Michael Kearney Memorial Lecture

The 2018 Michael Kearney Lecture will be held on Thursday, April 5th, 3:30 pm, in Commonwealth B.

The keynote speaker is Josiah Heyman.

Commentators are Christine Ho (Independent) and Alison Lee (UDLAP).

The Lecture celebrates the life and work of Michael Kearney, late of the University of California, Riverside. Each year, the Lecture Committee selects an outstanding scholar whose presentation will explore the intersection of three themes - migration, human rights, and transnationalism. These three themes were central to Prof. Kearney’s scholarship. They were first explored in his doctoral research (“The Winds of Ixtepeji”). His subsequent research led to a greater involvement in the formulation of public policy, and the commitment to use his discipline to understand and assist the development of indigenous migrant organizations.

heyman_josiah.jpgJosiah Heyman is a Professor of Anthropology and the Director, Center for Interamerican and Border Studies (CIBS) at UTEP.

Dr. Heyman's research interests include all things that concern borders, and the processes that shape them and pass through them. His three most recent inquiries are regulation of spatial movement generally (building on, but going beyond borders per se), participant observation of engaged/activist anthropology (and lessons thereof), and unequal territorialization and political ecology of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. Much of Dr. Heyman's work centers on the presence of and limits to state power at borders. This has connected to a specific focus on migration and mobility (especially the putative state control thereof). It has also led to a focus on state workers, bureaucratic work processes, societal power and bureaucracies, and so forth. His border and migration work in turn has led to an active role in public policy, focusing on alternative migration and border policies for the United States. That, in turn, has led to a long sequence of works on values, advocacy, and social science (applied or engaged anthropology).

Dr. Heyman is also interested in border cultures and complex/dynamic analyses of them, and how such approaches contribute to culture theory generally. He has worked for many years on anthropology of work, of working classes, household economies (including unpaid/reproductive work within capitalism), and consumption. He contributes modestly to the nascent field of political ecology, and to political economy within anthropology. Dr. Heyman is a student of, and advocate for, the legacy of Eric Wolf in anthropology, and the social sciences and history generally.

Click here for an interview with this year's lecturer