Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Long Interview on Occupy Wall Street With a Humorous Slant

Occupy Wall Street Interview - Professor Mark Naison ... - YouTube

5 days ago – Matt Sky Interviews Professor Mark D. Naison at Fordham University about the Occupy Wall Street movement, its future and global ...

Saturday, December 17, 2011

OWS brings it home....

Here's a vivid story describing OWS's next move after its eviction from public spaces: occupying homes that have been foreclosed upon by banks and have been sitting vacant ever since.  My gut reaction is that it's very smart, in that it brings home the consequences of not only  the financial meltdown but also the decades-long upward redistribution of wealth that has been the consequence of many years of neoliberal policy. But it's also risky, in that the constant public visibility of a place like Zuccotti Park was a major source of the movement's success.  What do others think of this strategy?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Fabulous thesis presentations!

I'd like to interrupt the ongoing discussion of OWS just to rave about the American Studies thesis presentations that took place today. The creativity and hard work of the students was visible at every moment, and the large and lively audience of faculty, undergraduates, and graduate students provided a supportive and collaborative environment. Congratulations to the seniors of the class of 2012 for some remarkable research! Here are the thesis titles:
  • Ariadne Blayde, “‘I Ran My Fingers Through Her Coal Black Hair To Cover Up My Sin’: Gender, Violence, and Redemption in Appalachian Murdered Girl Ballads”
  • Melissa Brumer, “Sand, Sun, and Sex Tourism: What Really Happens During College Spring Break”
  • Rebecca Gehman, “‘Fast Food for the Filipino Soul’: Consuming Transnational Identity at Jollibee in Queens”
  • Rachel Jones, “Sistas in Sisterhood: Black Cultural Clubs in All Girls Private High Schools”
  • Andrea Krok, “‘I Got It From My Mama’: Experiences of Language and Identity for Second-Generation Immigrant College Students at Fordham”
  • Eve Krupitsky, “An Important Year: Competing Images of Womanhood in the Ladies’ Home Journal, 1919”
  • Grace Loughney, “The New Media Deal: Obama, the Information Age, and the Shadow of FDR”
  • Catherine McNamara, “The Cross Bronx Double Cross: The Effects of the Cross Bronx Expressway on Pediatric Asthma in the Bronx”
  • Andrew O’Connell, “From Clayton Bigsby to Stuart Hall: Conceptions of Blackness and Authenticity in Chappelle’s Show
  • Jennifer Prevete, “‘Maybe It Was Too Much to Expect for Those Days’: The Changing Lifestyles of Barnard’s First Female Students”
  • Kevin Price, “Jay-Z’s Coliseum: The Barclay’s Center, Professional Sports, and the Transformation of Brooklyn”
  • Sarah J. Rogers, “Dramatizing Oppenheimer and Reagan: Theatricality and the Shaping of American Historical Memory”
  • Lauren Sepanski, “Tending the Flowers, Cultivating Community: Gardening on New York City Public Housing Sites”
  • Emily Tuttle, “‘Inspired By Our Feminist Foremothers’: Feminists for Life’s Appropriation of First-Wave Feminist Rhetoric and History”
  • Gabriella Wilkins, “Fun, Fearless, and Feminist?: Gender and Sexuality in Cosmopolitan

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Not Fading

Occupy Wall Street is, rather than fading, slowly embedding itself into the lives of working class and middle class New Yorkers. Consider the following- yesterday, OWS protesters occupied a foreclosed home inn the East New York Section of Brooklyn; tonight Occupy the Bronx and supporters around the city will be packing a meeitng of the 40 Precinct Community Council to protest the illegal arrest of... Occupy the Bronx members outside a community garden over the weekend; there are ongoing hunger strikes in front of Trinity Church to protest the church's refusal to let the movement Occupy a vacant lot owned by the Church on Canal Street; there is a 99 Percent Club, in full operation at Fordham with new clubs on the verge of forming at other area colleges. Couple that with CUNY tuition protests, movements to resist school clusings and charter school co-locations and you have a remarkable range of political activism around the city inspired by or supported by OWS.

Mark Naison
December 7, 2011

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Art of OWS

As if in answer to an earlier call for American studies scholars to look at the proliferation of images coming out of OWS,  here's a link to an op-ed piece by two American studies professors, Michele Elam and Jennifer DeVere Brody, in which they discuss  how we might start to talk about images like this one: