News for Thursday, August 17, 2017

2017-18 SAR Resident Scholars & Presentation Calendar Announced

2017-18 SAR Resident Scholars & Presentation Calendar Announced

The School for Advanced Research (SAR) is pleased to announce its 2017-2018 resident scholars, their projects, and presentation dates.

On September 20, 2017, at noon, as part of the SAR Colloquium Series on campus, all six resident scholars will present brief introductions to their projects. Throughout the fall, in-depth discussion of the projects will also be held (dates noted below, all scheduled in the Dobkin Boardroom at SAR from noon to 1 p.m.). These presentations are free and open to the public. SAR resident scholars are provided with an office, low-cost housing, a stipend, library assistance, and other benefits. Most fellowships involve a nine-month tenure, from September 1 through May 31.

The resident scholar fellowships are funded by the Weatherhead Foundation, the Katrin H. Lamon Endowment for Native American Art and Education, the Anne Ray Foundation, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. In 2017-2018, the Mellon program expands to two fellowships per year: a doctoral candidate and a postdoctoral scholar in anthropology, history, sociology, religious studies, Latino/Chicano studies, cultural studies, or an interdisciplinary field that incorporates two or more of these disciplines.

On September 27, 2017, Weatherhead fellow Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, professor, Department of Sociology, University of Southern California, will discuss Roots and Raices: Latina/o Immigrant Integration in Black Spaces. There is no grand theory of immigration, but in American sociology, three paradigms have prevailed: assimilation, transnationalism, and racialization/criminalization. Each one has its own merit yet misses important dynamics. In this lecture, Hondagneu-Sotelo focuses attention on the significance of race, anti-Black racism, and generational differences among Latina/o immigrants in the immigrant homemaking process and suggests several concepts that highlight the significance of place and race in immigrant homemaking.

On October 4, 2017, Katrin H. Lamon fellow Thomas Michael Swensen, assistant professor, Division of Ethnic Studies, University of Utah, will explore The Great Land: The Environment and Belonging in Native Alaska. Swensen traces Alaska Native relationships with Russia and the United States amid the industrialization of the continent’s most western borderlands as a colony where natural resources are extracted with no provision for replenishment. Russian functionaries adopted the word “Aláxsxaq,” a term now commonly translated as “Alaska” or “The Great Land,” as they subjugated the Unangax̂ and other Native peoples into coercive labor regimes that caused ecological devastation throughout the Russian occupation of the region. This talk will conclude discussing how the young Alutiiq Jon “Benny” Benson’s territorial flag in 1927 foresaw statehood for Alaska forged through Native inclusion and an economy based upon the removal of natural resources.

On October 11, 2017, Anne Ray fellow Deana Dartt, lecturer, Department of Museum Studies, University of Oregon, will discuss Mapping the Camino Indigenous: Reclaiming the Road on Our Terms. The California Missions Foundation, a group of historians and Mission supporters, seek UNESCO World Heritage designation for the “Royal Road,” which connected the Baja and Alta California Missions and allowed for Spain’s domination of the region. Supplanting the emphasis on Spain, tribal leaders along the greater California coast are currently exploring possible interventions either to counter the UNESCO designation or co-opt it—reasserting a strong visual presence that underscores an ancient, powerful, indigenous narrative. This discussion will explore some of their efforts, including a film and a major traveling exhibition organized by tribal leaders, artists, and scholars.

On October 25, 2017, Mellon fellow Milena Melo, assistant professor, Department of Anthropology and Middle East Cultures, Mississippi State University, will present Life and Death in Everyday Life: Emergency Dialysis for Undocumented Immigrants. Over eleven million undocumented immigrants currently live and work in the US as members of society who harvest our produce, scrub our toilets, contribute to the economy by paying taxes, and raise US citizen children as part of mixed-status families. However, they are barred from accessing the majority of publicly funded healthcare services due to their unauthorized status. This becomes especially true in cases of life and death, such as emergency dialysis for undocumented immigrants suffering from end-stage renal disease (ESRD). In this and many other cases, the pursuit of the American dream has detrimental, and even deadly, consequences.

On November 1, 2017, Mellon/ACLS fellow in Latino studies, Héctor Beltrán, PhD candidate, Department of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley, will discuss Hacking Imaginaries: Codeworlds and Code Work Across the US/Mexico Borderlands. Drawing on extended ethnographic fieldwork between 2014 and 2016, this talk explores circulating forms of hacking and entrepreneurial development between the US and Mexico. On one side of the border, hackathons, tech startups, and co-working spaces become part of the national imaginary for rethinking Mexico; on the other side, communities of computer experts coalesce in the name of empowering a Latina/o collective. Research participants hone their programming skills across these sites in search of “coding bliss,” the affective state one encounters when creating beautiful code. The emergence of the hacker indexes new ways of organizing and working in contemporary society.

On November 8, 2017, the Weatherhead/Charlotte Newcombe fellow, Brian C. Smithson, PhD candidate, Department of Cultural Anthropology, Duke University, will present Piety in Production: Video Film, Religious Improvisation, and Cosmopolitan Ethics in Bénin. In the small, West African country of Bénin, Yorùbá movie crews “improvise” stories that venerate indigenous spirits. Meanwhile, these productions bring Christians, Muslims, and followers of Yorùbá divinities together on sets and in writers’ rooms, offering them a forum to negotiate norms of religious interaction, and to assert their cultural importance on a global stage. Based on two years of field research, Smithson considers how these moviemakers stay active despite economic competition from Nigeria’s Nollywood juggernaut and disdain for video film aesthetics from the Béninois state.

Click here to learn more about Scholar Programs, or contact Maria Spray, Scholar Programs coordinator, at 505-954-7237 or spray[at]

Follow us: