GCLR Roundtable, Series on Disability 
 Cripping UCSB: Conversations on Disability Justice
May, 17, 4pm-5pm on Zoom    

The Roundtable brings together five scholars whose academic work is situated at the intersection of disability scholarship, art, and activism. The roundtable addresses some of the questions and conversations that arise when we think about disability from a scholarly perspective that does not exclude an activist dimension. 
Georgina Kleege, Department of English, UCB 
Victoria Marks, Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance, UCLA 
Janette Dinishak, Department of Philosophy, UCSC  
Rachel Lambert, Department of Education, UCSB
Hangping Xu, East Asian Languages & Cultural Studies
The Roundtable is part of a series of events centered around the theme of disability, in an effort to bridge the gap that often separates activism from scholarship and knowledge production. Organizers: Shanna Killeen, Sven Spieker

What Graduate Students Are Reading


Iman Salty is reading Troubling Vision: Performance, Visuality, and Blackness by Nicole R. Fleetwood. 

Troubling Vision examines the constructed visual narratives of Black culture as it has been created and perpetuated by American media. Using critical race theory, media studies, feminist theory, and performance theory, this book exposes how the production and circulation of Black visualities have resulted in troubling conceptions of coded and performative methods for visualizing Black subjects in the public sphere.


Surojit Kayal is reading The Marvelous Clouds by John Durham Peters.

In The Marvelous Clouds, the author argues that though we often think of media as environments, the reverse is just as true—environments are media. Drawing from ideas implicit in media philosophy, Peters argues that media are more than carriers of messages: they are the very infrastructures combining nature and culture that allow human life to thrive.  


Mary Okin is reading Hollywood Flatlands: Animation, Critical Theory, and the Avant-Garde by Esther Leslie.

With ruminations on drawing, colour and caricature, on the political meaning of fairy-tales, talking animals and human beings as machines, the book brings to light the links between animation, avant-garde art and modernist criticism, and Leslie reveals how the animation of commodities can be studied as a journey into modernity in cinema. 


Richard Nedjat-Haiem is reading Broadcasting Change: Arabic Media as a Catalyst for Liberalism by Joseph Baude.

Amid civil war, failing states, and terrorism, Arab liberals are growing in numbers and influence. Advocating a culture of equity, tolerance, good governance, and the rule of law, they work through some of the region’s largest media outlets to spread their ideals within the culture. This book analyzes this trend by portraying the intersection of media and politics in two Arab countries with seismic impact on the region and beyond. 


James Nichols is reading Exorcismos de la memoria: Políticas y poéticas de la melancolía en la España de la transición by Alberto Medina Dominguez. 

Through an interdisciplinary approach in which the analysis of philosophical, filmic, literary and political texts coexist, the book deals with a reading hypothesis of the period in which the lines of demarcation between the aesthetic and the political are blurred.


Wendy Sun is reading Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination by Toni Morrison.

Morrison shows how much the themes of freedom and individualism, manhood and innocence, depended on the existence of a black population that was manifestly unfree--and that came to serve white authors as embodiments of their own fears and desires. Her discussions of the "Africanist" presence in the fiction of various authors leads to a dramatic reappraisal of the essential characteristics of our literary tradition. 


Ursula Friedman is reading The Red Brush: Writing Women of Imperial China, edited by Wilt L. Idema and Beata Grant.

Because of the burgeoning interest in the study of both premodern and modern women in China, this anthology offers a glimpse of women's writings not only in poetry but in other genres as well, including essays and letters, drama, religious writing, and narrative fiction.


Rachel Feldman is reading The Bus Driver Who Wanted to be God by Etgar Keret (in Hebrew).

Brief, intense, painfully funny, and shockingly honest, Keret's stories are snapshots that illuminate with intelligence and wit the hidden truths of life. As with the best comic authors, hilarity and anguish are the twin pillars of his work.


Christene d'Anca is reading Marie of France: Countess of Champagne, 1145-1198, by Theodore Evergates. 

Countess Marie of Champagne is primarily known today as the daughter of Louis VII of France and Eleanor of Aquitaine and as a literary patron of Chrétien de Troyes. In this engaging biography, Theodore Evergates offers a more rounded view of Marie as a successful ruler of one of the wealthiest and most vibrant principalities in medieval France.

Congratulations to Daniel Martini and Richard Nedjat-Haiem, this year's participants in the Harvard Institutue for World Literature! 

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The 2021-2022 Colloquium Series of the Iranian Studies Initiative will be held this next year in collaboration with the UCSB Graduate Center for Literary Research (GCLR).
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The Harvard Institute for World Literature (IWL) has been created to explore the study of literature in a globalizing world where our understanding of "world literature" has expanded beyond the clssic canon of European masterpieces. GCLR affiliated students have a unique opportunity to participate in this exciting opportunity. This year's HIWL will be held in Mainz, Germany. Read more...

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