Imagination and the Nation:
In, Between, and Beyond States
ACGC Graduate Student Conference
Saturday, May 8th, 9am - 6:30pm,
Centennial House, UCSB
In recent years, the processes, flows,
forces, and trends which could be called "globalisms"
or "globalization," as well as theories surrounding
these developments, have contributed to renewed interest in
the connections within and among America, the Americas, and
the rest of the world. With this in mind, this conference brings
together student scholars from various disciplines around the
central theme of the national imaginary and how it relates to
the global imaginary.
How do we articulate the "states" we are in-- politically,
intellectually, aesthetically, ethnically, emotionally, sexually,
psychologically-- and what difference might these articulations
make? What exactly is a "national imaginary" in today's
world where the nation-state seems to be increasingly diffuse
and deterritorialized? How do cultural forces influence a nation's
sense of itself, and how do those same forces influence how
nations view each other and the world as a whole? How are political
and economic decisions being determined or influenced by broader
cultural ideologies or forms? What does it mean to imagine one's
self as a citizen in a purportedly "globalized" world?
How do identity politics interact with aesthetic formations
of the self in an era where national identity is merely one
of many competing subjectivities? All of these questions are
merely the beginning of a series of inquiries this conference
hopes to explore.
Up and coming scholars from various humanities
and fine arts departments in the UC system and across the nation
are presenting papers on topics as divers as Philipino-American
spoken word performance, female Indonesian dancers, and American
literature survey courses. A faculty panel will hold a rountable
discussion on the topic as well: Susan Koshy (Asian American
Studies), Jacqueline Stevens(Law and Society), Chris Newfield
(English) and, tentatively, Kumkum Bhavnani (Sociology) will
hash out issues of the national imaginary. English Department
doctoral candidate Emily Davis will moderate the discussion.
In addition, artists from our university community will show
selected works in Centennial House that day.