We hope 2014 has gotten off to a good start for you. We wanted to touch base with you all regarding the kind of planning we’re doing for RevAmStudies for spring 2014 and forward, and look forward to seeing you in the coming months at the various events. We begin as always by expressing our gratitude to the Advanced Research Collaborative and its director Don Robotham and the fantastic Alida Rojas, and the offices of the Graduate Center Interim President Chase Robinson, Interim Provost Louise Lennihan, and that of the CUNY Interim Chancellor Bill Kelly for their continuing support of our activities; and we’re enormously pleased to continue to work collaboratively with the Center for the Humanities, IRADAC, the Caribbean Epistemologies seminar, the Mellon Committee on Globalization and Social Change, and the Center for Place, Culture, and Politics, as well as with all of you!
As we have in the past, we’ll be bringing in Americanist scholar-teachers to present a lecture and engage with us in a smaller seminar setting; we’re still working out the details around these visits, but wanted to note now that they will continue in some way RevAmStudies’ focus this year on black diasporic studies, informed in particular by Paul Gilroy’s enormously influential book, The Black Atlantic. We’ll announce specific details shortly; as a reminder, the revamstudies blog (https://revolutionizingamericanstudies.commons.gc.cuny.edu/) remains the best source for the most updated information. You can also find through that site links to events of interest for revamstudies communities.
We’re also establishing a working papers/publication workshop, specifically geared toward encouraging graduate students to prepare their research for submission for publication consideration to scholarly journals appropriate to their work and fields of engagement. The call for that workshop series will go out as a separate email shortly. (We thought that having it as a separate item might be helpful for circulation purposes, and also might make it less possible that that information get lost in the muddle of a long email; apologies in advance for the influx to your inboxes.)
We’re working as well to formulate an event (or multiple events) that would allow us to address the issue of academic freedom, which, as you’ve undoubtedly seen, has become a loudly visible aspect of American studies conversations presently. We hope to organize a program that will serve as an occasion to think through the histories and meaningfulness of academic freedom, to facilitate discussion that might enable us to attend to the genealogies of state power and its relationship to university life in the broad frame of the emergence of modernity, as well as in its local iterations.
Not unrelatedly, we’ll also be collaborating with others to address the conditions of work for minoriized scholar-teachers in line with the kind of work that Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs, Yolanda Flores Niemann, Carmen G. González, Angela P. Harris undertake in their edited volume, Presumed Incompetent: The Intersections of Race and Class for Women in the Academy. (This and the academic freedom centered programming is likely to take place in AY2014-15.)
That’s about it for now, except to offer our very best wishes to you for the new year — more to follow….!
Kandice & Duncan