Session 3

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Friday, March 4th
2:00 PM

White Supremacist Ideology and Segregationist Frames in Cold War Context

Devon A. Wright

GC140, Modesto A. Maidique Campus, Florida International University

2:00 PM - 2:15 PM

This paper examines how segregationists fused traditional frame arguments with Cold War geopolitics to defend the South’s racial hierarchy and white supremacist ideology. For social movements, ideology’s power is its capacity to weave seemingly disparate cultural perspectives of deep historical roots together with more contemporary concerns and reorient them into a web of frame arguments serving the core logic for collective action. As the intellectual architecture of a movement’s cosmology, the frame constellation is the entire interlocking web of frames as defined by core ideology. Its structure is comprised of multiple frame clusters that are regional assemblages in the constellation of frames organized around a central subject as related to the movement’s ideological nucleus. Within frame clusters are frame sub-clusters, which are relatively smaller numbers of tightly interconnected frame arguments structuring the larger frame cluster theme as related to movement ideology. Frame arguments then, are basic units of a movement’s ideological thrust. In this research white supremacist ideology functions as the gravitational center around which all thematic arguments orbit in the segregationist frame constellation; a dynamism characterized by interrelated, overlapping and intersecting notions which operate for the singular purpose of defending the segregationist vision of the cosmos.

2:20 PM

Silent Spaces of Faith

Tara Kai

GC140, Modesto A. Maidique Campus, Florida International University

2:20 PM - 2:35 PM

Unrevealed spaces of emotions and abstract matters of belief and faith are forces that are beyond the familiar terrain of academia. However, these representations not only forge the weight of our meaningful relations to those in positions of authority, but also draw attention to the ethical possibilities held in the hands of the few. In academic settings, most research on topics of sex abuse and trauma comes from the department of psychology. The purpose of this paper is to discover these “secret” spaces from the perspective of space, power, and representation, and to become attentive to spatial forces folded into the fabric of the Catholic orthodoxy. This presentation investigates links between the “Silent Spaces of Faith” (within the hierarchy of the Catholic Church where these spaces transform the shape of “moral truths”, “sin”, and “penance”) and the French Marxist philosopher and sociologist Henri Lefebvre’s spatial trialectics. The dynamic oscillation between Lefebvre’s three spatial concepts: from the abstract, crude, natural space or “absolute space” to the more complex spatialties whose significance is socially produced or “social space” are worthy to use in order to deconstruct what happens when “confined” groups of men are given absolute spaces that fall “under the thrall of divine order” (Lefebvre 235).

2:40 PM

Gifts and Reciprocity: Mistakes and Personal Experiences in a Bangkok Law Firm

David A. Dayton

GC140, Modesto A. Maidique Campus, Florida International University

2:40 PM - 2:55 PM

The maintenance and negotiation of personal relationships to accomplish various public ends fascinates me, likely because experience has shown that I’m not very good at it. History, personal experience, place and space construct understandings which facilitate the negotiation of identity for individuals both directly and indirectly are involved in the gift-giving events. This paper is a reflexive look at original research done within a Thai law firm focusing on gift giving and professional relationships. At the time of my research, my ethnographic skills were limited by my own understanding of my role in the narrative that I was assembling. Two decades later, I reflect on issues of race, gender, sexuality, language and the nature of gift relationships and my role in the negotiation of networks and identity--both my own and that of these in law firm with which I was working/researching. After 15 plus years of subsequent experience working in and studying Thailand and China, there are aspects of these relationships that I understand with much more clarity today. This additional experience has allowed me to re-think some of the key aspects of my previous research. In doing so, I have detailed a number of experiences that I hope will be useful to other anthropologist wishing to think critically about their involvements in the field.