With significant financial support from the International Division, CSEAS, collaborating departments and programs, and the College of Letters & Science, this component of the Social Justice in Southeast Asia (SJSEA) Project supports developing scholarly infrastructure by hiring three entry-level assistant professors.
Dr. Veronika Kusumaryati will join the Departments of Anthropology and International Studies as an Assistant Professor of Anthropology and International Studies. Dr. Kusumaryati is a political and media anthropologist working in West Papua, a self-identifying term referring to the Indonesia’s provinces of Papua and West Papua. Her scholarship engages with the theories and historiography of colonialism, decolonization, and postcoloniality. She holds a Ph.D. in anthropology with a secondary field in film and visual studies from Harvard University, and she received her bachelor degree from the Jakarta Institute of Arts majoring in Film and Media Studies. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Anthropology and a member of the Harvard Sensory Ethnography Lab at Harvard.
Juan Fernandez will join the Department of History as an Assistant Professor of Southeast Asian History in the near future. Fernandez’s work focuses on the histories of masculinity in the highlands of the northern Philippines in the early twentieth century. His dissertation, “Manly Encounters,” examines how ethnographic fieldwork conducted by the earliest generation of professional American anthropologists was intertwined with their attempts to perform (to varying degrees of success) their approximation of Indigenous Philippine masculinity. It is through an examination of these anthropologists’ fieldnotes, diaries, and correspondence—in addition to their published ethnographic work—that he argues that there is a simultaneous, reciprocal, but nevertheless hierarchical construction of masculinity of both the anthropologist and their Indigenous subjects. The dissertation is part of a larger project that analyzes the emergence of the category of the Southeast Asian “headhunter”—in the Philippines, but also in Malaysian and Indonesian Borneo—in terms of its gendered dimensions and the almost invariable ascription of masculinity to the Indigenous peoples who once practiced it. He is currently a PhD candidate in History at Cornell University.
In year 2 of the project, the CSEAS will search for a third faculty member in Asian Languages and Cultures (ALC). This hire will be focused on the cultural politics of dissent, difference, movement, or another theme related to social justice.
These faculty will develop a cluster of conjoined social justice courses for first-year undergraduates through UW’s First-year Interest Group program (FIG), and will also contribute in other ways to the project and the CSEAS.