Coined by DataCenter, an Oakland-based community research organization, research justice “is a strategic framework that seeks to transform structural inequities in research. . . . When marginalized communities are recognized as experts, and reclaim, own, and wield all forms of knowledge and information,” then research justice is achieved.
Research Justice at the Intersections (RJI) is an interdisciplinary research group at Mills College that fosters social justice-oriented research and groundbreaking critical analysis. RJI encourages scholars to consider new forms of knowledge production that challenge traditional research hierarchies, mobilize the leadership of those directly affected by the investigated phenomena, and acknowledge and engage subaltern ways of knowing.
Growing out of the Mills College Ethnic Studies Department’s involvement in hosting the National Association for Ethnic Studies’ (NAES) conference “Research as Ceremony: Decolonizing Ethnic Studies” in 2014, RJI supports research that centers an intersectional analysis of race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, and nation, within a context of globalization and transnationality. Supported by the Provost’s Office, the RJI Fellows program is coordinated by a faculty steering committee and hosted by the Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE).
Natalee Kēhaulani Bauer, Assistant Professor of Race, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Dana Wright, Associate Professor of Education
Patrick D. Anderson is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Digital Studies at Grand Valley State University in Michigan where he teaches courses in applied ethics, digital technologies, and social-political philosophy. Dr. Anderson’s current research focuses on two areas: cypherpunk ethics and digital coloniality. In his work on cypherpunk ethics, he explores the implications of the cypherpunk movement’s cryptography activism for ethical questions regarding privacy, surveillance, whistleblowing, journalism, and intellectual property. In his work on digital clonality, he draws upon the tradition of Africana anticolonialism, bringing to light the unacknowledged neocolonialism of surveillance, propaganda, weaponized drones, and mass incarceration.
Research: Anderson’s current research project is a book manuscript entitled The Phallus and the Ogre: The Social and Political Philosophy of Eldridge Cleaver. With chapters on race/gender theory, internal colonialism, class, technology, culture, and whiteness, the book draws upon extensive archival research to reinterpret a significant thinker and public intellectual of the twentieth century.
Lisa Arellano is an Associate Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Colby College. Her research and teaching focus on comparative social movements, critical historiography and violence studies.
Research: Arellano’s current book manuscript, Disarming Imagination: Violence and the American Political Left, contains research on high profile rape revenge cases, anti-violence activism, militant political movements, and dis/utopian political literature. Her first book, Vigilantes and Lynch Mobs: Community, Nation and Narrative, was published by Temple University Press in July 2012. She is co-editor, with Amanda Frisken and Erica Ball, of the fall 2016 issue of the Radical History Review entitled “Reconsidering Gender, Violence and the State.”
Doria E. Charlson recently earned her PhD in Theatre Arts & Performance Studies at Brown University. Her current research resides at the intersections of dance studies, critical race theory, performance historiography, and political economy. She is an educator who has taught theatre and performance theory, studio-based explorations of performance and practice, and performance historiography.
Research: Charlson’s book project, Consuming Crises: Migrant Labor, Spectacle, and Precarity in the 20th Century, considers how crises of capitalism become spectacularized through the laboring body. This project draws from dance studies, performance historiography, and critical theory to trace both how crises, and their responses, migrate across sites and industries and how bodily comportment becomes critical to the framing and management of said disruptions. Broadly, she is interested in investigating how people move, work, and breathe under capitalism. Doria hopes this research can help us reimagine our collective futures in the age of cascading societal, ecological, economic, and labor crises.
Alexandra Havrylyshyn is an interdisciplinary law and society scholar. She completed her PhD in Jurisprudence and Social Policy and her juris doctorate at the University of California, Berkeley. Her research focuses on slavery, the legal profession, and access to justice.
Research: Havrylyshyn’s book project, Crossing Freedom’s Line: How Louisiana Destroyed Free Soil, explains why and how certain women and girls of African descent successfully sued for their freedom in antebellum New Orleans, where state law generally denied legal standing to enslaved people. This project seeks to engage social justice activists as well as historians of law, slavery, and gender. Alexandra’s work has been supported by the American Association of University Women, and appears or is forthcoming in California Legal History, Canada’s Legal Past, and the William & Mary Quarterly.
Sona Kazemi was the postdoctoral researcher, from 2018 to 2020, of Migration Studies, Disability Studies, and Medical Humanities, as well as the project coordinator for a digital humanities archive at the Ohio State University. Her articles and book reviews have appeared in the Journal of Critical Educational Policy Studies, Canadian Women’s Studies, a special issue of the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies entitled “Survivals, Ruptures, Resiliences,” Critical Disability Discourse Journal, Zanj: The Journal of Critical Global South Studies, and Disability Studies Quarterly. She is the Society for Disability Studies’ 2018 recipient of the honorable mention for the Irving K. Zola Award for emerging scholars in Disability Studies. She is currently the Associate Editor for Global Ideas for the Review of Disability Studies, an International Journal.
Research: Kazemi’s current project concerns traumatized Yazidi refugees in diaspora and their disability consciousness as survivors of genocide and ethnic cleansing, the mental health of Iranian and Kurdish refugees in the United States who are the survivors of state terror, Iranian women survivors of acid attack and their disability and feminist consciousness, and punitive limb amputation in Saudi Arabia and Iran.
Henry S. Kuo is visiting assistant professor of theology and ethics at Greensboro College in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he teaches courses in religion and ethics. He has published on subjects in theology, history, and applied ethics in journals such as the Journal of Religion and Business Ethics, Interreligious Studies and Intercultural Theology, Religions, and Moral Philosophy and Politics. Henry’s current research analyzes the history of Reformed catholicity as a double bind.
Research: Kuo’s current project aims to excavate the history of Christianity in the Reformed tradition to demonstrate how that Reformed catholicity takes on various forms of resistance. Yet, this self-understanding of catholicity presents double binds, often resulting in dynamics of resistances and counter-resistances against social, political, and cultural values and positions. He strives to uncover how Christian identities and public resistances contain spaces of ambiguities, generating complex double bind situations in the process. At the same time, however, these complicated dynamics convey opportunities for communities to closely analyze pertinent problems, engage issues and arguments more perspicaciously, and effectively strategize speech-acts of defiance.
Anna Lee Mraz Bartra teaches courses on Feminism, Visual Sociology and Technologies of Information and Communication and is a temporary researcher at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and the National Council for Science and Technology (CONACYT). She founded and directed Disidentas a feminist multimedia research project at the Sociology Department at UNAM. She is a co-editor of Sociology with Audiovisual Media published in Mexico (2019) and is author of two bilingual children's storybooks for Latinx children living in the Bay Area.
Research: Mraz Bartra studies the use of technologies of information and communication by Latinx underserved women in the San Francisco Bay Area. The central point of her study is to understand both how low-income women in the Silicon Valley cope with everyday life during the COVID-19 pandemic and what transformation technologies bring about in their lives. This research will be based on a multidisciplinary methodology, from visual sociology to focus groups, surveys, and in-depth interviews with the women and children in Redwood City and other unincorporated areas.
Lorena Muñoz is an urban/cultural geographer at Mills College whose research focuses on the intersections of place, space, gender, sexuality, health and race. Her transdisciplinary research agenda has been focused on the production of Latinx worldmakings, particularly in the areas the (in)formal economy and productive/transformative agency. In her different research projects, she calls for rethinking the ‘informal’ economy in ways that disrupt normative narratives that center ‘the economy’ as a unitary category. Instead, she argues that “the economy” consists of diverse, heterogeneous entangled economic processes, rather than categories that exclude, include, and define binary systems. In order to theoretically understand how these spaces and places are produced, she looks towards what she calls “queering economies”; that is, rethinking the economy by understanding heterogeneous economic processes as queer, entangled, and relational.
Research: Muñoz’s current book manuscript is about Latinx Workmakings as blueprints for healthier urban futures for peoples of color.
Dana Chalupa Young is an assistant adjunct professor in the Sociology Program at Mills College. She specializes in Latinx Studies and has developed an intersectional analysis in her research to examine the racial and ethnic identities among Peruvian, Colombian, and Argentinian immigrants as well as their assimilation in Ohio.
Research: Chalupa Young’s current project explores the college attainment rates, racial and ethnic identities, experiences of microaggressions, and mental health of Latinx college students.
Kevin D. Thomas currently serves as the Assistant Professor of Multicultural Branding at Marquette University. He specializes in using policy-relevant and community participatory action research methods to critically examine the relationship between marketing, consumption practices, and notions of self and community. He is particularly interested in how identity markers such as race, gender, class, and sexuality are represented in marketing and experienced in the marketplace. His research is featured in the Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, Journal of Advertising, Consumption Markets & Culture, among others. He is co-editor of Race in the Marketplace: Crossing Critical Boundaries (Palgrave Macmillan 2019). He is co- founder of Food for Black Thought, the Black Media Council, and the Race in the Marketplace Research Network.
Research: Thomas’s current research brings together a consumption perspective and philosophical investigations and brings them to bear on his inquiry into the legitimacy and authenticity of a transracial identity. Analyzing the Rachel Dolezal controversy, he explores how the media assigns meaning to race and trans-identities and how identities are legitimized through embodied practices. His project’s goal is to produce knowledge on the historic, contemporary, and future interactions of race in the marketplace.
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