Home Events Cristiana Giordano Book Event, "Migrants in Translation: Caring and the Logics of Difference in Contemporary Italy"

Cristiana Giordano Book Event, "Migrants in Translation: Caring and the Logics of Difference in Contemporary Italy"

STS/CSIS Event
When May 20, 2015
from 12:10 PM to 01:30 PM
Where SS&H 1246
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Lunch provided. Please RSVP if you plan to attend.

Please join Science & Technology Studies (STS) and the Center for Science and Innovation Studies (CSIS) for a Round Table to discuss Prof. Cristiana Giordano's book Migrants in Translation (2014) published by UC Press. This event will feature discussants Marisol de la Cadena, Ladson Hinton, Hélène Mialet, and Mayanthi Fernando.

Migrants in Translation is an ethnographic reflection on foreign migration, mental health, and cultural translation in Italy. Its larger context is Europe and the rapid shifts in cultural and political identities that are negotiated between cultural affinity and a multicultural, multiracial Europe. The issue of migration and cultural difference figures as central in the process of forming diverse yet unified European identities. In this context, legal and illegal foreigners—mostly from Eastern Europe and Northern and Sub-Saharan Africa—are often portrayed as a threat to national and supranational identities, security, cultural foundations, and religious values.

This book addresses the legal, therapeutic, and moral techniques of recognition and cultural translation that emerge in response to these social uncertainties. In particular, Migrants in Translation focuses on Italian ethno-psychiatry as an emerging technique that provides culturally appropriate therapeutic services exclusively to migrants, political refugees, and victims of torture and trafficking. Cristiana Giordano argues that ethno-psychiatry’s focus on cultural identifications as therapeutic—inasmuch as it complies with current political desires for diversity and multiculturalism—also provides a radical critique of psychiatric, legal, and moral categories of inclusion, and allows for a rethinking of the politics of recognition.

Cristiana Giordano is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at UC Davis. She works on foreign migration, mental health, and cultural translation in contemporary Italy. Her research addresses the politics of migration in Europe through the lens of ethno-psychiatry and its radical critique of psychiatric, legal, and moral categories of inclusion/exclusion of foreign others. She is the author of Migrants in Translation. Caring and the Logics of Difference in Contemporary Italy (University of California Press, 2014).

Marisol de la Cadena is Professor of Anthropology at UC Davis. She is the author of Indigenous Mestizos: The Politics of Race and Culture in Cuzco, Peru, 1910-1991 and is currently writing the book Alternate Archives: Understanding Indigenous Politics the Andean Way, in which she interrogates the relationship between indigeneity and “politics” and more specifically, the epistemic maneuver through which the power to decide what and who counts as its objects and subjects was invented.

Ladson Hinton MD is a geriatric psychiatrist, clinical and services researcher, and social scientist at UC Davis in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Over the past two decades, he has conducted interdisciplinary research to better understand the cultural and social dimensions of late life depression and dementia-related illness and caregiving experience among older adults and their families.

Hélène Mialet is a Visiting Professor in the STS program at UC Davis and a Senior Fellow in the Center for Science and Innovation Studies. She works on questions related to subjectivity, human-machine interaction, body, and cognition. She is the author of L’Entreprise Créatrice (Hermès, 2008) and Hawking Incorporated (The University of Chicago Press, 2012). 

Mayanthi L. Fernando is Associate Professor of Anthropology at UC Santa Cruz. Her research concerns Islam, secularism, sex/gender, and the politics of difference in post-colonial France, and her first book, The Republic Unsettled: Muslim French and the Contradictions of Secularism, came out in November 2014.

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