News | 2 April 2013

CRES Speaker Series/Spring Speaker: Lisa Lowe


In anticipation of the development of a formal Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CRES) proposal to the Academic Senate, the Humanities Division is sponsoring a 2012-13 CRES visiting speaker series, which brings scholars from other programs at other universities to UCSC.

Last fall, we hosted Sunaina Maira, Professor of Asian American Studies at UC Davis. Professor Maira presented “More Delicate Than a Flower, Yet Harder Than a Rock: Human Rights in the Shadow of an Empire.” During winter quarter, we welcomed Roderick Ferguson, Professor of American Studies at the University of Minnesota, who presented “Comparative Ethnic Studies: Retrieving, Redistributing, and Holding the Institution Under Erasure.”

Lisa Lowe

Lisa Lowe

Our third and final scholar in the CRES visiting speaker series is Lisa Lowe, Professor of English at Tufts University. On Monday, May 20, Professor Lowe will present “Sugar, Tea, Opium, and Coolies:  The Intimacies of Four Continents.” This lecture examines the fetishism of colonial commodities as a mediation of often obscured connections between the transatlantic African slave trade to the Americas, settler colonialism, the import of Asian indentured labor, the East Indies and China trades, and the emergence of European liberal ideas of citizenship, wage labor, and free trade in the late-18th and early-19th centuries

Lisa Lowe is a professor of English and American Studies at Tufts University and a scholar in the fields of comparative literature, and the cultural politics of colonialism and migration.  Before joining Tufts, she taught in the Literature Department at UC San Diego for over two decades.  She is the recipient of awards and fellowships from the Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundations, the UC Humanities Research Institute, the American Council of Learned Societies, the School of Advanced Study – University of London, and the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.  Lowe is the author of Critical Terrains:  French and British Orientalisms (Cornell UP), Immigrant Acts:  On Asian American Politics (Duke UP), and coauthor of The Politics of Culture in the Shadow of Capital (Duke UP).  Her current project, The Intimacies of Four Continents, is a study of the global conditions for liberal economy, knowledge, culture, and politics. Lowe received her Ph.D. in Literature from UC Santa Cruz.