Fall 2008 Events

"Mixed Race and the Legacy of Loving" 

Peggy Gillespie: “Of Many Colors and the Family Diversity Projects”
September 8, 2008
3:30 - 4:30pm
Maier Hall (Fromm)

Peggy Gillespie, is the Co-Founder/Director of Family Diversity Projects, whose mission is “to educate people of all ages to recognize, support, and celebrate the full range of diversity.” She is a certified social worker and co-founder and former Assistant Director of the University of Massachusetts Medical Center’s Stress Reduction Program. A graduate of Smith College with a master’s degree from the University of Oklahoma, Ms. Gillespie has worked as a freelance journalist for the past fifteen years.

Ms. Gillespie’s Davies Forum talk will discuss how the “Of Many Colors” photo exhibit (on display at the USF Crossroads Gallery Sep 3-Sep 19) was created and has been received, and will be followed by a walking tour of the exhibit.

Touring Family Diversity Projects Exhibit “Of Many Colors: Portraits of Multiracial Families”
September 3 – 19, 2008
Crossroads Gallery (University Center)

We have all encountered the standard demographic survey with its instructions to "Check one: African-American, Hispanic, White," and so on. But for those who do not fall neatly into any of these categories, there is only the least inclusive, most alienating category – "Other." To spotlight and celebrate the ever-growing diversity of the American Family, photographer Gigi Kaeser and writer Peggy Gillespie, Amherst, Mass., have created an ambitious, award-winning photograph-text exhibit, Of Many Colors: Portraits of Multiracial Families.

An exhibition of Of Many Colors: Portraits of Multiracial Families, a touring photo-text display created by the award-winning Family Diversity Projects of Amherst, Massachusetts is scheduled to be featured at USF this September as part of the Davies Forum.

The Of Many Colors exhibit has visited universities, public schools (K-12), houses of worship, community centers, galleries, museums, and conferences since 1994. Of Many Colors tells the stories of twenty families who have bridged the racial divide through interracial relationships or adoption. In a world where race is considered by many to be a formidable barrier between people, the families in this exhibit are celebrated as twentieth century pioneers willing to risk disapproval and misunderstanding to find richness and value in diversity. These families have much to say about the most intimate form of integration: family love.

The book, Of Many Colors, has also been published by the University of Massachusetts Press (with a forward by Teaching Tolerance magazine Editor, Glenda Valentine). The book is available in paperback and hardbound editions and include complete text and photographs of over 20 families along with a comprehensive diversity resource guide.

Internet browsers can view images, interviews, and other information about the Of Many Colors exhibit and book at www.familydiv.org .

Michael Omi: “Multiracial Identity, Colorblindness, and the Post-Racial Society”
September 24, 2008
3:30 – 5:15pm
Lone Mountain 100

Michael Omi is a faculty member of the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Berkeley, and received his Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Omi's work includes race theory, Asian American studies, and antiracist scholarship. He is most well known for developing the theory of racial formation along with Howard Winant, in Racial Formation in the United States. First published in 1986, Racial Formation in the United States is now considered a classic in the literature on race and ethnicity; and Omi and Winant’s theory of racial formation has become an established primary paradigm for sociologically understanding race.

Dr. Omi’s Davies Forum talk will focus on multiracial classification and identity, placing it within the context of ongoing debates about the broader political meaning of race. In particular, he will critique how some figures (such as Ward Connerly) utilize multiraciality to illustrate that we need to "get beyond" race and move towards a truly colorblind society.

Wild Tongues: A Spoken Word Event, in collaboration with Kearny Street Workshop
November 19, 2008
6:30 – 8:00pm
Crossroads Café (University Center)

The Kearny Street Workshop (KSW) is a non-profit, community-based organization, based in San Francisco. Its mission is to produce and present art that enriches and empowers Asian Pacific American communities. KSW’s vision is to achieve a more just society by connecting Asian Pacific American (APA) artists with community members to give voice to APA cultural, historical, and contemporary issues. In addition to continuing to organize ongoing community events, between Oct 25, 2008-Jan 18, 2009, KSW will be collaborating with the De Young Museum to bring about several events in conjunction with its exhibition, Asian/American/Modern Art: Shifting Currents, 1900–1970, which will present the first comprehensive survey of the work of artists of Asian ancestry who lived and worked in the United States.

This Davies Event will bring together community artists and performers, of all colors, and of several generations, to share their experiences with mixed race love and lives, in poetry and song.

Kip Fulbeck: “What Are You: The Changing Face of America”
November 3, 2008
5:30 – 7:30pm
Maier Hall (Fromm)

Kip Fulbeck is an award-winning artist, slam poet and filmmaker. He is the author of Permanence: Tattoo Portraits; Part Asian, 100% Hapa; and Paper Bullets: A Fictional Autobiography, as well as the director of a dozen short films including Banana Split and Lilo & Me.

Kip has been featured on CNN, MTV, and PBS, and has performed and exhibited in over 20 countries. He speaks nationwide on identity, multiraciality and pop culture — mixing together spoken word, stand-up comedy, political activism and personal stories to standing ovations.

A challenging and inspirational teacher, Kip is a professor of Art at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he has been named an Outstanding Faculty Member four times. He is also an avid surfer, guitar player, motorcycle rider, ocean lifeguard, and pug enthusiast. A complete overachiever despite being only half Chinese, Kip is also a nationally-ranked Masters swimmer.

Mr. Fulbeck’s Davies Talk will discuss his experiences with “The Hapa Project,” which began as a forum for mixed descent Asian and Pacific Islanders to address the question “What are you?” in their own words, and later evolved into his book, Part Asian, 100% Hapa. Part Asian is filled with over 100 individual, handwritten response to “What are you?,” is accompanied by portraits of each respondent, is meant to present the individuals and their growing community to the world, “a reality that will no longer be ignored.”

Anthony Brown and the Asian American Orchestra
December 3, 2008
6:00 - 8:00pm
Presentation Theater

Dr. Anthony Brown is a percussionist, composer, ethnomusicologist, and Guggenheim Fellow. Dr. Brown’s unique compositional and performance voice, reflective of his own intercultural heritage and experiences, has established him as a seminal figure in the contemporary California creative music scene, as Director of the Asian American Orchestra, and a performer with some of the foremost musicians in jazz today.

Since 1998, the Asian American Orchestra has received international critical acclaim for blending Asian musical instruments and sensibilities with the sonorities of the jazz orchestra. The orchestra's recording of Duke Ellington-Billy Strayhorn's Far East Suite received a 2000 Grammy nomination for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance. And the Orchestra’s recording, Monk's Moods, which features new interpretations of Thelonious Monk’s, was rated as a "five-star masterpiece," and one of four "Best CDs of 2003" by Downbeat magazine. This year, the Orchestra will celebrate its 10th anniversary and the release of its newest CD.