1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

Department Speakers Series

How public language can dismantle a democracy: Lessons from Hungary

Speech registers are different ways of saying "the same thing," fitting different occasions. But registers don't simply exist, they are assembled (enregistered) by social actors for political projects and interpreted through language ideologies. What can a study of registers tell us about the dynamics of political discourse? My analysis is relevant to the American scene, but the starting point is Hungary and its current ruling party (FIDESZ), which has destroyed civil society, the independence of the judiciary, and academic freedom.

Modern Desires for the Giant of Africa: Eros and Infrastructure in Nigeria’s Planned Capital

"Journey into the Lexical Past of Ancient Peru."

October 19, 2018
Brooks Hall Commons
1:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M.
Reception to follow in Brooks Hall Foyer

Cosponsorship at the invitation of the Department of Spanish, Latin and Portuguese 

"Pursuing Happiness as a Political Project: Black Women, Travel, and the Promise of Diaspora"

In recent years, the Movement for Black Lives has elevated Audre Lorde’s notion that self-care is a political act, pushing us to have a national conversation about effective strategies for maintaining emotional wellness in the context of white supremacy and patriarchy. The discussion is one Black feminists have been engaging in for generations, attempting to find ways to be well, and remain well, despite the disproportionate amount of emotional labor Black women are expected to provide in organizing spaces, their households, neighborhoods, and on their jobs.

"Moonson Travelers: Route and History on an Indian Ocean Dhow"

1:00 PM, Brooks Hall Commons
Reception to follow in Brooks Hall Foyer

Title TBA

1:00 PM, Brooks Hall Commons
Reception to follow in Brooks Hall Foyer
Cosponsored with the Field Methods Workshop (Department of Sociology)


Microbiosociality: Sensory Ecologies of Ritual Life in Amazonia

In the wake of recent research showing that most of the cells and genes in a human body are non-human, there has been an explosion of interest in microbes’ roles in social life. For anthropologists, attention to microbial relations can illuminate how meanings, materials, memories, and emotions entwine as human and non-human beings co-produce and co-configure local life-worlds.

"'Civilizing' China: Cultural Beliefs about the Urban and Modern in the People’s Republic of China"

"The Chinese Revolution of 1949 is seen by scholars as the quintessential peasant  revolution, and a pro-peasant stance became standard in political rhetoric following the Revolution. But during my ethnographic work over the last three decades I have heard just the opposite view of the peasantry expressed by both urban and rural Chinese. In this lecture I will discuss the stigmatizing of the peasantry and the corresponding valorization of the city.

Singular-Particulars: Some Reflections on the Excessiveness of Death, Mourning, and Loss

Drawing upon phenomenological insights into the ways that phenomena disclose, indicate, or conceal themselves given the particular conditions in which they are situated and the distinctive modes of access that we may have to them, this talk will sketch the ethical and ontological entailments that afford access to what I term a “singular-particular.” While most modes of particularity inhabiting ethnographic work can be understood as typified particulars, that is as particulars that disclose something of the recurrent and typified ways that particular individuals or groups go about navigating

Graduate Student workshop on Ethnography in Advertising


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