events

ISI Cosponsors Conflict Transformation and Literature Series

ISI is a proud cosponsor of The Art of Conflict Transformation Event Series, whose two-day event "Conflict Transformation and Literature: Exploring Transformations of Conflict Across Boundaries of Language, Nation states, Time and Memory" will take place from November 12-13. The event is organized by former ISHA/ISI fellow Leah Wing, and features Dr. Marjorie Agosin in three different engagements.

The first, on Wednesday November 12 at 12:30 pm in Herter 601, is an interdisciplinary graduate student conversation titled "The Aesthetics of Social Justice Activism through Literature." The second is a reading and conversation titled "Weaving the Memories of OThers" in the Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies at November 12 at 4:30 pm. Dr. Agosin's UMass visit will conclude with "Human Rights and the Arts," a student conversation on November 13 in the Honors College, Elm 230, at 10:00 a.m.

Albie Sachs Delivers Remarkable Talk To Standing-Room Only Crowd

On September 10, Justice Albie Sachs delivered a remarkable talk to a standing-room only crowd in the new Integrative Learning Center building. Drawing from his life experiences of involvement in South Africa's ANC during the struggle against Apartheid, his exile in Mozambique, and his later appointment by Nelson Mandela to the Constitutional Court, Sachs kept the audience rapt with his storytelling as well as his dry wit.

The talk, titled 'The Value of Values: Lessons from the South African Transformation,' was directed at value and values which are at the heart of ISI's theme for the year. Sachs touched on issues that ranged from same-sex marriage and sexual equality, the death penalty, and revenge and vengeance.

During his visit to UMass and in addition to his talk, Sachs met with the current ISI fellows, conducted an interdisciplinary mixed graduate and undergraduate seminar. More photos from his visit can be found on our gallery

Albie Sachs To Give Lecture at UMass

Called "arguably the world's most famous judge" in The Guardian, the famed South African judge Albie Sachs will give a lecture on September 10 at Umass at 4 p.m. in the new Integrative Learning Center, room south 331. Sachs's lecture will be on "The Value of Values: Lessons from the South African Transformation" and will inaugurate this year's ISI theme, "Value."

2014 ISI Capstone, "Dimensions of Emancipation"

ISI presented a roundtable discussion featuring fellows of the 2013-14 ISI faculty seminar on Emancipation. The seminar was inspired by the the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, and during the year the fellows addressed the general topic from a wide range of approaches across the disciplines. The roundtable aimed to return some of their insights and interactions to a wider audience, as well as to encourage audience participation at the close of another successful and busy year.

The event was held on Thursday, April 24 at 4PM in Bartlett 316, free and open to the public, and all faculty and students were encouraged to attend. 

Mandiba's Gifts: Nelson Mandela's Life and Legacies - A Tribute

The event Mandiba's Gifts: Nelson Mandela's Life and Legacies - A Tribute will take place on Friday, April 4 as part of Five College Africa Day 2014. The event will take place at 4PM in Bowker Auditorium, Stockbridge Hall and feature keynote speaker Garrey M. Dennie, former speech writer for Nelson Mandela and Professor of History at St. Mary's College of Maryland.

Barbara Fields to Deliver ISI Lecture

The Interdisciplinary Studies Institute (ISI) is delighted to host Professor Barbara Fields, who will visit UMass from February 18-20 for the ISI 2014 Residency. Professor Fields will present a public lecture entitled “Was Emancipation a War Crime?” on Wednesday, February 19th in Campus Center 165-169 at 5 p.m. In addition, through the course of her stay she will visit classes in an array of departments and take part in several graduate seminars, as well as engage with this year’s ISI fellows, who are discussing the theme of “Emancipation” through the year. 

Professor Fields is the recipient of several prestigious awards, including a 1992 MacArthur Fellowship, the John H. Dunning Prize of the American Historical Association, the Founders Prize of the Confederate Memorial Literary Society, and the Thomas Jefferson Prize for the Society of the History of the Federal Government. Professor Fields is Professor of History at Columbia University. 

For a complete schedule of events, see our Residency page. 

Photographer and Activist Zanele Muholi Visits Smith College

The Interdisciplinary Studies Institute (ISI) is pleased to co-sponsor the event 'Black Queer Born Frees in South Africa' at Smith College on February 4, 2014. Photographer and visual activist Zanele Muholi will show photographs and a video produced in Durban as part of a presentation exploring Black Frees (the generation born in post-apartheid South Africa and known as Mandela's great-grandchildren) and how each person expresses him/herself queerly in a time of troubling hate crimes in South Africa. The young adults she depicts are those born in 1990-1994, and openly gay/lesbian/trans with/in South African borders. This event will take place in the Browsing Room of Neilson Library on the Smith College campus on Tuesday, February 4 from 5-7pm.

Muholi's work will be on display at the Williams College Museum of Art from February 1, 2014 - April 27, 2014.

Theaster Gates to Give Public Lecture

The ISI is a proud cosponsor of the upcoming Theaster Gates visit to UMass. Gates will give a public lecture on November 4 titled "Du Bois: The Early Social Practitioner," at 5:00 PM Thompson 104 at UMass Amherst. His talk is part of the programming for the exhibition "Du Bois In Our Time" at the University Museum of Contemporary Art at UMass Amherst.

The artist Theaster Gates has developed an expanded practice that includes space development, object making, performance and critical engagement with many publics. Founder of the non-profit Rebuild Foundation, Gates is currently Director of Arts and Public Life at the University of Chicago.

 

Negotiating Culture Book Launch

Celebrate ISI's first book! A book launch and book signing for ISI's first edited collection, Negotiating Culture, will be held at Amherst Books on October 11 at 4.30 p.m. Edited by Laetitia La Follette, the volume includes contributions from David Bollier, Stephen Clingman, Susan DiGiacomo, Oriol Pi-Sunyer, Margaret Speas, Banu Subramaniam, Joe Watkins, & Martin Wobst and originated from ISI's productive faculty seminars. A review by contributor David Bollier can be found here. Negotiating Culture examines issues of cultural heritage and intellectual property in a variety of contexts, from contests over tangible artifacts to more abstract forms of culture such as language and oral traditions.

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