All ISSI events are free and open to the public. For more information, please contact us at issi(at)berkeley(dot)edu or (510) 642-0813.

For wheelchair access to the Duster Conference Room (2420 Bowditch Street) or Wildavsky Conference Room (2538 Channing Way), please call (510) 642-0813 one day before the scheduled event.

August 2014

Friday, August 15

9:00am to 6:00pm

Celebrating Troy Duster

Please join us for this day-long celebration of Troy Duster's scholarship, public engagement, and commitment to social justice.

This event will feature talks and reflections from many of Troy's colleagues as they discuss his scholarly influence, contributions, and the significance of his work for current and future challenges.

Location: Booth Auditorium of the Berkeley Law School, University of California (2778 Bancroft Way)

Read more about the conference agenda and panels here.

Sponsored by Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society, UC Berkeley Department of Sociology, Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice, Center for Research on Social Change, Center for the Study of Law and Society, Center for Genetics and Society

September 2014

Thursday, September 4

3:30 to 5:00pm

CLPR Speaker Series:

Immigrant Children at the Border: Challenges, Issues, and Policies

Allison Davenport, Supervising Attorney and Clinical Instructor, International Human Rights Law Clinic, UC Berkeley

Lariza Dugan-Cuadra, Executive Director, Central American Resource Center, San Francisco

Beatriz Manz, Professor, Department of Ethnic Studies and Geography, UC Berkeley

The recent arrival and detention of unaccompanied minors from Central America and Mexico have generated a number of responses ranging from pro-immigrant action to anti-immigration sentiment. There have been questions about the ways children's rights are being protected and whether the responses from the U.S., Mexico, and Central American governments have been appropriate. This panel brings together perspectives from research, law, policy and community to examine international and local actions taken to ensure the protection of these children. It also furthers dialogue on immigration reform from family reunification to refugee concerns, and on the unprecedented number of children migrating on their own in response to high stakes economic and social reasons in their home countries.

Center for Latino Policy Research, Shorb House, 2547 Channing Way

Tuesday, September 16

4:00 to 5:30pm

ISSI Colloquia Speaker Series:

Making Hispanics: How Activists, Bureaucrats, and Media Constructed a New American

Cristina Mora, Assistant Professor of Sociology, UC Berkeley

How did Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, and Cubans become known as "Hispanics" and "Latinos" in the United States? How did several distinct cultures and nationalities become portrayed as one? Cristina Mora answers both these questions and details the scope of this phenomenon in Making Hispanics (University of Chicago Press 2014). She uses an organizational lens and traces how activists, bureaucrats, and media executives in the 1970s and '80s created a new identity category-and by doing so, permanently changed the racial and political landscape of the nation.

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Wednesday, September 17

4:00 to 5:30pm

 Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues Speaker Series:

"Dancing Salmon Home" Film Screening and Discussion with Michael Preston

'Dancing Salmon Home' is a journey of loss and reunification, across generations and oceans, as the Winnemem Wintu tribe of Northern California journeys to New Zealand to meet their long-lost Chinook salmon relatives, which have been missing from their river for 65 years. Along the way, the 28 tribal members hold four days of ceremony beside New Zealand's Rakaia River, forging enduring bonds with the Maori people of the region, sharing a message of respect for the natural world, and launching plans to bring their salmon home. The film was released in 2012 and produced by Will Doolittle.

Michael Preston (Winnemem Wintu) is a recent UC Berkeley graduate who is featured in the film.

Power Bar Building, 2150 Shattuck Ave, 10th floor, Room 1019, Berkeley

Monday, September 22

4:00 to 5:30pm

Myanmar's Sexual Minority Rights Movement and the Cultural Processes of Translating and Mobilizing Human Rights

Lynette J. Chua, Assistant Professor of Law, National University of Singapore

This paper draws from fieldwork in Myanmar and Thailand to examine how human rights matter to a sexual minority rights movement that is emerging in Myanmar as the country undergoes political transition. Building on the cultural study of human rights, it analyzes how activists collectively disseminate and mobilize the ideas and practices of human rights in a state known for its violation of human rights and repression of dissent.

Selznick Seminar Room, 2240 Piedmont Ave.

Reception to follow in Kadish Library

Co-sponsorsed by Center for the Study of Law and Society, ISSI, Center for Southeast Asia Studies, and Department of Gender and Women's Studies

Tuesday, September 30

4:00 to 5:30pm

ISSI Colloquia Speaker Series:

Political Therapeutics in Italy

Cristiana Giordano, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, UC Davis

In this paper, I discuss the experience of Italian clinical ethno-psychiatry as an emerging technique that provides culturally appropriate therapeutic services exclusively to foreigners, political refugees, and victims of torture and trafficking. This clinical practice has a political impact on other Italian institutions (such as the Catholic Church, the police, and social services) involved in aid programs for foreigners that increasingly turn to ethno-psychiatrists to consult on how to shape culturally and psychologically appropriate interventions for foreigners. The specificity of Italian ethno-psychiatry, though, can only be understood against the backdrop of the debates around the de-institutionalization of the mentally ill and the radical critique of public institutions initiated by Franco Basaglia and the de-institutionalization movement in the early 1970s. Crucial to the Italian context is also the work of Antonio Gramsci and his reflections on the relationships between hegemony and subaltern cultures, in addition to the role of the organic intellectual in creating a field of political action that could involve subalterns in defining what counts as politics. Through an ethnography of clinical cases and interactions between ethno-psychiatrists and local communities, I show how these legacies intersect in the practice of Italian ethno-psychiatry in ways that are broadly relevant not only for the politics of alterity within clinical settings, but also for critiquing psychiatric, legal, and moral categories of inclusion. This clinical practice allows for a re-thinking of the political and phenomenological grounds of existence, while also offering a critical frame to issues of "global mental health."

Anna Head Alumnae Hall, 2537 Haste Street

October 2014

Wednesday, October 1

4:00 to 5:30pm

CRWS Colloquia Series:

Hungary's Conservative Revolution: Sui Generis or Future Pattern?

Jason Wittenberg, Associate Professor, Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science, UC Berkeley

Since the landslide victory of Fidesz in the 2010 Hungarian national parliamentary election, Hungary has undergone nothing short of a conservative revolution. With its parliamentary supermajority, Fidesz can rule without regard for opposition views, and has used that power with vigor. Since taking power Fidesz has drafted and passed a new conservative constitution, weakened the separation of powers, restricted freedom of speech, squeezed its socialist and liberal rivals out of positions of influence, and gerrymandered the electoral system in its favor. My comments will examine the roots of these changes and whether they are harbingers of future developments in post-communist Eastern Europe.

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Co-sponsored by the Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies and the EU Center

Thursday, October 9

1:00 to 5:30pm

Production to Picture to Personhood: Food, Representation and Identity in Contemporary American Cultures

Many new theories have bound food production and consumption to representation, and have endeavored to unpack the profound effects of seeing food on the construction of identity. In particular, theories by Julie Guthman and others have revealed how food discourse helps produce and exclude certain permutations of race, class, gender, and sexuality. This conference frames food as both a site and a sign to understand how bodies are constructed, ideals are maintained and monitored, and how those constructs get undone through various interventions. How is alimentary desire shaped by what we see? How are paradigms like race, class, gender, and sexuality policed and regulated through food? What are the effects of being seen as food due to stereotyping or the creation of other codes? And in what ways do the morals and manners associated with food figure within the dynamic operations of culture? For our purposes we understand "culture" very broadly-as film, television, everyday practices, fine art, and performance paradigms.

Speakers, agendar, and more information available here.

Maude Fife Room, 315 Wheeler Hall

Spponsored by the Berkeley Food Institute. Co-sponsored by the Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, Media Studies Program, and Department of Sociology at UC Berkeley

Thursday, October 9

6:30 to 7:30pm

Center for Latino Policy Research is proud to co-sponsor:

Secretary of State Candidate Forum with Alex Padilla and Pete Peterson: On the Future of California's Elections

Moderated by John Myers, KQED
University of California, Berkeley's Chevron Auditorium (I-House)
2299 Piedmont Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94720
(doors open at 6 PM)

​RSVP to attend the event live in person! Register for a seat
Or if you can't attend in person, you can watch it livestreamed
(For updates on the Livestream before the event please check here.

 Monday, October 13

 9:00am to 5:00pm

Indigenous Peoples' Day

Join us for a free day-long series of events, performances, and participatory activities. Schedule and registration available here.

Bancroft Dance Studio, 2401 Bancroft Way, Berkeley.

Co-sponsored by the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, the Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues, the American Indian Graduate Student Association, the American Indian Graduate Program, Native American Student Developmen, and Native American Studies.

Monday, October 20

4:00 to 5:30pm

CRSC Colloquia Speaker Series:

Non-Citizen Nationals: Neither Citizens Nor Aliens

Rose Cuison Villazor, Professor of Law & Martin Luther King Jr. Hall Research Scholar, UC Davis School of Law

The modern conception of the law of birthright citizenship operates along the citizen/noncitizen binary. Those born in the United States generally acquire automatic U.S. citizenship at birth. Those who do not are regarded as non-citizens. Unbeknownst to many, there is another form of birthright membership category: the non-citizen national. Judicially constructed in the 1900s and codified by Congress in 1940, non-citizen national was the status given to people who were born in U.S. territories acquired at the end of the Spanish-American War in 1898. Today, it is the status of people who are born in American Samoa, a current U.S. territory. This Article explores the legal construction of non-citizen national status and its implications for our understanding of citizenship. On a narrow level, the Article recovers a forgotten part of U.S. racial history, revealing an interstitial form of birthright citizenship that emerged out of imperialism and racial restrictions to citizenship. On a broader scale, this Article calls into question the plenary authority of Congress over the territories and power to determine their people’s membership status. Specifically, this Article contends that such plenary power over the citizenship status of those born in a U.S. possession conflicts with the common law principle of jus soli and the Fourteenth Amendment’s Citizenship Clause. Accordingly, this Article offers a limiting principle to congressional power over birthright citizenship.

240 Boalt Hall, Berkeley Law School

Co-sponsored by the Center for the Study of Law and Society

Friday, October 24


UC Berkeley Global Adolescent Health Colloquium presents:

Alice Achan, Director & Co-founder of Pader Girls Academy in Uganda 

Please join us for a talk on global adolescent health and human rights. Alice Achan is the Director and Co-Founder of The Pader Girls’ Academy, a haven for 250 young northern Ugandan girls and their 70 babies, most of whom were abducted by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) as “brides” and ostracized on their return to village life. PGA is the only school in Uganda where babies can live with their mothers at school, receiving the support that will help them thrive. 

Talk is free and open to all. Students especially welcome!

Wellman Hall 311, UC Berkeley

Co-sponsored by ISSI

Tuesday, October 28

4:00 to 5:30pm

ISSI Colloquia Speaker Series:

Protestant Techniques of Caring for the Self

Ian Whitmarsh, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, History and Social Medicine, UCSF School of Medicine

In Trinidad, as in other countries, the state increasingly works with Protestant churches to disseminate biomedical techniques of maintaining health, conducting blood tests and teaching proper diet and body size.  I draw on recent rethinking of "the secular" to argue that ties between Presbyterianism and biomedical practices in Trinidad reveal a Protestantism latent in international techniques of care for the chronic disease subject. Protestant endeavors have long focused on, the "involuntary poor" as a figure unable to enact proper choice, suggesting not a contradiction but rather a deep kinship between the liberal individual and the subject founded in economic, social, political structures. As international medical techniques implicitly carry out a Protestant care for the involuntary poor, new tensions are produced with traditions such as Hinduism and obeah that run counter to Christian logics.

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Thursday, October 30

4:00 to 5:30pm

Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues Speaker Series:

Archaeo-Legal Landscapes of Identity: Defining 'Indian' in a Post NAGPRA World

Darren Modzelewski, Law Teaching Fellow, James E. Rogers College of Law, University of Arizona

Simply put, the archaeo-legal landscape is where law and archaeology intersect. This spans everything from administrative questions about compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act to the criminal prosecution of illicit antiquities dealers. Of particular importance for Native American, legal, scholarly, and activist communities is where and how archaeological models of cultural boundaries and the legal requirement of cultural affiliation found in the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act intersect to create Indian identities. How Native American identity is created in and through both archaeology and law highlights questions about the production of knowledge-power, indigenous human rights, and what can be done to reshape the current landscape.

Room 134, Boalt Hall, Berkeley Law

Thursday, October 30

3:30 to 5:00pm

Center for Latino Policy Research:

I <3 Latin@s: Building Resistencia, A Panel Discussion on Latin@s and Health


Sandra R. Hernández, M.D., CEO, California HealthCare Foundation; Assistant Clinical Professor, University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine; Practicing Clinician, San Francisco General Hospital AIDS Clinic

Genoveva Islas-Hooker, MPH, Director, Central California Regional Obesity Prevention Program (CCROPP); Program Coordinator, Public Health Institute (Community Transformation Grant Project)

Xavier Morales, Ph.D. MRP, Executive Director of Latino Coalition for a Healthy California


Kurt C. Organista, Ph.D., Professor of Social Welfare & Special Assistant for Faculty Mentoring, UC Berkeley

Recent health reports have generated public debate on ways to prevent an increase in heart disease, diabetes, depression, HIV cases, and other health conditions affecting the Latino population in the U.S.  Health professionals and organizations have been mobilizing to draw attention to health issues impacting Latinas/os through public campaigns and ballot measures, such as the Berkeley and San Francisco measures to tax industries for soda and sugar-sweetened drinks. This panel will address some of these health issues and will discuss community and policy efforts in response to economic and political forces negatively influencing the well being of Latinas/os.    

Shorb House, 2547 Channing Way

November 2014

Thursday, November 6

12:00 to 1:00pm

Berkeley Center for Social Medicine Speaker Series:

Homosexual Mutants! Biases in the Neurobiological Study of Sexual Orientation

Erik Eckhert, MD/MS Student, UC Berkeley/UCSF Joint Medical Program

with Lawrence Cohen, Professor of Anthropology, UC Berkeley, as respondent

This work examines the space between biology and biological discourse by reflecting on the reemergence of antiquated sexological discourses in the contemporary basic science literature behind sex and sexual orientation, and attempts to disentangle the socio-scientific conditions that enable their persistence. It employs modified grounded theory to explore published works on the fruitless (fru) gene in Drosophila neurobiology, which is notable for being implicated in determining sex and sexual orientation in the flies and is the clearest example to date of a genetically programed biochemical signaling cascade controlling a specific set of (courtship) behaviors. With an emphasis on experimental design, data inclusion, and the interpretation of results, my analysis follows three interrelated thematic clusters: “Homosexual Mutants” problematizes claims about the fru male’s sexual orientation by calling into question the “heterosexuality” of wildtype males, the assumptions behind behavioral assays used to determine sexual orientation, and the tenets of Sexual Selection used to discursively disable or inferiorize queer organisms. “Sexing the Body” examines the techniques used to assign sex on sub-organismal scales, considers the effect this has on reifying the groundedness of sex as a biological concept, and traces the practice and effects of reducing sex to a male/female dichotomy in the fru field. “Making the Model Work– Disabling, Inverting, Passivizing” refuses and confuses the fru field’s ‘homosexual by broken sex detector model’ by looking at what’s really being detected by male flies and considering the interplay between discourses about sexuality and disability, sexual inversion and femininity.

Room C108, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Co-sponsored by the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program and the Center for Science Technology Medicine and Society

Thursday, November 6

4:00 to 5:30pm

CRSC Colloquia Speaker Series:

African Rural Women Speak!

Muadi Mukenge, Program Director for Sub-Saharan Africa, Global Fund for Women

Dr. Mutombo Mpanya, Professor of International Studies, Sonoma State University, as discussant 

To contribute to the empowerment of rural women, in June 2011, Global Fund for Women (GFW) launched a two-year initiative to support 22 rural women's groups working in sustainable agriculture and the promotion of women's rights in Burkina Faso, Kenya and Uganda. Groups received grants to enhance agricultural and women's rights activities, participated in yearly convenings to deepen their knowledge of the politics of agriculture, and undertook field research. The initiative documented the constraints women farmers face in achieving food security, and in strengthening their position in society. The presentation will share the outcomes of the initiative comparing baseline and impact data, with the aim to inform broader debates on effective strategies to ensure food security, respect biodiversity, and end the exclusion of rural women from decision-making on the very issues that concern them. GFW is holding project dissemination workshops in project countries and in the U.S. Students pursuing development and international human rights fields are encouraged to attend.

223 Moses Hall, UC Berkeley

Co-sponsored by Berkeley Food Institute, Institute of International Studies, and Center for African Studies

Thursday, November 13

4:00 to 5:30pm

CRWS Colloquia Speaker Series:

The Great European War and the Rise of Radical Shinto Ultranationalism in Japan

Walter Skya, Associate Professor, History Department; Director, Asian Studies, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Few students of  history are aware of the ideological linkages between Shintō nationalism in Japan and the new nationalists of early twentieth-century Europe, especially Italian Fascists and German Nazis-a linkage that began prior to the First World War and continued throughout the 1920s and 1930s.  There is much historical evidence to show that Italian Fascists and German Nazis were inspired by, and in some cases in awe of, Japanese völkisch Shintō nationalists.  Still more, the First World War gave momentum to a surge of vicious forms of radical Shintō ultranationalism that resulted in a wave of assassinations of Japanese politicians and mobilized the Japanese masses for war against the Western democracies in the 1940s.

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Co-sponsored by Center for Japanese Studies, Department of History, and Institute of European Studies

Thursday, November 13

4:00 to 6:00pm

Children at the Border, Children at the Margins: Health, Responsibility, and Immigration

Opening remarks by Stefano M. Bertozzi, Dean and Professor of Health Policy & Management, Public Health, UC Berkeley


Lariza Dugan-Cuadra, Executive Director, CARECEN Central American Resource Center

Seth Holmes, Assistant Professor, Public Health and Medical Anthropology, UC Berkeley

Rubén Martínez, Journalist and Author of Desert America, Crossing Over, and The New Americans

Casey Peek, Producer of “New World Border”

Adrienne Pine, Assistant Professor, Anthropology, American University


Patricia Baquedano-López, Chair, Center for Latino Policy Research, and Associate Professor, Education, UC Berkeley

While unaccompanied migrant children have been at the center of a media firestorm, journalists and politicians generally ignore the context, experiences, and health of these children. The children are portrayed as criminals or as victims of drug lords and gang members; both representations minimize the effects of historical and contemporary United States policies and interventions in Latin America. This panel discussion includes scholars and organizers who provide nuanced perspectives on the crisis, challenging the logics of detention and deportation. The panelists bring together anthropological, historical, public health, and policy analyses to put the health, well-being, and rights of migrant children at the center.

245 Li Ka Shing Center, UC Berkeley

Sponsored by Berkeley Center for Social Medicine and Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society. Co-sponsored by Center for Latino Policy Research, Institute for the Study of Societal Issues and School of Public Health

Monday, November 17

4:00 to 5:30pm

Berkeley Center for Right-Wing Studies Speaker Series:

Narendra Modi and the Sangh parivar: Lessons from his Gujarat years

Christophe Jaffrelot, Senior research fellow at Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales at Sciences Po (Paris), and research director at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Professor of Indian Politics and Sociology at the King's India Institute (London) and Global Scholar at Princeton University.

with Raka Ray, Professor and Department Chair of Sociology, UC Berkeley, as respondent

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Co-sponsored by the Institute for South Asia Studies and the Center for Research on Social Change

Tuesday, November 18

4:00 to 5:30pm

ISSI Colloquia Speaker Series:

The Remittance Landscape: The Spaces of Migration in Rural Mexico and Urban USA

Sarah Lynn Lopez, Assistant Professor, School of Architecture, University of Texas, Austin

International migrant remittances have received much attention in the last ten years, as-according to the World Bank-flows increased from 72.3 billion in 2001 to an estimated 483 billion in 2011. While dollars sent home are used for an array of expenses, little is known about how they are used to turn migrant aspirations into concrete and fired-brick realities. This talk explores the remittance landscape-the built environment elements in rural Mexico that have been envisioned by migrants and erected with dollars-as well as the spaces in both Mexico and the U.S. defined by information flows, practices, and organizations that give rise to remitting as a way of life. I argue that the architectures of migration are powerful evidence of the aims, desires, and fears that drive social change in rural Mexico and urban USA; producing complex results for migrants, their families, and their home communities who must balance new kinds of freedom and agency with familial fragmentation, changing social norms, increased responsibility, and growing debt.

Wildavsky Conference Room, ISSI, 2538 Channing Way

Thursday, November 20

12:00 to 1:30pm

Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues Speaker Series:

“I Feel For You”: Trauma, Self-Determination, and Indigenous Feminisms’ Affective Response to State Violence"

Dian Million, Associate Professor, American Indian Studies, University of Washington, and author of Therapeutic Nations: Healing in an Age of Indigenous Human Rights

I consider Indigenism today as an active and affective political position for peoples across continents seeking self-determination. In the United Nations, in Human Rights forums, and in communities Indigenism is a powerful lived and felt movement for our times. At the same time, Human Rights as it is articulated at the international level relies very heavily on the discourses of trauma and restitution to enact “justice” for atrocities committed by states against stateless and Indigenous peoples. Indigenous feminisms now present a growing grass roots response to a normalized violence haunting the lives of Indigenous women, their families and communities. This is a movement that both utilizes the human rights discourse and counters it. Recognizing that violence against Indigenous women undermines any self-determination in practice, how are women both central to the discourse of "trauma" while opposing its assumptions as they struggle for social and economic health? What is an Indigenous Feminist response?

554 Barrows Hall

Co-sponsored by American Indian Graduate Program and Native American Studies