Fall 2019 Reading Group Series: Thinking About Research Justice

Please join us for our November Literature and Mind reading group led by Aili Pettersson Peeker with Visiting Assistant Professor Amrah Salomon and Professor Candace Waid on November 20th at 5pm in the Sankey room (SH 2623). All faculty, postdocs, grads, and undergrads are warmly invited to attend.

As the second meeting of this year’s grad student-led reading group series, this event seeks to foster further conversation among the intersections between Literature and Mind and the American Cultures and Global Contexts Center. Please email english-litandmind@ucsb.edu for the selected readings.

Amrah Salomon, “Telling to reclaim, not to sell: Resistance narratives and the marketing of justice”

Marie-Laure Ryan, “Narratology and Cognitive Science: A Problematic Relation” 

“This reading group will be joined by Visiting Assistant Professor Amrah Salomon (English Department, Indigenous Studies Specialization) and Professor Candace Waid (English Department) as an opportunity for exploring how the interests of Literature and Mind and the American Cultures and Global Contexts Center might merge. We will read one of Professor Salomon’s articles, “Telling to reclaim, not to sell: Resistance narratives and the marketing of justice,” together with Marie-Laure Ryan’s “Narratology and Cognitive Science: A Problematic Relation” (both short ones). Professor Salomon works on Native American Literature, Native Feminisms, and Native American Environmental and Social Justice, among other topics, and this article focuses on Indigenous and traditional storytelling as it critiques story-based practices used by social justice activists today. Ryan’s article introduces cognitive literary studies and raises questions about interdisciplinary collaboration and how to study the nexus of narrative and mind. Together, I hope these articles serve as a starting point for a joint exploration of where cognitive approaches to storytelling and memory merge with other disciplines and agendas as well as where they fail to do so, and for a discussion of research justice and the connection (or lack thereof) between the academy and the communities around it.” —Aili Pettersson Peeke, UCSB English Department

Fall Welcome Reception

Come join us for our Literature and Mind fall welcome reception in the Sankey room (SH 2623) on Wednesday, October 9th, at 5pm! Come enjoy a lovely evening connecting with your fellow minds over tasty refreshments as we enter into the new academic year. All faculty, postdocs, grads, and undergrads are very welcome to attend! If you have any questions, please feel free to email lit-and-mind@english.ucsb.edu.

Story and the Brain Undergraduate Discussion Group

Next Meeting: October 30, 2019, at 6-7:45pm, South Hall 2623 (Sankey Room)

October 30 – This meeting will be led by Thomas Nedungadan and we will read Iris Murdoch’s short essay (only six pages) “Against Dryness” to continue our conversation about the potential of literature and its relationship to empathy and action in the world. Food and refreshments will be provided and everyone is welcome!

December 4 – This meeting will be led by Melody Sobhani and aims to situate our discussion of empathy in a global context by reading short stories by William Faulkner and Haruki Murakami and engaging with the work of the auteur Chang-dong Lee. Readings and more information will be sent out closer to the date.

About Story and the Brain

The advent of neuroscience and artificial intelligence is reshaping our world today, creating a dramatic shift in how we think about what it means to be human. At this critical juncture, it is vital that humanists participate in the development of a shared intellectual enterprise to ensure that scientific developments take place in the context of human values. But much of the ‘cognitive revolution’ still has to make its full impact on the typical student. The Story and the Brain Undergraduate Discussion Group sets out to provide a space for humanists with little or no knowledge of modern neuroscience to acquire an informed account of the model of the mind emerging from accelerating technological and scientific advances. That literature has something significant to offer to the neurobiological and computer sciences on the most subtle aspects of social perception, memory, emotion and cognition will be the focus of the meetings. The group will meet monthly and decide on readings together. All are very welcome and no prior knowledge is needed. Undergraduates are especially welcome.

Organizers: Sowon Park and Aili Pettersson Peeker

Contact: unconsciousmemory@english.ucsb.edu or apetterssonpeeker@ucsb.edu

Readings for Oct. 2nd meeting: Blakey Vermeule’s article “The New Unconscious: A Literary Guided Tour” from The Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Literary Studies (2015) and Toni Morrison’s short story “Recitatif” (1983).”