Current Projects

Leslie AlexanderLeslie Alexander (Associate Professor, Department of History) is pursuing a project titled “The Cradle of Hope: African American Internationalism in the Nineteenth Century.”  The project seeks to understand how African Americans viewed political issues throughout the African Diaspora in the antebellum and early post-bellum eras.


Esther Baker-TapargaEsther Baker-Taparga (Assistant Professor, Department of Dance) is currently working on a project examining the history of whiteness, violence, immigration, and ancestor memories in embodied performance practices with the dance company she co-leads.  The project involves work with musicians, visual artists, and video artists in interdisciplinary installation and performance projects.


Christine Ballengee-MorrisChristine Ballengee Morris (Professor, Art Education; American Indian Studies) is in the early stages of a research project -  funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities Digital Seed Grant - that is hoped to create a video game prototype about the Earthwork Builder Culture for school-age children.


Franco BarchiesiFranco Barchiesi (Associate Professor, African American and African Studies) is currently pursuing a comparative historical sociology of waged employment in relation to state formation and social conflicts in post-emancipation and newly colonized societies, focusing specifically on Southern Africa, the Caribbean, and the mid-Atlantic United States between the 1880s and the 1920s.  He is specifically interested in how the productive positions of African and African-descended peoples were both defined and contested in global contexts of state formation and capitalist modernization, by racialization and whiteness as modalities of rule.  Barchiesi places specific emphasis on the "Atlantic" dimension of the circulation of ideas of governance and opposition, excavating a genealogy for the persistence of discursive and ontological modalities that unequally and often violently position whiteness and blackness in social policies and institutional interventions to the present day.


Nina BermanNina Berman (Professor, Department of Comparative Studies) is in the process of finalizing work on a co-edited anthology, African, Asian, and Oceanic Negotiations of German Colonialism: Interactions, Resistance, and Memory (with Klaus Mühlhahn and Patrice Nganang). This multidisciplinary anthology, which includes seventeen essays and an introduction, addresses a gap in current scholarship on German colonialism by foregrounding social, economic, political, and cultural practices generated by African, Asian, and Oceanic people within the context and aftermath of German colonialism.


Cindy BurackCindy Burack (Associate Professor, Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies) has a current project entitled Tough Love: Sexuality, Compassion, and the Christian Right. The project is an empirical and theoretical study of the social, political, and psychological implications of Christian conservative compassion in ex-gay and post-abortion ministries.


Theresa DelgadilloTheresa Delgadillo (Assistant Professor, Department of Comparative Studies) presently has two ongoing projects. Latina Oral Histories of Milwaukee is an edited volume of fifteen first-person accounts of Latina life in the Midwest by women in three different generations, from varied occupations and national/ethnic backgrounds; African Diaspora in Latino/a Literature is an examination of the representations of diaspora and blackness in the contexts of Latino/a, Afro Latin American and African American canons and paradigms.


Jared GardnerJared Gardner (Associate Professor, Department of English) is in the early stages of a book called "The Lower Frequencies" on radio and the post-war American novel— with especial interest in African American and Latino radio in New York City and Los Angeles.


Linda MizejewskiLinda Mizejewski (Professor, Department of Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies) is finishing a book on contemporary women and comedy; an excerpt on Tina Fey and 30 Rock is forthcoming in the online journal Genders.


Brian MurphyBrian Murphy (Ph.D. student, Comparative Studies) is writing a dissertation, entitled “Frozen Memories: Race, Photography, and Digital Preservation in American Culture,” focusing on the Corbis Film Preservation Facility (CFPF) in Boyers, Pennsylvania.  The project looks at questions of race, memory, and security in twentieth-century America, both in the subject matter of the archive and in the broader social contexts from which the archive emerged, aiming to critique the cultural assumptions that produce and guide a project aiming to preserve a media collection 'forever'.


Joe PonceJoe Ponce (Associate Professor, English; Asian American Studies) is pursuing two major projects.  The first, tentatively titled “Asian American Literature Between Nations and Empires,” grapples with the politics of theoretical trends away from US-centric frameworks to other, broader frameworks in Asian American Studies.  The second project builds on his teaching experiences in literature courses dealing with intersections of race and sexuality.  It engages with Asian homophobia and aims to move beyond stereotypes of effeminacy in Asian-White relationship dynamics.


Barry ShankBarry Shank (Professor, Department of Comparative Studies) has a current project “Silence, Noise, Beauty: The Political Agency of Music,” which is a study of popular music’s power to create an embodied sense of the abstraction of political community in its listeners.