Humanities Working Groups
Glasscock Center Humanities Working Groups are a forum for in-depth discussion and research-related activities. Participants share the goal of stimulating intellectual exchange through discussion, writing, viewing, reading, and other activities that further their inquiries into common scholarly concerns. The Center makes space available for the meetings of these groups.
Working Group meetings are posted on the Center’s web calendar. To join a Working Group, or to find out more about a particular group, contact the convenor directly (listed below).
These meetings are open to the public and both students and faculty are encouraged to attend. To reserve a space in the Glasscock Center, submit a Room Reservation Request.
Convenors should view the Procedures tab for information on using funds and planning activities.
Working Groups (2022-2023)
This group will adopt humanist categories of inquiry as cornerstones as we form an interdisciplinary research group dedicated to care studies. At its core, the group maintains that rhetoric, culture, religion, race and gender influence a collective ideology of care and care labor; that ideology goes on to shape the various societal problems commonly associated with care (e.g., eldercare abuse, childcare shortages, the racialization of domestic work, the gendered nature of the nursing field). By bringing the methods and methodologies traditionally associated with the humanities to bear in a more interdisciplinary context (which includes the social sciences), we will interrogate care and care labor as both practices and ideologies; ultimately, we will produce scholarship that places care front and center in an analysis of larger societal forces, including economic markets, laws, and immigration patterns, as well as gender, race, and class relations.
Convenors: Dr. Allegra Midgette, ACES Fellow, Psychological & Brain Sciences; Dr. Joan Wolf, Associate Professor Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies
Caribbean and Atlantic Studies
The Caribbean and Atlantic Studies Group fosters collaboration and communication between faculty and students at Texas A&M working within this field as well as to affect cohesion and collaboration amongst members.
Convenor: Dr. Evan Haefeli, History
Community Food Security and Food Justice
The Community Food Security and Food Justice Working Group focuses on a variety of political, social, and cultural issues emerging from the food system (from production, distribution, and consumption), including economic, agricultural and ecosystems, and public health.
Convenor: Dr. Sarah N. Gatson, Sociology
Critical Childhood Studies
Critical Childhood Studies is an interdisciplinary field that focuses on figurations of the child in the humanities. The field embraces the study of social constructions of childhood, children’s literature and culture, the child in legal theory, the social agency of the child, the child’s experience across national and historical boundaries, and child development theories in the social sciences, among other topics. The group’s ongoing activities include regular meetings of faculty, graduate students, and members of the larger community to discuss topics in childhood studies scholarship, as well as a discussion series aimed primarily at undergraduates and focused on issues relating to childhood in popular culture.
Convenors: Dr. Charles Carlson, Public Partnership and Outreach; David Anderson, Philosophy
Early Modern Studies
The Early Modern Studies Working Group provides a forum for those with scholarly interests in the global early modern period, roughly defined as 1450-1800 CE. We aim to provide an intellectual community for graduate students and faculty, a forum for the presentation and discussion of research and writing, and opportunities for collaboration between graduate students and faculty that promote academic mentorship and further the process of professionalization.
Convenors: Dr. Dorothy Todd, Lindsey Jones, English
Immigration, Migration, and Ethnicity
The Immigration, Migration, and Ethnicity working group generates a collaborative space across the university where we discuss and share ideas related to the transnational movement of people throughout all periods of history and discipline. The IME working group seeks out scholarship dealing with the past and current discourse that shapes immigration, migration, and ethnicity issues today. From global migration patterns and crises in Europe to the heighted salience of immigration in US politics and society, historical, sociological, and linguistic contexts for understanding these topics are extremely relevant for scholars, students, and policy makers.
Convenor: Sophia Rouse, History, Patrick Grigsby, History
The Indigenous Studies Working Group explores the challenges and rewards of engaging in Indigenous Studies, discovers and analyzes the similarities and differences between academic approaches to the study of Indigenous peoples, investigates trends and changes within the field of Indigenous Studies, supports and assists one another in undertaking innovative research.
Convenor: Dr. Angela Pulley Hudson, History
Jewish Studies Working Group
The Jewish Studies Working Group aims to provide an intellectual space for faculty and students working the many areas that the field of Jewish studies includes, for example: history, philosophy, religious thought, cultural and ethnic studies, literature, languages, and international studies (e.g., geopolitical themes). This working group aims to provide a common space that brings together scholars and teachers at Texas A&M University working in this field.
Convenor: Dr. Claire Katz, Philosophy and Women’s and Gender Studies
The Language Matters Working Group explores language issues for a thorough understanding of the human condition. The group brings together faculty and graduate students across different departments in and outside of the College of Liberal Arts whose work is connected with the language broadly understood. The group meets to discuss topics such as the sounds, grammatical structure, and lexicon of human languages, the pragmatics of language use and change across time and space, bilingualism, factors affecting language acquisition, and various other topics of communication through language.
Convenor: Dr. Maria Irene Moyna, Global Languages and Cultures
Latinx Cultural Production
This working group, to be launched formally in the Spring Semester of 2019, will devote its efforts to the study of Latinx cultural production in the wider sense of the term “culture.” It will focus on literature, film, music, comix, visual arts, performance, politics, history, gastronomy, and indeed cultural institutions such as the working group itself aspires to be. It seems unreal to us that Latinx culture, as a fundamental subaltern culture in the state of Texas and generally in the southwestern United States, has been able to produce and sustain so little by way of academic institutions devoted to its systematic study, but we know not all the responsibility lies with Latinx culture itself. Things will be changing soon, however, as there is a new energy in the wind everywhere, and Latinx culture will be soon ready to claim its own place in the institutional world. Meanwhile, we aim to work towards filling in the gap at Texas A&M to the extent of our abilities, trusting (but not taking for granted) that there will be appropriate support. Our purpose is to foster an intense, diverse, and exciting conversation on all Latinx cultural matters, with a special focus on Tejanx culture but not limited to the latter. We aim high but must begin modestly given our lack of institutional tradition. Our ambition, however, is to become a reference point and even a clearinghouse for the study of Latinx culture in Texas. Give us a few years.
Convenors: Rodrigo de los Santos, Global Languages and Cultures; Raul Carrillo, Philosophy
The Latinx Working Group provides a space for intellectual dialogue among scholars working on issues relevant to Latinx groups. The objective is to gather monthly to engage in rich discussions, assorted methodological practices, and active research that contribute to Latinx scholarship. Monthly meetings allow members to workshop their ideas, writing, and research so as to gain insights and feedback from scholars across disciplines that can sharpen and enhance their academic contributions. The space would be available to graduate students, undergraduate students, and faculty throughout Texas A&M University. Subsequently, the group would contribute to the Texas A&M initiatives for academic excellence, student success, diversity, interdisciplinary collaborations, and community-building.
Convenor: Arely Herrera, Communication
Law and Society
The Law and Society Working Group brings together faculty and graduate students from multiple disciplines to investigate the important role of the law in social, political, economic, and cultural life. The group provides a forum to hold discussions, present works in progress, and host speakers in a broad range of topics, including the history of legislation and court decisions, theories of justice, methods of constitutional interpretation, law enforcement and the carceral system, international law, and contemporary legal debates.
Convenor: Dr. Katherine Unterman, History
The Literacy Studies Group includes faculty, professionals, researchers and graduate students from diverse backgrounds (psychology, sociology, neuroscience, linguistics, and education). The group meets to break artificial disciplinary barriers and to facilitate the exchange of information on the issue of literacy, a major concern in our technological society.
Convenors: Dr. R. Malatesha Joshi, Dr. Emily Cantrell, Dr. Kay Wijekumar, Teaching, Learning, and Culture
The Medieval Studies Working Group invites the participation of all faculty and graduate students with academic interests in the Middle Ages, roughly defined as the period 500-1500 CE. Regular meetings normally focus on the airing of work-in-progress or the discussion of published primary or secondary works. The group provides a forum for dialogue about the field of medieval studies and any topic within it; supports participants’ own research with opportunities for constructive feedback; increases awareness of, and access to, interdisciplinary possibilities as we benefit mutually from one another’s more specialized interests and expertise; and continues to develop a sense of community among TAMU’s medievalists.
Convenors: Dr. Kathy Torabi, Dr. Noah Peterson, English
New Modern British Studies
The New Modern British Studies Working Group is an informal group of faculty members and graduate students working in British, Irish, and Postcolonial literary, historical, and cultural studies from the eighteenth century to the present.
Convenors: Dr. Shawna Ross, Janet Cho, English
Science and Technology Working Group
The Science and Technology Working Group brings together faculty and graduate students across different departments in and outside of the College of Liberal Arts interested in the many facets of science and technology including their social and cultural dimensions.
Convenors: Dr. Martin Peterson, Philosophy; Dr. Patricia Thornton, Sociology; Dr. Andrew Morriss, Bush School
Science Fiction Studies Working Group
The Science Fiction Studies Working Group is a cross-disciplinary program for exploring the genres of science fiction and fantasy in all their complexities, through the lenses and methodologies of different academic disciplines. Science fiction and fantasy allow for creatively exploring important issues such as the impact of new technologies on society, the evolution and mutable nature of racial and gender identities, and the ongoing cultural, societal, and biological development of humanity as a species on this and other planets. The SWG seeks to bring together, using the Science Fiction & Fantasy Research Collection at Cushing Library as the locus, scholars and researchers across multiple fields, including English, History, Sociology, Film Studies, Women’s and Gender Studies, Africana Studies, and Engineering, among others. The group will facilitate events such as lectures, discussions of current and ongoing research, readings by creators in the field, and film showings, leading ultimately to a formal academic program in Science Fiction Studies.
Convenors: Dr. Apostolos Vasilakis, English; Jeremy Brett, University Libraries; Dr. Francesca Marini, Performance, Visualization & Fine Arts
Social, Cultural, and Political Theory
The Social, Cultural, and Political Theory Working Group is an interdisciplinary group of faculty and graduate students who are interested in theories of society, broadly understood. The group provides an intellectual center for work in contemporary social thought, intellectual history, cultural theory, and political thought from ancient times to the present day. Topics of interest include: interpretation of canonical figures such as Plato, Weber, or Sartre; interpretation and application of major theories of society such as utilitarianism, Kantianism, or pragmatism; reading and research on more recent social theorists such as Peter Singer, Judith Butler, or Bruno Latour; exploration of major topics in socio-cultural thought such as power, discourse, or justice; members use a variety of research methods including critical theory, ethnography, or textual analysis.
Convenors: Dr. Daniel Conway, Firooz Jafari, Philosophy
South Asia Studies
The South Asia Studies Working Group focuses on the interplay and confrontation between dynamics of liberalization, globalization and nationalism in the South Asian region. Precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial periods of South Asian history will be studied using area, cultural, and women’s studies as well as other disciplinary perspectives on the politics and cultures of South Asia as a region.
Convenors: Dr. Jyotsna Vaid, Psychology; Gisele Cardoso de Lemos, Sociology
Teaching matters in and outside academia. Regardless of discipline and career choice, we all must convey information to audiences of all types. Centering the practice of teaching in the humanities and social sciences, the Teaching Matters working group is comprised of graduate students and faculty that will offer support to one another through on-hands practical workshops, discussions, and the sharing of knowledge/best practices in teaching. Too often, graduate students and faculty are expected to teach without proper training, thus, one of the priorities of this group is to help individuals build their strength in teaching (delivery, communication, method, organizing of content), particularly as it relates to teaching undergraduate courses. The group will also discuss opportunities for participants to deliver mock lectures for constructive criticism while offering a supportive environment. While praxis will be the focus of the group, theories and/or ideas around teaching effectiveness will also be considered to frame and inform understandings of what it means to be an effective teacher.
Convenors: Dr. Sonia Hernandez, History; Kaitlyn Ross, History
War, Violence and Society
The War, Violence and Society Working Group brings together faculty and graduate students who employ a variety of disciplines in the study of violence and the ways it impacts society. This working group considers the causes, courses, and consequences of violence, including conventional warfare, insurgencies, and state-directed violence. It benefits from the perspectives of specialists in the institutional, cultural, social, and gendered study of conflict in the human experience.
Convenor: Dr. Adam Seipp, History
The Glasscock Center for Humanities Research requests reports about how funds were used by grantees. Please use the following forms to submit your report.
Humanities Working Group Report Form
- Invited speakers and workshops
- Pre-conference practice presentations
- Workshopping papers and works-in-progress
- Zoom-based or other virtual activities
- Workshops to enhance different research skills for graduate students
- Collaborative grant-writing, e.g., T3 grant proposals
- Collaborative publications
- Reaching beyond the humanities to collaborate with other units at TAMU
- Collaborating with other institutions working in similar areas of interest
- Reading books/articles; having graduate students introduce readings to the group
- Public-facing events, e.g., in and with community groups
- Field trips
- Co-sponsor larger events with other TAMU units
The Glasscock Center is introducing a Working Group Capstone Grant for our currently funded working groups. These grants are available to working groups that would like to culminate or ‘cap’ their activities with a major event in the form of a workshop, collaborative grant-writing activity with external faculty, a symposium or small conference. It is expected that the event will complete the working group’s activities, and that the working group will not be renewed. Two grants of $3000 each will be available on a rolling basis.
The capstone event should support interdisciplinary research and scholarship for faculty and students. The Center expects that the event will be of short duration (one or two days); involve scholars from outside Texas A&M University; and be free and open to the public. It is normally expected that the event/activity will take place in the academic year following the grant deadline.
Eligibility: The grant is only open to working groups which are concluding their activities.
Please note: you may not apply for funding through the Co-sponsorship, Symposium and Small Conference, Notable Lecture, or Campus Diversity grant programs to fund this capstone activity.
Instructions: Applications should be submitted by the working groups convenor/s, in discussion with their working group members. Complete and submit the application below.
Working Group Capstone
- Funds allocated will be transferred to your home department. Therefore, you will coordinate expenditures/reimbursements/etc. for the Working Group through your home department's business office.
- Funds may be used for normally reimbursable expenses such as copying, supplies, refreshments, and defraying the cost of speakers (We should discuss in advance your intent to deploy them for unusual ends, but there is generally no need for you to seek approval for properly documented expenses)
- TAMU policy requires that all reimbursement requests be made within 90 days of the expense or else they will be reported as taxable income to the individual.
- Original itemized receipts must be submitted
- Non-consumable materials purchased with Glasscock Center funds remain the property of Texas A&M University. Any books, DVDs, CDs, or the like that you purchase for working group discussions should be deposited in the Glasscock Center’s Library when those discussions are finished, although it is our view that such discussions may extend throughout the academic year.
- Funds may be used for meals related to a guest speaker’s visit or other allowable events, however, we ask that meal expenses be modest. Expenditures for alcohol must occur in the context of a business-related event or meal to be reimbursable. Amounts for alcohol must also be kept to a minimum.
- Please note that you may present a tax-exempt form when you purchase items for your working group, though the business has the right to decline (as the personal card is not tax exempt).
- Please note that any unused funds will not roll over to the next fiscal year. In order for the working group to be considered for renewal, a report of activities must be submitted at the end of the academic year (see below).
- The Glasscock Center will not be responsible for coordinating any events or logistics related to a speaker’s visit, as the funds are not held here at the Center.
- Working groups are expected to meet or hold events (which must be open to the public) at least twice per semester. You are welcome to use the Center’s spaces for your meetings. To reserve space, use the Room Reservation Request.
- We will be pleased to help publicize your meetings and other events, as well as to link to any website you may develop. To include your event on our website and in the monthly email of events, which we send to our listserv, all relevant details should be sent to email@example.com no less than one month before your event will take place.