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Friday, May 6, 2016

Call for Papers/Convocatoria de Ponencias


Third International Conference of the "Local Action in Response to Migration" Network


With the conference just four months away, the academic bodies comprising the third international conference are seeking interested and relevant persons and institutions to submit papers for presentation.

This two-day conference is designed to share the experiences arising from local action with regard to migration. It will support the examination of key efforts in response to migration and migrants in the framework of the most recent challenges to the dynamics in the movement of peoples that unite Mesoamerica and North America as well as their transnational effects.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

University of Minnesota Hosts Black Feminism Cornerstone Event

Sponsored by the Winton Chair in the College of the Liberal Arts, this three-day event was made possible by the efforts of black feminists who sought to bring greater awareness to black cultural life and politics through poetry and performance. Using voice, storytelling, and deep collaboration, these artists, scholars, and intellectuals invigorate the meaning and practice of community. In the era of Black Lives Matter, the intensive Cornerstone event examined how black feminist queer existence and influence informs current practices and life by centering love, realness and each other. By incorporating art, discussion, interactive presentations, oral histories and singing, the conference entitled, Learning to Breathe: Black Feminism, Performative Pedagogies, and Creative Praxis, exuded creativity, innovation, and celebration. Here is an insight into just a few of the inspiring events:

Black Lives Matter and Social Justice

African American writer James Baldwin once noted, “to be black and conscious in America is to be in a constant state of rage.” Baldwin’s words continue to echo in American society today, where racial inequality has yet to substantially dissipate.  Despite the victories in Brown vs Board of Education, the Voting Rights Act, and the Fair Housing Act, schools and neighborhoods are re-segregating, and elements of the Voting Rights Act were recently stripped of substantial power. Forty-two percent of black children are educated in high-poverty schools. The unemployment rate for black high-school dropouts is 47% (for white high-school dropouts it is 26%). Black people constitute just 13.2% of the US population, yet they account for 37% of the homeless. One in every 13 African Americans of voting age is disenfranchised because of a felony conviction – a rate more than four times greater than the rest of the US population. Moreover, African Americans now constitute nearly 1 million of the total 2.3 million people in jail and are incarcerated nearly six times as often as white people.

Graduate Students Take Part in Semester-Long Simulated Advocacy around Racial Justice

The human rights movement has a stake in every part of society. While we often emphasize its global or transnational dimensions, the ways in which human rights are promoted and protected locally and nationally are just as important, for they underscore what advancements we can and must all make in our very own communities. With this in mind, it is worthwhile to consider one particular group’s experience in studying racial justice in the Twin Cities. This is their story:

Undergraduates, Graduates/Professionals Lauded for their Achievements at the 6th Annual Human Rights Awards

With tremendous fanfare, the Human Rights Program and the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies (CHGS) hosted on April 22nd their 6th annual Human Rights Awards ceremony. It was a time of celebration and festivity as the spotlight was turned to the students and their exceptional achievements in studying and promoting human rights. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

PhD Candidate discusses narcotics and drug violence in Latin America

On April 21, Marie Jose Mendez Gutierrez, a PhD. candidate from the Political Science department presented her research regarding “Narcocorridos” and drug war violence in Latin America at the biweekly Holocaust, Genocide, and Mass Violence Studies workshop. This portion of her dissertation explores the violence in Central America and Mexico through what she calls Narco culture. This realm consists of art, songs, and literature, which carry the political consciousness of Latin America.  Previously, these spaces were largely dominated by the language of repression and autocratic rule, where as now, drug trafficking permeates such forms.