Lori A. Flores, an Associate Professor of History at Stony Brook University, comes to BC to talk about her book "Grounds for Dreaming", which is a deeply-researched history of how the Mexican community in California's Agriculture Belt fought for equality and respect decades before Cesar Chavez founded the United Farm Workers. Grounds for Dreaming flyer.
The second-annual conference in honor of Chicanx Studies pioneer Jess Nieto featured a roundtable discussion on Ray Gonzales; art by Jorge Guillen, Diego Monterrubio, and BC students; a keynote discussion by Sean Arce; a screening of the documentary "Rise and Fall of the Brown Buffalo", about Chicano activist Oscar Zeta Acosta; graduate student presentations about Chicanx history; and much more. 2019 Jess Nieto Conference flyer.
In recognition of Dolores Huerta Day, the Levan Center and the National Endowment for the Humanities presented a discussion with Dr. Stacey K. Sowards, professor and chair of the Department of Communication at the University of Texas in El Paso. Sowards discussed her book, "Si, Ella Puede! The Rhetorical Legacy of Dolores Huerta and the United Farm Workers", which contextualizes Huerta's activism through close, theoretical analysis of the activist's speeches, letters and interviews. Dolores Huerta flyer.
Project Conexiones and the Social Justice Institute presented a screening of director Laurie Coyle's documentary "Adios Amor", which tells the story of Maria Moreno's struggle to organize California's migrant farm workers while raising 12 children. The documentary also interweaves Coyle's quest to find photographs and more information about Moreno through the attics and archives of the California Central Valley. After the screening, Coyle and students from Project Conexiones held a roundtable Q and A session.
Daniel Rios, a graduate student pursuing a Ph.D in Ethnic Studies at UC San Diego and a Bakersfield native, presented his research on the political, social, geographic, and cultural production of Bakersfield in the 20th Century, examining how the interplay of race, class, gender, and labor played a central role in shaping the daily lives of working class communities of color.
University of Oregon professor Dr. Sarah Wald hosted a conversation about how American ideals about farming and property ownership influence citizenship. Race, Citizenship and the American Farmworker flyer.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Sonia Nazario, as well as new media entrepreneur and former Center for Investigative Reporting CEO Joaquin Alvarado, hosted a discussion about the ways that media frames immigration issues as part of the CA 2020: Democracy and the Informed Citizen project. Immigration and Journalism flyer.
Alenda Y. Chang, an Assistant Professor in Film and Media Studies at UC Santa Barbara and editor of the Growing Games blog, presented a discussion about the ways environmental humanitarians and scientists come together to create media that advocates for environmental causes. Her discussion focused primarily on ecocritical theory in PC and console video games. Revisiting the Two Cultures flyer.
The Social Justice Institute hosted a conference recognizing the life and service of Dr. Jesus "Jess" Gilberto Nieto to Bakersfield College. Dr. Nieto was one of BC's first Chicano faculty, a pioneer of BC's Chicano Studies curriculum, and founder of BC's Chicano Cultural Center. 2018 Jess Nieto Memorial Conference flyer.
Author Gabriel Thompson talked about his book "America's Social Arsonist: Fred Ross and Grassroots Organizing in the Twentieth Century." Gabriel Thompson flyer.
Sonoma State University Professor Emeritus Dr. Gerald Haslam talked about growing up in Oildale and studying at BC in the mid-1950s and early 1960s before becoming an educator and a prolific writer. He has published novels, essay collections, and historical manuscripts about the Central Valley and its cultures, and he has contributed to news media such as the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine, KQED’s California Report, and the Sacramento Bee. Gerald Haslam flyer.
The project leads for BC's Social Justice Institute visited Washington, DC in 2017 to attend a Project Directors meeting hosted by the National Endowment for the Humanities at the Constitution Center.
"Out of Shadows", the musical by famed Chicano writer Gary Soto, is based on interviews with Bay Area DREAMers discussing their dreams and despair as they navigate the shadows of immigration policies. The performance was conducted in conjunction with a series of events commemorating the historical legacy of the Delano Grape Strike.
A week's worth of events centered on the Delano Grape Strike and Latino-American history. For more information, visit the Latino Americans: 500 Years of History website.
For our first "Community Dialogue" event, we hosted environmental justice activists from three local organizations who focus on community organizing and education efforts in rural Kern County, particularly in the Lost Hills area. Their advocacy surrounds issues related to environmental justice, education, community organizing, and the creation of "citizen scientists."