UW News

September 9, 2020

English Department discusses coronavirus, ‘politics of care’ in ‘Literature, Language, Culture’ podcasts, videos — plus Devin Naar of Sephardic Studies interviewed on two podcasts

Jesse Oak Taylor

The Department of English has introduced its new “Literature, Language, Culture” Dialogue Series, a series of podcasts and YouTube videos in which UW humanities faculty discuss their research and teaching — “including the ways our work contributes to how we experience and seek to understand this time of global crisis.” Each presentation is available in both podcast and YouTube video formats.

Michelle Liu appeared on an Engiish Department podcast

Michelle Liu

In the first of three episodes so far, associate professor Jesse Oak Taylor describes “what studying literature in what’s called ‘the environmental humanities’ teaches us about collectivity during events from Cyclone Amphan to COVID-19.” Cyclone Amphan was a powerful tropical cyclone that caused damage in Eastern India in May.

The second episode features Michelle Liu, senior lecturer and associate director of writing programs, on the topic, “What Asian American Studies, Literature and Art Teach Us During COVID-19.” Liu also discusses anti-racist pedagogical practices.

Stephanie Clare appeared on an English dept podcast

Stephanie Clare

The third episode features associate professor Stephanie Clare on “Queer Care and Trans Literature During COVID-19.” With a focus on promoting a “politics of care,” key texts she covers in the talk include “Nevada” by Imogen Binnie to “Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl’s Confabulous Memoir,” by Kai Cheng Thom.

Public scholarship project director for the podcast/video series is lecturer C.R. Grimmer and project manager is Jake Huebsch, coordinator of the department’s Expository Writing Program.

In other podcast news:

Sephardic Studies chair Devin Naar visits two podcasts

UW professor Devin Naar was a guest on two podcasts

Devin Naar

Devin Naar, UW professor of history and Jewish studies and chair of the Jackson School’s Sephardic Studies Program, was a guest on two podcasts in recently.

In May Naar discussed the history and cultural legacy of the Ladino language on a podcast about Near Eastern history, language and culture produced by Foreigncy.US. He described the growing Sephardic Studies Digital Collection, in the Jackson School’s Stroum Center for Jewish Studies, gathering and digitizing documents pertaining to the Sephardic Jews of the Mediterranean world.

Naar also was a guest in September on a podcast called “Then and Now,” produced by the University of California, Los Angles, Center for History and Policy. The episode was titled “Are Jews White? A Conversation on Race, Erasure, and Sephardic History.” Naar discussed the topic from the perspective of Sephardic Jewish history.

“He challenges the imposed racial categorization of Jews in the United States, discusses the erasure and exclusion of Sephardic and Mizrahi identity in mainstream Jewish institutions,” program notes say, “and proposes a historical reclamation of Sephardic identity and a radical reimagining of community spaces.” This podcast was released on Sept. 8.