Fall 2019 Dresher Center Faculty Research Fellows
The patriarchal figure’s lifeless presence is pervasive in the dark comedies of Spanish cinema but its materiality and mobilization differ across filmic representations from the late 1950s to today. The “putrefying patriarch” is on life support, on ice, on snooze, on display, or on notice in a number of recent films. The belated burials of these corpses highlight the impediments to free and fair elections and auditions, motherhood, and women’s professional fulfillment. Patriarchy’s Remains theorizes the grotesque as a body genre for a feminist autopsy of the Spanish dark comedy and investigates laughter as a comedic strategy promoting gender equality.
We must take to the streets again explores the ‘black power resurgence’ of the 1980s and 1990s. Threatened by a spreading urban crisis and the rise of a racially reactionary Reagan coalition, African Americans turned away from an ascendant integrationism and embraced black power era symbols, political strategies, and cultural forms. For fifteen years, they fought doggedly to protect the gains of the civil rights and black power movements, in the process setting the terms of black politics for a generation. Using new oral histories and archival collections, this study challenges the idea that African Americans made a smooth transition from “protest to politics” in the years after 1965. It argues instead that in the face of a conservative counter-revolution, they reached back to the strategies, symbols, and even the activists of the black power movement to wage an ongoing struggle for black equality.
Spring 2020 Dresher Center Faculty Research Fellows
Postconflict Utopias and its accompanying digital storytelling archive, “Mujeres Pacíficas” explores how Afro-Colombian women and their local, regional, and transnational networks create knowledges and practices of peace-building in the everyday. Survival is not accidental, but an embodied collaborative practice, requiring a daily commitment to living in the midst of a decades-long (but often denied) armed conflict.
Maya Deren: Life Choreographed for Camera is a biography of filmmaker Maya Deren (1917-1961). Deren was an influential figure in avant-garde film of the 20th century. In addition to the films she made in the 1940s and 1950s, she created an audience for experimental film. Deren’s life is one of total immersion in virtually the entire spectrum of the humanities; she was a poet, essayist, filmmaker, film theorist, photographer, choreographer, translator, ethnographer, and social activist.
For a list of previous Residential Faculty Research Fellows, please visit the Archives page.