2019 RITM Summer Research Symposium

– Welcome, welcome. Thank you so much for coming. It’s great to have all of you here today on this beautiful day, I mean really one of the
most beautiful days we’ve had in New Haven, weather-wise,
for a long time, and here you are indoors
thanks to your dedication to the work that you’re
gonna talk about today and hear others describe. I’m Steve Pitti, I’m
faculty in American Studies and ER&M in History, and the
Director of the RITM Center, and we’ve been looking
forward to this event for a long time. We were looking for an opportunity
to see you all in action, to see people present about their work, and just as importantly,
maybe more importantly, give people the opportunity
to hear from one another, because I think one of the
things that this place doesn’t do as well as it might is
give folks the opportunity to engage with one another
about their work-in-progress, about their research in progress. Too often, all of us are sort
of dug in to our own projects, stuck in our holes,
digging, digging, digging, and we may not know who’s digging what just a few feet away from us. So here we have that opportunity, right, to learn from one another,
to think collaboratively, to think across disciplines,
all more or less around topics related to questions
surrounding race, indigeneity, transnational migration,
and similar things. So last year here in the RITM Center, we had the opportunity, the
extraordinary opportunity to support research
work by undergraduates, graduate students, and professional
students around campus, a total of 52 students from
all categories received some form of support from us, and we’re really, really
fortunate and proud that we were able to support
students from so many different parts of the university, from
17 different departments, programs, and divisions of the
university, both in this part of campus, Central Campus, the
faculty of Arts & Sciences, Yale College, the Yale Graduate
School, but also extending out to the medical school,
the nursing school, the art school, architecture, divinity, forestry and environmental
studies, and so forth. So this is what part of
our mandate is here in RITM is to try to nurture and
enable that work in all parts where we can help, and then
to bring that work together in one place as best we can to make sure that you all can hear from one another. So we’re excited about the
opportunity today to bring that work together, to give
you the chance to present and to hear from one another
about the work that you’ve done and to make this space available,
to enable collaboration and elaboration in the hour or so to come. So what we have today is a
subset, a fraction of the work that happened over the summer, I think 12 presentations. And we thank all of you
for being here today, for answering the call as summer awardees to come and share your
work with one another. Thanks so much. What we’re gonna ask
everybody to do is to speak for no more than three
minutes about their work. We have put together a program, and the PowerPoint presentations
are already in order, so they will load automatically, and that should make this
easier for everybody. As you can see I’m holding a microphone. We ask you to also hold the
microphone so we can catch this on tape, and make sure
that this is recorded well. We’ll let you know when
you have a minute left, and then when your time is up, so we hope that you’ll enjoy this,
settle in, have fun with this, but also stick to time. – Hi, my name is Ambre
Dromgoole, I’m in the Departments of Religious Studies and
African American Studies. Oh there we go, okay. This summer while presenting
my research on 20th century Gospel composer Roxie Ann
Moore at the Biannual Christian Congregational Music
Conference in Oxford, England, I had the opportunity to
converse and fellowship with a group of scholars
researching Black sacred music traditions spanning the Atlantic. These discussions opened the
door for sustained global conversation and collaboration
concerning the nature of Black sound, consciousness,
and self-making. From United States 20th century
Great Migration narratives and the lasting impact of
Black Southern migrants to Northern cities, on
Black expressive culture, to the onset and effect
of the mid-20th century Windrush movement of Caribbean
and West African populations, creating a multi-faceted
Black-British community, negotiating collective significance against nuanced cultural
offerings and traditions, the dialogue was incredibly dynamic. This to say, in addition
to my own research concerning the creation,
evolution, and innovation of Black musical production
and sound as analyzed and described through the
life of Roxie Ann Moore, I was able to add this
Transatlantic component to which she was also a
contributor and beneficiary to my research which was a direct result of my travels and RITM support. While my initial work this
summer was supposed to follow the trails of Roxie Ann Moore
and legendary 20th century vocal group, the Golden Gate
Quartet, I found my work taking different turns as a
result of robust conversation held with my Black, British colleagues. For example, letters I
found in Roxie’s archive prior to my travels
informed me of how the Gates first arrived in Paris in
the mid-1950s to explore new economic opportunities
after their light began to dim in the United States, and music
labels started casting them aside for seemingly brighter stars. I knew that Black Americans
in the mid-20th century viewed Paris as a place
of freedom and liberation from the economic and racial
turmoil of the United States, and that the ambassadorship of
jazz artists opened a window for other Black musical artists and groups like the Golden Gate Quartet
to find audiences in Europe. But through this summer’s
research, I learned that Windrush, the mass migration of West
Indian and West African migrants to Europe from the mid
to late 20th century coincided with these
efforts, adding several other dimensions to an ever-evolving
Black European soundscape. During the Christian
Congregational Music Conference, I learned that Trinbagonian
folk songs that migrants brought with them, songs
combined with the sounds of a burgeoning Gospel music industry, scholars observed how
the commercialization and commodification of Black
American sacred music practices affected Caribbean and West
African artistic retentions as they sought to adapt to new landscapes while keeping home near. Discussion surrounded the
Americanization of dialect and pronunciation when
recording music came up time and time again. This experience has shifted
my research in a new and dynamic directions,
and I’m grateful to RITM for allowing me the opportunity to open such a necessary dialogue, thank you. (applause) – Hi, I’m Michelle Johnson. I am a second-year in History
and African American studies. So my research looked at
the Civil Rights movement, generally it looks at civil
rights movements in places outside of the South. So I start with the Great
Migration, starting around 1916 when Black folks were
moving from the South up to Northern industrial
cities, and from there I look at how those same
Black folks in cities took their Southern roots,
took what was happening in the South, and made the
Civil Rights movement their own. So as Black Southerners moved
into Chicago specifically, they set about rebuilding and
creating new institutions. These included churches and
schools, as well as branches of organizations like the NAACP and Congress of Racial Equality. Early on in the Civil Rights
era, many of these groups were strategically made interracial, which is how I found myself,
kind of unexpectedly, looking at the papers of
Faith Rich, a white woman who worked as an unpaid
staffer for the Chicago NAACP beginning in 1945 and working all the way until she passed away in the 1990s. In her more than 50 years
living in a Black neighborhood on the West Side of Chicago,
she involved herself in nearly every education-related
battle for equality, as well as political struggles
over urban renewal policies. Though much of her work was
working on creating research for reports, she was also not afraid of door-to-door organizing,
doing a lot of block work, or block-based organizing work. Chicago’s Civil Rights
movements were in some ways very similar to movements in the South. Much of the organizing
started with desegregating restaurants and roller rinks,
but then went on to schools and eventually housing,
and then eventually a lot of Black Power-ish movements
working on Black business. These individual movements
sort of broken down issue by issue were also
happening all at once throughout time and ended up
being continued over the period starting around 1916 to 1970,
so while you can break them down issue by issue, they also
were concurrent throughout. In one of the most
dramatic moments in 1963, 200,000 public school students
stayed home from school to protest inequality in public education. Three years later, before the
schools came to a resolution, Martin Luther King moved
into the city to fight for open housing. Local people on the ground
juggled these shifting priorities as focus changed over time. The majority of my sources up
to this point, doing research for a couple years, were
not personal in nature. So I looked a lot of reports created by community organizations,
internal memos, drafts of speeches, things like that, but this was one of the first
archives that I came across that had letters back and forth to husband and wife, for example. And I had to figure out
what to make of that. It’s a different type of source. I had never had to come
across it, what do you do? And I found that actually
it was really helpful in piecing together what
the role of a white woman in a Black activist position meant and how she felt about
it and how she took it on and how her neighbors felt about it and how her family felt about it. So it really shifted
my focus on my research into not only Black folks
organizing about issues that affected them, but
also the ways that coalition was working in the city
of Chicago in this period, thank you. (applause) – Hi, my name is Heidi,
I’m a senior History major here at Yale. This summer I was fortunate
to receive funding from the RITM Center to
visit a series of archives in the Midwest. In particular, I was investigating
the relationship between, the entangled relationship
between railroad expansion and the White Earth and
Red Lake reservations in Northwestern Minnesota in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. What I found increasingly
in my research by looking at Indian Nation correspondence
and diaries and maps and transcribed oral histories was how much railroads really
affected both reservation policies and Euro-American
settlers’ access to these lands. So in 1889, the Nelson Act
was established in Minnesota that basically granted
settlers, Euro-American settlers access and settlement
upon both the White Earth and Red Lake reservations and
also allowed timber tycoons to access these reservations. So I started looking at
maps, for example from 1887 that showed a transcontinental
railroad passing just south of the reservation
and all the lands in orange represent lands that
were available for sale. This reveals the degree of
pressure that railroads applied on these reservations and
therefore allowed for settlement on the reservations. Likewise, only 15 years
later, we see the effect of regional railroads and
the presence of railroads on the reservations. So this railroad, the Sioux
line, passed right through the heart of White Earth
and just skirted Red Lake. That allowed timber tycoons
and land speculators to gain access to the
land, which in turn allowed for the denuding of the
landscape and white settlers to basically take over these reservations. The effects of this railroad expansion was just devastating for
the Native populations. Here we see an Ojibwe woman practicing her traditional maple
sugaring, and likewise, other practices such as wild
ricing became very endangered, because of the intensive logging practices that were occurring because
of the railroad expansion. And so we see basically
that how greatly railroads are implicated in this process
of environmental degradation, land dispossession, and
the cultural practices that suffered thereafter. And so I was just super
fortunate to engage with a series of photographs such as the
one with Roland Reed here, and all these different
maps, and Indian Nation correspondence that just
shed light on this story that’s otherwise been somewhat neglected in the historiography of the period. Most people have focused on
just the policies themselves instead of the vehicles
that allowed these policies to be enacted, so thank you. (applause) – Hi, my name is Jacqueline
Ly, I’m a third-year History Ph.D student studying
Latin American history. And this summer I went
to London for my research thanks to money from RITM. So my research is on the Bay of Honduras and the Mosquito shore
in the 18th century. So the Bay of Honduras occupied the region that is today Belize, you’ll
see it in yellow on the map labeled British Honduras. And the Mosquito Shore
occupied the Caribbean coast of modern-day Southern
Honduras and Nicaragua, so it comes down, the pink and green here on the right side of the screen. So the significance of the
time and place come into play in the context of early
modern Atlantic empires. Here specifically we’re
dealing with Britain and Spain, and Spain by right of
discovery and the authority of the Papal Bull of 1493
claimed absolute sovereignty over the entire expanse of
the Americas west of the line drawn in the Treaty of Tordesillas. So of course, this is
how it worked in theory, but in reality, Spain
didn’t have the manpower and the Spanish authorities on the ground didn’t have the inclination
to completely explore and take a hold of the territory
in all of Spanish America. And especially on this
Caribbean coast of New Spain, the terrain was jungle-filled
and the coastline was treacherous, and so
Europeans really made few entries into this region. The British eventually
came to get a foothold here in the Bay in particular,
in the yellow area. And as the historiographic myth goes, in the Golden Age of Buccaneering
as it comes to an end, the buccaneers who would’ve
been among the best sailors of this region would have
been able to navigate the treacherous Keys and
reefs coming into the Bay, so you can see the map of the water as it moves around these islands. It would’ve been really
hard to actually access the landmass of this
coast of Central America. So as Jamaica changes
hands from Spain to Britain in the late 17th century, and
sugar planters are beginning to establish their
lucrative businesses here, the European powers agree
that buccaneering needed to come to an end in this new
age of order in the Caribbean. So as a result, the buccaneers
who had been operating in the Caribbean sought
new sources of income, and they turned to enterprises
they had already been starting, which were
cutting logwood and mahogany from this region. So as these trades expand,
Spain and Britain begin to vie for sovereignty over the region,
and the traditional story that’s told of this is about
an Anglo-Spanish conflict. So my question in researching
this has been challenging the historiography to look at other sides that are not simply about
European sovereignty, and specifically about
the Mosquito Indians who actually held territorial, political, and political control of this region. And a geographer Karl Offen
writes that this region was only called Mosquitia
or the Mosquito Shore because of the Mosquito’s
spatial practices. Otherwise it would have
only been some other place in Central America. So my research looks at
how the Mosquito Indians were not only crucial in
facilitating European forays into the region, but also
I’d like to take seriously the words themselves, so for
example, why has sovereignty not been used in the
historiography of this region? And how can we apply
that, taking into account contemporary challenges that
the Mosquito people still face with the Nicaraguan government
and questioning the ethics and how far we can actually
push the history and questions in this region, so that’s my work. Thank you. (applause) – Hello, my name is Ever Osorio. I’m a third-year in American Studies and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and this summer I had opportunity
to do archival research which is something that
I’ve never done before, so I wanna thank Steve
for gently pushing me in the last two years
to go beyond my methods and improve them. So I guess that one of the
gains was to not be scared anymore of the archive, and I
think that’s a big, big step. So I had opportunity
to gather, make friends with the archival people,
and get to know materials, how to do research, how
is the archive organized, so I kind of learned that. And my question was, well,
what is the global circulation of contemporary art on the War on Drugs? And why level of circulation,
because I wanted to see how there were different interpretations of the Mexican War on
Drugs, which is my main area of research, in aesthetics,
as how we are feeling this violence from a global perspective. So I went to four archives. The first one was MUAC, which is Museo Universitario
Arte Contemporáneo, which is University Museum of UNAM, which is the main public
national university in Mexico. And there what I found was fascinating because I found embroiderers
which were women that embroidered the name of
victims of the war on drugs, of casualties, so it was
very interesting to see how I had forgotten about that, like I had forgotten
about all those visual artistic manifestations
that had been taking place in the last 10 years, so that was, in a way this research was also self-autographic,
because I found a lot of stuff that I forgotten, like what
was forgotten was for sure one of the most important elements
of this historical record. Then I went to Paris
to the Centre Pompidou. I found nothing, but
that absence is important because it really speaks
of the circulation of art and the geographical distribution of certain topics or concerns. Then I went to Kassel in
Germany, where documenta, one of the most important
contemporary art fairs takes place every five years, and there
what I found were more … Since I’m not looking for history or a particular historiography,
I am mostly looking for metaphors or, I don’t like
the word “sign,” but symbols that let me think beyond
what I’m already thinking, so I found a lot of metaphors there. And finally I was in
Venice, where the Biennale, the Venice Biennale, which is the oldest contemporary
art fair, takes place. And this is the work Teresa Margolles, she is one of the most relevant
contemporary Mexican artists and the name of this art
piece is “The Surge,” and it’s relevant because it
shows posters of the government looking or searching for
women that are missing, and what is so sadly and painful is that these are from 2009, 2011, so when we see the massive
demonstrations of women in our hemisphere, we can see
how old that phenomenon is, so that’s what I found. (applause) – Hello, my name is Héctor Peralta, and I’m a third-year Ph.D.
student in American Studies. Today, our public schools in
the U.S. are as segregated as they were when the Supreme Court ruled in Brown Vs. Board of Education. What’s more, states like
New York and California are among the most
segregated of those states. But how did we get here? Well, by the 1980s,
Constitutionally-mandated integration of schools had been largely
undermined through legislation like California’s Prop 21, which prohibited mandatory busing. Today, schools continue to
contend with the effects of white flight, redistricting,
and the rise in private and charter school enrollment, yet state-funded school
programs working to improve graduation rates and increase
access to higher eduction largely ignore the realities of inequity produced through school segregation. One such program is AVID, which stands for Advancement via
Individual Determination. In 1980, a high school English teacher named Mary Catherine Swanson
founded the AVID program at a public high school
in San Diego County. As schools restructured
to accommodate for changes in student demographics
and budget capacity caused by factors like
refugee resettlement and the privatization of
education, AVID was advertised as a remedy, an educational innovation to close the achievement gap. Today, AVID is offered in 47 states and 16 countries worldwide. In popular coverage, Swanson
is celebrated as a visionary educator with a plan and
the gall to disseminate it. Yet these very accounts
celebrate her individual grit and tenacity without emphasizing
the collective of mentors, educators, and
administrators that make AVID as successful as it is. Even the name, Advancement
via Individual Determination pushes forward a neo-liberal
vision of public education. It is up to the individual
student determination if they go to college. So my research asks, how is
the resegregation of schools and the unequal distribution of resources rendered invisible behind
programs like AVID? Furthermore, how is the
AVID pedagogy implemented in other education programs
designed for indigenous and migrant communities
within the San Diego region? With the support of RITM,
I conducted archival and ethnographic research
this summer to examine how different educational
institutions in San Diego address the achievement gap in schools. Primarily I worked at the
Viejas Tribal Education Center, or VTEC, located on the
Viejas-Kumeyaay Reservation in East County, San Diego. VTEC provides after-school
tutoring, college readiness and life management skills
workshops for students who are children of
enrolled tribal members. In an oral history I
conducted with Teresa, the high school student
coordinator at VTEC, she stated the greatest need
within the public school district is tutoring
services for all students, not just those in AVID
or those at part of VTEC. Looking forward, I will
analyze how a collaborative mentorship functions
differently across AVID, VTEC, and YALLA, which is a non-profit
that uses a combination of after-school tutoring and team soccer to prepare migrant
students to enter college. As San Diego County continues to lead in refugee resettlement, I
hope my research will support and promote pedagogies of and
for liberation, thank you. (applause) – Hi everyone, my name is Teanu Reid. I am a joint-Ph.D. student in History and African American Studies. If I asked everyone to take
out some money right now, you might pull out a dollar bill, a coin, or even a debit or credit card. It wouldn’t be difficult
for many of us in the room right now, but there was a
time in the early modern period where money was not
standard, and if I asked the same question in the
17th or 18th century, you might pull out a Spanish
piece of eight, a French livre, English or Dutch bills of
exchange, and you could all be in the same British colony. For my research, I am connecting
this early modern history of the complicated monetary supply with the rented out
labor and Sunday markets of Africans and their descendants, particularly I am exploring
the economic activities of freed and enslaved
people of color in Barbados, Jamaica, and South
Carolina from 1650 to 1770. I am tracing their sources of income, the economies they participated in, and how their lives too were affected by the early modern monetary supply, wondering how they paid
for their manumission, wondering how they paid for
rent, for clothes, for food. Through my analysis of the
money of freed and enslaved people of color, I hope to
provide an early modern basis for thinking about economic inequality not only in terms of the
difference for how much money people have, but also in the difference in the types of money that
people have access to. And finally I hope to create
a interdisciplinary dialogue between the fields of history,
finance, and Black studies. To complete my project,
this summer with the support of RITM, I went to the
British National Archives where I explored several
colonial office records, in particular I’ll name two:
the Colonial Office Records 2815, which contain several
letters about the illicit trade between Barbados and the French, and then Colonial Office Record 137/2 that contains similar
documents with relation to Jamaica’s illicit
trade with the Spanish. Collectively, what these
documents show is that, do-do-do-do-do-do-do, whether or not, sorry, one second, primarily I would argue from these sources that the support for piracy
that went on sometimes under the table by these
colonial governors shows that there was a desperation
for money in the colonies, and that there was a definite
means to procure money through illicit trade,
and with further research, I am going to show that the
currency from this trade ended up in the hands of
freed and enslaved people and was important to their survival in these colonial spaces. Thank you. (applause) – Hi, my name is Gabi Rivera,
I’m Mapuche, I’m a senior, an ERM major, I’m an
undergrad, and I’m using images of street art in Chile,
around Santiago and Temuco that I collected this past summer to look at indigenous
Mapuche urban identities and resistance today against
state-sanctioned violences directed against indigenous
communities in Chile. And one question that
I ask is to what extent are these artworks
examples of manifestations of Mapuche resistance, because
urban spaces are oftentimes not seen as spaces inhabited
by indigenous peoples, and therefore this becomes
indigenous space reclamation. They can be self-erected
memorials to victims of police brutality, like Matías Catrileo, who was murdered by a police officer. They can address hydro-electric
company encroachment on Mapuche lands, the
desecration of burial sites, or current Mapuche political prisoners, like Francisca Linconao who was arrested under Chile’s anti-terrorism
law, because the state oftentimes perceives Mapuche
people as terrorists. Linconao is currently still
in prison for her resistance. I also asked to what extent
do some of these murals in the heart of Santiago point to an issue of multiculturalism in the Chilean state? Or the concept of promoting
diversity politics in a country oftentimes while still maintaining
discriminatory policies toward specific racial and ethnic groups. In Chile, one of the tenets that allows the multicultural state
to function is the concept of “mestizaje,” which is
typically defined as the mixing of white-Spanish, or colonizer
blood, with indigenous blood, to produce a quote-unquote
new race, or the Mestizo. And I’m going to refer
to it as an ideology in an engagement with Mapuche
poet Daniela Catrileo’s work. She refers to mestizaje
as a colonizer ideology which promotes the assimilation
of indigenous peoples into white society. And this further supports
the settler state by promoting a diminishing
of indigenous communities through a pattern of
self-identification with whiteness, and it creates a racial hierarchy with the quote-unquote
actually indigenous peoples at the bottom and then Mestizos
and whiteness on the top. Many Mestizos claim Native
heritage or ancestry, which relegates our
indigeneity to the past as belonging to history,
rather than as an active part of ourselves today and
promotes stereotypes such as vanishing Native people and that indigenous
peoples are disappearing. Mestizos in Chilean society
are oftentimes the one enacting violence against Mapuche people, and enacting the violence
on indigenous communities that they perceive themselves
to no longer be a part of. The street art in Chile
gets at complex layerings of identities and of the presence
of a white settler state, and ultimately I’m gonna draw parallels between Chilean street art
and settler-state violences to transnational settler-state
violences protested by indigenous produced murals
in neighborhoods of color that I’ve also collected in
Baltimore and Washington, D.C., like murals containing
images of Freddie Gray or Trayvon Martin, and I wanna
draw attention to a variety of human rights violations and injustices that settler-states legally
and systemically perpetuate that we continue to confront today. (speaks in foreign language) Thank you. (applause) – Hi, I’m Sylvia Ryerson. I’m a second-year American Studies Ph.D., and the RITM summer research
fellowship supported 10 weeks of field research for
me in Eastern Kentucky on mass incarceration
in Central Appalachia. Since the 1990s, Central
Appalachia has become one of the most concentrated
areas of rural prison growth nationwide, and many of
these new prisons are built on formerly strip mined,
mountaintop removal mined land. And so my initial research
goal was to document transfers of land ownership from coal
companies to prison sites. However, within my weeks of
first arriving in Kentucky this summer, one of my research
sites, there was major news that broke regarding
the pending construction of a new federal prison in
Letcher County, Kentucky, and this is the prison proposal
that was first proposed to the county in 2008, and on June 20th, the Federal Bureau of
Prisons withdrew its record of decision to build USP
Letcher, which was projected to become a $510 million
new high-security prison. This effectively defeated
what was slated to become the most expensive federal
prison ever built in US history. So due to this historic turn of events, my research took a different
direction, and I focused on the 15 years of local
and national organizing that made the defeat of
this prison possible, and you can see this is the proposed site, and this is a strip
mine, and I interviewed many different people including
some local landowners, and so here is one of my interviews. – [Mitch] And they were gonna try to split right across everything,
and they could bullied him! They coulda said, look, that’s our coal. – [Sylvia] Yeah. – [Mitch] The best way to get to it is right across your land. This has already been signed over to us, but I think from what I
done, they were forced to go another way, and again
they went up the road about half a mile and
(murmurs) winding road to the top of that, and all
of that coal was brought off another way, but they wanted
to come off Brent Ball side, and had it not been for them
telling you got the right, you know, they done, they could … And it woulda busted my,
right away my grandfather’s big cow pastures where he
kept his cattle and stuff, he would’ve, you know, just
been off his mess, there it was, he wouldn’t have been
able to use it, you know, it would’ve took up half of his land. And it would’ve been terrible
to have seen it split down there, and that’s what I
thought was gonna happen again. Really, really was. – That’s what I thought
was gonna happen again. That’s Mitch Whitaker who owned 15 acres of this 700-acre site, located
his opposition to the prison within the genealogy of
organizing that his grandfather and his father were a part of, was opposing radical
strip mining in the 1970s, so that’s what you
heard him talking about. And his refusal to sell
these 15 acres delayed the whole project two
years and was pivotal in ultimately defeating this
proposal, and he ended up joining a historic lawsuit
alongside 21 incarcerated people across the country that
sued the federal government against the prison being
constructed on the grounds that it would cause unnecessary harm. So this research is essential
to a journal article I’m currently co-authoring,
observing what this ROD, record of decision withdraw reveals about the current contradictions
of the US carceral state, and how a multi-sided coalition
of organizers, advocates, and landowners strategically
exploited these contradictions and created this space for
radical and groundbreaking opposition to the carceral
state to emerge in a place many might not have expected
or thought possible. (applause) – Hi everyone, my name is Aanchal Saraf, and I’m a third-year in
American Studies and WGSS. This summer, I did a
combination of ethnographic and archival work in order
to consider the history of indigenous anti-nuclear
organizing in the Pacific through an organization
known as a nuclear-free, and independent Pacific movement. So the poster that is on,
this poster right here, as well as the two photographs above are both historical photos
from NFIP mobilization. I also considered the material traces left on Pacific Islanders subject
to nuclear detonations whose landscapes and displacement
point to the still present nature of 20th century
wars in the Pacific. The aerial photo of Majuro
Atoll in the Marshall Islands depicts the ethnographic
space in which I began to ask the latter question more intently. And I took that photo
from the plane window. For my research, I visited
the National Archives of Australia and Canberra,
and the National Archives of Aotearoa, or New
Zealand, in Wellington, as well as the archives at
UH-Manoa in Honolulu, Hawaii. I also did preliminary
field work in Majuro in the Marshall Islands. I have a few primary takeaways
from this experience. First, the politics of the
archive are deeply enmeshed with empire’s entanglements
within climate change, as many documents formerly
available in the Marshalls were lost due to disaster events, or moved to imperial archives
due to sea level rise. Second, the Black Pacific
is a generative terrain of contestation within 20th
century social movements in Oceania, especially
in the ways that troubles divides between Blackness and indigeneity in order to provide a
fulcrum for solidarity, and that’s me, I think,
riffing on Manu Karuka’s ideas of fulcrums for solidarity. Third, war is immediate in the Marshalls. It happened, it is happening, it could happen at any given moment. These coexisting temporalities remind me that as I imagine liberatory
Pacific Islander futures, I must also account for the
colonial and settler futures already set in the motion
by the artifacts of war, such as unexploded ordinances,
human bones in various stages of repatriation or loss,
and American military ships resting in the fishing
lagoon, parts breaking off and breaching sand where children play. Finally, Pacific Islander
women and queer people are and have been at the helm of these trans-indigenous movements. The sovereignty of their
bodies is a critical foundation to further liberation. While these are just a
handful of the revelations I had doing research this summer, they speak to a much larger examination of nuclear colonialism
and indigenous resistance, as well as the transformations
of race that emerge from the migration catalyzed
by these unfolding processes. I thank RITM for funding this work. It has proven to be an
extraordinarily enriching summer. Thank you. (applause) – Hi everyone, my name’s Monique. I’m a Ph.D candidate in
the Department of History. So, two photo albums sit side by side in the archives at UC Berkeley. One of them, filled
with mugshots replicated from a long lost set
of original photographs in the early 20th century. Under each mugshot, detailed descriptions of what the men wore, their hairstyles, and other information
that according to the eyes of a Mexican anthropologist
and his research assistant told us just what “type”
of Mexican men these were. Another, filled with
photographs just like this one, of men standing in a field with
either cows, cars, or horses in the background and little
to no information about them beyond that they’re from the late 1920s and perhaps a name and a hometown. In another archive on the
other side of the Bay Area sit a different set of records. Mexicans entering the
US through Angel Island whose names, birthdays,
kinship networks, jobs enter the historical record
through immigration workers and are found actually
in national archives of Chinese exclusion. All of these archives are
part of how Mexican migrants, from the middle class escaping
the Mexican Revolution, to migrant peasant workers laboring during the Great Depression in
agricultural fields in the US, enter the historical record,
shepherded in by how a set of experts or so-called
experts understood them. Anthropologists, economists,
INS workers, the border patrol, photographers, and bureaucrats
of all sorts on both sides of the US-Mexico border,
from 1910 to mid-century were heavily concerned with
Mexicans entering the US. But also of what type of
Mexicans were entering, of how to racially categorize
them, of how to understand and read what they are,
according to so-called experts, and what they saw in their
faces, clothing, and hairstyles. This is a story made up
of different threads, of how different experts were
establishing and solidifying the racial category of Mexican in the US at the same time that Mexican
experts were solidifying a national, almost mythical,
Mestizo-Mexican citizen after the Mexican Revolution. Both were taking place in
relation to massive migrations of Mexicans within Mexico and in the US, and they specifically were
concerned with how one saw them. What did their clothes tell these experts about economic station? What did their hairstyles
tell them about their racial locations, about their
gender presentation, and about who they were? In short, what did one see
when looking at a Mexican? These are questions that enter the archive along with the photographs
and textual records that these experts have
used to try to figure out who these Mexicans were, how
they fit into the racial matrix of both the US and Mexico,
and how citizenship was being fashioned on
each side of the border, but also between them,
dependent on what one saw when looking at a Mexican. This is the project that I have
taken on for my dissertation and that has slowly come
together in no small part thanks to the generous
funding and support of RITM over the last summer, allowing
me to visit these archives, sit with the stories of these migrants, and to begin to figure
out what it is that I see. Thank you. (applause) – All right, I’m Adam
Waters, I’m a second-year History Ph.D. student, and first of all, it’s just really wonderful
to be able to share my work alongside all of you, so thanks for that. So on March 24th, 1982, a rally was held at South Side Presbyterian
Church in Tucson, Arizona to declare publicly that the
church would provide shelter to migrants fleeing systemic
violence in Central America. Over the next several
years, hundreds of churches, synagogues, mosques, and other
religious communities joined the Sanctuary Movement in
supporting migrants and protesting the Reagan administration’s
policy towards Central America. Likewise, a constellation of
committees and organizations were birthed to shepherd the movement at the local, regional,
and national levels. And as is common with political movements, especially those on the left,
numerous and often serious disagreements emerged
over, among other things, the political orientation
of Sanctuary, and the role of Central American migrants
themselves in the movement. So the Sanctuary Movement was
the subject of intense media coverage and a good deal of
scholarly research in its time, but given where we find
ourselves today with renewed conversations about migration
from Central America, about migrant detention
and deportation regimes, and with the emergence of
a new Sanctuary Movement, I think it’s an opportune
moment to revisit the 1980s Sanctuary Movement. So this summer I spent a month in Tucson conducting initial research
on the Sanctuary Movement and its historical legacies. My research was primarily
archival, exploring several Sanctuary-related collections
at the University of Arizona, but I also had the
opportunity to get involved with local organizations currently working in humanitarian assistance
and advocacy for migrants, many of which were created and staffed, sustained by former Sanctuary workers. My time in the archives
and my conversations with migrant justice activists
have sparked a number of questions that I hope
to consider moving forward, and so I’ll outline just a
few conclusions from my summer and avenues for further research. So first, most works on
Sanctuary have either focused on a local level and its
manifestations in a particular city in Tucson, in Los
Angeles, in San Francisco, or on the actions of
its national leadership. But the documents that I found made clear that the Sanctuary Movement
needs to be approached as a multi-scaler phenomemon. I hope to document the
relationships and the dynamics between actors at various
scales in order to present a more comprehensive
sense of how the movement operated as a whole. My research this summer also made clear that the Sanctuary Movement
was a transnational and international movement. So Tucson-based activists
were working closely with church leaders in
Central America and in Mexico to develop what they called
an underground railroad that brought migrants through
Mexico across the US-Mexico border and into sanctuary
in the United States. So far no one has really
been able to document how this trail actually
functioned, particularly how it functioned outside of the
borders of the United States, and so I imagine that my work
in the future will involve conducting field work in
northern Guatemala and in Mexico. And finally I think there’s a
lot more to be done to think about how the Sanctuary Movement
fits into larger histories of immigration policy,
migrant justice activism, left politics, and progressive religion in the late 20th century
in the United States and in Latin America. I’m particularly interested
in situating sanctuary as part of an emerging
migrant justice praxis, one that stretches from the
1970s through to the present. Thanks. (applause) (low chimes)

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