February 9, 2022
Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

White Masochism: The Psycho-Sexual Dynamics Behind U.S. Political Grammar 
Dr. Mariana Bolívar Rubín
Dr. Bolívar Rubín will discuss the psycho-sexual dynamics of masochism to examine socio-political identifications grounded on the spectacle of cruelty and the rhetoric of whiteness that animates U.S. political grammar today. Bolívar Rubín argues that Republican public speeches around zero tolerance policy and Democrats voting rights initiatives, such as independent redistricting commissions, have functioned as ritualized contracts grounded on the performative violence and exclusionary rhetoric involving Latinx communities. Such masochist political dynamic exposes both parties’ strategic moves toward innocence, that is, their attempt to ease responsibility without giving up political power. 


Mariana Bolívar Rubín is Associate Professor of Modern Languages at MCLA. She received her Ph.D. in Hispanic American literatures and cultures with an emphasis on gender and cultural studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Her academic background and research interests demonstrate a commitment to interdisciplinary scholarship by engaging with current and pressing topics within race, gender, and trans-nationality. Currently, she is interested in the representation of Afro-Caribbean religion in Latinx literature and film.
12pm Virtual
March 1, 2022

Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

Oral History Remix: Disrupting Notions of Difference
Dr. Lisa Arrastia
Dr. Arrastia and attendants will try to bring into being “diverse, untidy social dreams” by listening to students engage a new genre of public art, one of duration, one with the intent of disorienting our notions of difference through a love pedagogy, a pedagogy of aesthetic love.


Lisa Arrastia is Assistant Professor of Education at MCLA. Lisa is school leader, teacher, and school founder in NYC, Chicago, and California, studies pedagogies of culture, racial capitalism, masculinity, social class, place, and dystopias in education. She is co-editor of Starting Up (Teachers College Press) and author of “Love Pedagogy: Teaching to Disrupt” (The Crisis of Connection, NYU Press).
March 24, 2022
Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

The Tectonics of Form: Change and Impermanence in New Contemporary Drawings and Paintings
Prof. Gregory Scheckler
Prof. Scheckler will share new artworks that respond to questions of how we might embrace change and impermanence in visual art. Relying on gesture drawing and movement trends found throughout Berkshires geologies, these artworks reconfigure art-making as creative non-fictions borne of nature’s patterning forces. 


Gregory Scheckler is Professor of Fine and Performing Arts at MCLA. His work is rooted in imagery from nature and its observation. When he’s not writing, artmaking, or teaching, he and his wife ski, hike and bike the Berkshires and tend their solar-powered home in the company of two fuzzy cats.
5:30pmMurdock 218,
Tuesday April 5, 2022
Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

The Balance of Freedom: Abolishing Property Rights in People in the US Civil War and American Memory
Dr. Amanda Laury Kleintop
Though enslavement and the trade in Black bodies once existed throughout the United States, Americans often frame slavery as a southern problem. In this talk, Dr. Kleintop argues that the nation built this myth after the Civil War during debates over whether to pay former enslavers for the value of freed people. When the Fourteenth Amendment successfully nullified white southerners’ claims for compensation in 1868, Americans celebrated immediate, uncompensated emancipation as an inevitable outcome of the war and distanced themselves from the legal and economic legacies of chattel slavery.


Amanda Laury Kleintop is Assistant Professor of History at MCLA. Her work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Gilder Lehrman Center at Yale University, among others. It has been published in Slavery & Abolition, and she is completing her first book.
Thursday April 21, 2022
Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

Constructing Imaginary White Cultural Space: Urbanization and Anti-Black Racism in China
Dr. Guangzhi Huang
Through investigating local campaigns to eliminate African communities in Guangzhou, China, Dr. Huang exposes the racial capitalist logic behind urbanization in post-socialist China. The brief existence of Black communities in Guangzhou shows how whiteness informs place-making strategies and highlights the tangled relationships between race, class, and modernity in a non-Western context.


Guangzhi Huang is Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies at MCLA. Huang is a scholar of contemporary China who is particularly interested in the intersection of race and urbanization. Influenced by critical race theories and global urban studies, his research sheds light on how meanings of race disseminate globally and localize in non-Western contexts.

__________2021 EVENTS__________
April 13, 2021
CARE SYLLABUS / Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

Imitation of Life: A Lyric Essay
Dr. Zack Finch

Join this event
In this reading of an essay begun during this past year, Dr. Finch explores whether performance art and literature can enact the sorts of funerary, healing, and socially cathartic care work traditionally reserved for more religious rituals and ceremonies of mourning.  Moving across a spectrum of aesthetic texts, including installation works by Taryn Simon, sculpture by Fred Wilson, essays by Stéphane Mallarmé, and films by Douglas Sirk and Stan Brakhage, this work-in-progress takes a personal, auto-theoretical approach to the question of how one navigates loss and separation under the conditions of the ongoing pandemic. 

Zack Finch is a poet, essayist and scholar of modern and contemporary US poetry and poetics. He has received awards and fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, the Breadloaf Writer’s Conference, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Wallace Stevens Society.  His work has appeared in places including American Letters & Commentary, Boston Review, Fence, Jacket2, Poetry and Tin House. A graduate of Warren Wilson’s Program for Writers (MFA in poetry) and University of Buffalo’s Poetics  Program (PhD), Dr. Finch currently teaches writing and literature courses MCLA.

In this lecture series, MCLA faculty members from across campus share their current research projects and benefit from questions and discussions. Events are open to the public.
Tuesday, April 20, 2021
CARE SYLLABUS / Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

Witches, Girlhood, and the Ethic of Care
Dr. Ingrid E. Castro

In this talk, Dr. Castro outlines childhood studies interpretations and applications of the feminist ethic of care to expand the concept of children’s ethic of care to their material cultures. Castro discusses the caring girlhood of young witches as represented in examples from film, streaming media, and a novel to argue that girl witches are material culture – subsumed into the narrative and cultural imaginary, a witch (when younger) is no longer a scary person but instead a material culture artifact. The young witch is first and foremost carer for others around them, whether that be animal, friend, relative, or trusted adult.

Ingrid E. Castro is Professor of Sociology at MCLA. She earned her MA and PhD in Sociology, with two Graduate Certificates in Cinema Studies and Women & Gender Studies, from Northeastern University. She regularly writes on children and childhood, specifically child and youth agency, ethic of care, generationalism, and interpretive reproduction. Her edited volumes include Researching Children and Youth: Methodological Issues, Strategies, and Innovations (2017); Representing Agency in Popular Culture: Children and Youth on Page, Screen, and In Between (2019); Child and Youth Agency in Science Fiction: Travel, Technology, Time (2019); and Childhood, Agency, and Fantasy: Walking in Other Worlds (2020).

In this lecture series, MCLA faculty members from across campus share their current research projects and benefit from questions and discussions. Events are open to the public.

April 27,
CARE SYLLABUS / Works-in-Progress Colloquium presents

Private Performance as Caretaking
Prof. Melanie Mowinski

In this exploration of performance, acts of endurance, and the role of caretaking in the arts and recovery, Melanie Mowinski examines the idea of wilderness mindset. Mowinski defines wilderness mindset as being present to the unpredictability of life, a concept she developed through her walking practice. When one deliberately seeks the uncomfortable or the opportunity to be lost while walking, resiliency, perseverance, confidence and fortitude get exercised. What is done “alone” can be framed as private performance, an act of endurance in the ongoing care for the body and soul within this great unknown. 

Melanie Mowinski
lives and works in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts where she is a professor of art at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA). Mowinski holds an MFA from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia and an MAR from Yale University. Mowinski balances hyper control & very specific rules with experimental investigations in her letterpress and book arts making. She gravitates towards the creation of one-of-a-kind artist books housed in unusual and traditional enclosures. Her books under the imprint PRESS • 29 PRESS are in private and public collections around the world. 

In this lecture series, MCLA faculty members from across campus share their current research projects and benefit from questions and discussions. Events are open to the public.


Tuesday, April 6,
In Conversation: MCLA Faculty on Book Writing & PublishingJoin faculty members from across campus for a roundtable discussion to celebrate and learn about their most recent and forthcoming book publications. Featured speakers will share information about their books, writing practices, and publishing processes. This event is co-hosted by the MCLA Alumni Association and The Mind’s Eye—a research and praxis at MCLA. 


Featured speakers:

Caren Beilin is Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at MCLA. Dr. Beilin writes at the intersection of feminism and disability poetics and is most recently the author of Blackfishing the IUD (Wolfman Books, 2019), the memoir SPAIN (Rescue Press, 2018), and a forthcoming novel from Dorothy, a publishing project, titled REVENGE OF THE SCAPEGOAT.

Ingrid E. Castro is Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work Department at MCLA. She is the lead editor of Researching Children and Youth: Methodological Issues, Strategies, and Innovations (Emerald, 2017). She is co-editor of Representing Agency in Popular Culture: Children and Youth on Page, Screen, and In Between (Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield, 2019) and Child and Youth Agency in Science Fiction: Travel, Technology, Time (Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield, 2019). She is the editor of Childhood, Agency, and Fantasy: Walking in Other Worlds (Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield, 2021). She is an elected member of the Eastern Sociological Society’s Executive Committee and the American Sociological Association’s Section on Children and Youth Council, and serves on the editorial board of the book series Sociological Studies of Children and Youth (Emerald).    

Kelli Newby, pen name Evi Kline, is Adjunct Instructor of English at MCLA who writes genre bending novels. The Good Girl’s Guide to Fantasy and Adventure is her self-published debut (2021). She earned an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminarsand an MA in Theatre Studies from Kent State University. Her next self-publishing project—The Devil Wears Shakespeare—is a two-time Golden Heart finalist and winner of the Fire and Ice contest.

Paul Nnodim is Professor of Philosophy at MCLA. He is author of Beyond Justice as Fairness: Rethinking Rawls from a Cross-cultural Perspective  (Lexington – Rowman, 2020), Rawls’ Theorie der Gerechtigkeit (Athena, 2004), co-author of Corporate Social Responsibility (Routledge, 2012), and co-editor of Ubuntu – A Comparative Study of an African Concept of Justice (KU Leuven University Press, 2022). 

Gerol Petruzella
is Director of Academic Technology at MCLA and author of The Cruellest Month: 30 days of microfic from the pandemic era (Shires Press, 2020), “Death in Ancient Philosophy and the Sandman Series” in Seelow, David (ed.) Lessons Drawn: Essays on the Pedagogy of Comics and Graphic Novels  (McFarland Press, 2018), and  Durable Goods: Pleasure, Wealth and Power in the Virtuous Life (Peter Lang, 2013). Dr. Petruzella has been a technologist, a linguist, and a philosopher in various combinations. He holds a Ph.D. from the University at Buffalo. His recent projects have included serving on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)’s Ethically Aligned Design  workgroup, helping develop industry standards for the ethical use of artificial intelligence systems; and contributing to the Critical Code Studies Working Group, sponsored by the Humanities and Critical Code Studies (HaCCS) Lab at the University of Southern California.

Jenna Grace Sciuto is Associate Professor of English at MCLA. Her book Policing Intimacy: Law, Sexuality, and the Color Line in Twentieth-Century Hemispheric American Literature (University Press of Mississippi, 2021) examines literary representations of sexual policing of the color line across spaces with distinct colonial histories and constructions of race: Mississippi, Louisiana, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic. Dr. Sciuto’s work has appeared in ARIEL, The Global SouthThe Journal of Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies, Faulkner and the Black Literatures of the Americas (University Press of Mississippi, 2016), and Southern Comforts: Drinking and the US South (Louisiana State University Press, 2020). 


Victoria Papa is Assistant Professor of English & Director of The Mind’s Eye at MCLA. Her research and teaching examines the intersection of trauma and experimental aesthetics in American literature and visual culture from the modernist period to the present. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in ASAP/J, Modernism/modernity, Public Books, Literature & History, and Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature. She is currently at work on her first book, tentatively titled, Aesthetics of Survival: Modernist Literature and Minoritarian Worldmaking.

Thursday, February 11, 2021
Teaching and Learning with CARE SYLLABUS
What would it look like if we placed care at the forefront of our creative pursuits, critical inquiries, and civic dialogues? How would it feel if care were to be taken seriously as a method of relationality and creation? What if, beyond a means, care was a goal—an endpoint inseparable from a beginning?

Join the co-directors of CARE SYLLABUS, Victoria Papa (MCLA), Levi Prombaum (MASS MoCA), and Laura Thompson (MASS MoCA), for an information session and workshop to learn more about teaching and learning with the multimodal content of CARE SYLLABUS. This interactive event will include an overview of the project, suggestions for incorporating material into courses and other programming, and an experiential activity aimed at generating discourse about care.

This event is open to all and especially geared towards community members of MCLA, MASS MoCA, and CARE SYLLABUS affiliates including WCMA, Williams College, and The Clark.

12:00 pmVirtual