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Current Workshops

Linda Randall Meier Research Workshop

Approaches to Capitalism

Well before the 2008 global economic crisis, historians, anthropologists, and economic sociologists worked to reclaim interpretive authority from those who privileged an abstract “market” or “capital” as the agent of social, cultural, and economic change. These scholars insisted that capitalism has a history that does not unfold uniformly across time and space. Still, the new histories and ethnographies of capitalism remain in a formative stage. This workshop provides clarity to the field by inviting faculty to consider the range of methodological approaches to researching and writing studies of capitalism. A series of nine seminars will bring together the architects of an emerging subfield to explicate methodological approaches for telling histories and ethnographies of people, space, and resources in the context of capitalism’s development. The goal is to contribute to a larger debate over using capitalism as a synthetic lens to comprehend modern history and anthropology.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Jennifer Burns, Richard White

Graduate Student:

Branden Adams
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

Blokker Research Workshop

Approaches to Data Scarcity in Ancient History

This workshop seeks to combine social scientific and humanistic approaches to the ancient world. It will explore the ways in which methods drawn from network theory, statistics, and anthropology can inform debates over data, specifically data scarcity, in Antiquity and subsequent periods of history. In addition to the rich documentary and textual sources available to scholars of Classics, Mediterranean archaeology has produced impressive datasets in recent years. Ancient historians and archaeologists have begun to systematize the collection and publication of this data, but a key premise of this workshop is that we must complicate our understanding of social scientific models and their implications to better use these emerging datasets. We envision a collaboration with the Stanford Archaeology Center and with the History and Anthropology departments at Stanford in order to move towards a better integration of textual and archaeological evidence, as well as the incorporation of other forms of quantifiable data related to the study of the past.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Justin Leidwanger, Josiah Ober

Graduate Student:

Grace Erny
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Archaeological Histories and Futures

Stanford Archaeology Center’s (SAC) 2016 workshop series will explore the theme of histories and futures, recognizing that social sciences research binds the past, present, and future together. It will interrogate the complex ways in which the past forms a referent for and influence in ancient and contemporary life, framed within an interdisciplinary milieu including archaeology, anthropology, classics, history, art history, environmental sciences, and area studies. While a variety of methods, regional foci, and subject matter are included, the series will pay particular attention to emergent agendas of cultural networks and diaspora, heritage, identity and lived experience, and materiality. It will consist primarily of weekly colloquia held throughout the 2016-2017 academic year, involving an array of Stanford faculty and students as well as a selection of outstanding scholars from other institutions whose work is particularly relevant to our academic community.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Lynn Meskell

Graduate Student:

Paul Christians
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Ethics and Politics, Ancient and Modern

The Ethics and Politics, Ancient and Modern (EPAM) workshop explores topics with broad interdisciplinary appeal, especially in the areas of classics, philosophy, and political theory. The workshop examines possibilities for reuniting classical and classically-influenced ideas about ethics with political theorizing that is applicable to the modern world. Meetings occurring several times each quarter provide a focus for Stanford faculty and students with a primary or secondary interest in classical moral and political philosophy, engage faculty and students from several departments by promoting an interdisciplinary discussion among them, and, enable graduate students and faculty to meet on a common ground, as members of a single intellectual community.  

Coodinators

Faculty:

Chris Bobonich, Josh Ober

Graduate Student:

Amos Espeland
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Eurasian Empires

Eurasian Empires explores the connected and comparative history of early empires from the Mediterranean to China, defining space and time broadly. We focus on themes and problems common to the many empires that asserted control over this space, from ancient Greek and Middle Eastern empires, to early modern Russian, Ottoman, Safavid/Qajar and Mughal, and Chinese empires from Han to Qing. We are particularly interested in the imagination of imperial space and power through visual and literary forms and different modes of knowledge production for imperial integrities; at the same time we are concerned with material and political strategies of governance and power. This workshop, therefore, would interest colleagues and students across many disciplines and areas.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Nancy Kollman, Ali Yaycioglu

Graduate Student:

Ali Karamustafa
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Feminisms & Queerings

What might it mean to queer something? What does feminism look like in the academy when it is not limited to applying a fixed lens to any given subject? When we as scholars apply theory to certain objects of inquiry, we run the risk of reducing our objects to the theories we apply to them. If we look only for certain patterns, ideas, and examples, our findings will always reaffirm our original worldview. Feminist and queer theory has been accused of making everything about certain attitudes toward sex, sexuality, and gender--of reducing multidimensional texts to a single dimension. Rather than rehashing old patterns, this colloquium will explore new and vibrant directions in feminist and queer scholarship that rethink how we perform our political identities in our research, teaching, and activism.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Sianne Ngai

Graduate Student:

Annie Atura
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Forced Migrations

This workshop addresses the research interests of various members on campus that stem from the intersection of slavery, human rights, and empire. Our frame is forced migration with an oceanic emphasis, and we will discuss analyses of historical and literary texts from the present, as well as the nineteenth century or earlier.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Jenny Martinez, Lisa Surwillo

Graduate Student:

George Rosa-Acosta
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

French Culture

The French Culture Workshop brings together participants from a wide range of disciplines, including French literature, History, Comparative Literature, and Art History, to examine questions relevant to French culture and society from the modern period (1650 to the present). Topics of discussion include political and intellectual history, imperialism and colonialism, nationalism and national identity, immigration and minorities, gender, religion, and francophonie.

Coodinators

Faculty:

James P. Daughton, Dan Edelstein

Graduate Student:

Chloe Edmondson
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

Graphic Narrative Project

From political cartoons and centuries-old Japanese woodblock prints to superhero serials, manga, comics journalism and webcomics, pictures and words have been brought together by visionary artists across the world who saw the potential to tell stories of human civilization in ways not possible via text or image alone. The Graphic Narrative Project explores the many manifestations of this medium, spanning the boundaries of race, nation, genre, time period, and language to bring together faculty, students, artists, and scholars from across disciplines. Through inviting artists and scholars from across these disparate fields to give presentations and participate in discussions with the Stanford community via workshops, we hope to continue to foster new perspectives, collaborations, and debates that span academic departments’ traditional divisions.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Scott Bukatman

Graduate Student:

Mia Lewis
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Humanities Center Fellows Research Workshop

Interdisciplinary Working Group in Critical Theory

The Interdisciplinary Working Group in Critical Theory brings together faculty and graduate students from across the humanities and qualitative social sciences to address current theoretical debates by reading and discussing texts that both define and disrupt disciplinary thinking. In order to tie together the disciplinary concerns and latent research agendas of workshop participants, we have chosen to join forces another with existing working group, previously sponsored by the English Department, Infinite Possibilities: The Working Group on Speculative Fiction. Together, we will engage with one thematic focus that will carry us throughout AY 2016-2017: The Speculative. By providing a sustained platform for cross-disciplinary dialogue, the workshop aims to provoke discussions that allow participants to test disciplinary assumptions within a sympathetic yet serious scholarly environment.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Mark Algee-Hewitt, Paula Moya

Graduate Student:

Cam Awkward-Rich
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

Marta Sutton Weeks Research Workshop

Minority Communities, Rights, Political Economies and States in the Modern Middle East and Central Asia

The Middle East and Central Asia constitute an interregional zone defined by the interplay of the Arab and Turco-Persian high cultural traditions that are both distinct and intimately related to one another, as well as a great variety of interlinked local cultures, economies, and ecologies. Within that region, and occasionally its geographical extensions, the workshop agenda focuses on the dynamic relationship of two fields often separated in academic work and that are central to the research of several of the core faculty and graduate student members. First, issues connected to the development of capitalism in the region and its place in the global market through the mutual constitution of markets, states, and classes. Second, the intersections of civic and minority rights, identities and discourses of modernity, development, and democracy, and struggles for social justice.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Joel Beinin

Graduate Student:

Kristen Alff
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

Research Workshop in Honor of John Bender

Seminar on the Enlightenment and Revolution, 1660-1830

Our workshop explores the very long eighteenth century: the period of European and American history from 1660 through 1848. Enlightenment and Revolution broadly describe the epochal transformations in religion, economics, art, literature, science, and philosophy over the period. Inspired by the persistence of Enlightenment ideas and the sense that its idealistic projects remain incomplete, in 2016-17 our workshop proposes the organizing theme of “The Unfinished Enlightenment and its Concepts.”

Coodinators

Faculty:

Bernadette Meyler, Blakey Vermeule

Graduate Student:

Alex Statman
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

The Material Imagination: Sound, Space, and Human Consciousness

This workshop explores how attention to the materiality of sound opens up new questions about history, art, architecture, religion, and society. In contrast to established research on music and language that emphasizes textual meaning of sounds, this workshop engages with the materiality and physical presence of acoustic phenomena in order to consider the sensuous space through which human experience takes place. From the medieval to the modern, the corporeal to the technological, and the historical past to the imagined future, this workshop fosters innovative scholarship across disciplines that include art history, architecture, music, anthropology, English, history, classics, and religious studies.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Bissera Pentcheva

Graduate Student:

Justin Tackett
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Marta Sutton Weeks Research Workshop

Varieties of Agency

We all act all the time, and know much about action simply in virtue of engaging in it. We act so as to affect important changes in ourselves, one another, and the world at large. We make confident use of reasons for action in deciding what to do and in explaining and assessing actions of others. Yet a closer look at action and agency shows them to be puzzling. In choosing how to act, do we settle things left unsettled by the causal order prior to our choice? When and how can our interactions with others add up to joint action? How is explaining actions in terms of an agent’s reasons related to explaining it in terms of its causes? In what way do we know what we’re doing when doing something intentionally? Disciplines across the humanities and sciences have their own ways of tackling these hard questions about agency.

Coodinators

Faculty:

David Hills

Graduate Student:

Nathan Hauthaler
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.

Claire and John Radway Research Workshop

Workshop in Poetics

The Workshop in Poetics is concerned with the theoretical and practical dimensions of the reading and criticism of poetry. Oriented toward work in progress by Ph.D. students, the workshop accommodates talks by visiting speakers and discussion of both classic and neglected works in the field. Its agenda is driven by the interests of its members. Within the eclectic critical landscape called “poetics” in literary studies, the workshop offers a forum where scholars with distinctive methods and historical concerns can test their claims and assumptions about poetic objects against the broad linguistic and historical knowledge of the workshop’s members. Over its nine years, the workshop has become a central venue at Stanford and in the Bay Area for sharing projects in a conversation outside of conventional disciplinary and national limits.

Coodinators

Faculty:

Roland Greene, Nicholas Jenkins

Graduate Student:

Armen Davoudian
Meeting Schedule: (click to expand)

  • No meetings assigned to this workshop yet.