Sunday, November 24, 2019

Nicole Rizzo's "To Stop Treading Water: Monologues that Challenge the Undertow of Trauma" in the UNESCO/UNITWIN Diary Series

Photo courtesy Stephen Vocaturo
The following video based on my Kilachand Honors College Senior Keystone Project at Boston University concerns the pervasive socio-cultural problem of sexual assault and/or trauma, particularly on college campuses. This is a topic continuously in circulation on various social media platforms (just think: Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, the Stanford swimmer Brock Turner, and the President of the United States). Movements such as #MeToo and feminist plays such as for colored girls who have considered suicide/ when the rainbow is enuf and The Vagina Monologues have powerfully given voice to survivors by offering intersectional perspectives and raising awareness. My Keystone Project was essentially an activist endeavor – one that aimed to deconstruct the universalizing narrative of the “victim” and the “survivor” seen through the historical lenses of racism, sexism, homophobia, and ableism. I have written a Vagina-Monologue-choreopoem-inspired play, To Stop Treading Water: Monologues that Challenge the Undertow of Trauma, that combines monologues, movement, and music to address the violence of rape culture and explore the diverse array of trauma responses. The play was performed on April 24th and 25th, 2018 with the assistance of a team of committed performers and designers, who also assisted with the development of educational multimedia (i.e. videos/graphics) materials and a website to contain them. Research on postmodern drama that grapples with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) and sexual assault (which also served as the basis for my senior Honors Thesis in English) and the use of ethnographic approaches to gathering ideas, such as conducting interviews with sexual trauma survivors, informed my work. In essence, my Keystone Project was an attempt to give voice to survivors of sexual assault/trauma and inspire a call to action.

Congratulations to Yaaminey Mubayi on her Fulbright-Nehru Academic and Professional Excellence Fellowship!

News in from Yaaminey, who joined our UNESCO/UNITWIN Network as a Founding Member with the New Delhi-based Cultural Resource Conservation Initiative in 2007: 

"I have received the Fulbright-Nehru Academic and Professional Excellence Fellowship, enabling me to carry out a research cum teaching program at Mount Holyoke College this academic year, 2019-20. My research focuses on my study of historic water management in Ellora and Daulatabad, Maharashtra, that I have been engaged with for the past several years. I hope to complete the manuscript for my next book on the subject by end year."

Within our UNESCO/UNITWIN Network over the years, Yaaminey has been contributing in such arenas as livelihoods in Punjab and Orissa, endogenous tourism including gender implications such as commercialism competing with women's traditional livelihoods, and intangible cultural heritage.

Photo Courtesy Yaaminey
In the first e-book of our UNESCO/UNITWIN Network, Yaaminey contributed a chapter entitled "Poverty of Choice: Gender and Livelihoods in Punjab." We now look forward to her new book in the arena of water and human settlements in Maharashtra.

Summary Bio: Yaaminey Mubayi is an Historian and Social Development Professional with twenty years of experience in the field of Cultural Heritage Studies. With an interest in fieldwork-based applied learning as her core motivation, she has combined research and institutional experience with academic practice and forged an innovative professional niche in the area of Cultural Heritage and Development Planning.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Beyond the Book XI Exhibition Opens and Artists' Talks Announced! (UPDATE: plus Artists' Talks photoset!)

UPDATE: Photoset from Artists' Talks on November 23, 2019:

Beyond the Book XI with 85 works of art was opened to the public at the Faneuil and Brighton Center Branches of the Boston Public Library on November 9, 2019.

Below, a glimpse of the reception at the Faneuil Library as well as an event description by Exhibition Organizer, Ronni Komarow. The events are cosponsored by the Friends of the Faneuil Library, and supported by the UNESCO/UNITWIN Network on Gender, Culture, and People-Centered Development at Boston University Women's & Gender Studies. (Photos by Brenda Gael McSweeney)

Exhibit Organizer Ronni Komarow welcoming 
Artists Dennis Dahill and Ruth Rosner with Maria Rodrigues

Group Photo with Exhibition Artists
Applause for newly elected Boston City Councilor Liz Breadon

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Liz Breadon Makes History on Election Day in Boston!

Three cheers for Liz Breadon! Liz, who served on the Board of Directors of our UNESCO/UNITWIN Affiliate the Brighton-Allston Historical Society, made history on November 5 2019 by winning the election to become the first-ever woman representing Brighton-Allston on the Boston City Council!

 Her key plans include:

- Combating suffocating luxury development through promotion of affordable housing
- Championing strong schools for strong communities
- Campaigning for transportation that actually gets you there
- Protecting the environment and green space in the community (for which Liz walks the talk by having installed solar panels and rain water harvesting at home)

Liz and her progressive platform, with 58.5% of the vote in the Municipal Elections, earned a decisive mandate!


Photos by Brenda Gael McSweeney

Saturday, November 2, 2019

You are invited to Beyond the Book XI, cosponsored by Friends of Faneuil Library, our UNESCO/UNITWIN Affiliate!

On view at both the Faneuil Library and the Brighton Library through Sat., Jan. 11th 2020

Beyond the Book XI
Sat., Nov. 9th, 11:30 am.–1:30 pm.
An Exhibition of Artist's Books and Book-Related Art Inspired by Books

Image credit, "Influenced by Matisse" by Suzette Dorso

Beyond the Book has been presenting exhibitions of book art in the greater Boston area since 2006. This upcoming exhibition will feature artist's books about books—book art inspired by a favorite novel, a book of poetry, an author, a library. The exhibition will feature over 100 works of art by over 30 artists from around New England as well as the work of artists in New York, Texas — and even Belgium!

This exhibition is a joint effort involving both the Faneuil and Brighton Branches of the Boston Public Library. Works are distributed between the two branches.

Hours and directions for the Faneuil Branch Library, 419 Faneuil St, Oak Square, Brighton MA are here:

Hours and directions for the Brighton Branch Library, 40 Academy Hill Rd., Brighton Center, Brighton MA are here:

Parking for the Faneuil Library is available at the Presentation School Foundation lot, diagonally across Oak Square from the library. Enter from Tremont St., just past the bus shelter. The Brighton Library has a parking lot; from Washington Street go up Chestnut Hill Ave. and enter on the left, just past the Brighton Courthouse.

Exhibition Programming: There will be a series of exhibition-related programs offered at both branches. Please stay tuned for details. Ronni Komarow of FOFL coordinated this exhibition.

Cosponsored by The Friends of the Faneuil Branch Library (FOFL), and supported by the UNESCO/UNITWIN Network on Gender, Culture, & People-Centered Development of Boston University's Women's and Gender Studies Program.