News | 20 April 2010

New Multicampus Research Groups in the Humanities


The Consortium of Humanities Center Directors, under the rubric of the UC Humanities Network, is pleased to announce funding for three new multicampus research groups in the humanities for 2010-11. They are:

California Italian Studies

Co-investigators and their institutions:
Albert Ascoli, Italian Studies, UC Berkeley
Joann Cannon, French and Italian, UC Davis
Claudio Fogu, French and Italian, UC Santa Barbara
John Marino, History, UC San Diego
Deanna Shemek, Literature, UC Santa Cruz
Lucia Re, Italian, UCLA

Funds will support California Italian Studies (CIS), a new electronic journal, and research related activities, including the sponsorship of an annual “day of studies.” CIS is an online, peer-review journal committed to publishing the finest, most innovative, and most potentially influential scholarly work in the field of Italian Studies today. CIS seeks contributions which meet the following criteria: interdisciplinarity; comparative study; critical reflection on theory and method. Contributions that make the most creative use of the journal’s digital format are especially encouraged.

Critical Historicities: Between Africa and the Diaspora

Co-investigators and their institutions:
Peter J. Bloom, Film and Media Studies, UC Santa Barbara
Percy C. Hintzen, Director, Center for African Studies and Professor of African American Studies, UC Berkeley
Stephan F. Miescher, History, UC Santa Barbara

At the heart of Critical Historicities between Africa and the Diaspora is the question of how teleologies of difference between the African continent and the Diaspora have ruptured developmental approaches to modernity. In order to move beyond the complacency of difference implied by alternative modernities, we seek to establish a context that enables greater engagement with multi-sited research methodologies both on the African continent itself as well as in Asia, Europe, the Global South, and North America. We also seek to examine the relationship between late colonial and postcolonial national infrastructures on the African continent through the movement of successive generations abroad, and an examination of how a sense of integration and return can be more broadly construed.

Early Modern Globalization: Iberian Empires/Colonies/Nations

Co-investigators and their institutions:
Ivonne Del Valle, Spanish and Portuguese, UC Berkeley
Anna More, Spanish and Portuguese, UCLA

This interdisciplinary group, consisting initially of specialists from the fields of history, art history, and literature, examines the place of the Iberian imperial experience in the emergence of global modernity and its consequences. The group will focus on the following areas, among others, in a dialogue with theories developed in other centuries and other languages: How the presuppositions of classical antiquity and Medieval Christianity provide the first racial, political and evangelical paradigms for global empires in the 16th century; the theoretical and practical changes these paradigms underwent when they incorporated the experiences of the colonizers and evangelists in Asian and American colonies; the particular challenges posed to the establishment of a universal empire by responses of the African, Asian, and Amerindian peoples who were first subjected to models of universalization and the ongoing influence of local forms upon global processes spurred by Iberian colonization; the differences between the administration of transatlantic colonies and European colonies (Flanders, Portugal, Italy) and between the politics and practices carried out within European nations and in transatlantic and transpacific contexts; and the adaptations to political, aesthetic, scientific and social ideas generated in American and Asian colonies and their repercussions for both the history of these regions and the history of transatlantic and transpacific exchange.