Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies - Seth Holmes' New Book on Migrant Farmworkers Now Available
Seth Holmes, who is Martin Sisters Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health, and Chair of ISSI's newly formed Center for Social Medicine, has a new book out, Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Migrant Farmworkers in the United States (UC Press, 2013), which is based on five years of ethnographic research (including berry-picking and traveling with migrants bach and forth from Oaxaca up the West Coast). Holmes, an anthropologist and MD in the mold of Paul Farmer and Didier Fassin, uncovers how market forces, anti-immigrant sentiment, and racism undermine health and health care. Holmes' material is visceral and powerful. For instance, he trekked with his informants illegally through the desert border into Arizona, where they were apprehended and jailed by the Border Patrol. After he was released from jail (and his companions were deported back to Mexico), Holmes interviewed Border Patrol agents, local residents, and armed vigilantes in the borderlands. He lived with indigenous Mexican families in the mountains of Oaxaca and in farm labor camps in the United States, planted and harvested corn, picked strawberries, accompanied sick workers to clinics and hospitals, participated in healing rituals, and mourned at funerals for friends. The result is a "thick description" that conveys the full measure of struggle, suffering, and resilience of these farmworkers. Read more about Holmes' book here.
Center for Latino Policy Research Releases Report on Online Voting and Nativity
ISSI's Center for Latino Policy Research recently completed a study of voters who registered online for the November 2012 election. The study's authors, CLPR Chair and Professor Lisa García Bedolla and Dr. Verónica Vélez, look at nativity differences across these voters, including whether U.S. born Latina/o and Asian American online registrants have different characteristics than those who are naturalized. García Bedolla and Vélez write, "Considering nativity is important because it sheds light on how the political socialization process can vary across generations and across different national origin groups." To read more about their study and key findings, click here.
2013 Yamashita Prize Winner and Honorable Mention Announced
ISSI's Center for Research on Social Change is pleased to announce the 2013 FOUNDATIONS FOR CHANGE: Thomas I. Yamashita Prize Winner, Roxanna Altholz, Assistant Professor of Clinical Law and Associate Director of the International Human Rights Law Clinic at Berkeley School of Law, who works to hold governments accountable and to bring legal justice to family members and marginalized victims of human rights abuses in Latin America. Margaret Rhee, who developed a program that uses digital storytelling to promote HIV/AIDS prevention education that taps incarcerated women's experiences as a source of knowledge, received Honorable Mention. Read more about both of these social change scholars here. The Prize is awarded annually to an outstanding young social change activist/scholar in California whose work transforms the existing social landscape - often in subtle and previously unappreciated ways - and serves as a bridge between the academy and the community. The awardee helps to build the capacity of communities to confront pressing issues by applying his or her academic expertise. Simultaneously, he or she enriches academic scholarship by sharing the insights and knowledge produced from community engagement with the broader academic community. On Wednesday, May 1, CRSC honored the contributions of both of these scholar activists at an award ceremony and reception at the Women's Faculty Club. Read more about the award ceremony and the FOUNDATIONS FOR CHANGE: Thomas I. Yamashita Prize here.
Video of Conference on Cuba and California now Available on UCTV
Last fall ISSI co-sponsored (with the Institute of Governmental Studies, the Center for Latino Policy Research, and the Center for Latin American Studies) a conference entitled "Cuba and California: Prospects for US-Cuban Relations." The conference featured leading Cuban, American, and Canadian experts who spoke about the evolving relationship and emerging opportunities between Cuba and the United States. Conference speakers (including Rep. Barbara Lee [D-CA], Julia Sweig, and Carlos Alzugaray Treto, among others) provided analysis of the economic, social, and political developments taking place in Cuba and the role Californians, especially, might play in advancing U.S.-Cuba business and cultural exchanges and intiatives. Video of the conference is now available on UCTV. To view video of the conference, click here.
New Research on Americans' Decline in Religious Preference
ISSI Affiliated Faculty Mike Hout (UCB Sociology) and Claude S. Fischer (UCB Sociology), along with Mark Chaves (Duke University), published a new study indicating that the trend in the number of Americans disavowing a specific religious affiliation, which began in the 1950s, has accellerated greatly in recent years. According to the 2012 General Social Survey, 20% of American adults now identify as having no religious preference. While some types of Americans identify with an organized religion less than others, Americans in almost every demographic group increasingly claim "no religion" since the trend began to accellerate in 1990.
Learn more by downloading a copy of their report, "More Americans Have No Religions Preference: Key Finding from the 2012 General Social Survey," here.
New Book on the tea Party edited by CRWS's Rosenthal and Trost now available
Steep: The Precipitous Rise of the Tea Party (University of California Press), edited by Lawrence Rosenthal (Exec. Dir. of ISSI's Center for Right-Wing Studies) and Christine Trost (Assoc. Dir. of ISSI) is now available from UC Press.
In the Spring of 2009, the Tea Party emerged onto the American political scene. In the wake of Obama's election, as commentators proclaimed the "death of conservatism," Tax Day rallies and Tea Party showdowns at congressional town hall meetings marked a new and unexpected chapter in American conservatism. Accessible to students and general readers,Steep: The Precipitous Rise of the Tea Party brings together leading scholars and experts on the American Right to examine a political movement that electrified American society. Topics addressed by the volume's contributors include the Tea Party's roots in earlier mass movements of the Right and in distinctive forms of American populism and conservatism, the significance of class, race and gender to the rise and successes of the Tea Party, the effect of the Tea Party on the Republican Party, the relationship between the Tea Party and the Religious Right, and the contradiction between the grass-roots nature of the Tea Party and the established political financing behind it. Throughout the volume, authors provide detailed and often surprising accounts of the movement's development at local and national levels. In an Epilogue, the Editors address the relationship between the Tea Party and the Occupy Wall Street movement.
To order a copy and/or read more about the book click here.
ISSI Co-sponsors conference on Sustainable Development in North East India
ISSI, in partnership with the North East Centre for Research and Development (NECRD) Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), is co-sponsoring an international symposium, "Global Initiative for Sustainability and Human Development: Envisioning the Planetary Future." The symposium, which will be held in Guwahati, India, October 1-3, 2012, will bring together leading scholars, practitioners, activists, and government officials from India, the US, and other parts of the world to envision action-oriented solutions to the challenges of sustainability faced by North East India. Other co-sponsors include the Mualana Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Ministry of Culture, Kolkata; Indian Council of World Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi; and the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Guwahati India.
Click here for details.
ISSI is also co-sponsored a conference on "Territories of Poverty," September 14-15, 2012, organized by the Blum Center for Developing Economies, UC Berkeley. For more information, go here.
ISSI In the News
A story about the origins and activities of ISSI, "From cracks in the campus budget, a new research community blooms," is featured in the August 22, 2011, edition of The Berkeleyan.
"Born of financial crisis, UC Berkeley's Institute for the Study of Societal Issues has cultivated a more collaborative, community-based approach to social-science research. In the process, a rickety old campus building has been transformed into a place where scholars can do more with less."
Read the full article here.
ISSI's Center for Latino Policy Research (CLPR) Awarded Innovation and Research Grants
ISSI's Center for Latino Policy Research has been awarded a $25,000 UC Berkeley Innovation Grant for Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. The award will be used to fund the "Student Engagement and Retention through Research" program. Through collaboration among established academic programs at Berkeley -- the Center for Latino Policy Research, the Marco Antonio Firebaugh Scholars, Student Life Advising/EOP Counselors (SLAS/EOP) -- and local community organizations, including the Greenlining Institute, the Applied Research Center, and Urban Habitat, this program will enhance undergraduate student retention by engaging students in academic research projects that are grounded in their experiences working with local community organizations. Participation in this program will not only provide students with traditional academic supports, such as guidance on research and writing, but also will make explicit the links between intellectual work and community practice. Community engaged research of this type is especially appropriate for retaining and supporting Cal's most marginal students, such as AB540 students. Through this unique community-engaged academic support program, these students' retention and academic success will be improved.
CLPR is also partnernering with the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) on a $500,000 planning grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Education's Promise Neighborhood program. The grant will be used to improve opportunities for children and families in San Francisco's Mission District. CLPR will provide support for the needs assessment and data collection, evaluation, and dissemination portions of the project. Read more about this project here.
CRWS Collection of Conservative Political Ephemera and Broadcasting, 1980-2004, now available
In June of 2010, People for the American Way donated its vast and unique collection of materials on the American Right to ISSI's Center for Right-Wing Studies. The archive of political ephemera has been processed and is now permanently housed at UC Berkeley's prestigious Bancroft Library, one of the largest and most heavily used libraries of manuscripts, rare books, and unique materials in the United States, which is open to students and scholars from around the world. Comprised of approximately 1,220 organizations, 300 individual files, and 80 rare right-wing magazines and newspapers, the collection charts the flourishing movements of American conservatism from the 1980s to the early twenty-first century.
A video archive of 2,200 DVDs with thousands of network and cable broadcasts from the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s is also available for scholars to access at the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues. The video collection, which features televangelist broadcasts, speeches by important figures on the right, and coverage of important conservative events, widely documents year-to-year developments among major figures and organizations of the right.
The Center acquired the collection so that scholars from a range of fields might use it to illuminate our historical and social understanding of the American Right. To read more about these materials and how to access them, click here.
05/15/2013 In Search of Individual Ontologies 12 - 1:30 p.m. (Off Campus) Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, Berkeley, CA 94720