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Humanities Institute



Archive

Research Clusters


The UC Davis Humanities Institute currently sponsors eight research clusters. The research clusters provide a critical space for interdisciplinary research and collaboration not easily accomplished in a single department or program. Clusters are meant to facilitate exchange among faculty and graduate students in workshops, symposia, or mini-conferences, to encourage experimentation with new forms of collaboration within and beyond UC Davis, and to broaden the aims of faculty research in the humanities and humanistic social sciences. Clusters are awarded up to $5,000 annually.

Year: 2016-2017

Black Radical Thought: Traditions, Aftermaths, Futures

Faculty Contact: Laurie Lambert (African American & African Studies)

The main goal of this research cluster is to promote critical dialogue, in the form of research, writing, and publications, on black radicalism across the African Diaspora. We will host a symposiumdiaspora that examines the role of intellectuals in imagining, leading, and promoting radicalism and revolution throughout Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe. In The Wretched of the Earth (1961), Martinican psychiatrist and philosopher Frantz Fanon writes, “Challenging the colonial world is not a rational confrontation of viewpoints. It is not a discourse on the universal, but the impassioned claim by the colonized that their world is fundamentally different” (6). We are interested in how black intellectuals have experienced and described this fundamental difference between the colonized and the colonizer. What are the key concepts black radical intellectuals have developed to understand anti-colonial struggle? How have these concepts evolved as black freedom struggles have shifted over time? What does black radicalism mean in 2016? How can we situate current concepts of radicalism and revolution in relation to previous iterations throughout the black world? Drawing on the work of Haitian anthropologist Michel-Rolph Trouillot, our conceptualization of black radicalism does not take for granted the “chronological boundary between past and present inherited from antiquity” (Trouillot 5). Instead we are invested in creating a critical framework that can account for the simultaneity of the traditions, aftermaths, and futures of black radicalism and revolution.

Cluster on Language Research

Faculty Contact: Robert Blake (Linguistics)

Website: http://languageresearch.ucdavis.edu/

language

Initially founded in 2013 through the joint effort of UC Davis faculty and graduate students and with the support of the DHI, the cluster encourages investigation, exploration, and dialogue between researchers involved in diverse fields such as theoretical and applied linguistics, cognitive psychology, foreign language teaching and education, language policy, sociology of language, language preservation, and philosophy of language.  In essence, our mission is to create a space where students and faculty of diverse linguistic training can share their insights and expertise in the pursuit of a more modern and unified vision of language.  We are pleased to report that during the last two years we have accomplished this goal and have set the stage for further progress. We are expanding on this interdisciplinary focus by attracting more participation from students and scholars in psychology, computer science, and education, in addition to the active contributions from its core members of the last two years drawn from the Linguistics, Spanish, and French departments.

Cognitive/Social-Science Media Theory (CSSMT)
Faculty Contact: Laramie Taylor (Communications)
film

Why do films, and audio-visual media in general, have the power they do over their viewers – not only to entertain, but to engage audiences emotionally and even, in some cases, to change the very core of a culture? Why do certain characters (Bale’s Batman, Bridget Jones, Hannibal Lecter) enter the cultural lexicon while others are quickly forgotten? Why do some films succeed while others fail (financially and/or artistically)? These myriad questions about cinema/audio-visual media — one of California’s biggest industries and the US’s key cultural export around the world — point to a fundamental inquiry: what exactly happens in the brains/minds of viewers to make these phenomena and processes transpire in the way that they do? By bringing together faculty and graduate students who study media from diverse perspectives — both humanistic and cognitive/social-scientific, from some eight different departments/programs — we aim to address these kinds of questions that seem central to narratives, their aesthetics, and therefore humanistic studies in general.

New Viet Nam Studies Cluster

Faculty Contact: Caroline Valverde (Asian American Studies)

viet-nam

In the heels of Viet Nam’s dramatic economic rise in the last few years and its concerted efforts to engage internationally as a result of it, there has been renewed interest to study contemporary Viet Nam (V .Nguyen 2015:Espiritu 2014; Valverde 2013; Worrall 2014; Veith 2013; Turse 2013; Wu2013; and L. Nguyen 2012).  The proposed New Viet Nam Studies Cluster aims to directly engage and coordinate research to lead this emerging trend.  With a population of 94 million and a literacy rate of 92 percent, Viet Nam is moving from the international ranking of ‘poor’ to ‘middle poor,’ making it the fastest growing nation in Southeast Asia.  Its recent signing of the controversial Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) begs the question of how such global trade agreements will strengthen its economy while maintaining its sovereignty and independence.  These and many other pertinent research questions will have practical consequences for Viet Nam and its widening global reach.  This is the time for us to consider the economic reconstruction and cultural renewal of Viet Nam as it moves beyond the major conflicts of its recent history to chart its own course into the future.

Research, Narrative, and Performance: Explorations in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities

Faculty Contact: Cristiana Giordano (Anthropology)

img_2968This cluster explores the cross pollination between research and narrative practices in performance studies, social sciences, and the humanities. By creating a dialogue between these disciplines in a laboratory format, we hope to pose questions and engage techniques in ways that will enrich our engagement with anthropological and humanistic questions, and performative productions. We will explore how social scientists and humanities scholars can learn from theater and the arts a more playful posture towards research, and a more performative understanding of narrative that can translate into either new forms of writing (essays, plays, short stories), or into a revitalized existing practice of academic writing. On the other hand, theater makers, performers, and artists can learn from social sciences’ methods a more nuanced understanding of political and cultural contexts, how to approach the different discourse formations around events, and to pay attention to the complexities of different worlds. We will use theatrical devising techniques to engage ethnographic questions and material. In this context, theatrical devices will provide us with tools to analyze our findings through the body and the embodiment of narratives in space. By exploring our narratives through the elements of the stage (lights, sets, objects, sound, bodies etc.), theater can teach us to engage with them more viscerally in our writing. On the other hand, social sciences can teach us to listen to the intricacies of stories in a way that can broaden and deepen the ways in which theater makers render narratives for the stage.

The Philosophy and Physics of Space-time

Faculty Contact: Alyssa Ney (Philosophy)spacetime

The status of space-time in our most fundamental theories has been a topic of research for several members of the Philosophy department. It is also the topic of a popular upper division philosophy course, Philosophy of Space and Time, taught by Professor Cody Gilmore and Professor Elaine Landry. The subject of time in relativity is also addressed in another upper division course, Metaphysics, taught by Professor Alyssa Ney. There is a happy affinity between this philosophical research and the work of several members of the physics department. Professors Steven Carlip, Veronika Hubeny, and Mukund Ragamani all work in the field of quantum gravity. As part of this work, they develop and explore theories in which space-time is not fundamental, but maybe explained in terms of more fundamental frameworks lacking a space-time fabric.

The goal of these interdisciplinary conversations is to achieve a better understanding of the sense in which space and time may be emergent rather than fundamental structures and the extent to which our most fundamental physical theories are suggesting this is so. At this early stage of collaboration, we are most interested in establishing a shared foundation of knowledge and so we propose in this first year to bring in a set of speakers with expertise on the status of space-time in relativity and theories of quantum gravity, as well as the formation of the internal psychological image of space-time.

Women and Gender in the World
Faculty Contact: Ellen Hartigan-O’Connor (History), Lisa Materson (History), Corrie Decker (History), Rachel Jean-Baptiste(History), and Jenny Kaminer (Russian)
Website: http://uswomenandgenderhistory.wordpress.com/In the early 1990s, feminist scholars developed gender as an analytical tool for deconstructing relationships of power and sent a shock wave through the field of history.  Some historians celebrated the prospect that gender history would replace women’s history with a more nuanced understanding of the interlocking historical categories of race, class, ethnicity, and sexuality.  Others asserted that gender history would refocus attention away from women and back onto men.  A tension between women’s history and gender history fueled vibrant debates in the pages of scholarly journals and in the classroom that are still transforming our understanding of the past.  In the 2000s, transnational and global history transformed the field again, challenging frameworks that had situated identities and institutions within national boundaries.  The debates surrounding these new challenges are still in their formative stages and have lively iterations in other disciplines beyond history.  Active since 2013, the cluster has provided a variety of forums during the last two years to explore implications of these debates.  The cluster community—which includes faculty and graduate students in History, German & Russian, Women & Gender Studies, American Studies, English, Sociology, and Film Studies, among other departments—is a vital part of campus initiatives to integrate scholarship on women, gender, and sexuality with humanistic and scientific inquiry.

Year: 2015-2016

Sexualities Across Disciplines

Faculty Contact: Eric Russell (French & Italian)

This cluster will pursue research relating to sexuality/ies from diverse disciplinary, thematic, theoretic, and methodological points of view, representing departments and programs across the Humanities and Social Sciences.  Each discipline (and in many instances sub-discipline and inter-discipline) is framed by specific understandings of the denotative qualities that may or may not be addressed by methodology, interpolated through theory, or explored in bounded corpora.  Analysis is further constrained by socio-cultural and historical foci.  Until recently, and still in many circles, sexualities have been treated as unquestioningly universal and reduced to deterministic paradigms, notably gay, bisexual, and straight, most often from occidental, and particularly Anglo-American perspectives.  Our understanding of sexuality is entrenched in parochialism.  There are few venues on campus in which to present research-in-progress to diverse audiences having plural frames of reference and focusing their attention on varied (especially non-Anglo-American) archives.  With the work of this cluster, understanding sexualities across disciplines will enrich and expand the work being done across the UC Davis campus by fostering new connections and nurturing new dialogues.

Rhetoric@Davis

Faculty Contact: Christopher Thaiss (University Writing Program)

Rhetoricians have long viewed all communication as rhetorical, or a spersuasive (Jones, 2012, p. 23).  Rhetoric is the study of all language and communication, written and spoken, web-based and face-to-face, and how these communications all have one thing in common: they seek to persuade, urging the audience to consider the writer or speaker’s stance.  This is why we believe rhetoric is essential to all disciplines on our UC Davis campus, from science to religion, from English to Mathematics.  All disciplines find it necessary to communicate their studies and their findings to a wide variety of audiences, urging those audiences to consider the stance that discipline takes.  The goal of this cluster is to foster interdisciplinarity.

Africa-California Research Innovations


Faculty Contact: Rachel Jean-Baptiste (History), Corrie Decker (History), and Monique Borgerhoff Mulder (Anthropology)

This research cluster will establish a much-needed venue for collaboration and innovation among UC Davis faculty and graduate students who conduct research in Africa.  We will build partnerships for future investigation in the geographic and thematic study of Africa.  Some regional questions addressed by the cluster might be: What are the postcolonial politics of race and ethnicity influencing the process of nation building and rebuilding in West and Central Africa?  How do Kenyan and Tanzanian notions of development shape the kinds of oral histories we can conduct there?  In what ways have lucrative industries in Southern Africa benefited or overshadowed social, cultural, and economic changes in neighboring countries?  Other interdisciplinary questions that could also be addressed in the workshops include: How does learning about environmental challenges force the historian or anthropologist to reframe his/her research scope?  How does knowledge about colonial and postcolonial history and culture inform contemporary research on plants and animals?  These and other questions to be addressed in the workshop will bridge the epistemological and methodological divides that often block collaboration across the humanities, social sciences, and biological and agricultural sciences.

Early Science, Technology, and Environment:

Fostering Interdisciplinarity at UC Davis

Faculty Contact: Colin Webster (Classics)

We believe that one barrier to collaboration—even for those working within similar fields—is the simple lack of opportunities to gather and exchange ideas.  To this end, the core group will identify scholars and graduate students inside and outside of the humanities who would be interested in engaging with this project.  The rise of interdisciplinarity within academia has led to exciting new work, and institutions have shifted funding to encourage collaboration across fields.  The models that support this trend, however, often operate on assumptions gleaned from the sciences, privileging large-scale grant-based investigative projects and multiple-author papers.  We seek to balance this tendency by producing a report that points to specific resources applicable to humanist researchers, while mapping the people on campus devoted to helping others with interdisciplinary questions.  Moreover, we will use our experiences to produce a “white paper” report detailing the roadblocks encountered by multi-disciplinary humanist researchers, in which we can formulate a set of recommendations for the university.

Cluster on Language Research

Faculty Contact: Robert Blake (Linguistics)

Website: http://languageresearch.ucdavis.edu/

Initially founded in 2013 through the joint effort of UC Davis faculty and graduate students and with the support of the DHI, the cluster encourages investigation, exploration, and dialogue between researchers involved in diverse fields such as theoretical and applied linguistics, cognitive psychology, foreign language teaching and education, language policy, sociology of language, language preservation, and philosophy of language.  In essence, our mission is to create a space where students and faculty of diverse linguistic training can share their insights and expertise in the pursuit of a more modern and unified vision of language.  We are pleased to report that during the last two years we have accomplished this goal and have set the stage for further progress. We are expanding on this interdisciplinary focus by attracting more participation from students and scholars in psychology, computer science, and education, in addition to the active contributions from its core members of the last two years drawn from the Linguistics, Spanish, and French departments.

Continuing Research Groups

Brazilian Studies

Faculty Contact: Robert Newcomb (Spanish & Portuguese)

Participant Bios.

Flag_of_Brazil.svgThe Brazilian Studies group was created in 2015 with funding from the UC Davis Humanities Institute. We bring together UC Davis faculty, graduate students, and other scholars from the humanities and social sciences with the goal of creating a space to share Brazil-related research and advance Brazilian studies on our campus. We periodically organize meetings and other events (keep an eye of the DHI calendar for these events). Please contact Robert Newcomb (rpnewcomb@ucdavis.edu), with any questions, or if you’d like to participate in our group.

Women and Gender in the World


Faculty Contact: Ellen Hartigan-O’Connor (History), Lisa Materson (History), Corrie Decker (History), Rachel Jean-Baptiste(History), and Jenny Kaminer (Russian)

Website: http://uswomenandgenderhistory.wordpress.com/

In the early 1990s, feminist scholars developed gender as an analytical tool for deconstructing relationships of power and sent a shock wave through the field of history.  Some historians celebrated the prospect that gender history would replace women’s history with a more nuanced understanding of the interlocking historical categories of race, class, ethnicity, and sexuality.  Others asserted that gender history would refocus attention away from women and back onto men.  A tension between women’s history and gender history fueled vibrant debates in the pages of scholarly journals and in the classroom that are still transforming our understanding of the past.  In the 2000s, transnational and global history transformed the field again, challenging frameworks that had situated identities and institutions within national boundaries.  The debates surrounding these new challenges are still in their formative stages and have lively iterations in other disciplines beyond history.  Active since 2013, the cluster has provided a variety of forums during the last two years to explore implications of these debates.  The cluster community—which includes faculty and graduate students in History, German & Russian, Women & Gender Studies, American Studies, English, Sociology, and Film Studies, among other departments—is a vital part of campus initiatives to integrate scholarship on women, gender, and sexuality with humanistic and scientific inquiry.

World of Late Antiquity

Faculty Contact: Catherine Chin (Classics) and Emily Albu (Classics)

Modern scholarship has pointed to events of 395 CE (the death of Theodosius I, last ruler of a unified Roman empire) and 476 CE (the German Odoacer’s depiction of the last western Roman emperor) as watersheds toward a fundamental divergence of Greek-speaking east from Latin-speaking west during the long fifth century (395-518 CE). Our preliminary investigation suggests ties to Roman identity and empire that endured, nurtured by venerable tradition and by deeply embedded networks of old Roman elites and within religious and ethnic groups that reached across the new political boundaries.  To test this argument and to explore factors that fostered a sense of unity or contributed to disintegration, we will organize a conference that joins six UC faculty from the California Consortium for Late Antiquity and six international scholars who work on both the eastern and western lands of the late Roman world.  By assembling scholars with far-ranging backgrounds and expertise, we launch a fresh examination of the literary and material evidence for divergence or convergence between the Greek east and the Latin west.  We focus on four key areas: Religion, Cultural Networks,Emperor and Elites, and Law and the Administration of Government.  We aim to investigate fifth-century expressions of cohesion and divergence, stability and turmoil to comprehend dissolution with explosive consequences for our contemporary world.  Our preliminary findings validate views of fifth-century writers more attuned to continuity than to change, challenging prevailing assumptions of twenty-first century scholarship that has projected an east-west binary into a distant historical moment.

Year: 2014-2015

Indian Ocean Imaginaries: Place-Making, Practices, and Networks

Faculty Contact: Smriti Srinivas, Bettina Ng’weno
Student Contacts:

The Indian Ocean Imaginaries Research Cluster brings together 13 members from Anthropology, African American and African Studies, English, Geography, Human Ecology, and Religious Studies. It focuses visibility on faculty at UC Davis, who have separately approached Indian Ocean cultures and societies in several ways and puts UCD in conversation with emerging frontiers of scholarship that focus on the significance and necessity for collaborative, cross-regional theorizations.  Research projects of graduate students associated with this cluster engage with several cities, coastal ecologies, warscapes, asylums, and other sites in this region. The purpose of the cluster is to create an explicit community of scholars focused on the Indian Ocean world. The cluster will also provide a venue for mentorship of graduate students who work on parts of the Indian Ocean world and a site for professional development of established faculty and students to think about Indian Ocean imaginaries together in novel ways.

The Digital Premodern: Codex to Code

Faculty Contact: Matthew Vernon, Claire Waters
Student Contacts:

This cluster explores premodern materials and experiences—from the classical to the late-medieval—in light of their intersections with modern and postmodern modes of communication, cultural engagement, and learning. We will be exploring the multiple meanings and uses of mapping in both premodern culture and the digital realm; the role of medievalism and classical receptions in contemporary gaming culture; and the intersection of pre-print and post-print technologies in the digital study of manuscripts and performance.

Women and Gender in the World

Faculty Contact: Ellen Hartigan-O’Connor, Lisa G. Materson
Website: http://uswomenandgenderhistory.wordpress.com/

In the 2000s, transnational and global history transformed the field of women’s and gender history, challenging frameworks that had situated identities and institutions within national boundaries. The debates surrounding these challenges are still in their formative stages and have lively iterations in other disciplines beyond history. This research cluster brings together an interdisciplinary group of scholars to explore the implications of transnational perspectives for scholarship and teaching on women and gender. Events in 2014-2015 include a major conference November 8-9 that will include more than 20 speakers from around the country presenting papers, and a spring workshop on the subject of “Women’s and Gender Scholarship in Global Contexts: the State of the Campus, the Future of Collaboration.”

Temporality and its Limits: Reconsidering Time, Duration and the Event

Faculty Contact: Sudipta Sen

In this cluster we investigate how studies of temporality in disciplines across the humanities have broached new questions relating to individual perceptions and normative orders implicated in common forms of time- reckoning. We also query how the very perception of time as measurable or experientially derived quanta—in the form of cycles, revolutions, chronology, linearity, progress, velocity, probability, futurity, as well as in the fused concepts of time and space—has persisted in the humanities.

There are temporalities that seem to be “hard-wired” in relationship to gender, reproduction, diurnal routines, rhythms of dance and music, and life-cycles, including birth, aging and death. These forms provide the living tissue of almanacs and calendars, and also the building blocks of historic duration that keep in place normative ideas of immediacy and the future. There are also temporalities that seem to be embedded in the very matrix of human association. We also seek to inquire how the very idea of the Event is perched on the interstice of the circadian and the socio- temporal forms of time-reckoning, we explore the Event as a gesture and form of reckoning common to most humanity that has a place prior to myth, history and apocrypha, as an essential punctum that keeps the here/now and the there/then at once in play and in tension.

UC Davis Multidisciplinary Psychoanalytic Research Cluster

Faculty Contact: James Smith, Li Zhang
Student Contact: Matthew Nesvet

The UC Davis Multidisciplinary Psychoanalytic Research Cluster sponsors research, lectures, seminars, digital humanities projects and other activities that foster the exploration of psychoanalytic ideas and texts across the disciplines. In particular, this cluster supports research and events that engage with psychoanalysis in pluralistic and experimental ways. By putting psychoanalytic ideas and practices in conversation with emerging thinking on temporality, materiality, history, memory, bodies, care, economy, narrative, experimentally, improvisation, performance, law, and criminality, the cluster provides a space for faculty and graduate students to explore and develop work at the forefront of humanistic and critical social science engagements with psychoanalysis. The cluster’s lecture series, Freudian Sips, brings prominent and cutting-edge scholars to campus for public events; cluster faculty, postdoctoral associates, graduate students and undergraduates attend and organize a panel at the annual UC Interdisciplinary Psychoanalytic Consortium Retreat; and its postdoctoral scholar works with graduate and undergraduate students seeking to explore how psychoanalytic texts and ideas might contribute to their research. The cluster is administratively housed in Cultural Anthropology and includes faculty and graduate students from across the humanities and critical social sciences. Please contact Matthew Nesvet (nesvet@ucdavis.edu) with questions on the cluster, if you’d like to be added to its mailing list, or if you wish to get involved. The cluster will host a kickoff event and open house for all interested persons in early fall quarter (Oct 9).

Rhetoric @ Davis

Faculty Contact: Chris Thaiss

Rhetoric @ Davis promotes the idea of rhetoric as a field of study that touches upon every discipline that needs to communicate information or knowledge to an audience.  This research cluster will create a forum to meet, discuss, and share research related to rhetoric for scholars from an array of disciplines and departments at the University of California, Davis.  Each quarter, the cluster will invite an outside speaker on rhetoric whose visit will be followed by a panel discussion later in the quarter.

Cluster on Language Research

Faculty Contact: Robert Blake
Website: http://languageresearch.ucdavis.edu/

The Cluster on Language Research seeks to create a space where researchers can share their individual specialties and insights in pursuit of creating a more unified vision of language. Encompassing interests such as theoretical and applied linguistics, cognitive psychology, foreign language teaching and education, language policy, sociology of language, language preservation, and philosophy of language, this cluster supports investigation, exploration, and collaboration in the field of Language Research. The members of this interdisciplinary group use this space to meet and discuss relevant literature, present and develop their research, organize projects and colloquia, and put on the annual Symposium on Language Research.

Turkish Studies

Faculty Contact: Baki Tezcan

Turkish Studies aims to broaden scholarly understanding of contemporary events in Turkey by inciting intellectual engagement with new political forms.  This research cluster will furnish young UC Davis scholars with valuable professional development and will facilitate a community for scholars of Turkey at Davis.  Turkish studies begins a conversation between thinkers whose work ranges from queer theory to political economy to social movement theory in order to help the public situate recent uprisings in Turkey in the context of subaltern political struggles unfamiliar to many in the U.S.

Eighteenth-Century Studies Journal

Year: 2013-2014

Eighteenth-Century Studies

Faculty Contact: Alessa Johns
Student Contacts: Molly Ball, Peter Weise

This research cluster supports scholars working in a wide variety of fields during the long eighteenth century. The cluster hosts the annual Hopkins-McGuinness lecture as well as formal and informal presentations of work by faculty and graduate students. It is assisting to organize and host an upcoming conference of the Western Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, to be held at UC Davis from 14-16 February, 2014.

Estudios Culturales en las Américas

Faculty Contact: Robert Irwin, Michael Lazzara
Student Contacts: Diana Pardo Pedraza, David Tenorio González
Website: http://estudiosculturales.ucdavis.edu

This research cluster focuses on the interdisciplinary field of Latin@american Cultural Studies, and specifically on contemporary critical debates and new research by scholars working on Chican@/Latin@ and/or Latin American cultural studies in the humanities and social sciences. In the tradition of Latin@american cultural studies, this cluster focuses on issues of political expediency and on power relations within the cultural sphere, topics related to gender and race, and work by women and indigenous peoples. Other possible themes of analysis include migration, subaltern knowledges, cultural industries, globalization, bilingualism, iconography, memory, and cultural policy, among others. The cluster approaches its topic through a transamerican perspective in interdisciplinary cultural studies.

Performance and the Premodern Archive

Faculty Contact: Noah Guynn, Matthew Vernon

Performance and the Premodern Archive explores what it means to study the distant past in the humanities and humanistic social sciences.  This cluster brings new theoretical discourses into the study of premodernity and finds innovative ways to historicize it.  Through a unique combination of disciplines, historical periods, geographic specialization, and theoretical affiliations, Performance and the Premodern Archive examines Medieval performance culture and seeks new understanding of modernity’s ways of performing the past.

Queer, Feminist, and Transgender Studies

Faculty Contact: Kathleen Frederickson
Student Contacts: Elisa Oceguera, Isabel Porras

The Queer, Feminist, and Transgender Studies Research Custer (QFT), formerly known as the Queer Research Cluster (QRC), is a research group of faculty members and graduate students that has been active for the past eight years at Davis. The cluster has aimed to be an interdisciplinary project devoted to interrogating structures of gender, sexuality, desire, affect, and embodiment in the contexts of political institutions, economic processes, and theoretical discourses. Undergraduates interested in pursuing grad degrees in these fields are also invited. To receive information about events, join the Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/QFTCluster or bookmark: http://qftcluster.ucdavis.edu

Reception Studies

Faculty Contact: Brenda Schildgen, Archana Venkatesan
Website: http://receptionstudies.ucdavis.edu/

Reception Studies is concerned with the reception, transmission, production and consumption of “cultural” forms, epistemologies, texts, and ideas temporally and spatially.  This cluster interrogates how new technologies shape the way texts and ideas are received.

Rhetoric @ Davis

Faculty Contact: Chris Thaiss

Rhetoric @ Davis promotes the idea of rhetoric as a field of study that touches upon every discipline that needs to communicate information or knowledge to an audience.  This research cluster will create a forum to meet, discuss, and share research related to rhetoric for scholars from an array of disciplines and departments at the University of California, Davis.  Each quarter, the cluster will invite an outside speaker on rhetoric whose visit will be followed by a panel discussion later in the quarter.

Studies in Performance and Practice

Faculty Contact: Kriss Ravetto-Biagioli

Studies in Performance and Practice will shift the focus of the performance studies cluster from the experience of embodiment to film and media aesthetics, particularly the politics of the moving image in the age of secularization. The focus will be on screening as a social and anti-social practice.

Turkish Studies

Faculty Contact: Baki Tezcan, Suad Joseph

Turkish Studies aims to broaden scholarly understanding of contemporary events in Turkey by inciting intellectual engagement with new political forms.  This research cluster will furnish young UC Davis scholars with valuable professional development and will facilitate a community for scholars of Turkey at Davis.  Turkish studies begins a conversation between thinkers whose work ranges from queer theory to political economy to social movement theory in order to help the public situate recent uprisings in Turkey in the context of subaltern political struggles unfamiliar to many in the U.S.

What Does Health Mean Today?

Faculty Contacts: Cristiana Giordano
Student Contact: Rima Praspaliauskiene

Cluster Profile: Research Cluster Questions the Meaning of Health in a Global Context

This interdisciplinary research cluster aims to explore the meanings of health in the context of a rapidly changing and increasingly connected world. We feel that it is imperative to explore how health has come to mean what it does today, and how our intellectual work can contribute to a more comprehensive approach to changing notions of embodiment, cure, and well-being. Our main objective is to understand the ways in which an emerging global medicine is articulated with diverse cultural beliefs and practices to shape diagnostic methods, healing models, therapeutic processes, health systems, and patient subjectivities. This research cluster will provide a space for faculty and students to develop richer and deeper analysis from the humanities and social sciences perspectives. At the same time we intend to link up with UC’s ambitious “One Health” project to broaden our discussion in order to reformulate how we think about health and medicine through an attention to large-scale human endeavors in dialogue with humanistic concerns of healthy cosmopolitan lives.

This page was last updated: August 28, 2017

 

 

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