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"Not too Young to Know: Critical Race and Feminist Epistemologies in Youth Narratives"

December 7, 2018 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm

400 Ford Hall

Jigna Desai is Professor in the Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies and the Asian American Studies Program at the University of Minnesota. Her book Beyond Bollywood: The Cultural Politics of South Asian Diasporic Film (Routledge 2004) elucidates a critical race, feminist, and queer diasporic critique. She has co-edited several collections -- Bollywood: A Reader (Open University /McGraw Hill Press 2009), Transnational Feminism and Global Advocacy in South Asia (Routledge 2012), and Asian Americans in Dixie: Race and Migration in the South (University of Illinois Press 2013). Desai serves as a co-editor of the Asian American Experience book series for the Univ. of Illinois Press. She is a founding member of the Race, Indigeneity, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Collective (RIGS) and has been honored with the “Red Motley” Undergraduate Teaching Award, the Association for Asian American Studies Mentoring Award, University of Minnesota Graduate Mentoring Award, and a University of Minnesota Service Award. She is currently working on a book manuscript on neural citizenship, intersectionality, and critical disability studies. With Kari Smalkoski, she is the co-founder/leader of Minnesota Youth Story Squad.

Kari Smalkoski is a research associate in the Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies at the University of Minnesota. Her research and teaching focus on masculinity, performance and identity, inequality, education and political economy, and youth. She writes about Asian American youths' experiences in and out of schools; her research findings are included in a 2014-16 AAPI Bullying Prevention Task force Report, a White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Her current book project, American Dream Disrupted: Rewriting Narratives on Hmong Youth and Masculinity, is an ethnography that takes place in the United States and Thailand. Dr. Smalkoski is the co-founder/leader of a new initiative, in partnership with urban public schools in the Twin Cities, called Minnesota Youth Story Squad (MYSS). She is Principal Investigator on a longitudinal research study that examines the short and long term impact of MYSS on thousands of youth who have participated in its programming. She has been interviewed most recently by Minnesota Public Radio and The Atlantic. You can read more about her work with MYSS in Inside Higher Ed.