Conference Speakers and Roundtable Leaders

Speakers and Panelists 

Prof

Professor Yoon Sun Lee, Wellesley College

My research and teaching span two areas, British eighteenth and nineteenth century prose fiction, and Asian American literature. My newest book, Modern Minority: Asian American Literature and Everyday Life (Oxford UP, 2012), examines the critique of the everyday in twentieth-century Asian American writing. It argues that Asian American writers came to see the  abstract, repetitive, small-scale character of the everyday as an inescapable aspect of modernity and also as a phenomenon of particular significance to their own minority status. Read More…

Professor Elena Creef, Wellesley College

Virtually all my work engages with questions of Asian American visual history in photography, film, and popular culture.  I am currently finishing a book on Japanese/American women and photography that  begins with a look at the small delegation of Japanese Ainu at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair and ends with an autoethnographic examination of my mother’s 1952 postwar Japanese warbride family photo album. I live and breathe Asian American/African American/Native American and Latino/a studies mixed in one big theoretical, critical, historical pot with cultural studies, feminist theory, and critical race studies.  Read More…

Assistant Professor Michael Jeffries, Wellesley College

I am broadly interested in the sociology of race and ethnicity, identity and politics, and popular culture. My new book, Paint the White House Black: Barack Obama and the Meaning of Race in America, uses Obama-related topics to demonstrate how race relies on other social forces, like gender and class, for its meaning and impact. It features discussions of race and nationhood, discourses of “biracialism” and Obama’s mixed heritage, the purported emergence of a “post-racial society,” and popular symbols of Michelle Obama as a modern black women. Read More…

Assistant Professor Irene Mata, Wellesley College

My research blends my love of literature and popular culture in an effort to investigate the ways in which women of color, especially immigrant women and their labor, are represented in contemporary cultural productions. I see the study of cultural productions as an important field of inquiry because it tells us so much about the ways in which the world around us is constructed. By looking at stories of immigration in popular culture, we can see how producers of cultural texts choose to represent the changes that have occurred over the past 20 years in the movement of women across national boundaries. Read More…

Assistant Professor Donna Patterson, Wellesley College

I am a historian of Africa and the African Diaspora with interests in pharmaceuticals, global health policy, gender, medical professionalization, gender, and entrepreneurship. My forthcoming book, “Expanding Professional Horizons: Pharmacy, Gender, and Entrepreneurship in Twentieth Century Senegal,” is based on fieldwork in Dakar, Thiaroye, Guédiwaye, and Diourbel, Senegal, but also in Aix-en-Provence and Paris, France. Read More…

Professor Heather Love, University of Pennsylvania

 Her research interests include gender studies and queer theory, the literature and culture of modernity, affect studies, film and visual culture, psychoanalysis, race and ethnicity, sociology and literature, disability studies, and critical theory. She is the author of Feeling Backward: Loss and the Politics of Queer History (Harvard, 2007), the editor of a special issue of GLQ on the scholarship and legacy of Gayle Rubin (“Rethinking Sex”), and the co-editor of a special issue of New Literary History (“Is There Life after Identity Politics?).  Read More… 

Professor Sarah Willie-Lebreton, Swarthmore College

Associate Professor of Sociology Sarah Willie-LeBreton studies higher education and work and teaches about race, racism, and social inequality. Informed by her work with community groups, Willie-LeBreton teaches courses on African American culture, politics, race, racism and social inequality.  Considering herself an applied sociologist, she has worked with a variety of groups on inclusivity and justice initiatives. Her research explores minority/majority and subordinate/superordinate relations, the construction of knowledge, and the subversion of oppression. Read More…

Professor Colleen Lye, University of California, Berkeley

Colleen Lye is Associate Professor of English at UC Berkeley. She is the author of America’s Asia: Racial Form and American Literature, 1893-1945 (Princeton University Press, 2005), a study of the making of “Asiatic racial form” through the interactions of naturalist literature and U.S. policy in an era of U.S. expansion across the Pacific. Currently she is working on a new project on Asian American literary formation after the 1960s and its relationship to the globalization of knowledge economies. Read More…

vmdiazProfessor Vicente Diaz, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Vicente M. Diaz is an interdisciplinary historian, cultural critic, film maker, and student of traditional seafaring in the Micronesian Islands. He taught Pacific History and Micronesian Studies at the University of Guam and the University of Michigan before coming to UIUC in 2012. Diaz is a founder of the field of Native Pacific Cultural Studies and is a proponent of comparative Native and Ethnic studies and Indigenous political and cultural decolonization. Read More…

 

Assistant Professor at Harvard University and a co-founder of Freedom University in Georgia. The following was sourced from the Freedom University website: Founded in 2011, Freedom University is a volunteer-driven organization that provides rigorous, college-level instruction to all academically qualified students regardless of their immigration status. Our faculty are fully committed to providing our students with college courses equivalent to those taught at the state’s most selective universities. We believe that all Georgians have an equal right to a quality education. Separate and unequal access to higher education contravenes this country’s most cherished principles of equality and justice for all. Read More...

Lorgia H. García Peña, Harvard University and Freedom University

Assistant Professor at Harvard University of Romance Languages and Literatures and of History and Literature. Co-founding professor of Freedom University in Georgia. More on Freedom University: Founded in 2011, Freedom University is a volunteer-driven organization that provides rigorous, college-level instruction to all academically qualified students regardless of their immigration status. Our faculty are fully committed to providing our students with college courses equivalent to those taught at the state’s most selective universities. We believe that all Georgians have an equal right to a quality education. Separate and unequal access to higher education contravenes this country’s most cherished principles of equality and justice for all. Read More…

image_miniAbel Valenzuela, Jr., University of California Los Angeles 

Professor Valenzuela is the current chair of the UCLA César E. Chávez Department for Chicana/o Studies and holds joint appointment in the Department of Urban Planning.  His research is primarily concerned with the issues faced by minorities and immigrants in the U.S.  His work focuses on three key interrelated areas: 1) immigration and labor markets, 2) poverty and inequality, and 3) immigrant settlement patterns.  His work combines ethnographic, in-depth interviews, participant observation, and quantitative methods to document and explain the processes that govern the incorporation of immigrants to the U.S. Professor Valenzuela is currently working on further publishing articles and completing a manuscript on day labor in a national context. His groundbreaking work on day labor continues to drive his primary research agenda. In addition, Professor Valenzuela is undertaking research on non-union supermarket janitors (subcontractors), immigrant-serving community based organizations, and the organizing campaigns of security guards and car wash attendants. Read More…

Ondine-e1373398813681C. Ondine Chavoya

Chair of Latino/a Studies Program and Associate Professor of Art, Williams College

C. Ondine Chavoya is an art historian, writer, and sometime curator who lives and works in New England but calls Los Angeles “home.”  Ondine teaches courses on contemporary art at Williams College, and has previously taught at the Rhode Island School of Design, Tufts University/School of the Museum of Fine Arts, UCLA, and University of New Mexico.

Ondine’s interests revolve around the social production and use of space and the ways artists have perceived, interpreted, represented, and intervened in the urban landscape.  His research investigates the relations between power and spatiality and the debates over various images and counter-images of specific places.  His writing focuses on the intersections between what he describes as “spatially politicized aesthetics,” the ways in which space and place localize and restrict difference, and the relations between racial formation and racial signification in the visual arts. Read More…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s