Conversations on Europe. What’s Left of the Yellow Vest Movement

Anne-Claire Defossez, visiting researcher, Institute for Advanced Study; Didier Fassin, professor of social science, Institute for Advanced Study

The emergence of the yellow vests movement, its rapid extension, its endurance, and its popularity have been a source of surprise and confusion among politicians as well as commentators. Whereas it was initially viewed as a mere reaction to an increase in fuel tax, it soon appeared to be a broader protest against the policies led by Emmanuel Macron regarded as deepening economic inequalities. Instead of responding to the claim to more social justice, the government first expressed contempt but soon used repression, the violence of which caused hundreds of severely wounded. Characterized by a unique repertoire of action, an unusual combination of social groups and a grassroots organization without clear leaders, the mobilization challenged traditional forms of democratic representation. While it is too early to assess its long-term signification, it has however revealed the resistance of the “classes populaires” to authoritarian neoliberalism.

Didier Fassin is professor of social science at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. A physician, sociologist, and anthropologist, he has conducted research in various countries on issues related to inequality and immigration. His recent works are ethnographies of the police, the justice system and the prison institution as well as on the idea of crisis.

Anne-Claire Defossez is researcher in social sciences at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. A sociologist, she was previously a public manager heading the administration of two large cities in the Paris region. Her current work is about women’s participation in local politics and about the crisis of democratic representation in France.

Donia Human Rights Center Distinguished Lecture. Global Challenges to Human Rights Today

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (2014-18)

From refugee crises and global poverty to rigged elections, growing populism – and the intolerance and oppression it breeds, we are at a pivotal moment in the fight for human rights. Throughout his years of service as a career diplomat and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein has been a champion for the protection of fundamental human rights. His work has involved the security of equality, justice, and respect – and has directly influenced international justice, United Nations peacekeeping, and women’s development. In this speech, Zeid discusses his concerns about the threats to global stability posed by such forces as racism, xenophobia, nationalism and authoritarian leaders, and poses that the safety of humanity will be secured only through vision, energy and generosity of spirit. According to Zeid, “Silence does not earn you any respect — none,” and only through civic activism can we ensure equality and justice.

Critical Engagement with Transitional Justice: Perspectives from Africa and Latin America

Colombia and South Africa experienced two of the longest civil conflicts since the Second World War. Both underwent intensive, tenuous and difficult negotiations in order to end their respective conflicts peacefully. What does it mean in such contexts to bring about “transitional justice?” What values and interests tend to drive transitional justice processes, and what aspects of justice tend to be overlooked? How can societies address key forms of injustice that formal transitional justice processes downplay or omit? What were the comparative successes, failures and difficulties that face societies after conflict in their quest for greater democracy, human rights and social justice? This interdisciplinary panel will offer a comparative cross-regional discussion of transitional justice. Leading scholars from Africa and Latin America will share insights about macro-level commonalities in transitional justice processes across diverse societies. They will also examine how those high-level dynamics have affected micro-level social, civil and political dynamics in the various countries they study, work and live in—and thus the experiences of ordinary survivors seeking remedies to continuing injustice.

Participating speakers:

Litheko Modisane(University of Cape Town)
Keith Vermeulen (Methodist Church of Southern Africa)
Alejandro Castillejo-Cuellar (Universidad de los Andes)
Gustavo Jose Rojas Paez (Universidad Libre de Colombia)

Yazier Henry (University of Michigan) as moderator

A Critical Theory of Transnational Justice: Realistic in the Right Way

Please join the Michigan Law & Ethics Program for our 2019-2020 lecture, “A Critical Theory of Transnational (In-) Justice: Realistic in the Right Way,” which will be delivered by Professor Rainer Forst.

This event is free and open to the public.

Professor Rainer Forst of Goethe University in Frankfurt will present his work, which develops a critical theory of transnational justice. A German philosopher and political theorist, Forst was named the “most important political philosopher of his generation” in 2012, when he won the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize.

Donia Human Rights Center Lecture. Rights Make Might: Global Human Rights and Minority Social Movements in Japan

Kiyoteru Tsutsui, Professor of Sociology, Director of the Donia Human Rights Center, and Director of the Center for Japanese Studies, University of Michigan

KiyoWhy have the three most salient minority groups in Japan – the politically dormant Ainu, the active but unsuccessful Koreans, and the former outcaste group of Burakumin – all expanded their activism since the late 1970s despite the unfavorable domestic political environment? My investigation into the history of the three groups finds an answer in the galvanizing effects of global human rights on local social movements. Drawing on interviews and archival data, I document the transformative impact of global human rights ideas and institutions on minority activists, which changed the prevalent understanding about their standing in Japanese society and propelled them to new international venues for political claim making. The global forces also changed the public perception and political calculus in Japan over time, catalyzing substantial gains for the minority movements. Having benefited from global human rights, all three groups repaid their debt by contributing to the consolidation and expansion of international human rights principles and instruments. The in-depth historical comparative analysis offers rare windows into local, micro-level impact of global human rights and contributes to our understanding of international norms and institutions, social movements, human rights, ethnoracial politics, and Japanese society. 

Kiyoteru Tsutsui is Professor of Sociology, Director of the Donia Human Rights Center, and Director of the Center for Japanese Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His research on globalization of human rights and its impact on local politics has appeared in American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Social Forces, Social Problems, Journal of Peace Research, Journal of Conflict Resolution, and other social science journals. His book publications include “Rights Make Might: Global Human Rights and Minority Social Movements in Japan” (Oxford University Press 2018), and a co-edited volume (with Alwyn Lim) “Corporate Social Responsibility in a Globalizing World” (Cambridge University Press 2015). He has been a recipient of National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, National Science Foundation grants, the SSRC/CGP Abe Fellowship, Stanford Japan Studies Postdoctoral Fellowship, and other grants as well as awards from American Sociological Association sections on Global and Transnational Sociology (2010, 2013, 2019), Human Rights (2017, 2019), Asia and Asian America (2018, 2019), Collective Behavior and Social Movements (2018), and Political Sociology (2019). 

If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation to attend this event, please reach out to us at least 2 weeks in advance of this event: umichhumanrights@umich.edu. Please be aware that advance notice is necessary as some accommodations may require more time for the university to arrange.

The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

https://umma.umich.edu/sites/default/files/Harn-sixpetritsch_spatialintervention.jpegThe World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene awakens us to the physical and social effects of the Anthropocene, a much-debated term used to define a new geological epoch shaped by human activity. Structured around ecological issues, the exhibition presents photography, video, and sculpture that address subjects and themes related to raw materials, disasters, consumption, loss, and justice. More than thirty-five international artists, including Sammy Baloji, Liu Bolin, Dana Levy, Mary Mattingly, Pedro Neves Marques, Gabriel Orozco, Trevor Paglen, and Thomas Struth, respond to dire global and local circumstances with resistance and imagination—sustaining an openness, wonder, and curiosity about the world to come.  

Artist Residency with Mary Mattingly in conjunction with The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

UMMA and the Ann Arbor Summer Festival welcome artist Mary Mattingly to Ann Arbor for a 3-day residency, June 27–June 30. Mattingly, whose photograph Life of Objects (pictured to the right) is featured in UMMA’s exhibition The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Antrhopocene, is deeply concerned with our relationships to objects—where they come from, where they go, their implications for humans, and their impact on the environment. Join the artist for a variety of interactive workshops and discussion-based programs during her residency. 

International Conference on Population, Poverty, and Inequality

This conference is organized by the Scientific Panel on Population, Poverty, and Inequality of the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population (IUSSP), in collaboration with the Population Studies Center in the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. The conference will feature researchers from a wide range of countries presenting research analyzing the interaction of population with poverty and inequality in low-income and middle-income countries. Schedule is available on the conference web site.

In Conversation: The World to Come: Art in a Changing Climate

What role do artists play in visualizing the Anthropocene, our current epoch of rapid and often-destructive ecological change? Using photography, video, drawing, and sculpture, the forty-five international artists in The World to Come respond to the impact of climate change around the globe. Join UMMA Assistant Curator of Photography Jennifer Friess for a discussion about how the artists on view reimagine humanity’s relationships with each other and the environment in the world today and to come.  

The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene is organized by the Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida and curated by Kerry Oliver-Smith, Harn Museum of Art Curator of Contemporary Art. Support for the exhibition is provided by the Andy Warhol Foundation  for  the Visual Arts, UF Office of the Provost, National Endowment for the Arts, C. Frederick and Aase B. Thompson Foundation, Ken and Laura Berns, Daniel and Kathleen Hayman, Ken and Linda  McGurn,  Susan Milbrath, an anonymous foundation, UF Center for Humanities and the Public Sphere, UF Office of Research and Robert and Carolyn Thoburn, with additional support from a group  of  environmentally-minded supporters, the Robert C. and Nancy Magoon Contemporary Exhibition and Publication Endowment,  Harn Program Endowment, and the Harn Annual Fund.

Lead support for the local presentation of this exhibition is provided by Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch, the University of Michigan Office of the Provost, Michigan Medicine, Tom Porter in honor of the Michigan Climate Action Network, the Herbert W. and Susan L. Johe Endowment, and the University of Michigan Penny W. Stamps School of Art and Design and School for Environment and Sustainability.

The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

https://umma.umich.edu/sites/default/files/Harn-sixpetritsch_spatialintervention.jpegThe World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene awakens us to the physical and social effects of the Anthropocene, a much-debated term used to define a new geological epoch shaped by human activity. Structured around ecological issues, the exhibition presents photography, video, and sculpture that address subjects and themes related to raw materials, disasters, consumption, loss, and justice. More than thirty-five international artists, including Sammy Baloji, Liu Bolin, Dana Levy, Mary Mattingly, Pedro Neves Marques, Gabriel Orozco, Trevor Paglen, and Thomas Struth, respond to dire global and local circumstances with resistance and imagination—sustaining an openness, wonder, and curiosity about the world to come.  

Artist Residency with Mary Mattingly in conjunction with The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

UMMA and the Ann Arbor Summer Festival welcome artist Mary Mattingly to Ann Arbor for a 3-day residency, June 27–June 30. Mattingly, whose photograph Life of Objects (pictured to the right) is featured in UMMA’s exhibition The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Antrhopocene, is deeply concerned with our relationships to objects—where they come from, where they go, their implications for humans, and their impact on the environment. Join the artist for a variety of interactive workshops and discussion-based programs during her residency. 

Healthcare Delivery in Emerging Markets Presentations

Join us as graduate student teams share in-country project summaries of their work with healthcare organizations in Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Peru, and Rwanda.

The graduate student presenters are enrolled in the International Business Immersion course which is designed to enhance the students global leadership capabilities, awareness of diverse business issues on the current international landscape, and on-the-ground experience in a specific country. This will be a great opportunity for you to learn more about this course, the students’ work and their experiences abroad.