Ten University of Arizona students representing the fine arts, humanities, and social and behavioral sciences have been named Graduate Fellows.
In its fifth year of advancing interdisciplinary research, the UA Confluencenter for Creative Inquiry has awarded the students a total of nearly $45,000 for the 2015-2016 academic year.
"In almost five years, the Confluencenter has become a superconnector: a force in bringing people and ideas together," Javier Durán, director of the Confluencenter, said during a joint presentation of the Graduate Fellowships and Faculty Collaboration Grant awards.
"The creative research, collaboration, interdisciplinary inquiry and community engagement projects that we support are changing the academic landscape at the University of Arizona," Durán said. "It is an honor and a privilege as director to witness and facilitate the research efforts of my colleagues as they dispel the myth of the rigid, siloed institution."
The center also unveiled the 2015 Arizona Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies, which bridges the arts, social sciences, humanities and science through the showcase of students' interdisciplinary work.
Among the fellows is Anabel Galindo, a doctoral student in the Department of History, who is mapping the historical movement patterns and settlements that Yaquis have followed since the last decades of the Spanish rule and into the mid-20th century. Her project is titled "Mapping Yaqui History: Mobility, Labor and Identity."
Christina Greene, a doctoral student in the UA School of Geography and Development, explores the physical and social dimensions of drought through the words and images of people living and working in drought-impacted central California. Greene's project, "Drought, Livelihoods and the Food System: Exploring Drought Narratives in California," uses Web-based storytelling to share new perspectives about drought impact and relief.
In the School of Anthropology, doctoral student Angela Storey traces how residents of informal settlements narrate their struggles to secure access to basic services. Storey's project, "Everyday Infrastructure: Documenting Struggles for Water, Sanitation and Electricity in Cape Town's Informal Settlements," highlights the experiences of people trying to secure basic necessities.
Other fellows, and their projects, are:
Gabriel Higuera, a doctoral student of Mexican American Studies, is organizing an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional event: the "UA High School Student Symposium on Ethnic Studies."
Carolina Kitagawa, through "Como 8 Horas," is composing a time-based performance art piece that examines underrepresented voices in Tucson and Los Angeles. Kitagawa is a Master of Fine Arts student.
William White is a doctoral student in anthropology and his project, "Archaeology at the Confluence of Race: The River Street Public Archaeology Program," explores the remains of a working-class, interracial neighborhood in Boise, Idaho.
Jeffrey Wilson, a doctoral student of geography and development, is creating "Geography and the Graphic Novel," which explores the experiences of Detroit residents battling Type 2 diabetes and housing insecurity.
Christopher Yutzy, a doctoral student in anthropology, has created a communications nexus involving a magazine, "Revista PROVOZ," a website for digital content and also WhatsApp groups. The resources enable residents of the Grande Bom Jardim slum in Brazil to share information and establish avenues for free speech. Yutzy's project is titled "Improving Information Access in Urban Slums: Social Technology as a Practical Alternative to Clientelism."
Manuel Martín Barros and Joaquin Perez-Blanes (shared fellowship), doctoral students of Spanish and Portuguese, will visually and textually narrate the experiences of migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border and the role amulets have played in their journeys. While the migrants' identities remain anonymous, an examination of objects they carried for good luck will be exhibited to build a better understanding of how migrants maintained hope in their crossings.