“Palestine(s) in the Sky: Visionary Aesthetics of Flight, Freedom, and Fantasy on the Frontiers of U.S Forever War,” by Dr. Ronak Kapadia
Friday March 6th, 5 PM
FAC Museum Education Studio
Sponsored by Feminist and Gender Studies, the Mellon Foundation, the Fine Arts Center, and Students for Justice in Palestine
This talk advances queer, feminist, decolonial, diasporic, and indigenous modes of thinking about the futures of Palestine. It will argue that a contrapuntal queer feminist analysis of visionary aesthetics in the work of London-based Palestinian visual artist Larissa Sansour provides an alternate perceptual regime through which to understand the “facts-on-the-ground” of contemporary US/Israeli security policing and warfare. By closely reading her science fiction film trilogy series as a form of sensuous knowledge and critique, this talk will question what architecture, outer space, and Arab futurisms together might yield for thinking Palestinian sovereignty otherwise. Bringing together scholarship on the affective, legal, and spatial dimensions of both contemporary Israeli security regimes and the Palestinian struggle for liberation with critical works in Arab/American studies, Black studies, Native studies, and queer studies, this paper further identifies fugitive alliances and radical forms of insurgent political consciousness between Palestine and Indigenous/Native futurisms and Afrofuturisms in the US/North America. In so doing, this research not only contributes to the transnationalization of American studies but also probes the field’s outer-planetary and cosmic dimensions too.
Dr. Kapadia is Associate Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies and affiliated faculty in Art History, Global Asian Studies, and Museum & Exhibition Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is the author of Insurgent Aesthetics: Security and the Queer Life of the Forever War (Duke University Press, 2019) which theorizes the queer world-making potential of contemporary art and aesthetics in the ongoing context of US war and empire in the Greater Middle East. His broader research and teaching fields include critical ethnic studies; race radical and transnational feminisms; queer of color critique; Arab, Muslim, and South Asian diasporas; national security and surveillance; critical prison and military studies; visual and performance studies; affect and new materialisms; and US Empire.
The Feminist and Gender Studies Program presents “Relating Across Borders, A Teach-In about Representation” with Mekael Daniel, Judy Fisher, and Samuel Vang on Thursday November 7, 2019 from 4-5:30 at Sacred Grounds.
Representations of Afro-Asian Solidarities
Within white supremacist ideology, groups of color are pitted against one another to discourage cross-community relationship building. One of the ways this presents is through the model minority myth which exceptionalizes Asian success while it is also weaponized against Black people. For this teach-in, Mekael will highlight and analyze a small portion of visual and textual representations of Afro-Asian solidarities (through mediums such as photography, painting, and fiction), and how these representations subvert white supremacist racial hierarchies that seek to pit Black people and Asian people against each other economically, politically, socially and academically.
Indigeneity in Germany
This teach-in will focus on how images and representations of indigeneity in Germany are tied to global and transnational flows that influence Indigenous movement and lives. By interrogating representations of Native North Americans at two hobbyist festivals in Germany Judy demonstrates the importance of visual media representations and discourses on the opportunities available for Native people globally. Judy illustrates the colonial and imperial legacies that permeate German fascination with Native peoples while pointing to moments which provide opportunities for forging relationships, respect, and support
Vietnamese-American Masculinities, Hip-Hop, and the War
In the United States, if rappers are stereotyped as overly-masculine, and East Asians are stereotyped as not-masculine-enough, then what kind of masculinities do East Asian-American rappers have? In this talk, Vang will problematize representations of the highest streamed male-identifying Vietnamese-American rappers within U.S. media. In doing so, he highlights various contradictions that arise when a predominantly white U.S. audience consumes the labor of racialized, feminized bodies whom fill roles opposite to their bodily constructions. Vang will also interrogate the processes that have influenced the West’s constructions of masculinity and Asianness, namely: orientalism and colonialism.