|Tuesday, April 11th|
Brenna Two Bears, Whitman College
10:45 AM - 11:00 AM
My presentation complements an exhibit at Maxey Museum about the representation of indigenous people. My talk will cover three areas: curation as narration, relations between indigenous communities and Maxey Museum, and decolonizing museum spaces and displays. I will share images of historic objects installed in the display case on the first floor of Maxey Hall (near Maxey 104). These objects include rose water given to Maxey Museum by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) for protection from powerful objects; implements used to archive and keep track of objects; and a copy of the Native American Graves, Protection, and Repatriation Act. The purpose of my presentation and the complementary exhibit is to emphasize the importance of the museum in the college’s current efforts to build a relationship with CTUIR.
Elise Frank, Whitman College
11:00 AM - 11:15 AM
Experiencing children’s literature--being read to, looking at illustrations and absorbing common narratives--is a key source of socialization in American society. Arguably, the representation of race in children’s literature molds children’s understanding of the role that race plays in social dynamics in society. Through scholarly literature and primary analysis of select children’s books, my presentation examines how children’s literature influences how we think, talk and understand racial dynamics in the United States. How is the consumption and production of “the other” racialized and politicized in the text and illustrations of American children’s literature? How does children’s literature contribute to the socialization of children in areas of racial and ethnic discourses?
Chris Cahoon, Whitman College
11:15 AM - 11:30 AM
The last significant study of whiteness discourse in rhetorical studies occurred in the work of Nakayama and Krizek in 1995. In my presentation I provide an updated analysis of whiteness discourse, using Nakayama and Krizek’s theory of whiteness. Through ethnographic interviews with Whitman College students, I examine how whiteness functions as a discursive strategy at Whitman, and I demonstrate how whiteness is no longer invisible in the university setting. Whitman students talk about race primarily in terms of “diversity,” “understanding,” “comfort” and “privilege.” The ways students discuss race, and as a result conceive of whiteness, strategically maneuver around the challenge to white student dominance. By discussing whiteness in non-disruptive ways, students reinforce the racial hierarchy in our community.
Forrest Arnold, Whitman College
11:30 AM - 11:45 AM
Ferguson, Missouri continues to be a focal point in the national dialogue on protest. There have been countless attempts to account for what happened there in 2014. I analyze the discourse of one zine, Dispatches from Ferguson, Vol. 1, in order to open up a broader field of conversation about the scope of public engagement. How can we better understand unruly, violent or illegal forms of public protest? Can we understand such uncivil disobedience as a form of public engagement? Rather than consider actions such as looting and rioting within the discourse of criminality, foreclosing urgent conversations about the politics of social change, I consider them as affective modes of resistance that allow protesters to respond to oppression when other tactics have failed. Ultimately, I argue for a new focus on affect within the discourse theory of citizenship in order to expand the scope of public protest.