A Symposium: Towards a Critical Refugee Studies

Published on April 27, 2016

Symposium_PostBannerLin + Lam, Tomorrow I Leave, 2010

Date and Time: May 25, 2016 | 8:30 AM–5:30 AM

Location: UC Riverside | INTS 1111, INTS1113, and INTS1128


Through panel discussions, the conference seeks to further the emergent field of Critical Refugee Studies. It will serve as a platform for the inquiry into globally displaced populations and their histories, bringing together panelists who will explore refugees originating from Central America, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. With a focus on refugees and their agency, the symposium decenters scholarship that portrays refugees as “problems” to be solved and absorbed by the host country.

Drawing from the fields of literary studies, feminist studies, cultural studies, and ethnic studies, the conference pivots on a critique of the braiding of militarism and imperialism that underlies forced migrations on a global scale. To this end, the conference will feature academics, artists and activists who have examined refugees through a critical lens, often in conjunction with a critique of empire and an emphasis on the creative expressions of refugeehood.


8:30–9:30 AM Breakfast INTS1111
9:30–11:00 AM Keywords I: Critical Refugee Studies
Mohamed Abumaye (UCSD), Yen Le Espiritu (UCSD), Lila Sharif (UIUC), Khatharya Um (UCB)
11:00 AM–12:30 PM Refugee Nation Workshop
Ova Saopeng
12:30–1:30 PM Lunch INTS1111
1:30–3:00 PM Keywords II: Critical Refugee Studies
Victor Bascara (UCLA), Lan Duong (UCR), Ma Vang (UCM)
INTS 1113
3:00–3:30 PM Poetry Reading
Mai Der Vang
INTS 1128
3:30–4:00 PM Rap Performance
 INTS 1128
4:00–4:30 PM A Conversation with Artists, Q &A
Mai Der Vang, praCh, Viet Thanh Nguyen
 INTS 1128
5:00–5:15 PM Close of Conference  INTS 1128