The Nominating Committee has posted the 2013 election ballot, together with candidates' statements and appropriate biographical material on all nominees, accessible only to the active membership of the association.

No mail ballots or election booklets will be printed and distributed. However, the Nominating Committee is also providing a "fax option" for voting. Members may download a "faxable" ballot from the web or have a copy emailed from the Office of Executive Director (

All ballots must be cast online or by fax (202) 467-4786. No vote cast after March 1, 2013 will be counted.

The following positions appear on the 2013 election ballot: president-elect (one position), member of the council (5 positions), student councilor (1 position), and member of the nominating committee (2 positions). The candidates are listed in alphabetical order without further distinctions.

PRESIDENT  (Select One)

Lisa Duggan, New York University
Avery Gordon, University of California, Santa Barbara

COUNCIL (Select Five)

Ann Cvetkovich, University of Texas, Austin
Kevin Floyd, Kent State University
Alyosha Goldstein, University of New Mexico
Kehaulani Kauanui, Wesleyan University
Regina Kunzel, University of Minnesota
Alex Lubin, American University of Beruit
Sunaina Maira, University of California, Davis
Martin Manalansan, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Mark Rifkin, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Juana Rodriguez, University of California, Berkeley


Erin Durban Albrecht, University of Arizona
Marisol Lebron, New York University


Nan Alamilla-Boyd, San Francisco State University
Gillian Harkins, University of Washington
Siobhan Somerville, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Judy Wu, Ohio State University

Where to Find Your ASA Membership Number

In order to access your ballot, you will need to enter your membership number.

Your membership number is 4 or more digits long and can be found in the following places: It is on your American Quarterly mailing label above your name; if you've been a member for more than a year, you can find it above your name and address on your annual renewal notice; or, if you're a new member, you can find it on your ASA acknowledgement letter.

If you cannot find any of the above items, you can call the Johns Hopkins University Press at 1-800-548-1784 for your membership number, or email

In order to prevent duplicate voting, a MEMBERSHIP NUMBER must accompany all ballots, faxed and electronic. In order to access the online ballot, members must have their member number available for entry into the ballot form. If your current email address is registered with the ASA membership coordinator at the Johns Hopkins University, you should expect to receive via email notification that the ballot is posted together with the URL and your membership number.

Continuing Members of Council and Nominating Committee

Information such as institutional affiliation, rank, and principal fields is being provided about continuing officers and members of the Council and Nominating Committee in order that electors may consider the same factors regarding balance that the Nominating Committee is charged to consider. Continuing elected officers and members of the Council and Nominating Committee are as follows:

Juri Abe, international councilor, Rikkyo University, Tokyo, Japan (2014)

Sarah Banet-Weiser, ex officio, University of Southern California, editor of American Quarterly

Jennifer Devere Brody, Stanford University (2014)

Simon J. Bronner, ex officio, Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg, editor of Encyclopedia of American Studies Online

Jeremy Dean, secondary schools councilor, University of Texas, Austin (2014)

Avery Gordon, University of California, Santa Barbara (2014)

Sandra Gunning, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (2015)

Matthew Frye Jacobson, Yale University, president (2014)

E. Patrick Johnson, Northwestern University (2015)

Karen Leong, Arizona State University (2015)

Curtis Marez, University of California, San Diego, president-elect (2015)

Roya Rastegar, student councilor, University of California, Santa Cruz (2014)

Chandan Reddy, University of Washington, Seattle (2015)

Maria Josefina Saldana-Portillo, New York University (2014)

Nikhil Pal Singh, New York University (2014)


Miranda Joseph, University of Arizona (2015)
David Kazanjian, University of Pennsylvania (2014)

Julie Sze, University of California, Davis (2015)

Deborah Vargas, University of California, Irvine (2014)


PRESIDENT (Select One)

is a scholar, journalist and activist. She is Professor of American Studies and Gender & Sexuality Studies in the Department of Social & Cultural Analysis at NYU, and is the author of two monographs, co-author of a collection of essays, and co-editor of two anthologies. Sapphic Slashers: Sex, Violence and American Modernity (Duke 2000) is not a history of lesbian life per se. Rather, it is a history of the construction of institutions of modernity in the United States during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, grasped through the prism of the appearance of the figure of the homicidal manly lesbian in sensational newspaper coverage (nationwide), scientific literature, medical publications, legal arenas, and both literary and popular culture. It won the John Boswell Prize awarded by the Committee of Lesbian and Gay History of the AHA. The Twilight of Equality: Neoliberalism, Cultural Politics and the Attack on Democracy (Beacon, 2003), is an account of the on-the-ground cultural politics that have aligned closely with the ascendency of neoliberal policies in the United States. Sex Wars: Sexual Dissent and Political Culture (Routledge: 1995, anniversary edition 2006) is co-authored with Nan D. Hunter. The essays included address battles over prostitution, pornography, sadomasochism, and sexual politics in general during the feminist “sex wars” of the 1980s. Our Monica, Ourselves: The Clinton Affair and National Interest (NYU Press, 2001), co-edited with Lauren Berlant, includes essays and commentaries by a wide range of public intellectuals, including cultural theorists and literary scholars. The collaborative project, A New Queer Agenda, undertaken with Queers for Economic Justice in New York City, is co-edited with Joseph DeFilippis, Kenyon Farrow and Richard Kim. It was published as a special e-book edition of The Scholar and the Feminist Online and contains over 30 essays, primarily by activists (and a few academics), arguing for a major overhaul of the focus of LGBT/queer activism. Her current undertakings include an extended essay/short book on the politics of kinship and caretaking, Precarious Intimacies, and a more long term research project titled Atlas Shrugging: The Affective Politics of Ayn Rand. She has also published both scholarship and journalism in a wide range of periodicals: GLQ, Social Text, The Nation, The Village Voice, Journal of the History of Sexuality, Theater Survey, Women in Performance and SIGNS included. In addition, she writes and edits for Bully Bloggers, with Jose Munoz, Tavia Nyong’o and J. Jack Halberstam. She has held a series of administrative posts at NYU, including Director of the Program in American Studies, and Acting Director of the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality. She is co-director with Kathleen McHugh, Director of UCLA’s Center for the Study of Women, on a joint multi year project including two conferences and a nationwide survey of programs in Gender and Women’s Studies, Ethnic Studies, Native Studies and African American Studies: New Majorities, New Priorities: Differences and Demographics in the 21st Century Academy.


If elected President of ASA, I will focus on three areas of activity:

Expanding the Field: American Studies should encourage and support collaborative projects. Because collaborative work does not count under conventional criteria for tenure and promotion, many otherwise eager scholars avoid it. The ASA might produce a statement advocating the worth of collaborative research, distributed to university administrators and relevant committees. Further, I would like to investigate the feasibility of creating and funding an American Studies “think tank” that would support collaborative research. In addition, such a think tank (think spa perhaps? who wants to think in a tank!) might support work in newly emerging fields of significance in American Studies—indigenous and disability studies, for instance. If especially ambitious, on the model of right wing think tanks, such an organization might produce research relevant to contentious political debates, including on immigration, the prison industrial complex, or the “wars” on drugs and terror. In addition, a funded American Studies think tank might promote a broader concept of “interdisciplinarity” than the model of just getting the different disciplines to interact, especially across the humanities/social science divide. Instead, our notion of “interdisciplinarity” might expand to include engagement across fields of research that fall outside the traditional disciplines. For instance, much fine work in urban studies proceeds without attention to gender and sexuality, while provocative new work in disability studies remains somewhat isolated from the field of American Studies overall. Promoting engagements across these fields and subfields would be more productive than simple inclusion of “more social science.”

Circulating the Work: The era of The Monograph is all but over. Though the effects are felt differently across (inter) disciplines and fields, the requirement of the single authored monograph as the sole foundation for tenure and promotion should be replaced. I would like to see the American Studies Association take an active role in pioneering new forms of knowledge production and circulation, addressed and accountable to multiple publics rather than only a narrowly conceived field of scholarship. Forays into digital publishing, public radio, video and television, and other forms for the circulation of research would help lead the field, and the university, out of the cul de sac of outmoded standards for publication. (Note: I am not suggesting that the monograph be declared dead and abolished, only that other modes of circulation take their places alongside this standard.)

Monitoring the Context: Higher education in the U.S. is becoming more expensive and less accessible by the year. The ranks of tenure line faculty are shrinking as forms of contract teaching proliferate. University governance is becoming less democratic, as faculty participation in decision-making erodes. University debt is high as government contributions contract, and reliance on student debt for tuition support expands. U.S. institutions are globalizing, often without adequate attention to the quality of education, the working conditions of employees, or the prevailing standards of academic freedom. Support for public education at the K-12 and high school levels is endangered while attacks on teachers’ unions escalate. The ASA must take part in these and other public political battles surrounding education in the US and abroad. We should address the condition and future of tenure, the employment of graduate students, the subcontracting of clerical and service labor, and the quality and political ethics of U.S. global outposts. I am not saying anything new here. We all know that the conditions and very viability of our work depend on the ways these trends develop. But we don’t know how to intervene effectively. If elected President, I would make it a priority to create an action plan for the ASA (in alliance with other academic and political organizations) to move these debates productively forward.

My major preparation for the office of President of the ASA has been my role as a founder and builder of the American Studies Program at NYU. Beginning in 1994, I worked with a tiny (two person) but expanding faculty to design the curriculum, hire colleagues, and admit and mentor students. We aspired to replace the conventional history/literature framing of American Studies by emphasizing media, the arts, urbanism, critical ethnic/diaspora studies, gender and sexuality studies, and political economy in global context. We stressed the importance of collaborative research and writing, and the goal of reaching multiple publics. Our graduate students have organized conferences and published books on police brutality, the regulation of public sex, afro futurism and race and technology (most recently, they have contributed to a Social Text dossier on Occupy Wall Street). These events and publications, while grounded in first-rate research and analysis, reach beyond academic specialties for their audiences. They reflect our goals, as we train intellectual activists who might (or might not) also wish to become professors. This experience of program building, collaborative research, political engagement, teaching and mentoring has been at the center of my commitments as a professor of American Studies. I enjoy it. And I am enormously proud of the young intellectuals we have unleashed upon the world.

Our program at NYU has grown along with the field, branching out in many new directions of research and political engagement. The American Studies Association is my primary professional location (I have served on the nominations committee, presented nearly every year, and have supported scores of students as they make their first professional appearance at the ASA conference). The ASA annual conference is the only academic meeting I enjoy, and attend regularly. I would love to be centrally involved in shaping the future of the field.

AVERY GORDON: Professor of Sociology, Affiliated Faculty Feminist Studies, University of California Santa Barbara since 1990; Visiting Fellow, Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths College, University of London since 2008; Co-host (with Elizabeth Robinson) of weekly radio program No Alibis, KCSB 91.9 FM Santa Barbara (since 1997). EDUCATION: PhD. Sociology Boston College (1990); M.A. Women’s Studies George Washington University (1981); B.S. Foreign Service Georgetown University (1979). SELECTED PUBLICATIONS: Notes for the Breitenau Room of The Workhouse—A Project by Ines Schaber and Avery Gordon (2011); Ghostly Matters: Haunting and the Sociological Imagination (2008, 1997); Keeping Good Time: Reflections on Knowledge, Power and People (2004); Mapping Multiculturalism (with Christopher J. Newfield) (1996); “Haunting, Futurity and Freedom Time,” Borderlands (2011); “The Prisoner’s Curse” in Gray and Gomez-Barris, Toward a Sociology of the Trace (2010); “’I’m already in a sort of tomb,’” South Atlantic Quarterly (2011); “The Methodology of Imprisonment,” PMLA 123:3 (2008); “’something more powerful than skepticism” in Holmes and Wall, Savoring the Salt: The Legacy of Toni Cade Bambara (2007); “A World Map” in Mogel and Bhagat, An Atlas of Radical Cartography (2007); “Abu-Ghraib: Imprisonment and the War on Terror,” Race & Class 48:1 (2006). HONORS AWARDS SPECIAL APPOINTMENTS: 2013 Writer in Residence School of Law Birkbeck University of London; 2012 Anna Maria Kellen Fellow, American Academy Berlin; Member, Institute for Race Relations, Editorial Working Committee, Race & Class. SERVICE TO THE AMERICAN STUDIES ASSOCIATION: National Council (2011-2014); Member, Program Committee (2010 and 2006); Member, Women’s Committee (08-11); Associate Editor, American Quarterly (06-07). TEACHING AREAS: Problems in Radical Thought, Radical Movements in America, The Prisoner, Race/Ethnicity/Nation, Social Theory, Introduction to Sociology, Sociology of Art and Literature. Longer CV and selected publications available at:

STATEMENT: As I sit down to write this statement, the news headlines are focused on the shooting deaths of the 26 children and adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. The question is posed: “What’s wrong with us?” American Studies scholars can answer this question. American Studies scholars can reframe this question to remove the surprise embedded in its unacknowledged repetition, while keeping hold of the sadness and frustration it harbors. American Studies scholars can put this question in its proper historical, socio-economic, political and cultural contexts. American Studies scholars can put this question in a moral context, up close next to the another 9 girls in Afghanistan killed this time from a landmine explosion or up close next to the Department of Justice’s defense of the President’s “Kill List” or up close next to…. The list is much longer than today’s companion headlines. The list is much older too: next year, our annual meeting will follow closely on the 50th anniversary of the bombing deaths of Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Denise McNair. American Studies scholars can also sharply question this putative “us,” can question who it includes, can question when we are a “we” and when “we” are not, and can explain the difference in the answers. And, American Studies scholars can show how things can be much better than they are and much better than we’re told they have to be.

I think this capacious ability to understand the history of the present is what makes American Studies so relevant to serious scholarly and intellectual work, including work that is focused on the past or focused on our many good and pleasurable things, and is perhaps the reason why American Studies has become such a valued meeting place for so many boundary crossing scholars, intellectual-activists, and educators, among them myself.

I am an interdisciplinary social theorist with an MA in Women’s Studies and a PhD in Sociology who applies historically grounded creative and critical methods to try to understand captivity, war and other forms of dispossession and how to eliminate them. For over twenty years, I’ve taught at a public university, equally committed to the effective and dignified education of graduate and undergraduate students, particularly as resources diminish and as our large first-generation university cohorts scramble to keep their places. A few years ago, I started teaching Introduction to Sociology to 500+ mostly first-year students. They are a demanding audience. I tell them that the heart of the sociological imagination is found in answering some big questions, at whatever scale they’re able to manage or that their curiosity or concern dictates: What are the problems of our time? What kind of society are we living in? Where did it come from? How is it organized, for whose benefit, with what consequences? What kinds of trouble do the terms of order make for people? What should be done—what is being done--to eliminate these troubles?

I have to invent what neither the students nor I can remember about the discipline of sociology in order to invite them into a study of American society that is critically interdisciplinary or even un-disciplinary (but not undisciplined), that is non-nationalistic and situates the United States in a global context in which it might not be the center, that is attentive to the intersecting dynamics of race, class, gender, and sexuality while respecting the complexity of experience and the unevenness of social determinations, that can grasp the workings of organized systems of power while not becoming overwhelmed by either their effects or conceits, that is guided always by better potentialities, and that celebrates rather than criminalizes the rebel. This sociological imagination, which traffics in the portents, fragments, and dissonance thrown up where force and meaning collide, is unthinkable without American Studies.

When Mary Helen Washington ran for ASA President in 1997, she concluded by saying: “What I offer is a vision and a spirit…the details have to be worked out in community.” I would like to offer something similar: a sense of purpose and the hospitality to realize it in respectful association with each other. This sense of purpose includes pursuing the paths that have been opened up for us by our predecessors and nurturing more daring next steps, reaching for what we don’t know yet and reaching out to those who are invited but who haven’t yet arrived.

Concretely, I hope the ASA will continue: 1) to expand the disciplinary bases of the field by keeping up our outreach to critical social and natural scientists; 2) to maintain its commitment to anti-racist and queer scholarship and institutional practice; 3) to further develop a transnational American Studies, able to think creatively and comparatively about the larger world; 4) to increase the participation of scholars from all parts of the world in our meetings and other activities; 5) to be a place where it’s safe for scholars and educators to take intellectual risks and to pilot new critical fields, like prison studies or university studies; 6) to be a meaningful site for graduate student development and support, particularly given the increasingly difficult challenges graduate students face; 7) to expand the reach of American Studies beyond the academy not only to our K-12 colleagues and to grassroots activists, but also to more artists and cultural producers; 8) to uphold its tradition of honoring fair labor practices, our own and others. Finally, I hope that the ASA will continue to be a place where radical thought and practice are always welcome and where promoting livable alternatives is the norm and not the exception.

I make only three promises in advance: I’ll use my experience working with Executive Director John Stephens and the officers and committees of the Association to foster a congenial community. We will have a great party in Los Angeles. I will try to launch (with some help) ASA radio.

COUNCIL (Select Five)

ANN CVETKOVICH is Ellen Clayton Garwood Centennial Professor of English and Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She received a B.A. in Literature and Philosophy from Reed College (1980) and a Ph.D. in English Literature from Cornell (1988). She was a Mellon Fellow at Wesleyan (1989-90) and a Rockefeller Fellow at Columbia (1999-2000) and has also held visiting appointments at New York University, Barnard College, and University of Paris 3. She is the author of Mixed Feelings: Feminism, Mass Culture, and Victorian Sensationalism (Rutgers, 1992); An Archive of Feelings: Trauma, Sexuality, and Lesbian Public Cultures (Duke, 2003); and Depression: A Public Feeling (Duke, 2012). She co-edited (with Ann Pellegrini) “Public Sentiments,” a special issue of The Scholar and Feminist Online, and (with Janet Staiger and Ann Reynolds) Political Emotions (Routledge, 2010). She was coeditor, with Annamarie Jagose, of GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies from 2004-2011. Her new writing projects focus on the current state of LGBTQ archives and the creative use of them by artists to create counterarchives and interventions in public history.


ASA has been an intellectual home base for me since the mid-1990s when it was in the process of becoming a site for critical and transnational American studies. As a scholar born and raised in Canada and hence resistant to American studies, it has been very meaningful to claim an affiliation as an Americanist. I would like to serve on the council in order to give back to an organization that has given me so much. I value ASA’s vision of a multiracial university and comparative ethnic studies, its embrace of queer studies, its transnational perspective, and its vigorous support of activism and the creative arts. In both my scholarship and my service work, I have been especially interested in the affective politics of collectivity in both culture and politics, and I see service on the ASA Council as an opportunity to foster new ways of doing intellectual work and to support creative thinking at a time when the humanities and public education are under attack. In addition to being a helpful cog in the wheel, I would bring to the table my experience with “public feelings” and would aim to support programming that pays attention to the felt experience of daily life inside and outside the university.

is the author of The Reification of Desire: Toward a Queer Marxism (Minnesota 2009). A recent recipient of Fulbright and Alexander von Humboldt grants, he is Associate Professor of English at Kent State University, where he is also affiliated with the Women’s Studies Program and the LGBT Studies Minor. He teaches courses in queer studies, Marxism, gender studies, literary and cultural theory, and twentieth century U.S. literature and culture. His work has appeared in Social Text, Rethinking Marxism, Cultural Critique, and elsewhere. Recent and forthcoming publications include “How to Subsume Difference, or World Reduction in Delany,” in the collection Literary Materialisms (Palgrave 2013); “The Importance of Being Childish: Queer Utopians and Historical Contradiction,” in the 2012 issue of Works and Days; and “Masculinity Inside Out: The Biopolitical Lessons of Transgender and Intersex Studies” in the collection Constructions of Masculinity (Palgrave 2011).


The ASA has been an important site of critical knowledge production for me since I first attended the convention in 1998. Especially crucial have been its commitments to internationalizing the “object” of American Studies, its strong sense of the political conditions of knowledge production, and its ongoing scrutiny of neoliberalism’s multiform violence. If elected, I would especially want to encourage continued critical examination of the national and international dimensions of financialization in relation to contingent/precarious labor; the transparent as well as the subtle ways in which economically vulnerable populations are criminalized or otherwise disciplined; and the ways racialization and sexual normalization mediate these processes. I would also want to encourage a dialectical reflexivity about the sites in which our work takes place, about our positions both outside and inside the processes we examine: the ways those of us who are privileged to have a relatively secure position in this profession, for example, are also implicated in, even as we scrutinize, the ongoing, debt-driven evaporation of spaces in which knowledge production is not (yet) thoroughly instrumentalized. Affiliating with and working to expand and increase access to such spaces both inside and outside the academy, especially institutionally insecure ones and including community and labor organizations and activist groups, are among the most powerful ways to avoid academic tendencies toward navel-gazing on the one hand, or underexamined assumptions that we have a position external to our objects on the other. This kind of critical practice, difficult as it is even under the best circumstances, strikes me as increasingly important and increasingly vulnerable, and I would look forward to collaborations that facilitate it.

ALYOSHA GOLDSTEIN: Associate Professor of American Studies, University of New Mexico. He received his PhD in American Studies from NYU and was awarded the American Studies Association’s Ralph Henry Gabriel Dissertation Prize in 2005. He currently serves on the ASA’s Graduate Education Committee. His publications include: Poverty in Common: The Politics of Community Action during the American Century (Duke University Press, 2012); editor, Formations of United States Colonialism (under review at Duke University Press); Co-editor (with Alex Lubin), “Settler Colonialism” special issue of South Atlantic Quarterly 107.4 (Fall 2008); “The Duration of Inequality: Limits, Liability, and Juridical Proximity,” in Territories of Poverty, eds. Ananya Roy and Emma Shaw Crane (University or Georgia Press); “Toward a Genealogy of the Colonial Present,” in Formations of United States Colonialism; “Where the Nation Takes Place: Proprietary Regimes, Antistatism, and U.S. Settler Colonialism” South Atlantic Quarterly 107.4 (Fall 2008); “On the Internal Border: Colonial Difference, the Cold War, and the Locations of ‘Underdevelopment,’” Comparative Studies in Society and History 50.1 (January 2008); “The Attributes of Sovereignty: The Cold War, Colonialism, and Community Education in Puerto Rico,” in Imagining Our Americas: Toward a Transnational Frame, eds. Sandhya Shukla and Heidi Tinsman (Duke University Press, 2007). His current book project examines how debates over accountability, foreclosure, reconciliation, and reparations with regard to racialized dispossession and settler colonialism have been shaped in response to the present-day retrenchment of global capitalism and financialization.


During the last fifteen years as a member of the ASA, I have found the association’s commitment to critical scholarship, and its capacity to collectively question the meaning and consequences of its own “interdisciplinary” formation, to be invaluable. If elected to the national council I would work toward the ongoing transformation of American Studies through a substantive engagement with (and centering of) critical indigenous studies, critical race and ethnic studies, queer theory, and scholarship focusing on the uneven conditions and genealogies of capitalism in ways that underscores the constitutive role of racialization, gender, sexuality, imperialism, and colonialism. I would like to see the ASA continue to pursue and extend calls to challenge the racial, disciplinary, and geopolitical normalizations that underwrite predominant forms of knowledge production and social reproduction today. I believe that it is important to do this in such a way that advocates a fundamental pluralization of knowledge, membership, and mission through a redistribution of power and resources rather than a symbolic politics of inclusion that leaves intact institutional norms and aspirations. I also believe that it is crucial for this association to continue to pursue connections to and solidarity with non-academic groups and initiatives working toward social justice. I would emphasize the ways in which academia is not a world apart, but is instead a multifaceted institutional formation fully entwined with the multiple crises of contemporary (neo) liberal capitalism throughout the world and the intensified militarization of everyday life. This has significant implications for how we approach graduate and undergraduate education, as well as how we conceive of our research, writing, and institutional, social, and political commitments and collaborations. I would welcome the opportunity to serve on the national council and to contribute to furthering the ASA’s role as a vital forum for such indispensable conversations.

J. KĒHAULANI KAUANUI: Associate Professor of American Studies and Anthropology, Wesleyan University, 2000-current. Education: PhD in History of Consciousness at the University of California, Santa Cruz, 2000; B.A. in Women’s Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, 1992. Book: Hawaiian Blood: Colonialism and the Politics of Sovereignty and Indigeneity (Duke 2008). Selected chapters and articles: “Precarious Positions: Native Hawaiians and US Federal Recognition,” American Studies, Recognition, Sovereignty Struggles, and Indigenous Rights in the United States: A Sourcebook, Eds. Amy Den Ouden and Jean M. O’Brien (University of North Carolina, 2013); “Hawaiian Nationhood, Self-Determination, and International Law,” Decolonizing Native Histories: Collaboration, Knowledge, and Language in the Americas, Ed. Florencia E. Mallon (Duke University, 2011); “Colonialism in Equality: Hawaiian Sovereignty and the Question of US Civil Rights,” South Atlantic Quarterly/SAQ 107:4. October: 635-650, 2008. Work in progress: Thy Kingdom Come? The Paradox of Hawaiian Sovereignty - a book project that documents and analyzes the epistemological and ontological shift that correlates to the transformations of indigenous Hawaiian sovereignty to the Hawaiian Kingdom and the conflicts and contradictions that arise with regard on land, gender, and sexual politics within contemporary political claims for independence. Multimedia: Sole producer and host of the public affairs radio program, “Indigenous Politics: From Native New England and Beyond,” since February 2007, which airs on WESU and is syndicated through the Pacifica radio network; co-producer and co-host of the anarchist radio program, “Horizontal Power Hour,” also on WESU. Editorial work: Co-edited special issues of three journals: ‘Women Writing Oceania: Weaving the Sails of the Waka’, Pacific Studies, with Caroline Sinavaiana, (2007); ‘Native Pacific Cultural Studies on the Edge’, The Contemporary Pacific, with Vicente M. Diaz (2001); and “Migrating Feminisms,” Women’s Studies International Forum, with Kalpana Ram (1998). Selected fellowships and honors: elected member of the American Antiquarian Society; fellowships or grants from: Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies at the University of Canterbury, the School of Advanced Research (formerly the School of American Research), Woodrow Wilson Foundation, Smithsonian Institution, Rockefeller Archives Center, National Science Foundation, and Fulbright. Selected service: current editorial board member of these journals: Settler Colonial Studies; American Indian Quarterly; and Hulili: Multidisciplinary Research on Hawaiian Well-Being; served as an editorial board member for Journal of Pacific History, 2005-2010; current advisory board member of these journals: Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism; and Intersections: Gender and Sexuality in Asia and the Pacific; President of the New England American Studies Association (NEASA), 2008; Vice President of NEASA, 2007; council member of NEASA, 2005-2006; member of the founding steering committee for the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA), 2005-2008; acting council member of NAISA, 2008-2009; elected member of the inaugural council of NAISA, 2009-2012.


I am honored to be nominated to the National Council. I first attended an annual meeting of the ASA in 1997, and Mary Helen Washington’s presidential address had a profound effect on me. Since then I have presented at the 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2008, and 2012 meetings, and the association has provided me with much intellectual and collegial sustenance. Through my organizing and participation, I have worked to bring Native Pacific and Native American panels to the program.

I think that American Studies should be at the fore of cultivating a dialogue with specialists engaging public intellectual work in diverse institutional and social locations and media including: libraries, museums and galleries, radio, film, community television, photography, and oral and community history in order to further linkages with a wide range of local and regional institutions and their respective publics. I am actively involved in public scholarship as evidenced in my development of two public affairs radio shows - on one indigenous politics, and the other on anarchism. I am also involved in a range of activist work for indigenous rights in the Pacific Islands, North America, as well as Occupied Palestine, and serve as an advisory board member of the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.

I also have significant experience in both academic institutional building since serving as a former council member, vice president, and president of the New England American Studies Association, and as a co-founder and council member of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA). I am committed to furthering hemispheric approaches to the field of American Studies, which I see as crucial to engaging the changing (and challenging) global and transnational contexts. While serving as a council member of the NAISA, I helped launch the El Grupo de Abya Yala/ The Abya Yala Working Group dedicated to bridging the hemispheric “North-South” divide within Native Studies.  Also, if elected, I would work to build connections between the ASA and the NAISA. As a member of the ASA Council, I would also place a high priority on being responsive to new intellectual currents and emerging fields of social and cultural inquiry, all while being attuned to the present contradictory moment of intellectual vitality and institutional crisis. I am committed to academic freedom and would uphold all past ASA resolutions.

REGINA KUNZEL is the Paul R. Frenzel Chair in Liberal Arts, Chair of the Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, Professor in the Departments of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies and History, and Affiliate Faculty in American Studies at the University of Minnesota. Education: Ph.D., History, Yale University; B.A. Stanford University.

Selected Publications: Criminal Intimacy: Prison and the Uneven History of Modern American Sexuality (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008), awarded the John Boswell Prize (Committee on LGBT History, American Historical Association), the Alan Bray Memorial Book Award (Modern Language Association), the Lambda Literary Award in LGBT Studies; finalist for the John Hope Franklin Prize (American Studies Association); Fallen Women, Problem Girls: Unmarried Mothers and the Professionalization of Social Work, 1890 to 1945 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1993); Co-editor, The Queer Issue: New Visions of America’s Lesbian and Gay Past, special issue of Radical History Review, No. 62 (1995); “Lessons in Being Gay: Queer Encounters in Gay and Lesbian Prison Activism,” Queer Futures, special issue of Radical History Review No. 100 (2008): 11-37; “Situating Sex: Prison Sexual Culture in the Mid-Twentieth-Century United States,” GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 8:3 (2002): 253-70; “Pulp Fictions and Problem Girls: Reading and Rewriting Single Pregnancy in the Postwar United States,” American Historical Review 100 (Dec. 1995): 1465-87; “White Neurosis, Black Pathology: Constructing Illegitimacy in the Wartime and Postwar United States,” in Not June Cleaver: Women and Gender in the Postwar United States, ed. Joanne Meyerowitz (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994).


I am honored to be nominated for election to the ASA Council. Though my degree is in History, my research, teaching, and vision of possibility in the academy have been sustained by an engagement with American Studies. I have attended the annual meetings of the ASA since I was in graduate school, and over the past nearly three decades, I have been excited and gratified to see the ASA become a site for vibrant and engaged work on sexuality, gender, race, and empire, and of transformative social vision. My teaching, research, and service reflect my commitments to such scholarship, and to fostering interdisciplinary, trans-disciplinary, and cross-generational conversations. I am also committed to furthering the ASA’s efforts to confront the challenges associated with budget cuts and aggressive privatization, severely reduced funding for public education, and the difficult job market for graduate students.

ALEX LUBIN. I am the director of the Center for American Studies and Research at the American University of Beirut and on-leave from the University of New Mexico. I chaired the department of American Studies at UNM for three years. I hold undergraduate and graduate degrees in American Studies (Phd, Minnesota, 2000). My research and teaching focus on transnational American Studies, critical race studies, and U.S./Middle East cultural politics. I am the author of Romance and Rights: The Politics of Interracial Intimacy, 1945-1954 (UP Mississippi) and Geographies of Liberation: The Making of an Afro-Arab Political Imaginary (forthcoming, UNC Press). I am the editor of: Revising the Blueprint: Ann Petry and the African American Literary Left (UP Mississippi); with Alyosha Goldstein, Settler Colonialism (a special issue of SAQ); with Marwan Kraidy, American Studies Between the American Century and the Arab Spring (under review). I have served on the ASA conference program committee, the graduate education committee, and the conference site committee. I was the president of the Rocky Mountain American Studies Association and am one of the founding coordinators of the ASA’s Caucus on Academic and Community Activism.


As an Americanist currently working in Beirut, Lebanon I am interested in how our discipline travels and what it means to think about “America” in transit. In its global circulation local and non-U.S. contexts transform America. This fact became apparent when I organized a 2011 international American Studies conference in Beirut that brought 90 speakers from more than 20 countries. At this conference Beirut imposed on the study of America and revealed incongruities within U.S. national culture that may not have been as visible within the U.S. In order to confront the future of the discipline at a paradoxical moment characterized by budgetary downsizing of AMST departments domestically and the field’s expansion abroad, I would like to work with the council to “trans-nationalize” the association. For me this means fostering a transnational American Studies that critically analyzes the transit of American Studies in the context of U.S. geopolitical power. I am interested in working with the ASA council to address the training of AMST graduate students, both within and without the U.S., who will increasingly enter a global American Studies job market. Moreover, I am interested in helping the ASA to form relationships with a network of Americanists beyond the U.S. and in emerging areas of American Studies development, including in the Middle East. As a council member I will support the ASA’s domestic and international political commitments, including its support of unionized hotels, its resolution on the Iraq war, its statement on the occupy movement, and a pending resolution on the academic and cultural boycott of Israel.

SUNAINA MAIRA. Professor of Asian American Studies, UC Davis. Books include: Missing: Youth, Empire, and Citizenship After 9/11 (Duke UP, 2009), Honorable Mention, Association of Asian American Studies; Desis in the House: Indian American Youth Culture in New York City (Temple UP, 2002), Honorable Mention, Lara Romero First Book Publication Award, American Studies Association; Youthscapes: The Popular, The National, The Global, co-edited with Elisabeth Soep (Temple UP, 2006); and Contours of the Heart: South Asians Map North America, co-edited with Rajini Srikanth (Asian American Writers' Workshop, 1997), American Book Award, 1997.

Recent articles in journals include: “Dispatches from Pepper-Spray University: Privatization, Repression, and Revolts,” co-authored with Julie Sze, American Quarterly (64:2); “Belly Dancing: Arab-Face, Orientalist Feminism, and U.S. Empire,” American Quarterly (60:2); “Flexible Citizenship/Flexible Empire: South Asian Muslim Youth in Post-9/11 America,” American Quarterly (60:3); and “‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ Muslim Citizens: Feminists, Terrorists, and U.S. Orientalisms,” Feminist Studies (35:3).

I have been a Steering Committee member for the UC Center for New Racial Studies and a coordinator of the UC Davis Race Project, a study of race and racial justice movements on campus. At UMass-Amherst, I co-founded and co-directed the Asian and Asian American Studies program. I am currently co-chair of the Academic and Community Activism Caucus within ASA, which organized a resolution on the war in Iraq and discussions of boycott and divestment opposing the U.S.-backed occupation and violations of human rights and academic freedom in Palestine. I have been involved with immigrant rights, civil rights, and antiwar organizing in Massachusetts and also California.


American Studies has been my intellectual home, as it has been for many other interdisciplinary scholars of critical ethnic and race, feminist, queer, transnational, empire, and indigenous studies. I have been attending the ASA conference for over a decade and have found it an incredibly supportive venue in which to collaborate with other scholars in comparative and increasingly global conversations. My research and teaching focus on transnational Asian, Arab, and Muslim American youth cultures, popular culture, youth organizing, warfare, and U.S. empire. Since 2001, I have been engaged in rethinking the location of Arab America and the racialization of Islam within American studies and ethnic studies scholarship and in relation to human rights and anti-imperialist mobilization. This is an intervention I have attempted to make in my published work and a special issue I edited of the Journal of Asian American Studies as well as in panels for the ASA.

One of the most compelling aspects of the field of American Studies for me today is the space it has offered for dissident scholarship, in a moment of economic crisis and global warfare which makes more urgent questions about public higher education, engaged scholarship, and solidarity with grassroots movements. I am honored to be nominated to the National Council, and if elected, I would like to participate in national conversations about how to actively support the mission of the public university and the work of student and faculty activists challenging privatization and debt, as well as about the role and responsibilities of the U.S. university in relation to questions of incarceration, surveillance, war, occupation, and neoliberalism. I am also interested in mentorship of graduate students and junior faculty, particularly those struggling to establish themselves in marginalized or emerging fields, and in finding ways to strengthen a progressive notion of academic freedom in the U.S. academy.

MARTN F. MANALANSAN IV: Associate Professor of Anthropology and Asian American studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Education: AB Philosophy, magna cum laude, University of the Philippines (1981), MA Anthropology, Syracuse University (1987), Ph.D. Social Anthropology, University of Rochester (1997). SELECTED PUBLICATIONS: Global Divas: Filipino Gay Men in the Diaspora. (Duke University Press, 2003);(co-edited with Arnaldo Cruz-Malave) Queer Globalizations: Citizenship and the Afterlife of Colonialism. (New York University Press, 2003); (editor) Cultural Compass: Ethnographic Explorations of Asian America. (Temple University Press, 2002); “Servicing the World: Flexible Filipinos and the Unsecured Life.” In A. Cvetkovich (eds.) Political Emotions. (Routledge, 2008); “Queering the Chain of Care Paradigm.” Scholar and Feminist Online. 2008 6:3 Summer <>; “Queer Love in the Time of War and Shopping.” A Companion to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Studies. G. Haggerty and M. McGarry (eds.) (Blackwell Publishing, 2008. 77-86);“Immigrant Domesticity and the Politics of Olfaction in the Global City.” In The Smell Reader. Jim Drobnick (ed.) (Berg, 2006, 41-52); “Race, Violence and Neoliberal Spatial Politics in the Global City” Social Text.84-85:141-156);“In the Shadows of Stonewall: Examining Gay Transnational Politics and the Diasporic Dilemma.” The Politics of Culture in the Shadow of Capital. L. Low and D. Lloyd (eds.) (Duke University Press, 1997). ACADEMIC POSITIONS: Apart from teaching as a tenured Associate Professor of Anthropology and Asian American Studies at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Manalansan has taught at New York University, New School University, City University of New York, the University of the Philippines, and St. Scholastica’s College, Manila. In addition to these academic positions, He is also the Social Science Review Editor at GLQ and until recently, on the editorial board of the American Anthropologist, the flagship journal of the American Anthropological Association. He has worked on the SSRC working group on migration and gender and has been on the boards of the Association for Asian American Studies, Association of Queer Anthropologists or AQA (formerly SOLGA) and the Association for Feminist Anthropology. In addition to these academic professional positions he was coordinator of research at the Gay Men’s Health Crisis and director of education at the Asian Pacific Islander Coalition on HIV/AIDS both in New York City from 1990 to 1999. Among his awards are the Ruth Benedict Prize from AQA in 2003 and the Association for Asian American Studies Book Award for Cultural Studies in 2001.


I immigrated to America in 1984 from the Philippines. I benefited from the legacies of American colonial educational efforts having graduated from the University of the Philippines which was patterned after the Big Ten universities of the Midwest. Today, as a senior scholar in one of these Big Ten institutions, I embody and critically appreciate the contradictions of U.S. empire. Interestingly, I joined the ASA in the late 90s when the events of 1898 were being revisited by the association. I found the atmosphere very inspiring. It encouraged me to pursue projects that attempt to capture the critical energies particularly around studies around transnationalism, migration and empire that animate many of the ASA’s discussions and engagements. As a scholar of LGBTQ studies, Asian American Studies, Southeast Asian area Studies and anthropology, I am poised to contribute to the ASA community from these various vantages of scholarly experiences. These fields plus the ten years of activist and non-profit work on AIDS and among immigrant and people of color communities in New York City have enabled me to appreciate the points of convergence and disjuncture between academia and various constituencies. It would be an honor to serve the ASA in helping to broaden collaborative efforts among and deepen conversations with various groups such as undocumented immigrants, scholars from the Global South, and labor groups. As a senior scholar, I am interested in the training and mentorship of students especially during these seemingly dismal academic working conditions and economic/job markets.

MARK RIFKIN is Associate Professor of English and Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He completed his Ph.D. in English at the University of Pennsylvania (2003), writing under the direction of Eric Cheyfitz, and received a Bachelor’s degree in American Studies and English from Rutgers University (1996). In addition, he has taught at Fordham University (as a Visiting Assistant Professor, 2003-2004), the University of Chicago (as a fellow at the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture, 2004-2005), and Skidmore College (as Assistant Professor of English, 2005-2008). His is the author of three monographs: Manifesting America: The Imperial Construction of U.S. National Space (Oxford, 2009); When Did Indians Become Straight?: Kinship, the History of Sexuality, and Native Sovereignty (Oxford, 2011); and The Erotics of Sovereignty: Queer Native Writing in the Era of Self-Determination (University of Minnesota, 2012). He also co-edited (with Daniel Heath Justice and Bethany Schneider) Sexuality, Nationality, Indigeneity: Rethinking the State at the Intersection of Native American and Queer Studies, published as a special double-issue of GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies (16.1-2, 2010). His articles have appeared in a range of journals and edited collections, including the following: “Representing the Cherokee Nation: Subaltern Studies and Native American Sovereignty” (boundary 2 32.3, 2005: 47-80); “Romancing Kinship: A Queer Reading of Indian Education and Zitkala-Sa’s American Indian Stories” (GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 12.1, 2006: 27-59); “‘A home made sacred by protecting laws’: Black Activist Homemaking and Geographies of Citizenship in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl” (differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies 18.2, 2007: 72-102); “Debt and the Transnationalization of Hawai`i” (American Quarterly 60.1, 2008: 43-66); “Documenting Tradition: Territoriality and Textuality in Black Hawk’s Narrative” (American Literature 80.4, 2008: 677-705); “Native Nationality and the Contemporary Queer: Tradition, Sexuality, and History in Drowning in Fire” (American Indian Quarterly 32.4, 2008: 443-470); “‘For the wrongs of our poor bleeding country’: Sensation, Class, and Empire in Ridge’s Joaquín Murieta” (Arizona Quarterly 65.2, 2009): 27-56; “Indigenizing Agamben: Rethinking Sovereignty in Light of the ‘Peculiar’ Status of Native Peoples” (Cultural Critique 72, Fall 2009: 88-124); “Remapping the Family of Nations: The Geopolitics of Kinship in Hendrick Aupaumut’s ‘A Short Narration’” (Studies in American Indian Literature 22.4, 2010: 1-31); “The Erotics of Sovereignty,” in Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions in Theory, Politics, and Literature, eds. Qwo-Li Driskill, Chris Finley, Brian Joseph Gilley, and Scott Morgensen (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2011: 172-189); “Shadows of Mashantucket: William Apess and the Representation of Pequot Place” American Literature (American Literature 84.4, 2012); and “Settler States of Feeling: National Belonging and the Erasure of Native American Presence,” Blackwell Companion to American Literary Studies, eds. Robert Levine and Caroline Levander (New York: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011: 342-355). He has won three national awards: the John Hope Franklin Publication Prize for best book in American Studies in 2011 for When Did Indians Become Straight? (2012); Best Special Issue award from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals for Sexuality, Nationality, Indigeneity (2010); and the Don D. Walker Award for the Best Essay in Western American Literary Studies for “Documenting Tradition” from the Western Literature Association (2008). He served on the American Studies Association Program Committee for the 2011 meeting.


I am deeply honored to be nominated for a position on the ASA’s National Council. Since my time as an undergraduate, American Studies has always been an academic home for me, and I’ve attended the annual meeting for the past eleven years. My work sits at the intersection of Indigenous studies, queer studies, postcolonial studies, political theory, and nineteenth-century American literary studies, and finding places where my many intellectual investments, and the scholarly publics to whom they speak, can come into productive conversation can be somewhat difficult. In this vein, the ASA increasingly has offered a site at which such dialogue not only occurs but is privileged as a vital part of contemporary academic life. Opening the possibility for cross-field engagement, in which the analysis and insights developed in one area can be brought into productive relation with that occurring elsewhere, has been a hallmark of my work, and for this reason, the ASA has provided a wonderful venue through which to explore these potentials, serving a crucial role in my own maturation as a scholar and teacher. More than promoting sharing across disciplines and among various other interdisciplines, the ASA plays a vital role in extending discussion of histories of racialization, empire, exploitation, and institutionalized discrimination, displacement, and abjection. I am deeply committed to the ways it can and does create space for challenging a redemptive story of the nation that continues to provide much of the material in primary and secondary education and prominent public narratives, and it also powerfully functions as a place for the hard discussions about what we do not see, do not remember, and how we have failed each other and continue to do so. The American Studies project, as I understand it, entails telling alternative stories of the U.S. as it has been, is, and could be, stories of effaced, dismissed, forgotten, and routinized violence but also of hope, solidarity, survival, and the potential for transformation. As a member of the National Council, I would work to build on these existing strengths. In particular, drawing on my connections in multiple fields, I would like to promote greater dialogue among subfields that tend not to talk to each other, to increase the presence of work in Native American and Indigenous studies and settler colonial studies at the conference and in the journal, and to expand the conference’s temporal scope to include earlier work. I also would like to increase the association’s attention to the conditions of work in higher education, addressing the issue of joint-appointments (especially for junior faculty), the uncompensated diversity and mentoring labor of people of color, the effects of implementing non-humanities-friendly assessment and efficiency metrics and strategies for challenging and negotiating them, and the implications of the shrinking of funding for public education on the potential for interdisciplinary scholarship and teaching (especially in the humanities). I also would like to help bolster alliances among educational institutions, focused on students of all ages, in order to aid in our collectively advocating more effectively against prominent logics of scarcity, precarity, and privatization that increasingly guide the allocation of public resources.

JUANA MARÍA RODRÍGUEZ: Professor Rodríguez is Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Pedagogy in Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of California, Berkeley where she is affiliated with the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies; the Center for Race and Gender; the Center for the Study of Sexual Culture; the Berkeley Center for New Media; and the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society. She holds a B.A. in Liberal Studies from San Francisco State University (1988); an M.A. in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University (1991); and a Ph.D. in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Berkeley (1998). Before arriving at Berkeley, her academic appointments included Assistant Professor of English at Bryn Mawr College; and Associate Professor of Women and Gender Studies and Chair of the Cultural Studies Graduate Group at University of California, Davis. Rodríguez is the author of book Queer Latinidad: Identity Practices, Discursive Spaces (NYU Press, 2003) and her second book, Queer Gesture, Sexual Futures and Other Latina Longings is under contract with NYU Press. She has published in GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies; MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the U.S.; Profession; PMLA; a/b: Auto/Biography Studies; Genre: Forms of Discourse and Culture; and SAIL: Studies in American Indian Literature. Her work has also been published in numerous anthologies including A Companion to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Studies; None of the Above: Puerto Ricans in the Global Era and An Introduction to Women’s Studies: Gender in a Transnational World.


I often describe myself as an accidental academic, a product of community college, state schools, and affirmative action who was lucky enough to find dedicated teachers who helped guide me along an unknown path. I have studied and taught at elite colleges and universities, and at under-resourced state institutions and although most of my professional career has been outside of traditional disciplinary boundaries, I have spent enough time in these departments to appreciate the challenges faced by interdisciplinary scholars who make their home there. Now, more than ever the differences of institutional status, departmental affiliation, rank within the profession, regional location and our social embodiments within these sites impacts every aspect of our experiences within the academy. The American Studies Association is a place of vigorous intellectual debate and deliberation, but it is also a place for mentorship and professional exchange across institutional hierarchies, academic generations and areas of specialization. It is a place to learn and strategize about the different challenges we confront in our disparate institutional locations. As a council member, I would focus on three areas: increasing the professional resources available to graduate students, junior faculty and adjunct faculty members by developing best practice guidelines for institutions engaged in the unique issues associated in the appointment, retention, evaluation and promotion within our fields of study; expanding the intellectual scope of American Studies to include hemispheric studies, diaspora studies, and transnational approaches to the field; and engaging more vigorously with public policy advocates, community activists and arts-based organizations as we work to expand the influence of the ASA beyond the academy.


ERIN DURBAN-ALBRECHT is a PhD candidate in Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of Arizona and managing editor of Feminist Formations, an academic journal in women’s, gender, and sexuality studies. Her dissertation, “Queer Anti-Imperialisms: Racialized Sexuality and Haitian History of Cultural Resistance to U.S. Imperialism” traces the ways that U.S. imperialism and anti-imperialist movements have colluded over the last century to render queer Haitian subjectivity “impossible” and, in turn, how queer Haitian cultural work intervenes in these dominant discourses of gender and sexuality. Before beginning the PhD program in Tucson, Erin was the director of a social justice youth program in Denver and earned an individualized BA in International Resistance: Race, Class, Gender, and Liberation at Metropolitan State College. She is currently involved in transnational artistic, academic, and activist collaborations to connect histories of colonization across the Americas (such as the Ghetto Biennale and the Haitian and American Artist Exchange) as well as movements at the local level to support ethnic studies and the accessibility of public education. In addition to being a member of the ASA, Erin is a member of the National Women’s Studies Association and the American Anthropological Association.



The American Studies Association conference has been an important place for me to connect with others interested in critical interdisciplinary scholarship. As a student in the initial cohort of a new PhD program, the ASA has been a tremendous resource to “learn the ropes” from a diverse community of engaged activist scholars. It has also provided an opportunity to participate in discussions about the politics of higher education and to develop plans to transform academia in more socially just ways. As one of the student members on the ASA Council, I would ensure that these vital and invigorating aspects of the organization remain central to ASA’s work. I would also work closely with the Students Committee to advocate for students within the organization and further enrich the experiences of students at the annual conference.

MARISOL LEBRÓN is a PhD candidate in the Program in American Studies at New York University. Her dissertation, "Violent Arrest: Punitive Governance and Neocolonial Crisis in Contemporary Puerto Rico," traces the growth of increasingly punitive policing measures within the context of a deepening neocolonial crisis between Puerto Rico and the United States. Marisol's writing has appeared in NACLA Report on the Americas, Women & Performance, Latino/a Studies, and Centro: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies. Her research interests include policing, militarization, incarceration, spatial inequalities, political economy, youth, and race in the Americas. She is also a member of the Puerto Rican Studies Association and Latin American Studies Association.


As a queer
nuyorican scholar working at the intersections of Puerto Rican Studies and American Studies, I have consistently found a generative and collegial intellectual space in the American Studies Association. Serving as a student member of the Council would allow me to participate in conversations about how ASA can best respond to the diverse needs of its membership and continue to provide a space for interdisciplinary research that explores questions of power, inequality, and social transformation. Given the theme of the 2013 annual meeting, "Beyond the Logic of Debt, Toward an Ethics of Collective Dissent," the time seems ripe to begin a conversation about how the Association should work against an increasingly corporate understanding of academe. The ASA's dedication to cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research compels us consider the ways in which the corporate logic of debt that permeates the academy threatens academic freedom, perpetuates a false narrative of scarcity, and places ever increasing numbers of the membership (including graduate students and adjunct and junior faculty) in tenuous labor conditions. As part of the Council, I look forward to participating in these critical discussions and representing the concerns of the Association's graduate student membership. My background in the fields of Latino/a Studies and Puerto Rican Studies will also enable me to meaningfully contribute to conversations within the Council about how the Association can continue its work of advancing a comparative and transnational vision of American Studies.


NAN ALAMILLA BOYD is Professor of Women and Gender Studies at San Francisco State University, where she served as Department Chair from 2007-2010. She was Assistant and Associate Professor of Women’s Studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder from 1993-2004, where she was affiliated with the program in American Studies and the Center for the American West. Her areas of interest include queer studies, historical methodology, neoliberal tourism, and urban gentrification. Her books include Wide Open Town: A History of Queer San Francisco to 1965 (University of California Press, 2003), and Bodies of Evidence, the Practice of Queer Oral History (Oxford, 2012), co-edited with Horacio N. Roque Ramírez. Recent articles include “Unpaid and Critically Engaged: Feminist Interns in the Non-Profit Industrial Complex” (with Jillian Sandell) in Feminist Teacher (2013); “San Francisco’s Castro District: From Gay Liberation to Tourist Destination” in Journal of Tourism and Cultural Change (2011); “Who is the Subject? Queer Theory Meets Oral History,” Journal of the History of Sexuality (2008); and “Sex and Tourism: The Economic Implications of the Gay Marriage Movement,” in Radical History Review (2008). Nan has also been a long-time volunteer at the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco.  She founded the Historical Society’s oral history project in 1992, served as co-chair of the Archives Committee (2004-2008) and on the Board of Directors (1992-93, 2006-2009).  

Nan’s current research addresses the links between transnational tourism, urban gentrification, and the commodification of race and sex. Her book-in-progress, Touring San Francisco: Race, Sex, and Gentrification, examines the transformation of four San Francisco neighborhoods – Chinatown, North Beach, Castro, and Fillmore – into tourist districts. It places the post-war gentrification of heretofore impoverished or subcultural urban communities at the center of analysis, and, in the process, analyzes the commodification of race and sex as part of the neoliberal production of (new) cultures of consumption.


It is an honor to be nominated for the ASA’s Nominating Committee. I have been attending ASA meetings since I was a graduate student in American Studies at Brown in the early-1990s, so I have had the pleasure of contributing to an organization that has worked hard to push itself beyond its initial imaginings. In the last twenty years, the nation-building project of “American Studies” has transformed itself into a space that supports ethnic studies, gender studies, queer studies, and, more recently, studies of U.S. imperialism and neo-colonialism, disability, transnational migrations, the prison industrial complex, the organization of labor, and neoliberal cultural formations and political economies. I am excited to have been a part of these recalibrations, and I look forward to continued contributions and service to the organization. Meanwhile, my academic position within the California State University system gives me a unique vantage into the restructuring of higher education. One consequence of the privatization of higher education is that access to professional organizations like the ASA has become increasingly difficult for scholars from universities with little to no travel funding or endowments to support faculty research. Scholars at “public” or “teaching” universities are eager to engage and in great need of support - financial and otherwise. As a member of the ASA Nominating Committee, I hope to be able to support faculty, scholars, artists, and activists across the divisions, both structural and cultural, that are becoming increasingly embedded in our very modes of knowledge production. Also, just coming off a three-year term on the Gene Wise-Warren Susman prize committee, it is clear that graduate student work continues to redefine and revitalize the field. I would like to find a way to further showcase (and support) the work of graduate students who, like scholars from underfunded universities, contribute to the ASA from a position of dramatically shrinking resources.

GILLIAN HARKINS: Associate Professor of English, Adjunct Associate Professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and Member of Graduate Faculty in the Program in Criticism and Theory in the Department of Comparative Literature at the University of Washington, Seattle. My research explores intersections of sexuality, race and gender in twentieth and twentieth-first century childhood, with a specific focus on legal, literary, and visual representations of children’s sexuality. Additional areas of interest include critical legal studies, queer theory, critical race studies, the modern novel, film, feminism, critical prison studies, and pedagogy. My first book on childhood sexuality within families, Everybody’s Family Romance: Reading Incest in Neoliberal America (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2009), ended up raising questions about non-familial childhood sexuality that lead to my new book project Screening Pedophilia: Virtuality and Other Crimes Against Nature. Across these two books I argue that print and visual representations of children’s sexuality have, in quite different ways, played an active role in increasing the surveillance and detection of sex crimes across the twentieth and early twentieth century. Recent essays related to Screening Pedophilia include “Documenting the Pedophile: Virtual White Men in the Era of Recovered Memory” in New Formations 70 (2010), “Foucault, the Family and the Cold Monster of Neoliberalism” in Foucault and the Family, Eds. Leon Rocha and Robbie Duschinsky (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2012) and “Virtual Predators: Neoliberal Loss and Human Futures in Mystic River” forthcoming in Social Text (May 2013). My focus on cultural formations of neoliberalism has recently taken shape in a Special Issue of Social Text on “Genres of Neoliberalism” co-edited with Jane Elliott (forthcoming).

Additional research commitments focus on critical prison studies and pedagogy, reflected in the Special Issue of Radical Teacher on “Teaching Inside Carceral Institutions” co-edited with Kate Drabinski (forthcoming), my essay “Access or Justice? College Programs in Prison and Transformative Education” accepted in Incorporation and Excess: Politics In and Against Neoliberalism, edited by Soniya Munshi and Craig Willse (in process), and collaborative work-in-progress on prison abolition and higher education programs in prison with Erica Meiners and on “civic engagement” with Gwendelyn Ballew, Mary Gould, and Kyes Stevens. I currently teach inside men’s and women’s prisons and have received a three year fellowship from the Walter Chapin Simpson Center for the Humanities at the University of Washington to develop sustainable, collaborative work linking education and abolition in the Puget Sound area. This work was recognized locally in a 2012 Sterling Munro Public Service Teaching Award from the University of Washington.


The role of the nominating committee is to ensure that diverse, engaged, demanding thinkers remain at the heart of the American Studies Association. I have been active in the American Studies Association roughly as long as I have been in the academy, and it has long provided a space where scholars can come together to share and sharpen their critical insights. In recent years however the ASA has developed an even more robust understanding of how diverse intellectuals intersect with the field: there are more activist scholars, more intellectuals from outside the academy, more transnational and dynamic approaches to research, and more collaborative spaces for thought and action. This has changed how we collectively understand the animating concerns of the field as well, transforming “American Studies” from an institutional and national place to a contested space where intellectual exchange flourishes in new and important ways. Such a space only exists when people dedicate time and energy to maintain it, and so I would be happy to serve on the nominating committee to help locate and support effective and engaged leadership for the ASA.

SIOBHAN SOMERVILLE is the author of Queering the Color Line: Race and the Invention of Homosexuality in American Culture (Duke UP, 2000). Her recent articles include: “Feminism, Queer Theory, and the Racial Closet,” Criticism (2010); “Queer,” in Keywords for American Cultural Studies, ed. Glenn Hendler and Bruce Burgett (NYUP, 2007); “Notes Toward a Queer History of Naturalization,” American Quarterly (2005); and “Queer Loving,” GLQ (2005). She is currently co-editing (with Martin Manalansan, Chantal Nadeau, and Richard T. Rodríguez) a special issue of GLQ on sexual diasporas, race, and a queer midwest. Her current book projects include “A Queer Genealogy of Naturalization in the U.S.” and “Sexuality and the Civil Rights Imaginary.”

Somerville is Associate Professor of English and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she is also an affiliated faculty member in the Department of African American Studies and the Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory. She received her Ph.D. in English from Yale University and her B.A. in English and Classics at the University of Virginia. She has served on the editorial boards of American Literature, Feminist Studies, and Modern Fiction Studies, and has been a member of the Executive Committee for the Division of Gay Studies in Language and Literature for the Modern Language Association (2005-2010).


I am honored to be considered for the Nominating Committee of the American Studies Association, an organization whose commitments to interdisciplinarity, vigorous self-critique, and social justice have sustained and transformed my work since I was a graduate student. The ASA has fostered intellectual exchange (including contestation) in areas central to my scholarship and teaching, including queer studies, African American studies, feminist studies, and ethnic studies. Just as crucially, it has provided opportunities to engage with and learn from scholars in fields such as indigenous studies, disability studies, and carceral studies (to name just three of many), fields that have powerfully reshaped my understanding of the contours and possibilities for interdisciplinary inquiry in American studies.
If elected to the Nominating Committee, I would work to advance the ASA’s longstanding commitment to fostering interdisciplinary collaboration, intellectual diversity, and outspoken defense of public protest and political dissent. In addition to these broad goals, two specific issues -- educational access and academic labor conditions – seem especially urgent. In the face of declining support for public education and rapidly evaporating opportunities for access for students at all educational levels and institutions, I would like to contribute to the ASA’s ongoing efforts to bring attention, through both scholarship and advocacy, to questions of access, particularly for working-class and poor students, students of color, people with disabilities, first-generation college students, and undocumented students. Likewise, I’m eager to participate in advancing the ASA’s efforts to address the working conditions of graduate students and faculty at a variety of institutions (including K-12, community colleges, and two- and four-year colleges and universities). Having benefitted from my years of association with the ASA, I would welcome the opportunity to contribute directly to the ASA’s efforts to engage its diverse membership in fostering new public conversations and institutional practices about these and other issues.

JUDY TZU-CHUN WU is an Associate Professor of History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Ohio State University. She coordinates the Asian American Studies Program and is a key organizer of DISCO (the Diversity and Identity Studies Collective at OSU which is a collaboration between African American and African Studies, American Indian Studies, Asian American Studies, Comparative Ethnic and American Studies, Disability Studies, Latino/a Studies, Sexuality Studies, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies). She is also co-editor of Frontiers: A Journal of Women’s History.

Wu received her Ph.D. in U.S. History at Stanford University in 1998. She is the author of Dr. Mom Chung of the Fair-Haired Bastards: The Life of a Wartime Celebrity (California 2005), a biography of the first American-born Chinese woman physician, Margaret Chung. This work examines how Chung navigated the shifting racial, gender, and sexual norms of American society from the Victorian to the early Cold War period. Wu also is the author of Radicals on the Road: Internationalism, Orientalism, and Feminism during the Vietnam Era (Cornell 2013), a work that examines how the international travels of American antiwar activists during the U.S. War in Viet Nam shaped their politics and identities. This work introduces the concept of “radical orientalism” to capture how an idealized understanding of decolonizing Asia shaped American political imaginaries. Wu is starting a third book project, a political biography of Patsy Takemoto Mink, the first congressional woman of color and the co-author of Title IX. This work analyzes Mink’s political career as a window onto changing notions of citizenship and liberalism during the second half of the 20th century.


The ASA is a remarkable professional organization, one dedicated to intellectually and politically interrogating what constitutes “America,” who are Americans, and how we should study America. I began attending the ASA in 2000, when I was just two years out of graduate school. I was still discovering and establishing my professional identity, and found a welcoming home at the ASA. Even though I was trained as a historian, I have been and continue to be engaged in interdisciplinary scholarship and program building. Also, the issues that inspire my intellectual curiosity – identity, race, empire, citizenship, gender, and sexuality – are now central to American Studies as a field. I chaired the ASA’s Constance Rourke Prize Committee for the last three years, and I welcome the opportunity to offer additional service to the organization by serving on the nominating committee and hence shaping the future of the field of American Studies.