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Chad Broughton - "Boom, Bust, Exodus" - International House (Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 6pm)
In partnership with the International House, we are pleased to present UChicago's own Chad Broughton
on his latest work, Boom, Bust, Exodus: The Rust Belt, the Maquilas, and a Tale of Two Cities
In 2002, the town of Galesburg, a slowly declining Rustbelt city of 33,000 in western Illinois, learned that it would soon lose its largest factory, a Maytag refrigerator plant that had anchored Galesburg's social and economic life for decades. Workers at the plant earned $15.14 an hour, had good insurance, and were assured a solid retirement. In 2004, the plant was relocated to Reynosa, Mexico, where workers sometimes spent 13-hour days assembling refrigerators for $1.10 an hour.
In Boom, Bust, Exodus, Chad Broughton offers a ground-level look at the rapid transition to a globalized economy, from the perspective of those whose lives it has most deeply affected. We live in a commoditized world, increasingly divorced from the origins of the goods we consume; it is easy to ignore who is manufacturing our smart phones and hybrid cars; and where they come from no longer seems to matter. And yet, Broughton shows, the who and where matter deeply, and in this book he puts human faces to the relentless cycle of global manufacturing.
It is a tale of two cities. In Galesburg, where parts of the empty Maytag factory still stand, a hollowed out version of the American dream, the economy is a shadow of what it once was. Reynosa, in contrast, has become one of the exploding post-NAFTA "second-tier cities" of the developing world, thanks to the influx of foreign-owned, export-oriented maquiladoras--an industrial promised land throbbing with the energy of commerce, legal and illegal. And yet even these distinctions, Broughton shows, cannot be finely drawn: families in Reynosa also struggle to get by, and the city is beset by violence and a ruthless drug war. Those left behind in the post-Industrial decline of Galesburg, meanwhile, do not see themselves as helpless victims: they have gone back to school, pursued new careers, and learned to adapt and even thrive.
In an era of growing inequality and a downsized middle class, Boom, Bust, Exodus gives us the voices of those who have borne the heaviest burdens of the economic upheavals of the past three decades. A deeply personal work grounded in solid scholarship, this important, immersive, and affecting book brings home the price and the cost of globalization. Chad Broughton is a senior lecturer of Public Policy at the University of Chicago. He is Faculty Director for the Chicago Studies Program, Acting Director of the Pubic Policy Studies Program, and Affiliated Faculty with the Center for Latin American Studies. His current ethnographic fieldwork takes place in downstate Illinois, the US-Mexico border, and rural southern Mexico. He explores how the North American Free Trade Policies have brought about sweeping changes for factory workers, borderland workers in the maquiladoras, and Mexican smallholders in the state of Veracruz. Just a few of his numerous conference presentation titles include "Anti-Poverty Field Research and Advocacy," "Surviving NAFTA," "Downsizing Masculinity," "Reforming Poor Women," and "Making Workers: An Ethnography of Welfare-to-Work."
Location: Street: 1414 E 59th St City: Chicago, Province: Illinois Postal Code: 60637-1507 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)… (more)
Carolyn Kane - "Chromatic Algorithms: Synthetic Color, Computer Art, and Aesthetics After Code" - Logan Center (Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 5pm)
At the Logan Center on January 15, 5pm.
These days, we take for granted that our computer screens—and even our phones—will show us images in vibrant full color. Digital color is a fundamental part of how we use our devices, but we never give a thought to how it is produced or how it came about.
Chromatic Algorithms reveals the fascinating history behind digital color, tracing it from the work of a few brilliant computer scientists and experimentally minded artists in the late 1960s and early ‘70s through to its appearance in commercial software in the early 1990s. Mixing philosophy of technology, aesthetics, and media analysis, Carolyn Kane shows how revolutionary the earliest computer-generated colors were—built with the massive postwar number-crunching machines, these first examples of “computer art” were so fantastic that artists and computer scientists regarded them as psychedelic, even revolutionary, harbingers of a better future for humans and machines. But, Kane shows, the explosive growth of personal computing and its accompanying need for off-the-shelf software led to standardization and the gradual closing of the experimental field in which computer artists had thrived. Even so, the gap between the bright, bold presence of color onscreen and the increasing abstraction of its underlying code continues to lure artists and designers from a wide range of fields, and Kane draws on their work to pose fascinating questions about the relationships among art, code, science, and media in the twenty-first century
Location: Street: 915 E 60th St City: Chicago, Province: Illinois Postal Code: 60637-1507 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)… (more)
Eric Posner and Geoffrey Stone - "The Twilight of International Human Rights Law" - International House (Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 6pm)
Partnering with the International House, the Seminary Co-op is pleased to present Eric Posner
and Geoffrey Stone. The discussion on Posner's latest The Twilight of International Human Rights Law will take place at the International House on January 15, at 6pm.
Countries solemnly intone their commitment to human rights, and they ratify endless international treaties and conventions designed to signal that commitment. At the same time, there has been no marked decrease in human rights violations, even as the language of human rights has become the dominant mode of international moral criticism. Well-known violators like Libya, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan have sat on the U.N. Council on Human Rights. But it's not just the usual suspects that flagrantly disregard the treaties. Brazil pursues extrajudicial killings. South Africa employs violence against protestors. India tolerate child labor and slavery. The United States tortures.
In The Twilight of Human Rights Law--the newest addition to Oxford's highly acclaimedInalienable Rights series edited by Geoffrey Stone--the eminent legal scholar Eric A. Posner argues that purposefully unenforceable human rights treaties are at the heart of the world's failure to address human rights violations. Because countries fundamentally disagree about what the public good requires and how governments should allocate limited resources in order to advance it, they have established a regime that gives them maximum flexibility--paradoxically characterized by a huge number of vague human rights that encompass nearly all human activity, along with weak enforcement machinery that churns out new rights but cannot enforce any of them. Posner looks to the foreign aid model instead, contending that we should judge compliance by comprehensive, concrete metrics like poverty reduction, instead of relying on ambiguous, weak, and easily manipulated checklists of specific rights.
With a powerful thesis, a concise overview of the major developments in international human rights law, and discussions of recent international human rights-related controversies, The Twilight of Human Rights Law is an indispensable contribution to this important area of international law from a leading scholar in the field.
Eric A. Posner teaches at the University of Chicago. He has written nine books and more than one hundred articles on international law, constitutional law, and other topics. He has written opinion pieces for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New Republic, Slate,and other popular media. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the American Law Institute
Geoffrey Stone joined the faculty at the University of Chicago Law SChool in 1973, after serving as a law clerk to Supreme Court Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. He later served as Dean of the Law School from 1987 to 1994, and Provost of the University of Chicago from 1994 to 2002. Stone is the author of many books on constitutional law, including Speaking Out: Reflections of Law, Liberty and Justice; Top Secret: When Our Government Keeps Us in the Dark; War and Liberty: An American Dilemma; Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime; and Eternally Vigilant: Free Speech in the Modern Era.
Location: Street: 1414 E 59th St City: Chicago, Province: Illinois Postal Code: 60637-1507 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)… (more)
Critical Historical Studies Launch Party (Wednesday, January 21, 2015 at 6pm)
Please join the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT) and the Seminary Co-op Bookstore on Wednesday, January 21st at 6pm to celebrate the first two issues of Critical Historical Studies,a new journal exploring the implications of socio-economic transformations for cultural, political, and social change. Over refreshments and light hors d'oeuvres, editors William Sewell and Moishe Postone will discuss what critical theory has to contribute to the social sciences and the editorial vision of CHS. A member of the University of Chicago Press will deliver a short talk about why the material form of a print journal remains consequential in an age of ephemeral digital media. Copies of the journal will be available to browse and purchase. This event will also mark the beginning on an ongoing collaboration between Critical Historical Studies, the Chicago Center of Contemporary Theory and the Seminary Co-op Bookstore. In spring 2015, we will launch a series of biannual CHS lectures, which will highlight new research and critical reflections on current cultural, political, and scholarly issues by scholars from across the range of the social sciences and humanities. Critical Historical Studies is a new interdisciplinary journal devoted to historical reflections on politics, culture, economy, and social life, edited by University of Chicago faculty Moishe Postone and William Sewell, as well as Chicago History Department alumni Manu Goswami and Andrew Sartori. CHS features research on the implications of socio-economic transformations for cultural, political, and social change. In the broad tradition of Critical Theory, CHS explores the complex connections between cultural form and socio-economic context and promotes a reflexive awareness of the researcher’s own position in the history of global capitalist society. The journal features monograph research articles, theoretical and review essays and critical reflections on contemporary issues by scholars from across the humanities and social sciences. The first two issues include work by: - Claudio Lomnitz, Columbia University, “Mexico’s First Lynching: Sovereignty, Criminality, Moral Panic” - Jonathan Levy, Princeton University, “Accounting for Profit and the Theory of Capitalism” - Fredrik Albritton Jonsson, The University of Chicago, “The Origins of Cornucopianism: A Preliminary Geneaology” The Editors of Critical Historical Studies Manu Goswami is an Associate Professor of History at New York University. Moishe Postone is the Thomas E. Donnelley Professor of the College, the Center for Jewish Studies, and History at the University of Chicago. Andrew Sartori is an Associate Professor of History at New York University. William H. Sewell, Jr. is the Frank P. Hixon Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of Political Science and History at the University of Chicago.
Location: Street: 5751 S Woodlawn Ave. City: Chicago, Province: Illinois Postal Code: 60637-1507 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)… (more)
Charles Baxter (Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 6pm)
, Harmony of the World
, Saul and Patsy
, The Feast of Love
, The Soul Thief
, Through the Safety Net
, First Light
, There's Something I Want You to Do
, The Would-be Father)Charles Baxter
is the author of the novels The Feast of Love
(nominated for the National Book Award), The Soul Thief
, Saul and Patsy
, Shadow Play, and First Light, and the story collections Gryphon, Believers, A Relative Stranger, Through the Safety Net, and Harmony of the World. The stories “Bravery” and “Charity,” which appear in There’s Something I Want You to Do, were included in Best American Short Stories. Baxter lives in Minneapolis and teaches at the University of Minnesota and in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. (added from Random House)… (more)
D. N. Rodowick, Elegy for Theory (Friday, March 13, 2015 at 6pm)
Russell H. Tuttle, Apes and Human Evolution (Friday, March 20, 2015 at 6pm)
Gary Willis - "The Future of the Catholic Church and Pope Francis" (Saturday, March 21, 2015 at 3pm)
The New York Times bestselling historian takes on a pressing question in modern religion—will Pope Francis embrace change?
Pope Francis, the first Jesuit pope and the first from the Americas, offers a challenge to his church. Can he bring about significant change? Should he?
Garry Wills, the prizewinning historian, argues that changes have been the evidence of life in the Catholic Church. It has often changed, sometimes with bad consequences, more often with good—good enough to make it perdure. In this brilliant and incisive study, he gives seven examples of deep and serious changes that have taken place (or are taking place) within the last century. None of them was effected by the pope all by himself.
As Wills contends, it is only by examining the history of the Church that we can understand Pope Francis’s and the Church’s challenges, and, as history shows, any changes that meet those challenges will have impact only if the Church, the people of God, support them. In reading the Church’s history, Wills considers the lessons Pope Francis seems to have learned. The challenge that Pope Francis offers the Church is its ability to undertake new spiritual adventures, making it a poor church for the poor, after the example of Jesus.
GARRY WILLS is a historian and the author of the New York Times bestsellers What Jesus Meant, Papal Sin, Why I Am a Catholic, and Why Priests?, among others. A frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books and other publications, Wills is a Pulitzer Prize winner and a professor emeritus at Northwestern University. He lives in Evanston, Illinois.
Location: Street: 5751 S Woodlawn Ave City: Chicago, Province: Illinois Postal Code: 60637-1507 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)… (more)
Saskia Sassen, Expulsions: Brutality and Complexity in the Global Economy (Sunday, May 3, 2015 at 3pm)