From the Women in Black vigils and Dyke marches to the Million Mom March, women have seized a dynamic role in early twenty-first century protest. The varied demonstrations–whether about gender, sexuality, war, or other issues–share significant characteristics as space-claiming performances in and of themselves beyond their place in any broader movement.
Elizabeth Currans blends feminist, queer, and critical race theory with performance studies, political theory, and geography to explore the outcomes and cultural relevance of public protest. Drawing on observation, interviews, and archival and published sources, Currans shows why and how women utilize public protest as a method of participating in contemporary political and cultural dialogues. She also examines how groups treat public space as an important resource and explains the tactics different women protesters use to claim, transform, and hold it. The result is a passionate and pertinent argument that women-organized demonstrations can offer scholars a path to study the relationship of gender and public space in today’s political culture.
Elizabeth Currans is associate professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at Eastern Michigan University where she teaches courses in feminist, queer, performance, and disability studies. She earned her MA in Folklore Studies in 1999 from the University of Oregon and her PhD in Religious Studies and Women’s Studies in 2007 from UC Santa Barbara. Recent publications appear in Feminist Formations, Social Justice, Women’s Studies Quarterly, Obsidian, and Frontiers: A Journal of Women’s Studies. Her new research project examines public performances (bicycle rides, protests, music festivals, performance art, sculpture) in edge spaces, places were the urban and natural encounter each other.
As part of the UO Latinx Heritage Month celebration, the World Music Series’s first concert features Venezuelan music with Trio Mochima this Sunday, October 15 at 7:30 PM in Beall Hall. Joropo, merengue, parranda and other genres will featured. In addition to visiting a local elementary school, the Trio will offer a free, public workshop on Venezuelan music at 11 AM on Monday, October 16 in Frohnmayer Music Building, room 190. Bring your flute, guitar, and maracas and join us!
Support for this concert comes from the UO School of Music and Dance, the Oregon Humanities Center’s Endowment for Public Outreach in the Arts, Sciences, and Humanities, the UO Folklore Program, and the UO Center for Latino/a and Latin American Studies.
Professor Carol Silverman, Department of Anthropology and Folklore Program, was interviewed on CBS TV in San Francisco about Roma and begging. You can view the story at –
For Some BART Panhandlers, Begging Is Their Job:
Daniel Wojcik was a child when he first encountered the art of the untrained.
During trips, his family was always stopping at one roadside attraction or another. He was amazed by the famous Watts Towers of Los Angeles, made of rebar and concrete and reaching 90 feet into the air; Bottle Village, a collection of shrines and mosaic walkways in Southern California composed of landfill discards and found objects—25 years in the making—left him fascinated and wanting to learn more.
The Folklore Program is proud to announce the appointment of Dr. Philip Scher to the post of Divisional Dean for Social Sciences, effective July 1, 2017. Dr. Scher is the Director of the Folklore Program and has been a member of the UO Department of Anthropology faculty since 2002. He has previously served as the Director of Undergraduate Studies and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Anthropology.
Dr. Scher has extensive university experience, including serving on the Dean’s Advisory Council, UO Senate, Committee on Committees, College Advisor, and UO Childcare Committee. Dr. Scher is an exemplary scholar in the field of heritage and national identity in Caribbean cultures, and has received a number of prestigious grant awards including a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Fulbright Senior Scholar Fellowship, and a Wenner-Gren Foundation grant.
In his role as Director of the Folklore Program, Dr. Scher has increased summer online course offerings, giving students flexibility in satisfying core requirements and quadrupling the program’s operating budget. He is committed to engaging in contemporary communities, new media and technology, and diverse communities in active and reciprocal ways.