Published May 11, 2022
In Fall 2009, The Baldy Center sponsored the day-long conference, Thinking Beyond the Nation-State: A Symposium on Empires, Diasporas, and Indigeneity. The event was organized by faculty in the UB American Studies Program, with Theresa Runstedtler, PhD, as convenor. Now, over a decade later, the event meets the criteria of a legacy conference in presenting topics that continue to be relevant today.
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Friday, November 20, 2009
8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
509 O’Brian Hall, UB North Campus
Even in the wake of the global movements toward decolonization and civil rights, at a moment when many politicians and legislators have declared the dawn of a “colorblind” and “multicultural” era, racial inequality and the dispossession of indigenous peoples remain defining features of the contemporary world. Today’s most powerful engines of global economic integration – multinational corporations, transnational financial institutions, and trade alliances – pursue a multiplicity of agendas that involve both discrimination and displacement on a grand scale. At the same time, the transnational trade in racial ideologies, political practices, and institutional forms has helped to spawn inequities in a variety of realms including job and housing markets, welfare and educational organizations, legal and criminal justice systems, immigration policies, the state management of indigenous peoples, and environmental regulations. Yet, despite these realities, mainstream discussions of the global have tended to overlook questions of racial and indigenous rights.
“Thinking beyond the Nation-state” brings together faculty and graduate students from Western New York and Southern Ontario to address this gap in the scholarship. In many respects, the University at Buffalo is the perfect location for comparing Indigenous, African American, and Ethnic Studies approaches to the global. After all, the university sits on land formerly held by the Haudenosaunee people (Six Nations). Its two campuses are also in the midst of a metropolitan area that is profoundly segregated along racial lines. Furthermore, the university is located just minutes from the United States-Canada border – a border that crosscuts a region in which Western notions of nation-building, citizenship, and economic development have long collided with the interests of people of color.
This symposium provides a forum for faculty and graduate students to discuss groundbreaking research in three intersecting and overlapping fields: 1) imperial and colonial history, policy, and practice; 2) the global migrations of people of color and their attendant transnational political, cultural, and social movements; and 3) indigenous peoples’ history and culture, along with their varied responses to dispossession and discrimination. Thus, the symposium endeavors to spark conversations and build relationships between scholars who have been traditionally separated by national borders and disciplinary/topical boundaries.
Friday, November 20, 2009
509 O’Brian Hall
8:45, Welcome and Opening Remarks
Theresa McCarthy and Theresa Runstedtler, Assistant Professors of American Studies, University at Buffalo
9:00-10:30, Alternative Geographies and Communities beyond the Nation
Moderator: Katie McMahon, American Studies, University at Buffalo
10:45-12:15, Rethinking Citizenship and Nation for Indigenous Peoples
Moderator: Rick Monture, Acting Academic Director of Indigenous Studies, McMaster University
Richard W. Hill, Associate Director, First Nations Technical Institute
Rinaldo Walcott, Canada Research Chair, Associate Professor of Social Justice and Cultural Studies, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto
1:00-2:15, Creating Ideal Subjects at Home and Abroad
Moderator: Jeff Iovanonne, American Studies, University at Buffalo
2:30-3:45, Immigrant Women and Belonging, within and beyond the Nation
Modertator: Tara Viceconte, Global Gender Studies, University at Buffalo
4:00-5:30, Indigenizing Settler Relations.
Moderator: Nancy Napierala, American Studies, University at Buffalo