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Wed, October 12, 2016 @ 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM$6.00 – $15.00
Literary and Cultural Perspectives on Terror
a talk by Basuli Deb
co-sponsored by the Theater of the Oppressed Laboratory (TOPLAB) toplab.org
In this talk, writer and researcher Basuli Deb will discuss some of the issues addressed in her book, Transnational Feminist Perspectives on Terror in Literature and Culture, which offers a transnational feminist response to the gender politics of torture and terror from the viewpoint of populations of color who have come to be associated with acts of terror. Using the War on Terror in Afghanistan and Iraq, Deb visits other such racialized wars in Palestine, Guatemala, India, Algeria, and South Africa. Her research draws widely on postcolonial literature, photography, films, music, interdisciplinary arts, media/new media, and activism, and joins the larger conversation about human rights by addressing the problem of a pervasive public misunderstanding of terrorism conditioned by a foreign and domestic policy perspective. Diverging from an international security studies lens, Deb provides an alternative understanding of terrorism through a postcolonial and transnational feminist lens grounded in history. Her analysis brings counter-terror narratives into dialogue with ideologies of gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, class, and religion, and addresses the situation of women as both perpetrators and targets of torture, and looks at the possibilities for a dialogue between feminist and queer politics that might lead to confronting securitized regimes of torture.
Basuli Deb is a faculty member at CUNY and a 2016-2017 Global Scholar at the Institute for Research on Women at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. Her first book, Transnational Feminist Perspectives on Terror in Literature and Culture is a gendered analysis of a pervasive public misunderstanding of terrorism conditioned by neoliberal foreign and domestic policy perspectives. It was published by Routledge in 2014. At Rutgers, Deb will be working on her next book, Indigenous Lives and Diasporic Aspirations, which brings together the abuses of indigenous and immigrant populations in a queer feminist conversation about national and international securitization and its blindspots. Deb’s queer feminist critique of securitization also extends to celebrity studies in another book project she is working on called Celebrity Lifestyles and Public Intellectualism. Her peer-reviewed essays have been published in leading feminist and postcolonial studies journals and collections, among them Frontiers, Meridians, Postcolonial Text, South Asian Review, Journal of Commonwealth Studies, and Atlantic Literary Review. She has also co-edited a celebrity studies collection and a special issue of Postcolonial Text. Deb is a nationally and internationally recognized public speaker on feminist and postcolonial issues with a record of long-standing feminist leadership in the academic profession.