Pomona College Gender and Women’s Studies Program welcomes Aimee Bahng as Assistant Professor and Amanda Apgar as Visiting Instructor.
Aimee Bahng teaches and writes about transnational Asian/American literature, feminist science and technology studies, and queer theory. Her book, Migrant Futures: Decolonizing Speculation in Financial Times (2017, Duke University Press), examines narratives of futurity across a range of platforms – from subaltern science fiction to the financial speculations of the 1%. The book asserts that a history of racial capitalism subtends visions of the future and to imagine otherwise demands an excavation of this history. She is currently working on another book, Transpacific Ecologies, which looks to the Pacific – the body of water, the islands, and their human and non-human denizens, as well as the nation-states and corporations that parlay across it – for narratives that help us think beyond a terrestrial-centric human history and toward a more diverse conceptualization of environmental futures. She uses transnational and indigenous feminist frameworks to reassert a “transpacific undercommons” through which we might reconfigure relationships to the planet by reckoning with a disavowed ecological past.
Amanda Apgar is a visiting instructor at Pomona College in Gender and Women’s Studies. Her research interests include disability, sexuality, and memoir. She is currently completing a doctorate at UCLA in gender studies, where she is examining narratives of gendered childhoods using a feminist disability studies theoretical framework. She also really loves riding a bike.
Giovanni Ortega (PO), assistant professor of theatre and dance, was commissioned to write a creative response for HALO: Bayanihan Art Project, a multi-arts program presented throughout 2017 in partnership with six key cultural institutions across Sydney.
He also devised and directed KATAWAN – Creation of My Body, an original play that weaves the stories of Chinese, British and Filipinos in Australia. The performance was held at Arts, Culture and Innovation Central (ACI Central) in Campbelltown, New South Wales. In addition, he was commissioned by the same organization to write a poetic dedication that highlights the unique Filipino-Australian heritage and experience.
In Brisbane, Queensland, he facilitated a two-day workshop of Creation of My Body (COMB) with local artist Katrina Graham that focused on the female identity. He also produced a presentation of “Welcome to Manhood” by Zed Hopkins ’20 with a post-show discussion with the participants of COMB.
Lastly, Ortega was a guest performer for Die Juwelia Soraya Performance in Bar Ludwig, a performance space that focuses and encourages queer artists in Germany. The following week, he headlined weekend performances with composer Jose Promis at Galerie Studio St. St. in Neukölln, Berlin.
Ami Radunskaya (PO), professor of mathematics, received a collaborative National Science Foundation grant for her collaborative project “Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education: Research Results from Twenty Years of Empowering Women in Mathematics.”
Carolyn Ratteray (PO), assistant professor of theatre and dance, is currently performing in the critically acclaimed world premiere of “The Cake” by Bekah Brunstetter (NBC’s “This Is Us”). This production has garnered national attention with the NY Times and LA Times both doing feature articles/reviews on the production.
Ratteray directed a short play in Ammunition Theatre Company’s Past/Present/Future Women’s Theatre Festival. This show was also performed at the Downtown Women’s Center.
Professor Pardis Mahdavi (PO) has accepted a position at the Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver as chief academic officer and senior associate dean.
Gilda L. Ochoa (PO), professor of Chicana/o-Latina/o Studies, published her 2017 Pomona College Class Day address, “Ode to the Class of 2017: In the Midst of So Much Inequality,” in Latino Rebels on May 24. It was reprinted at Pocho.com.
Jean Reith Schroedel is a Professor of Political Science at Claremont Graduate University. Her teaching and research interests encompass a wide range of topics, which are linked by a common thread—to understand how the concerns of traditionally under-represented groups are addressed by the political system within the United States. Schroedel has a strong record of collaborating with students, including having published with more than 40 students at CGU. About five years ago, Schroedel began researching voting rights issues, and in 2014, she was an expert witness in the Wandering Medicine v. McCulloch voting rights case in Montana. With her students, she continues to conduct research on the barriers faced by Tribal members in much of the Plains and Mountain States, and this work has been used in other voting rights cases.
Diana Selig is the Kingsley Croul Associate Professor of History and Chair of the Department of History at Claremont McKenna College. She is author of Americans All: The Cultural Gifts Movement, which tells the story of early efforts at multicultural education in the United States from the 1920s through the 1940s. Her current research focuses on the memory of the women’s suffrage movement in American political and cultural life.
Professor Alicia Bonaparte Explores the Biopolitics of Black Female Reproduction at Conference in South Africa
Pitzer College Associate Professor of Sociology Alicia Bonaparte and artist Andrea Chung presented their interdisciplinary project “Push and Pull: The Biopolitics of Black Female Reproduction” at the BLACK PORTRAITURE[S] III: Reinventions: Strains of Histories and Cultures Conference held in Johannesburg, South Africa, on November 17-19. The conference was hosted by governmental, academic and arts institutions, including the US Department of State, Harvard University, New York University and the Institute of African American Affairs.
“Push and Pull” examines how the nation-state has impacted black female bodies as midwives and health consumers in reproductive healthcare. Bonaparte’s research delves into the ways black midwives and mothers passed along intergenerational knowledge of healing and birthing traditions within the African diaspora. “Push and Pull” incorporates illustrations by Chung that highlight how women navigate the healthcare system.
Their presentation of “Push and Pull” in Johannesburg explored how the persistence of birthing traditions among US and Jamaican midwives relates to Michel Foucault’s concept of biopolitics.
“It is our hope that understanding how socio-political machinations by the medical establishments in the US and in Jamaica are reflections not only of a pathologization of the black female body but also harken to the idea that black women are innately deviant beings that require control by the state,” Bonaparte said. “Moreover, illuminating the ways in which black midwives in both the US and Jamaica found surreptitious and blatant ways of rejecting these forms demonstrates an active resistance to state control and an adherence to the continuation and transmission of cultural birthing knowledge in resistance to biopolitics.”
Professor Alicia D. Bonaparte is a medical sociologist who specializes in reproductive health and health disparities. She co-edited the anthology Birthing Justice: Black Women, Pregnancy, and Childbirth, which addresses the global crisis in maternal health care for black women. Her courses at Pitzer include Sociology of Health and Medicine, African American Social Theory and Moon Called: Black Women, Pregnancy and Ritual. She is currently working on a manuscript addressing how racism, sexism and inter-occupational conflict has affected black grandmother midwives in South Carolina.
Ellen Rentz (Literature, Claremont McKenna) published Imagining the Parish in Late Medieval England (Ohio State University Press, 2015). She also presented papers “Books of Hours and Public Displays of Spiritual Affection” at the Medieval Colloquium at Sewanee – The University of the South in April 2016, and “Mindful Materiality: Teaching Ethics and Empathy” at the 2015 meeting of the Medieval Association of the Midwest in October.
Kyla Tompkins (English & GWS, Pomona) won an American Council of Learned Societies Burkhardt Award for recently tenured faculty and will be in residence at Princeton University fall 2017 to spring 2018.
Vanessa Tyson (Politics, Scripps College) offered live commentary as an election-night guest in the FOX-LA news studio in Los Angeles on Nov. 8. Her offerings included non-partisan commentary on national politics, the election, and state propositions during the television station’s election night reporting. Tyson, whose book tour for Twists of Fate, Multiracial Coalitions and Minority Representations in the US House of Representatives began this fall, has recently been featured by The New Republic Studio, interviewed by POLITICO, US’s Poppy MacDonald ’97, and Lana Zak of ABC News. Her book Twists of Fate examines how the Congressional Tri-Caucus—comprised of lawmakers from and representing communities of color—have formed a powerful voting bloc that is changing the dynamics of minority representation on Capitol Hill. She has been an active voice in the primary election season commentary as well, with columns published in The Conversation and U.S. News & World Report earlier in the year.
IFC FIELD GROUP MEMBERS APPOINTED TO ENDOWED CHAIR POSITIONS AT SCRIPPS COLLEGE
- Andrew Jacobs (Professor of Religious Studies) ~ The Mary W. Johnson and J. Stanley Johnson Professorship in Humanities
- Marina Pérez de Mendiola (Professor of Hispanic Studies) ~ The Richard Armour Chair in Modern Languages
- Nathalie Rachlin (Professor of French) ~ The Margaret McKenzie Distinguished Professorship in Modern Foreign Languages
- Rita Roberts (Professor of History and Africana Studies) ~ The Nathaniel Wright Stephenson Chair in History and Biography Read more »
Romarilyn Ralston (Pitzer 2014) received Washington University’s Mary McLeod Bethune Award, named in honor of the educator and civil rights leader and given to a graduate student who “through leadership, service, scholastic achievement, and perseverance has served as an inspiration to the University community.” Romarilyn was selected to the National Strategic Planning Committee for Higher Education in Prison, and was also a panelist on Mayor Eric Garcetti’s The Access to Higher Education Challenge at USC Gould School of Law on June 17, 2016 along with Nigel Boyle, Dean of Faculty and Owen Wilson, Admission’s from Pitzer College. Romarilyn graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a Master’s in Liberal Arts and is currently exploring Ph.D programs across the country. (June 2016)