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Michelle Tallez - Liberating Stories of Resistance Along the U.S./Mexico Border

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Oct 1, 2019, 5:00 PM-7:00 PM

319 Sims Hall

Susann DeMocker-Shedd

Liberating Stories of Resistance Along the U.S./Mexico Border

Drawing from her own experience as a transfrontera/transborder scholar and activist, Dr. Téllez will discuss how the U.S./Mexico border must not be seen merely as a site of passage, a crossing line of militarized surveillance and policing, or political boundary. Instead, she argues, the borderlands is also a space of resistance, conviviality, agency, creative community building, and a space where transformative politics can take place.

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C. Heike Schotten - Queer Terror: Refusing Settler Empire and the “Value of Life”

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Oct 22, 2019, 3:30 PM-5:00 PM

319 Sims Hall

Susann DeMocker-Shedd

Queer Terror: Refusing Settler Empire and the “Value of Life”

Dr. Schotten argues that the War on Terror is both an outgrowth and a contemporary chapter of the settler conquest that founded the United States via a queer reading of liberal political theory’s discourses of “savagery” and “civilization” that interprets these categories as centrally about proper and improper desire.  This overlay of “savagery” and improper or abject desire exposes the moralization of the otherwise seemingly objective or self-evident categories of “life” and “death” that anchor both the settler colonial and the US imperial project.  The result of this reading is an analysis of “terrorism” discourse as a hyper-moralized ideological project that aims to slander decolonizing and indigenous struggles as anathema to all life and value, thereby de-legitimizing them out of existence.  This political and ideological landscape leaves liberatory thinkers and actors with no other choice than to side openly with “the terrorists” in an act of anti-colonial and anti-imperial queer radicalism, or queer terror.  Dr. Schotten concludes with some reflections on why appropriating “terrorism” to name or describe white supremacist political violence is a misguided strategy. 

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K. Melchor Hall - Naming a Transnational Black Feminist Framework: Writing in Darkness

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Oct 30, 2019, 4:00 PM-6:00 PM

319 Sims Hall

Susann DeMocker-Shedd

Naming a Transnational Black Feminist Framework: Writing in Darkness

By writing Black feminist texts into the IR canon and naming a common Black feminist praxis, this text charts a path towards a transnational Black feminist (TBF) framework in IR, and outlines why a TBF framework is a much needed intervention in the field.  Situated at the intersection of IR and Black feminist theory and praxis, the book argues that a Black feminist tradition of engaging the international exists, has been neglected by mainstream IR and can be written into the IR canon using the TBF framework. Using grounded theory research within the Black indigenous Garifuna community of Honduras, as well as the scholarship of Black feminist anthropologists, the author illustrates how five TBF guiding principles—intersectionality, solidarity, scholar-activism, attention to borders/boundaries, and radically transparent author positionality—offer a critical alternative for engaging IR studies. The text calls on IR scholars to engage Black feminist scholarship and praxis beyond the written page, through its living legacy.