collection hold enormous promise for sociologists whose research involves the monitoring and measuring of human rights violations. At these early stages, however, a great deal of theoretical and methodological groundwork lies ahead for social scientists who wish to leverage successfully such data in their own research.
Persistent Tensions: Human Rights and National Sovereignty in Socialist Venezuela
by Timothy M. Gill, Tulane University
In 1998, Venezuelan citizens elected their first leader outside of the two-party system that dominated the country since 1958: Hugo Chávez. On the campaign trail, Chávez attracted support from the popular classes by promoting the construction of a new constitution that would recognize all sectors and racial/ethnic groups, and would endorse the idea of a participatory democracy. Chávez would also promise to tackle extensive socio-economic inequality. In office, Chávez would indeed construct a new Venezuelan Constitution; initiate missions designed to combat social problems including illiteracy and lack of access to health care; and he would eventually embrace socialism. Under the latter move, Chávez asserted that Venezuela must encourage a truly democratic and communal form of governance.
At the international level, Chávez trumpeted the creation of a multi-polar world-system that would reduce U.S. imperial influence. Indeed, U.S. global power especially concerned the Venezuelan president as dissident military officers and opposition activists temporarily deposed Chávez in April 2002. In its wake, Chávez would blame the U.S. for allegedly funding and providing support to the individuals that carried out the overthrow, and he would recurrently criticize the U.S. for violating Venezuelan national sovereignty by attempting to influence domestic political affairs. While the U.S. rejected the accusation that it supported the coup, it recognized that some groups that participated in the event had received some support from U.S. government agencies (OIG 2002).
Although citizens continued to elect Chávez, and then his successor President Nicolás Maduro, he faced a spate of criticism. Critics contended that the socialists stifled private enterprise, targeted opposition politicians, and, despite enacting several government missions, transgressed an array of human rights. Critics have also portrayed the socialists as paranoid autocrats that invent conspiracies in order to justify support for draconian policies.
In two recent publications, I have examined how the Venezuelan government sought to contain U.S. influence within the country by prohibiting foreign funding for non-governmental organizations (NGOs). First, I have shown how Venezuela has pursued legislation targeting NGOs since 2006 (Gill 2016). It would take the Venezuelan government until 2010, though, to pass legislation that criminalized foreign funding for NGOs that promote – ambiguously phrased – political rights. In that article, I show that Chávez had remained susceptible to criticism from foreign state leaders and domestic NGO representatives in 2006, and thus decided to shelve the law. In 2010, though, I show that Venezuela had become immersed within a global subfield involving countries that were also pursuing similar legislation, including Belarus and Russia, and this sort of maneuver had become normalized within this newfound global milieu. What is more, the Venezuelan government had severed relations with formerly critical countries and NGOs.
In a second publication, I have drawn attention to how Venezuela continues to deploy a discourse of national sovereignty and a discourse of human rights depending on particular goals (Gill 2017). As it involved legislation targeting NGOs, for example, the government utilized a discourse of national sovereignty. In defense of the legislation, Chávez quite plainly stated that that “[Venezuela is] a sovereign country … [and there are] political parties, NGOs, personalities of the counterrevolution that continue being financed [by] the US empire … I implore you to pass a very strict law to impede this.”
In recent months, President Maduro has continued to prioritize the idea of national sovereignty. Amid a food and medicinal shortage, Maduro has refused to accept assistance from several countries and institutions. And when criticized by, for example, the U.S. for its handling of the political-economic crisis, government leaders have demanded the U.S. respect Venezuelan national sovereignty and not meddle in its affairs.
Despite this continued emphasis on national sovereignty, I have also shown how the government has, at times, advanced a discourse of human rights. Venezuelan government leaders indeed routinely testify that no other country respects human rights more than Venezuela. Leaders also continue to use the language of human rights to criticize foreign governments, including Israel and the U.S. In July 2014, for example, Venezuela condemned Israeli military attacks within Palestine, and sent medicine and clothing to the country. President Maduro has also recurrently criticized U.S. foreign policy efforts in places such as Libya and Syria, as well as the extrajudicial murder of unarmed African-Americans throughout the country.
Tensions between human rights and national sovereignty visibly persist in Venezuela. The Venezuelan government has provided economic assistance to a number of countries throughout the world including Haiti and Nicaragua, yet it has guarded its own sovereignty so close that it has refused assistance amid its own crisis. The government has also rejected the notion that it hampers human rights by targeting NGOs, and has asserted that it must restrict NGO operations to bolster its own national sovereignty. At the same time, it has leveled human rights-oriented criticisms at a number of countries.
The existence of these tensions is not limited to Venezuela. The U.S. displays its own issues. It criticizes Venezuela, but it has failed to ratify the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, as several senators assert that the U.S. should not answer to anyone outside its borders. These dynamics will undoubtedly persist well into the 21stcentury, and it will, first and foremost, behoove citizens to hold their domestic leaders accountable to the standards they set.
Gill, Timothy M. 2016. “The Venezuelan Government and the Global Field: The Legislative Battle over Foreign Funding for Nongovernmental Organizations.” Sociological Forum 31(1): 29-52.
Gill, Timothy M. 2017. “Unpacking the World Cultural Toolkit in Socialist Venezuela: National Sovereignty, Human Rights, and anti-NGO Legislation.” Third World Quarterly, forthcoming.
Office of Inspector General (OIG). 2002. A Review of U.S. Policy Toward Venezuela November 2001 – April 2002. Report Number 02-OIG-003.
2016 Section Awards
Best Graduate Student Paper Award
Roberts, Louisa. “Changing Global Attitudes Toward Homosexuality: The Influence of Global and Region Specific Cultures, 1981-2012.”
Gordon Hirabayashi Human Rights Book Award
Holzer, Elizabeth. The Concerned Women of Budburam: Refugee Activists and Humanitarian Dilemmas. Cornell University Press.
Best Scholarly Article Award
Teeger, Chana. 2016. “Both Sides of the Story: History Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” American Sociological Review 80(6)1175-1200.
Awards and Announcements
Manisha Desai was the Compact for Faculty Diversity’s 2016 Faculty Mentor of the Year, New England.
After spending several weeks as a Fellow of the Institute for Advanced Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, Bandana Purkayastha completed her first month as a Fulbright-Nehru scholar at the University of Hyderabad. She is gathering data on her project Water, Inequalities and Rights.
Anjana Narayan and Bandana Purkayastha have been awarded a 2017-2018 Global Religion Research Initiative grant to set up an interdisciplinary, multi-country coalition of scholars who will study living Islam and Hinduism from an intersectional perspective. The scholars from the US, India and Pakistan will also examine appropriate methodologies for studying lived religions.
Annie Isabel Fukushima is a member of the Institute of (Im)Possible Subjects, a transnational feminist collective of artist, scholars, and activists. They were awarded $75,000 to implement research, pedagogies, and digital exhibitions entitled, “Migratory Times,” in the Colombia, Denmark, Philippines, South Korea, and the United States.
Adur, Shweta and Purkayastha, Bandana. 2017. “Claiming ‘Tradition,’ Naming the Cause: Examining the Language of Social Identity among Queer South Asians in U.S.” Journal of South Asian Diaspora 9: 1-16. Currently available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/19438192.2016.1199456
Armaline, William, Davita Glasberg, and Bandana Purkayastha. 2016. “De Jure vs. De Facto Rights: A Response to ‘Human Rights: What the United States Might Learn From the Rest of the World and, Yes, From American Sociology.’” Sociological Forum. DOI: 10.1111/socf.12303
Desai, Manisha. 2016. “SWS 2015 Feminist Lecture: The Gendered Geographies of Struggle: The World Social Forum and its Sometimes Overlapping Other Worlds.” Gender and Society 30(6): 869-889.
Desai, Manisha. 2016. “The Gendered Geographies of Global Justice,” In Social Movements and World-System Transformation. Edited by Jackie Smith, Michael Goodhart, Patrick Manning, and John Markoff.
Desai, Manisha and Rachel Rinaldo. 2016. “Reorienting Gender and Globalization: Introduction to the Special Issue.” Qualitative Sociology, Dec. 2016.
Ferrales, Gabrielle, Hollie Nyseth Brehm, and Suzy McElrath. 2016. “Gender-Based Violence Against Men and Boys in Darfur: What is Gendered About Genocide?” Gender & Society 30(4): 565-589.
Fukushima, Annie Isabel. 2016. An American Haunting: Unsettling Witnessing in Transnational Migration, the Ghost Case, & Human Trafficking (W.S. Hesford and R. Lewis, Eds). Feminist Formations, Special issue, Mobilizing Vulnerability: New Directions in Transnational Feminist Studies & Human Rights 28(1): 146 – 165.
Fukushima Annie Isabel, Guest Contributor. (2016) “Why should human trafficking be countered through a critical human rights approach?” In John Vanek (Ed.), The Essential Abolitionist: What You Need to Know About Human Trafficking & Modern Slavery.
Hola, Barbora and Hollie Nyseth Brehm. 2016. “Punishing Genocide: A Comparative Empirical Analysis of Sentencing Laws and Practices at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), Rwandan Domestic Courts, and Gacaca Courts.” Genocide Studies and Prevention 10(3): 59-80.
Krase, Jerome. “The Italian American Contribution to Trump’s Muslim Immigration Ban.” http://www.iitaly.org/magazine/focus/op-eds/article/italian-american-contribution-trumps-muslim-immigration-ban
Krase, Jerome. “The Rise of Italo-Trumpism.”
Krase, Jerome. “Intalo-Trumpism in NYC.” http://www.iitaly.org/magazine/focus/op-eds/article/italo-trumpism-in-nyc
Krase, Jerome and Judith N. DeSena. 2016. Race, Class, and Gentrification in Brooklyn: A View from the Street. Lexington Books.
Krase, Jerome. Keynote Lecture, “Seeing the Image of the City Change,” University of Central, Lancashire, United Kingdom, Fieldwork Photography Symposium, November 9, 2016.
Nyseth Brehm, Hollie, Christopher Uggen, and Jean-Damascéne Gasanabo. 2016. “Age, Gender, and the Crime of Crimes: Toward a Life-Course Theory of Genocide Participation.” Criminology 54(4): 713-743.
Waring, Chandra and Purkayastha, Bandana. 2017. “‘I’m a Different Kind of Biracial’: How Black/White Biracial Americans with Immigrant Parents Negotiate Race.” Social Identities: Journal for the Study of Race, Nation, Culture. Currently available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13504630.2016.1271739
Wyrod, Robert. 2016. AIDS and Masculinity in the African City: Privilege, Inequality, and Modern Manhood. University of California Press.
Wyrod, Robert. 2016. “When Rights Come Home: The Intimate Politics of Women’s Rights in Urban Uganda.” Humanity 7: 47-70.
Yousaf, Farhan and Purkayastha, Bandana. 2016. “Social World of Organ Transplantation, Trafficking, and Policies.” Journal of Public Health Policy 37: 190-199.
Newsletter Submission Information
Please send the following types of submissions to Annie Isabel Fukushima and Hollie Nyseth Brehm at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. To be included in the next issue, please send your submissions by May 31, 2017.
Feature Articles: Articles that highlight research, teaching, or engagement relevant to human rights.
Research Notes: Brief reflections on research studies related to human rights. Notes could focus on the methodology, the findings, the dissemination of findings, etc.
Teaching Notes: Brief reflections on teaching about human rights in undergraduate or graduate classrooms. Tips and classroom activities are especially welcome.
Grassroots Notes: Reflections, stories, and advice pertaining to engagement with local organizations, policymakers, and/or grassroots activists.
Publications and Announcements: Recently published a book, article, or paper that the human rights section members should read? Have news or an opportunity that you would like to share with the human rights community? Please send it our way!
Check out my contribution to the IIS Flashreads: https://iisflashreads.tumblr.com/
Here I discuss, “Pedagogies & Teaching the ‘Illegal'”
Pedagogies & Teaching the “Illegal”
by Annie Isabel Fukushima
Ngai’s work is brilliant. Allowing for one to trace legal events where the making of the “illegal” goes hand-in-hand with the making of the US.
Here is a lecture I gave drawing upon Mae Ngai’s work. “What is an American? Genocide, Relocation, Citizenship and Making of the ‘Illegal’“ (September 23, 2016) at University of Utah. The class: 100 students, majority students of color with many who have migrant narratives in their own histories and/or their family histories. It was important that we had a conversation about the making of the term “illegal.” Ngai’s work has been seminal for understanding the legal construction of citizenship and the “illegal.“
During the election period, living in a conservative state, where migrant communities are an integral part of the Utah context, discussing migration is ever important.
1. The term “illegal” has so much history, that even when you trouble it for students, they may still find it challenging. The legacy of “illegal” being synonymous with migrant and/or the dominant anti-immigrant sentiment make this a term that is difficult to move through, for some students. However it is critical that educators contend with the uncomfortable as a site of productive possibility.
2. It was important for me as an educator to link sentiments of immigration with colonial contexts. There is a historical need to trace how as the “illegal” is sustained through notions of citizenship furthered, cannot be delinked from colonial systems of governance.
3. To teach about migration, legality, citizenship, and coloniality, requires ongoing self-reflexive teaching practices. This lecture is not a perfect how to. It is an offering of what I did in one class. What I would change – this could have easily been three lecture. In the race for time and the need to crunch as much in as possible, I am left with what does not stick with the students?
4. I always make my lectures available after class. That way students may return to the notes and ask questions.
We all read:
- C. Matthew Snipp, “The First Americans: American Indians.” Margaret L. Anderson and Patricia Hill Collins, Eds. Race, Class & Gender. An Anthology. Ninth Edition. Cengage Learning. 34 – 40.
- Mae Ngai. “Birthright Citizenship and the Alien Citizen.” Fordham Law Review 75(5): 2521 – 2529.
- Marie Friedmann Marquardt, Timothy Steigenga, Philip J. Williams, and Manuel A. Vasquez. “Living Illegal: the Human Face of Unauthorized Immigration.” Margaret L. Anderson and Patricia Hill Collins, Eds. Race, Class & Gender. An Anthology. Ninth Edition. Cengage Learning. 157-163.
Link to the Prezi (edited for this public audience).
Flashreads are a fabulous way to experience dynamic responses to works – videos, art, thoughts, connections, writing, and teachings. Here is what IIS says about the flashreads.
Welcome to the discussion site for the Institute of (im)Possible Subjects public “flashreads.”
Join us by reading the text and submitting responses of writing, video, links, reblogs and images!
Submissions are moderated to assure relevance to the reading and posts will be published anonymously unless the submitter includes a name in the content of the submission.
Currently reading February 17 – 20, 2017, the Introduction to Mae Ngai’s “Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America.”
The PDF can be found here: https://tinyurl.com/h7dfz5c
Previous reads archived on this site include Rolando Vazquez, “Translation as Erasure: Thoughts on Modernity’s Epistemic Violence” and Fred Moten and Stefano Harney’s “The Undercommons.”
Freedom Network USA 15th Annual Conference, “Redefining Justice: Envisioning New Approaches to Anti-Trafficking Work”, April 5 – 6, 2017.
Redefining Justice: Envisioning New Approaches in Anti-Trafficking Work,” the 15th Annual Freedom Network USA Human Trafficking Conference, will use a social justice lens to imagine what justice looks like in the anti-trafficking movement. To achieve justice is to talk about inequalities in our society and how injustices can create vulnerabilities to human trafficking and continue to disadvantage trafficking survivors. For the trafficked person, justice might look like the conviction of a trafficker, having access to various benefits, or the development of preventative efforts so that no one else experiences what they went through. What does justice look like to anti-traffickers? It might be through the criminal justice system, the civil legal system or restitution. It may be prevention or looking beyond the legal system or the development of new resources to protect survivors, victims, and potential victims. We look forward to exploring these issues during on April 5 -6, 2017 in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area. Registration opened on December 2016.
- Draft Agenda: https://freedomnetworkusa.org/app/uploads/2016/10/Posted-Draft-Conference-Agenda-2017-1.pdf
- Pre conference training for newer folks in the movement (April 4): https://freedomnetworkusa.org/training/#current-trainings
- To register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/15th-annual-freedom-network-usa-human-trafficking-conference-tickets-29997179371?aff=eac2
- Conference website: https://freedomnetworkusa.org/training/conference/
Federico de Jesus, FDJ Solutions
Dr. Gisela Negron Velazquez, Universidad de Puerto Rico
Denis Nelson, Author, War Against All Puerto Ricans
To learn more about ITSW in the College of Social Work at University of Utah, visit:
I will be heading to Los Angeles for an event curated, organized and in conversation with at land’s edge and “Geographies of Displacement”:
View this rich dialogue about Dr. Evelyn Nakano Glenn’s work. Jump ahead to see me (I presented after Linda Burnham with the Domestic Workers Alliance): 1:58:35.
American Studies Association 2016
Contested Visions of Home: Asian/American Diasporic Subjectivities in the Media
Sat, November 19, 8:00 to 9:45am, HYATT REGENCY AT COLORADO CONVENTION CTR, Level 3, Mineral Hall G
Session Submission Type: Paper Session: Traditional Format
Asian/American subjectivities are deeply shaped by the concept of home. For some, home is a place of stability and safety. Yet for diasporic subjects whose identities are marked by movement and displacement, home can be rife with contestation and disruption. Asian/American understandings of home cannot be delinked from systemic racism, gender oppression, and modern colonialism. Moreover, the troubled relationships that Asian/Americans have had to citizenship can make it difficult to speak up, voice their struggles, or navigate the violence and upheaval that have defined their experiences of home.
In this panel, we examine the creation of home through an interdisciplinary exploration of media representations, looking at the way Asian/American visions of home are created and overturned within film, radio, journalism, and digital media. Through interrogating these representations of Asian/American bodies, voices, and experiences, we seek to answer the questions such as, what does home mean for Asian/Americans when the home may be the site of violence? How do different forms of media provide access to Asian/American expressions of home, and how are opportunities for resistance both revealed and obscured through these stories? As Asians cross geographies, notions of how they belong in a given moment are deeply shaped by violence and sociopolitical instabilities. Violence takes on many faces: domestic violence, human trafficking, exclusionary policies, and histories of military engagement. Within the stories of Asian/Americans in the diaspora, we seek to unravel the various contested meanings of home that prevail in spite of this violence, and in doing so, have come to define Asian/American politics, social dynamics, and history.
Annie Fukushima will open our panel with an exploration of the violence against Asian migrants who have been trafficked into domestic servitude, asking how the concept of debt can help us to better understand their struggles. Through an analysis of legal court records and media circulations, she posits a form of unsettled witnessing as key to understanding the way that these populations are rewriting their understanding of home. Terry Park then explores the figure of Walt Kowalski in Clint Eastwood’s film Gran Torino (2009), asking how his history as a Korean War veteran impacts the relationship he builds with his Hmong American neighbors. The way that Kowalski polices the borders of his white picket-fenced home can be read in conjunction with Trans-Pacific circulation of Korean War and Cold War security practices that shape our definition of “home” and “not home,” ultimately revealing what it would take to transform those boundaries. Finally, Lori Lopez will present her research on the way that Hmong American women are using audio media in new ways that can begin to counter their long histories of displacement and disruption. She argues that Hmong American women are using these different media platforms to broadcast their collective voices and facilitate conversations by using their own cultural heritage as a strength, and in doing so, can create a diasporic space of belonging.
I had a wonderful time in Montreal. And, what an amazing flow of ideas, research, and practice. Our panel centralized the work of Dr. Maria Lugones to discuss witnessing, pedagogies, sound, and heartbreak. What a beautiful group of people to be thinking with.
The Praxis of Decolonial Feminism
Sat, Nov 12, 5:00 to 6:15pm, Palais des Congrès, 519B (LCD)
Session Submission Type: Panel
Panelists: Cindy Cruz (UCSC), Wanda Alarcon (UT, Austin), and Anna Rios-Rojas (Colgate)
- General Conference / SUBTHEME FIVE: World-Making and Resistant Imaginaries
Witnessing Homosocial Violence Through a Decolonial Praxis
This presentation examines a genealogy of legal events, from the Hornbuckle sisters, Adriana Delcid, Agni Lisa Brown, “Jackie” Roberts, to state and federal legislation, to examine witnessing homosocial violence. Drawing upon decolonial feminist Maria Lugones, I call for new forms of witnessing. This witnessing embraces Lugones concept of “faithful witnessing,” a witnessing against power that is on the side of resistance. Through Lugones, I call for a witnessing that embraces decolonial praxis where the witness inhabits the complex, is unsettled by what they are seeing, and challenges normative visions. This decolonial theory and practice of witnessing is an “unsettled witnessing.”
Presenter: Annie Isabel Fukushima
HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH
Historical and Ongoing Impact of Colonialism PROMESA Law Video Dialogue
Thursday, October 13, 2016 2:00 pm MDT Live Video Streaming with Public Engagement
To join, RSVP to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Puerto Rico has been a unincorporated territory of the U.S. since 1917 and Puerto Ricans are the second largest Latino group in the United States. This video dialogue will discuss a highly contested issue among Puerto Ricans, Latinos and people in the U.S.: the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA). PROMESA grants a sevenmember oversight board with the power to require balanced budgets and fiscal plans in Puerto Rico. The controversy of PROMESA has centered on what it can really promise and the kind of relationship it will solidify between the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Join students with the Initiative for Transformative Social Work (ITSW) to learn about the history, protests, and challenging issues surrounding economic relations between the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
Panelists: Nelson Denis, author of War Against All Puerto Ricans, writer/director of Vote For Me!
Federico De Jesus, founder of FDJ Solutions
Dr. Gisela Negron Velazquez, director of the Universidad de Puerto Rico Social Work Dept
Download event flyer here: promesa
Hear from Ani Robles, one of the Experiential Scholars, conveying the importance of the event:
Position in Pacific Island Studies,
University of Utah The University of Utah School for Cultural and Social Transformation, home to the Divisions of Ethnic and Gender Studies, invites applications for an open rank position in Pacific Island Studies. Tenure will be held in the School in either or both Divisions in consultation with the successful candidate. Applicants are encouraged to apply who engage in interdisciplinary or discipline-based research, feminist and/or gender studies, historical, or contemporary dimensions of the Pacific Islands/ Oceania Studies and diaspora. The successful candidate will be expected to demonstrate a strong commitment to research and teaching. The University of Utah values candidates who will contribute to a vibrant scholarly climate. For more details please see: https://utah.peopleadmin.com/postings/56573 A PhD., MFA or other terminal degree is required by the moment of hire, July 1, 2017. Submit letter of application; curriculum vitae; publication sample; and names and contact information of three references. The position will remain open until filled. For full consideration, submit materials by October 15, 2016. For queries contact: Dr. Wanda Pillow email@example.com
Position in American Indian Studies,
University of Utah The Division of Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah invites applications for a tenure-track assistant professor or tenured open rank professor of American Indian Studies, beginning Fall 2017. Ethnic Studies seeks a candidate from a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the University of Utah’s academic community. Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah, founded in 1976, is an interdisciplinary unit housed in the newly established School for Cultural and Social Transformation. Current job searches in the School include African American Studies and a Pacific Islander Studies joint-appointment with Gender Studies. For more details see http://utah.peopleadmin.com/postings/57364. Review of applications will begin November 1, 2016. Applications received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled. Please submit (1) a cover letter, (2) an updated curriculum vitae, (3) a sample of scholarly or creative work, not to exceed 40 pages, (4) and a list of three references. PhD, MFA, or other terminal degree in related field is required by start date. Inquiries may be directed to Dr. Lourdes Alberto (Lourdes.firstname.lastname@example.org). The University of Utah is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and educator. Minorities, women, veterans, and those with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Veterans’ preference is extended to qualified veterans. Reasonable disability accommodations will be provided with adequate notice. For additional information about the University’s commitment to equal opportunity and access see: http://www.utah.edu/nondiscrimination/. The University of Utah values candidates who have experience working in settings with students from diverse backgrounds and possess a strong commitment to improving access to higher education for historically underrepresented students.
Position in African American Studies,
University of Utah The Division of Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah invites applications for a tenure-track assistant professor or tenured open rank professor of African American studies, beginning Fall 2017. Ethnic Studies seeks a candidate from a range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the University of Utah’s academic community. Preferred candidates will be engaged in Black sexualities and/or gender studies and other related fields of research on the African American experience. Tenure will reside in the Division of Ethnic Studies with potential for a joint appointment in the Division of Gender Studies. Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah, founded in 1976, is an interdisciplinary unit housed in the newly established School for Cultural and Social Transformation. Current job searches in the School include American Indian Studies and a Pacific Islander Studies joint-appointment with Gender Studies. For more details please see: http://utah.peopleadmin.com/postings/57369. Review of applications will begin November 1, 2016. Applications received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled. Please submit (1) a cover letter, (2) a curriculum vitae, (3) samples of scholarly or creative work, not to exceed 40 pages, (4) and a list of three references. PhD, MFA, or other terminal degree in related field is required by start date. Inquiries may be directed to Dr. Wilfred Samuels (email@example.com). The University of Utah is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and educator. Minorities, women, veterans, and those with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Veterans’ preference is extended to qualified veterans. Reasonable disability accommodations will be provided with adequate notice. For additional information about the University’s commitment to equal opportunity and access see: http://www.utah.edu/nondiscrimination/. The University of Utah values candidates who have experience working in settings with students from diverse backgrounds and possess a strong commitment to improving access to higher education for historically underrepresented students.
9AM – 12:15PM
Ula Taylor, UC Berkeley
I am thrilled to announce the article I published with Feminist Formations, “An American Haunting: Unsettling Witnessing in Transnational Migration, the Ghost Case and Human Trafficking” is available to read. The special issue, “Mobilizing Vulnerability: New Directions in Transnational Feminist Studies and Human Rights” was co-edited by Wendy S. Hesford and Rachel A. Lewis. It features the works of Katie E. Oliviero, Heather Switzer, Emily Bent, Crystal Leigh Endsley, Leifa Mayers, Jane Juffer, Amy Shuman, Carol Bohmer, Alexandra Schultheis Moore, Sylvanna M. Falcon, and Rachel A. Lewis.
Volume 28, Issue 1, Spring 2016
Table of Contents
Special Issue: Mobilizing Vulnerability: New Directions in Transnational Feminist Studies and Human Rights
Vulnerability’s Ambivalent Political Life: Trayvon Martin and the Racialized and Gendered Politics of Protection
The Uncomfortable Meeting Grounds of Different Vulnerabilities: Disability and the Political Asylum Process
An American Haunting: Unsettling Witnessing in Transnational Migration, the Ghost Case, and Human Trafficking
“Dispossession within the Law”: Human Rights and the Ec-Static Subject in M. NourbeSe Philip’s Zong!
I recently stepped into the position as the Director for the Initiative for Transformative Social Work (website content coming soon, this role is a three year term 2016 – 2019). To kick of the 2016 year, I have organized The College of Social Work’s Initiative for Transformative Social Work (ITSW) inaugural ITSW Bootcamp next week. The goal of this Bootcamp is to bring together a critical community of social workers for a collective investment in social justice visions and practice.
- Chair Elect Kiyoter Tsutsui, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
- Secretary Treasurer: Annie Fukushima, University of Utah
- Council Members: Elizabeth Boyle, University of Minnesota; Robin Stryker, University of Arizona
- Grad Student Representative: Vivian Shaw
LSA Panel – Sat, 6/4 4:45 PM – 6:30 PM– NOLA Marriott, Galerie 3 (2nd floor) –
“Victimization, Human Trafficking and Immigrants: Mixed Methods analysis of the Perceptions of Victimhood in U.S. Courts, 2000 – 2015” – it’s a project that I am working on with Dr. Paul Baodong Liu.
Other session presenters: Edi Kinney (SFSU), Amy Cohen (OSU), Corey Shdaimah (University of Maryland), Rashmee Singh (University of Waterloo)
Law & Society Association, June 2 – 5, 2016.
New Orleans Marriott
8:00am – 8:30am
8:30am – 8:40am
Michael Hardman PhD
Chief Global OfficerUniversity of Utah
8:40am – 9:25am
Keynote Address:Health Beyond Borders
Eduardo Banzon, MD
Senior Health SpecialistAsian Development Bank
9:25am – 9:55am
Local Refugee Community Leaders: Refugees Promoting Wellness
Gyanu DulalHajie GollValentine MukundenteAntoinette UwanyiugiraMODERATOR: Grant Sunada
Bhutanese CommunityLiberian CommunityBest of Africa LeaderCongolese CommunityMPH, Doctoral Student
10:00am – 10:15am
10:15am – 10:45am
Plenary 1:Human Trafficking & Immigration: Witnessing (De) Valued Subjects in a Post 9-11 Era
Annie Fukushima, PhD
Asst Professor, College of Social WorkUniversity of Utah
10:45am – 11:15am
Plenary 2:Where Respect and Pragmatism Intersect: Empowerment, Markets, and Refugee Camps
Dominic Montagu, PhD
UC San Francisco
11:15am – 11:45am
Student Research Panel
11:45am – 1:00pm
Lunch with Mentors/Student Poster Mingle
Ask the Expert: Global and Refugee Health
1:00pm – 1:45pm
Keri Gibson, MD OB/GYN
Mara Rabin, MD Medical Director, UHHR
Dominic Montagu, PhDUC San Francisco
“Culturally Competent Care for the Ob/Gyn Patient: Implications of FGM on Women’s Health”
Speaking the unspeakable: Important health considerations in the care of torture survivors
Private Healthcare in Developing Countries: Why, Where and For Whom
1:55pm – 2:40pm
Amelia Self, MSWUT State Health Department, Refugee ResettlementJi won ChangBioinformatics Data AnalystU of U Dept of Epidiology
Debra Penney, PhD , CNM, MPH, MSU of U College of Nursing
Melissa Moeinvaziri, MScU of U Law Student
Refugee Resettlement: Overview of Utah State Refugee Policy
Dealing with Difference in the Health Encounter: Muslim Encounters
Asylum, Deportation, and Human Rights: Intersections of law and health in the refugee context
2:50pm – 3:35pm
Amelia Self, MSWUT State Health Department Refugee Resettlement
Eduardo Banzon, MDSenior Health SpecialistAsian Development Bank
Local Refugee Community Leaders
Mental Health of refugees
Pursuing Universal Health Coverage in Asia and the Pacific
Refugees Promoting Wellness
3:40pm – 4:30pm
Final words, mixer, ice cream
My article published with Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies is now available! Thank you to Institute for Research on Women, Nicole Fleetwood and Sarah Tobias, among other wonderful colleagues who offered this article feedback. I also want to say it’s amazing to be in a special issue with some very amazing people: Karen Leong, Robertta Chevrette, Ann Hibner Koblitz,Karen Kuo, Heather Switzer, Maylei Blackwell, Laura Briggs, MignonetteMinnie Chiu, Debjani Chakravarty, David Rubin, Hokulani Aikau, Maile Arvin, Mishuana Goeman, Scott Morgensen, Sonia Hernandez, & Anna Guevarra.
Full list of the special issue here:https://www.jstor.org/stab…/10.5250/fronjwomestud.36.issue-3
“Anti-Violence Iconographies of the Cage: Diasporan Crossings and the (Un)Tethering of Subjectivities” in Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies Volume 36, Number 3.
Project MUSE http://bit.ly/1mCbAkW
Thank you for everyone who joined me at my presentation at the American Studies Association 2015 conference, The (Re)production of Misery and the Ways of Resistance, October 8-11, 2015, Toronto, Canada
Sat, October 10, 10:00 to 11:45am, Sheraton Centre, Chestnut West
“Technology, Surveillance, and Transnational Trafficking: Securing the Nation Through Narratives of (In)security” by Annie Isabel Fukushima
Technology impacts transnational economies and technocultures, Anne Balsamo’s concept of how culture shapes technology and vice versa (that the two are not in opposition). For the transnational migrant crossing U.S. borders, he/she is impacted by the innovations in technology. Technology shapes mobile subjects. What is the role of technology in human rights endeavors? In 2011, Google gave $10.5 million to anti-trafficking organizations, suggesting that in a post-9-11 era, the relationship between technology and anti-violence efforts is an important area to be further investigated where the implications are human, political and social. Technology is central aspect in human rights endeavors, in particular, in anti-trafficking efforts, including wiretapping as a form of surveillance for prosecutorial purposes, media circulated public service announcements as a form of prevention and outreach, and online forms and data collection to better serve victims, However, insecurities are also sustained for the vulnerable migrant who is constructed by dualities of victim/criminal, illegal/legal, and citizen/noncitizen. As national borders are militarized furthering the belief that the world is a dangerous place, transnational migrants trafficked in the U.S. are also shaped by discourses of (in)security. How are the discourse and practices surrounding technology and human rights shaped by notions of (in)security? The technologies range from technologies of mobilizing a human rights agenda through apps to surveillance of Asian massage parlors. I focus on a particular transnational subject: transnational Asian migrants constituted as trafficked in the United States. Through examining legal court records and media discussions surrounding technology and violence, I address the (in)securities reproduced through nationalist narratives of misery in the form of human trafficking. As anti-trafficking discourse and the reproduction of (in)security is furthered, new relations and subjectivities are also forged through and shaped by technology innovations and implementations to address violence and human trafficking. Take for example the use of technologies to control the U.S. borders, where migrant crossings are seen as victims to be rescued and criminals to be deported. And diasporic subjects are positioned as naturalizing settler narratives – migrants as deportable and foreign or victims on a path to citizenship who are to be rescued and restored. In this paper I will discuss the role of technology in human rights efforts as a central aspect of furthering notions of (in)security. Therefore, to reposition how one witnesses notions of rights and (in)security, I call for an unsettling witnessing of transnational subjects.
Here is the title and description of the panel. My wonderful co-panelists were Ayano Ginoza and Crystal Baik, moderated by Ju Hui Judy Han:
Contesting Inter/national Militarized Security in the “Asia Pacific” and Imagining An Otherwise
In this proposed panel, participants address the “Asia Pacific” in relationship to the intersecting histories of U.S. and Japanese militarized imperialisms— enmeshed (neo)colonial dynamics that scholars, including Naoki Sakai, Setsu Shigematsu, and Keith Camacho, refer to as the enduring “transpacific alliance.” Mobilizing the “Asia Pacific” as an analytic and a politics of knowledge rather than a fixed geographical region, panelists engage with a spectrum of transnational sites and spaces acutely impacted by Japanese and U.S. empire building projects sustained by militarisms in Korea and the Korean DMZ (Baik), the continental United States (Fukushima), and Okinawa and Japan (Ginoza).
Paying attention to the production of “disposable” subjects living on the fringes of national citizenship and heteronormative life, this panel explores a central conundrum: the ways in which neocolonial regimes (including but not limited to the United States) conceptualize misery, violence, and surveillance as central to and necessary for the contemporary projects of global humanitarianism, inter/national safety, and democratic freedom. Examining these interconnected spaces and sites as nodes located within an extensive militarized geography, this panel is particularly interested in the oppositional logics that guide and undergird the biopolitical project of inter/national security— necessity/expendability, paradise/militarism, legality/illegality. Yet, even as they examine the serious material consequences and ontological conditions associated with militarized imperialism, panelists also engage with local ways of resistance, emergent forms of affinity politics, and alliance building— ranging from cultural production to disidentification practices and transformative methods of witnessing—that have crystallized among militarized subjects. As discussed within the panel, such practices do not merely trouble or challenge militarized imperial logics. Rather, they labor toward a new understanding of “security” de-linked from nationalist and militarized sentiments, and consider the radical possibilities of demilitarization and decolonization.
Please support the Essential Abolitionist by John Vanek,
The individuals who have offered to contribute to The Essential Abolitionist represent a wealth of knowledge in the fight against human trafficking, and bring years of experience in the investigation of trafficking incidents, serving victims, task force operations, research, and other topics.
* Jon Daggy, Detective Sergeant, Indianapolis Metro Police Depart., Human Trafficking Vice Unit
*Melissa Farley, PhD., Executive Dir. Prostitution Research & Education
*Susan French, Anti-Trafficking Consultant, (Former Federal Prosecutor)
*Annie Fukushima, PhD., Assistant Professor, University of Utah
*Benjamin Greer, Anti-Trafficking Consultant, Attorney
*Cindy Liou, Anti-Trafficking Consultant, Attorney, (Formerly with Asian/Pacific Islander Legal Outreach)
*Derek Marsh, Anti-Trafficking Consultant, Deputy Chief (Ret.) Westminster, CA Police
*Shamere McKenzie, CEO, Sun-Gate.org, Trafficking Survivor
*Sandra Morgan, PhD., Vanguard University
*Lynett Parker, Supervising Staff Attorney, K&G Alexander Community Law Center
*Stephanie Richard, Policy & Legal Services Director, Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking (CAST)
*Mark Wexler, Executive Director, Not For Sale Campaign
*Kiricka Yarbough-Smith, Chair, North Carolina Coalition Against Human Trafficking
*Polaris Project, home of the National Human Trafficking Resource Center and the National Human Trafficking Hotline
Just found out that my article that appears in the anthology edited by Kuilan Liu and Elaine Kim is available for purchase. My article,“‘The Jammed’: Representational Politics and Racialized Narratives of the Trafficked Asian Diaspora” examines a drama film, The Jammed, directed by Dee McLachlan. It is a chapter in the anthology Changing Boundaries and Reshaping Itineraries in Asian American Literary Studies (November 2014) edited by Kuilan Liu and Elaine Kim (Website says Kuilan Liu and Jin Huijing). To purchase a copy of the book, visit Nankai University Press, Click Purchase.
Here are the other folks featured in the anthology:
Changing Boundaries and Reshaping Itineraries in Asian American Literary Studies
Part I: Reading Asian American Literature in New Frames
1. Toward a Bifocal View of Chinese American Literature
2. Understanding the Ethnic and Universal Dimensions of Asian American Literature
3. Commentary on Transnational Asian American Studies
Part II: Beyond Borders of Nation and Race
4. Asian American Realism and the Literature of Globalization: The Local and the Global in Jhumpa
Lahiri and Yiyun Li
5. Where Is Gary Locke in Chinese American Literature? Critiquing Chinese American Literary
6. Amitav Ghosh’s Sea of Poppies: Individual Identity and the Imagined Nation
7. Debt, the Shifting Grammar of Life, and Manjula Padmanabhan’s Harvest
8. “The Jammed”: Representational Politics and Racialized Narratives of the Trafficked Asian Diaspora
Annie Isabel Fukushima
9. Re-presenting the Global Filipino: The Story and Songs of Apl de Ap
Ethel Regis Lu
10. Orientalism, Genre, and Transnational Korean/American Stars
Part III: Memories of War/Wars of Memory
11. On the Edges of Consciousness: Figuring Time in Joy Kogawa’s Obasan
Sunn Shelley Wong
12. Border-Crossing in the World Republic of Letters: South Korean and Korean American
Rearguard Fictions of the Korean War
13. Writing in the Dark: Memory, Memoirs and Re-Membering After Genocide
Part IV: Ideas of Home and Family
14. Memories Without Borders, Borders Without Memories
Luis H. Francia
15. A Foreigner at Home: The Politics of Home in Francie Lin’s The Foreigner
16. Family: The Site of Repression, Resistance, Empowerment, and Formation of Female Subjecthood
17. Transgenerational Trauma in Fae Myenne Ng’s Bone
Documenting Gendered Violence
Representations, Collaborations, and Movements
Please view the video of an Institute of Impossible Subjects dialogue on gender and precarity.
Sunday, March 8 at 4 p.m. EST in light of International Women’s Day, IIS hosted a conversation on Gender and Precarity.
Our facebook page with details for the event is at:
And the readings are posted on our tumblr site:
I feel so privileged to have witnessed an amazing multimedio.
Alanna Lockward was the facilitator.
It was an event that represented important border crossing. A recentering of decolonial actions through a dialogue that was intentional and moving. It made me think about how the U.S. portrays Haiti-Dominican Republic relations in ways that focus on the legacies of trauma and violence, as though it is delinked from U.S. imperialisms and colonization. The multimedio grappled with the killing abstraction of racism that has real implications – dividing people through the circulation of dominant narratives. How does one walk across the multiple borders that are reified in categories reinscribed on the body, the land, and in the mind – and dualities of legal/illegal, us/them, citizen/noncitizen, victim/criminal, and human/nonhuman. Where are the possibilities of healing? This multi-medio inspired through reading, listening, speaking, and being together, the decolonial maneuvers of reaching out, to be together, even in times when narratives of violence and difference (i.e., the circulation of the lynching of a Haitian man), continue to hold the center. The multimedio was a intervening in these divides – a desire to come together, alliance, and the speaking to what resonates across boundaries.
An important part of the multimedio is a collective reading of a fragment of Jacques Viau Renaud’s epic poem “Permanencia del llanto” (The Permanence of Weeping). The idea is to document this collective reading of people in both parts of the island and elsewhere, in Spanish, French and English.
Monday February 16 @ 11 am, Saint-Domingue time / 5 pm Europe time
Wednesday February 18 @ 11 am, Saint Domingue time / 5 pm Europe time
Dear friends, I am happy to announce that I have accepted an offer for a tenure track position as an Assistant Professor with University of Utah Ethnic Studies Program and the The University of Utah College of Social Work. I have thoroughly enjoyed being with Institute for Research on Women – Rutgers University and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, Rutgers University. The mentorship, support, and opportunities that I have experienced here as a Mellon Fellow has been life changing. My intellectual work, growth, and personhood have been radically changed in this Rutgers space. Although it’s sad to leave New Jersey, I am very much excited about what is in store for me. Please like the programs on Facebook and connect with me if you are interested in collaborating.
By Annie Isabel Fukushima, PhD
On November 25, the Institute for Research on Women, the department of Asian Languages and Cultures, and the Libraries at Rutgers University will host our first event of three events with regard to “Rethinking the Asia Pivot: Challenging Everyday Militarisms & Bridging Communities of Women.” The first event is aninternational webinar that brings together activists from Guam, Japan, Mexico, Okinawa, the Philippines, and South Korea. The activists will discuss the impact of militarisms on communities and how they work to build peace and genuine security in their communities. The event is in collaboration with the Center for Women’s Global Leadership to coincide with the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign.
The United States has had a long interest in the Asia-Pacific. From the illegal annexation of Hawaii (1898), the occupation of the Philippines and Guam (as well as Puerto Rico and Cuba) at the end of the Spanish American War, and the occupation of Japan, South Korea, among other countries during and after World War II. The United States has long been turning towards Asia. Whether it is for economic reasons, as seen in the development of Transpacific Partnerships, or the build up of military bases as seen in Jeju Island or Heneko, Okinawa, the U.S. has interests in Asia. The pivot to Asia is part of the U.S. military strategy tocontain China, and this intervention is commonly referred to as the “Asia Pivot.”
As the United States turns to Asia through military might and neoliberal economic maneuvers, what are its implications for the people, the land, and other species in the region?
There are lessons to be learned about military exercises; bombing in the Pacific has rendered Bikini Atoll unlivable. Others compare present-day Guam (or Guahan) to the Bikini Atoll. As people are displaced by military buildup, others are displaced by the environmental side-effects of buildup. And place between the Americas and Asia is a sea of islands with people, species, and land. Places where U.S. citizens settle are not immune. As tourists see places like Hawai`i as a vacation destination, the reality of Hawaii is its history and ongoing presence of the U.S. military that has led to the destruction of indigenous lands from Koho`olawe, to Makua Valley, and Pohakuloa. Indigenous peoples like Terri Keko`olani are speaking out about the human costs, impact on the land, and the rights denied due to military expansion and culture. Military exercises are known to leave behind contaminants such as depleted uranium. And some of the waste has yet to be unburied; Agent Orange was discovered in rusty barrels buried in cities in Okinawa – a legacy that the Vietnam War was not only about Southeast Asia. The health consequences of military contaminants are generational; the Alianza de Mujeres Viequenses has been at the forefront exposing the longterm effects of militarization even after demilitarization; Viequenses exhibit high rates of cancer, hypertension, asthma, cirrhosis, and other respiratory illnesses related to military contamination of environments.
The violence of military cultures is not only environmental, but also has material effects that come to the fore during crises. The International Women’s Network Against Militarism, a network of scholars and activists, was founded in 1997 in response to violence occurring on military bases. In particular, the rape of an Okinawan girl by U.S. military servicemen led to public outcry sparking the birth of an international women’s network to address human rights violations related to military buildup. As Cynthia Enloe has demonstrated, military violence that takes the shape of acts such as rape, cannot be seen as the actions of a “few bad apples.” Instead, sexual violence, rape, and trafficking must be contextualized by race, gender, and nation, that have visual, textual and material effects. Sexual violence has been a long-time concern for activists – from rape of military personnel to civilians; sexual violence is just as present on the frontline as it is on the fenceline of military bases. “Unknowable” numbers paint a picture of the politics surrounding U.S. actions and inactions towards rape, sexual violence, and trafficking – who is to be protected? Who and what is expendable? In fact the 21stcentury inheritance of war and sexual violence is not only a battle of weapons, but also history and memory. As Japan attempts to sweep its militarized sexual slavery under the rug, what do the visible narratives about U.S. military culture, rape, and (sexual) violence say about us? In 2006 Filipinas organized to raise visibility surrounding the rape by Lance Corporal Daniel Smith. The rape led to media and political discussions surrounding the Visiting Forces Agreement, Philippine sovereignty, gender-based violence, and military cultures. Gendered-base violence, such as the events surrounding rape cannot be disaggregated from the geopolitics of a U.S. turn to Asia as tied to neoliberal policies, military interventions, gendered and national subjectivities, and the transnational flow of people, goods, and ideas, in the region and to the U.S.
To call our event “Rethinking the Asia Pivot,” is to call for new interventions in thinking and practice. Therefore, the inspiration for the events include scholarly thinking and activism, as well as the role of the visual in (re)shaping how one may see (or not see) a military turn to Asia.
In 2013, I received an email regarding Sonoma County Museum’s “Camellia has Fallen.” The exhibit featured the works of artists reflecting on 1948, where the army executed thousands of residents on the island (~60,000) because the island was seen as Communist. From acrylic to video installations the artists uncovered histories of trauma. The exhibit is named for a “1991 painting of red camellias in the snow by South Korean artist Kang Yo Bae, recalling a folk story of the flowers falling like drops of blood in the massacre.” In late 2013, the artists and curators were looking for the next home for the exhibit. Where would these important works travel to next? Why not Rutgers? And so, we were able to bring some of the digital works to Rutgers.
At the time Obama was making plans to visit Asian countries to discuss the Transpacific Partnership, as military buildup continued on Jeju Island and Okinawa, and rape of military personnel by their peers made regular headline news. What does the turn to Asia mean for the people in Asia and the Pacific? What does it hold for the Americas?
Therefore, in late 2013, I convened a small committee: myself, Suzy Kim (author ofEveryday Life in the North Korean Revolution, 1945 – 1950) and Kayo Denda (head librarian, Margery Somers Foster Center, Douglass Library). We reached out to the Center for Women’s Global Leadership, and “Rethinking the Asia Pivot” was born. “Rethinking the Asia Pivot” at Rutgers University is possible due to the solidarity and organizing amongst women of color faculty at Rutgers in service to our community and students.
Our collaboration led us to ask important questions surrounding the Asia pivot: How will the pivot impact Asia and the Americas broadly (and how has it historically impacted the Americas)? How do women, scholars, activists, and political leaders respond to the changing climate of security and increased securitization through the military? What’s at stake for women, human rights, the environment, and nations? What are the health implications of militarisms from environmental impacts to physiological and psychological impacts of living near or on military bases? How are such health impacts gendered? What are the environmental consequences of natural disasters and the subsequent impact of disaster militarism on local communities? What are the generational impacts of military policies – for young people recruited, veterans, their families, local communities and nations?
Through digital works on display, transnational discussions in a webinar, and scholarly and activist discussions in panels, we hope to critically engage together with event participants “rethinking the Asia pivot.” The events comprise of artists, scholars, and activists from Denmark, Guam, Japan, Massachusetts, Mexico, New Jersey, New York, Okinawa, the Philippines, and South Korea. To kick off 16 Days of Activism Campaign, we begin with an international webinar on November 25, 6PM EST. On December 3, films will be screened. The films discuss the ghosts of Jeju that haunt the present, the migrations, dislocations and spectacles produced through the making of the Panama Canal, and the relation between water, sexual economies, and bases in the Philippines. Artist works featured include: Michelle Dizon’s Basing Landscapes, Dalida Maria Benfield’s Hotel Panama, Kakyoung Lee’s Burning Island, The Dawn of Jeju 4.3 by Manamongs, Im Heung Soon’s Sungsi, and Reiterations of Dissent by Jane Jin Kaisen. To rethink the pivot towards Asia requires conversations that bring in history, representation, policy, and practice. Therefore, the finale event occurs on December 4: it is our international symposium featuring Cynthia Enloe as the keynote. Panelists will discuss themes related to history, technology, visuality, narrativity, representation, strategies, policy and violence. To engage with the visual culture of the pivot to Asia, digital works will be on display throughout the entire day.
We invite you to join us during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign to address gendered-violence and human rights.
Please visit: rethinkingasiapivot.com for more information.
Sister events are occurring in New York City, Washington D.C., and San Francisco.
Annie Isabel Fukushima is an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow with the Institute for Research on Women and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University (2013 – 2015). Dr. Fukushima’s chapters appears in Human Trafficking Reconsidered: Rethinking the Problem, Envisioning New Solutions (2014) edited by sociologists Rhacel Salazar Parrenas and Kimberly Kay Hoang and in Documenting Gendered Violence edited by Lisa Cuklanz and Heather McIntosh. Her work discusses an array of issues on race, gender, and sexuality with regard to trafficking, intimacy, violence, and militarisms. Currently she is revising her manuscript Migrant Crossings.
Today I had the great pleasure of being on a panel with Dr. Walter Rucker, “Gold Coast Diasporas: Identity, Culture, and Power” and Dr. Bayo Holsey, “Tyranny of Freedom: Race, Power, and the Fictions of Late Capitalism.” I shared my manuscript in progress, Migrant Crossings: Unsettling Witnessing of Asian and Latinas/os in the United States. Powerful work was shared during our panel discussion titled, “Crossings.” This event was hosted by the Center for Race and Ethnicity as the 9th Faculty Forum on Race and Ethnicity. Dr. Ann Fabian offered great questions and contextualization for our diverse and intersecting works.
Our panel was followed by discussions on “American Inequalities” and panel presentations from Dr. Lisa L. Miller, Dr. Lauren Krivo, and Dr. Dweston Haywood; a discussion facilitated by Dr. Naa Oyo Kwate.
Thank you Mia Kissil for organizing the event.
More about the Center for Race and Ethnicity at Rutgers may be found here.
PDF of Flyer: FeministPedagogies
SPRING 2015 GRADUATE COURSE OFFERING
Department of Women’s and Gender Studies
MARY K. TRIGG
ANNIE ISABEL FUKUSHIMA
Tuesdays 2, 3
10:55 to 1:55 Ruth Dill Johnson Crockett Bldg. 011
Feminist Pedagogies encompass epistemology, theory and practice surrounding feminist teaching and learning. Feminist pedagogies develop an understanding about knowledge production surrounding gender, sexuality, race, class, and nation. In this graduate course, students will grapple with model feminist pedagogies in the classroom and the challenges instructors and professors navigate when discussing “difficult matters.” This class will engage with issues of power and authority, care, community in the classroom, as well as performance, resistance, difference, and dangerous memories. Our course will also include an applied aspect and will provide a platform for graduate students to receive peer and faculty feedback on feminist teaching with regards to facilitating class, structuring a syllabus, and teaching portfolios. This course is highly recommended for students who have teaching experience or who are teaching during spring semester 2015.
I forgot how much fun I have designing/laying out and coordinating events.
I have created the website: http://rethinkingasiapivot.com/
I am thrilled to be a part of the an exciting symposium happening at Rutgers right now:
Marking Time: Prison Arts and Activism Conference
Organized and Hosted by the Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers, New Brunswick
October 8-10 2014
Visit the conference website for a view of the entire program: http://irw.rutgers.edu/programs/conferences
Join me at the panel I am moderating:
PANEL: Narrating Injustice: Youth and Mass Incarceration (BSF)
9:30AM – 10:45AM, Friday, October 10 at the Bloustein School Forum
Sean Saifa M. Wall (Independent Artist)
“Letters to an Unborn Son”
Richard Mora and Mary Christianakis (Occidental College)
“(Re)writing Identities: Past, Present, and Future Narratives of Young People in Juvenile Detention Facilities”
Beth Ohlsson (Independent Educator)
“Reaching through the Cracks: Connecting Incarcerated Parents with their Children through Story”
Moderator: Annie Fukushima (Rutgers-New Brunswick)
Join me for the 2014 Asians in the Americas annual symposium, October 1 – 3, 2014.
To view information for the entire conference visit: https://sites.google.com/site/asiansintheamericas2014/program
I will be moderating the “Comparative Ethnic Studies” Panel. Join me for what will be an exciting conversation.
PANEL 4: COMPARATIVE ETHNIC STUDIES
Moderator: Annie Fukushima (Rutgers University-New Brunswick)
Julia H. Lee (University of California, Irvine)Transnational Anna (intersection of Asian American subject formation and U.S. histories of empire in Asia in the figure and writings of Anna Chennault)Kavitha Ramsamy (Rutgers University-New Brunswick)Anti-Asianism in the United States: The ‘Dotbuster’ Attacks of the 1980s in Jersey CityK. Kale Yu (Nyack College)Outside of Evangelical Mainstream: Jeremy Lin and Asian American EvangelicalismSayu Bhojwani (Rutgers University-New Brunswick) South Asian Panethnicity: Resonant Identity and Organizing Tool
Save the date and follow this website. I am organizing with faculty at Rutgers a symposium that takes place on December 4th.
Rethinking the Asia “Pivot”: Challenging Everyday Militarisms & Bridging
Communities of Women
December 4th, 2014
Alexander Library, 4th Floor
Rutgers University, New Brunswick
An international symposium with a digital exhibit, international webinar, drumming, and speakers
Time/Space: Histories & Technologies of Militarism
Kornel Chang, Annie Isabel Fukushima, Chie Ikeya, Moderated by Suzy Kim
Visuality/Narrativity: Representations of Everyday Militarism
Dalida Maria Benfield, Michelle Dizon, Jane Jin Kaisen, Kakyoung Lee, Tammy Ko Robinson, moderated by Theodore Hughes
Strategy/Policy: Organizing against Militarism & Violence
Kozue Akibayashi, Zaire Dinzey-Flores, Ko Youkyoung, Suzuyo Takazato, moderated by Gloria Bachmann
Keynote Speaker, Cynthia Enloe, Ph.D., author of Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics (2000), Maneuvers: The International Politics of Militarizing Women’s Lives (2004), The Curious Feminist: Searching for Women in The New Age of Empire (2004) and Globalization and Militarism: Feminists Make the Link (2007).
And an event preceding the symposium on November 25, International Webinar featuring Kozue Akibayashi (Japan), Corazon Fabros (Philippines), Lisa Natividad (Guam), Suzuyo Takazato (Okinawa), and Sunghee Choi (South Korea). Details coming soon.
Race and Racism in the United States: An Encyclopedia of the American Mosaic edited by Charles Gallagher and Cameron Lippard is now available for purchase. I wrote the bundle on “Intimate Relations”, covering a range of issues including anti-miscegenation laws, mixed race/ethnicity intimate relations, domestic violence, and LGBT communities. This encyclopedia holds a wide range of resources/information, that every library and educational institution should have.
There is also an e-book available; you may call the publisher to inquire about this.
Description from the publishers:
In the 21st century, it is easy for some students and readers to believe that racism is a thing of the past; in reality, old wounds have yet to heal, and new forms of racism are taking shape. Racism has played a role in American society since the founding of the nation, in spite of the words “all men are created equal” within the Declaration of Independence. This set is the largest and most complete of its kind, covering every facet of race relations in the United States while providing information in a user-friendly format that allows easy cross-referencing of related topics for efficient research and learning.
The work serves as an accessible tool for high school researchers, provides important material for undergraduate students enrolled in a variety of humanities and social sciences courses, and is an outstanding ready reference for race scholars. The entries provide readers with comprehensive content supplemented by historical backgrounds, relevant examples from primary documents, and first-hand accounts. Information is presented to interest and appeal to readers but also to support critical inquiry and understanding. A fourth volume of related primary documents supplies additional reading and resources for research.
A. Fukushima/ Societies Without Borders 9:1 (2014) 132-134
The Anti-Slavery Project: From Slave Trade to Human Trafficking By Joel Quirk
Annie Isabel Fukushima
University of Pennsylvania Press
Joel Quirk’s The Anti-slavery Project examines the evolving political project of the anti-slavery movement. Quirk is wary of the separation between historical and contemporary slavery, therefore, grapples with developing an understanding of definitions concerning slavery, legal measures that impact the interpretation and practice of slavery, the limitations and strengths of the legal abolition movement, and terms that create connections between “classical slavery” and contemporary slavery. As such, Quirk disrupts the division between historical and contemporary slavery by offering a new concept: the “Anti-Slavery Project.” The Anti-Slavery Project is “an ongoing task, or undertaking which has gone through a number of phases, and to a distinct form of historical project” that is regularly compared to transatlantic slavery (5). Quirk investigates the discursive development of the anti-slavery movement in Britain, which has had international implications in the twenty-first century. An overarching argument in The Anti-Slavery Project is that little has improved with the implementation of legal abolition, as evidenced through the analysis of historical events including the legal abolition of slavery, history of the British anti-slavery movement and colonialism, and a discursive analysis of discrimination and debt. The existence of slavery and slave-like practices and the growth of human bondage are endemic to the failures of legal abolition. Quirk contends that the failure of legal abolition is due to ideologies that perpetuate difference and social discrimination. The method in The Anti- Slavery Project delineates that an interdisciplinary approach is central to conceptualizing slavery through history, the law, and politics. To read the rest of the review click.
Join me on Friday.
At the end of the The Escape & Rescued Memories: New York Stories at Asia Society, there will be a panel.
I will be on a panel discussing Lenora Lee’s performance with Song Kim ( Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund) and Purvi Shah (http://purvipoets.net), moderated by Dan Bacalzo (NYU Drama Department),
FRIDAY, MAY 9, 2014 · 8pm
725 Park Avenue
Tickets: $15 general public, $10 Asia Society members, $12 students/seniors. Groups of 8 or more people can purchase at a discount. Email Lenora@asianimprov.org for group discount code. For tickets / info (212) 517-2742 or visit www.asiasociety.org/nyc
The Escape & Rescued Memories: New York Stories, Directed by A/P/A Institute at NYU Visiting Scholar LENORA LEE, is an interdisciplinary performance with dance, martial arts, film, text and music. Performed by an Asian American cast of 10 dancers and martial artists from San Francisco and New York City, these works utilize the interplay between live performance and film. The performance draws upon voiceover of first hand accounts, contracts and court documents found in the archives at Donaldina Cameron House and the Library of Congress, highlighting the lives of women who were at the forefront of the early Chinatown communities at the turn of the 19th century.
On May 9, Dan Bacalzo (NYU Drama Department and Hunter College Asian American Studies Program) moderates a post-performance conversation featuring Lenora Lee, Purvi Shah (non-profit consultant, anti-violence advocate, and writer), Annie Fukushima (Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Associate, Women’s and Gender Studies and the Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers University), and Song Kim (Kirkland and Ellis Fellow, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund).
Description of the Performance (Full length description at Lenora Lee’s website: http://www.lenoraleedance.com/2014/03/new-york-premiere-may-8-9-2014-at-asia-society/)
|COLLOQUIUM: An American Haunting: From Exclusions to the Ghost Case|
Presented by Dr. Annie Isabel Fukushima,
Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Associate in Women’s and Gender Studies
Response: Prof. Kathy Lopez, History and LHCS
Ruth Adams Seminar Room 018
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 | 11:45-1:15 | Lunch served | Paper will be pre-circulated
To RSVP, please email Liz Reilly firstname.lastname@example.org
The paper is premised on Dr. Fukushima’s role as an expert witness in a case that has multiple names: “Chinese blessing fraud,” “Street scam” and the “Chinese Ghost Case.” Fukushima grapples with the ghosts that haunt anti-violence narratives through examining the “Ghost Case.” The Ghost case is a part of a genealogy of events (i.e., exclusions, the coolie laborer, sexual slavery, human smuggling and Golden Venture, U.S. v. Kil Soo Lee, and Fang Ping Ding). Dr. Fukushima’s research employs media, legal, and sociological analysis of the ghosts in the media and legal coverage of human trafficking – the ghosts of immigration, human trafficking and violence. As migrants cross into visibility in the U.S. legal system, their legibility is made possible by how they are witnessed, narrated, and tethered to being seen as victims/criminals, citizen/noncitizens, and illegal/legal.
Annie Isabel Fukushima, Ph.D. is an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Associate in Women’s and Gender Studies and with the Institute for Research on Women at Rutgers University (2013 – 2015). Fukushima received her Ph.D. in Ethnic Studies with a Designated Emphasis in Women, Gender & Sexuality at the University of California, Berkeley. More about Dr. Fukushima: anniefukushima.com
|Location Ruth Adams Building 018 Douglass|