1 February 2018
Abstract: This presentation draws from Smith's observant participation research with local, national, and international human rights advocates. Her research on this topic grows from her earlier work on transnational global justice activism and on how people in different parts of the world are responding to pressures of globalization. Smith's current research reports on some of her work as a founding member and leader in Pittsburgh's Human Rights City Alliance, and it explores questions about how local practices and experiences are related to global level politics and movements. The talk will engage questions about the roles of scholar-activists and the challenges of doing engaged research. It also considers how this political moment calls for far more equitable and constructive engagement between the academy and the communities in which we live.
Author Bio: Jackie Smith is professor of sociology at the University of Pittsburgh and editor of the Open Access Journal of World-Systems Research. Her books include Social Movements and World-System Transformation (forthcoming, co-edited with Michael Goodhart, Patrick Manning, and John Markoff), Social Movements in the World-System: The Politics of Crisis and Transformation (with Dawn Wiest) and Social Movements for Global Democracy, among other co-edited and co-authored collections on social movements and global social change. Smith has served on the United States Social Forum's National Planning Committee and is co-founder of the International Network of Scholar-Activists. She works with technology justice organization, May First/People Link. Locally, she helps coordinate Pittsburgh's Human Rights City Alliance. Smith also serves on the National Steering Committee of the US Human Rights Cities Alliance.
1 March 2018
Abstract: Professor Newman will be talking about the fact that over the last 10 years Karl Marx has emerged as a pop-icon across genres and across the globe; Marx's image can be found on t-shirts, coffee mugs, memes, garden gnomes sold on Etsy, and on piggy banks. Newman will explain why Marx has emerged as a pop-icon, and she will be taking a closer look at a handful of international artists, who, unbeknownst to each other, have been using Marx's image and Marx's Das Kapital in their work.
Author Bio: Kathy M. Newman is Associate Professor of Literary and Cultural Studies at Carnegie Mellon where she writes about the history of mass culture in the US with an emphasis on representation and social change. She is currently finishing a book on 1950s labor films, titled, How the Fifties Worked: Mass Culture and the Decade the Unions Made. This spring Newman is also curating an art show that critically examines Marx and capitalism in the lead up to the 200th birthday of Karl Marx in May 2018. You can read more about it here: http://www.cmu.edu/dietrich/humanities-center/