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NYU Berlin Hosts Decolonize Mitte! Humboldt Forum, Museum Island, and the Palace

On 19 November, NYU Berlin will host a public talk: DECOLONIZE MITTE!
HUMBOLDT FORUM, MUSEUM ISLAND, AND THE PALACE 

Moderated by Ares Kalandides of NYU Berlin, the discussants will include Annette Loeseke (NYU Berlin), Stephanie Pearson (NYU Berlin & Humboldt-Universität), Wayne Modest (Research Centre for Material Culture, Amsterdam), and Iris Rajanayagam (xart splitta, Berlin).

As the Asian Art and Ethnological Museum collections move into the Humboldt Forum, questions have arisen about how to be responsible stewards of cultural heritage. 

Provenance research and repatriation are in the spotlight; but what is still missing from the public discourse is any recognition of – and attempt to grapple with – a fare more pervasive problem: the colonial perspective that informs museum displays not only in the Forum (most evident in its architectural frame, the reconstructed imperial Schloss) but all across Museum Island. This public talk draws attention to the above challenges and searches for solutions.

Engineers for Social Impact at NYU Abu Dhabi

“Being there with the people who will live in the house gave us a sense that our work is really important.”

NYU Abu Dhabi is preparing students to thrive in our ever-changing world and give back to local communities through Global Education and the Engineers for Social Impact program.

Students travel to countries such as Sri Lanka, Thailand, and India to help design and build infrastructure that improves quality of life for local populations.

In a recent video, students help build a sustainable home for a family in Jordan, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity. You can view the complete video via the NYU Abu Dhabi website here.

Engineers for Social Impact (EfSI) supports and complements the mission of the Engineering Division and the broad goals of NYU Abu Dhabi through courses that emphasize experiential learning and projects that focus on developing globally-relevant, locally-sustainable designs that meet challenges and deliver on opportunities that enable individuals across global communities to more effectively realize their aspirations and ambitions.

By engaging with ethics in the classroom and ethnographic fieldwork off-campus, engineering students expand their comfort zones to work from vantage points of broader mindfulness of social, cultural, and economic aspects that are inextricably connected to technology-driven solutions in today’s hyper-connected world.  Students may optionally enroll in a second, project-driven course focusing on the process of co-designing meaningful innovations, projects, and products  with members of a selected community.  Throughout all fieldwork, the goal is to connect with the processes, people, sights, sounds, experiences, and stories that are only accessible outside the classroom and bring new understanding to bear on the ways to address a wide range of issues and challenges in the courses and beyond.

The EfSI program is a collaboration between the Engineering Division and the Office of Global Education to deliver unparalleled international engagement with communities through partnerships with the Solar Energy Foundation in Ethiopia, URBZ/Urbanology in Dharavi, Mumbai, and Habitat for Humanity in Jordan, India, Sri Lanka, and Thailand.

 

NYU Washington, DC Hosts a Conversation with Author Sayu Bhojwani

On November 13, NYU Washington, DC will host a conversation with author Sayu Bhojwani to discuss her book, People Like Us.

Sayu Bhojwani is the founder and president of New American Leaders, the only national organization focused on preparing immigrant leaders to run for public office. She served as New York City’s first Commissioner of Immigrant Affairs and lives in New York.

People Like Us
is an inspiring story of political newcomers (sometimes also newcomers to America) who are knocking down built-in barriers to creating better government. The system is rigged: America’s political leadership remains overwhelmingly white, male, moneyed, and Christian. Even at the local and state levels, elected office is inaccessible to the people it aims to represent. But in People Like Us, political scientist Sayu Bhojwani shares the stories of a diverse and persevering range of local and state politicians from across the country who are challenging the status quo, winning against all odds, and leaving a path for others to follow in their wake.

NYU DC faculty member Victoria Kiechel will serve as interlocutor for the discussion.

Sayu Bhojwani works to ensure that American democracy is more inclusive. As an advocate, speaker and writer, Sayu engages people in public debate and in the democratic process. She has a PhD in Politics and Education from Columbia University, where her research focused on immigrant political participation. Sayu is currently a Visiting Scholar at the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University and a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow at the Council of Independent Colleges.

 

Victoria Kiechel has 20 years of professional experience in architecture, education, and sustainable design. A practicing architect, she works for the Cadmus Group, Inc., an environmental consultancy, and is a faculty member of the Global Environmental Politics Program, the School of International Service, American University (AU), in Washington, DC. In 2010, she was the inaugural recipient of AU’s Most Innovative Green Teacher of the Year award. At Cadmus, Vicky has worked for the US Green Building Council to develop and support the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating Systems; advises the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) ENERGY STAR commercial and industrial branch; leads consulting and review teams for buildings seeking LEED certification; and manages sustainability initiatives for clients as diverse as the Smithsonian Institution and state and local governments. Her architectural design work focuses on small-to-medium scale residential and institutional projects. For the Washington, DC Capitol Hill School Libraries Project, she designed the library for Maury Elementary School.

In Anaheim, California, a previously undocumented Mexican American challenges the high-powered interests of the Disney Corporation to win a city council seat. In the Midwest, a thirty-something Muslim Somali American unseats a forty-four-year incumbent in the Minnesota house of representatives. 

These are some of the foreign-born, lower-income, and of-color Americans who have successfully taken on leadership roles in elected office despite xenophobia, political gatekeeping, and personal financial concerns. In accessible prose, Bhojwani shines a light on the political, systemic, and cultural roadblocks that prevent government from effectively representing a rapidly changing America, and offers forward-thinking solutions on how to get rid of them.

People Like Us serves as a road map for the burgeoning democracy that has been a long time in the making: inclusive, multiracial, and unstoppable.

NYU Paris Hosts Symposium on Joan Miró

Joan Miró : Dessin-poème L’Été, 1937 (détail). Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona © Successió Miró

On 9 – 10 November, 2018, NYU Paris will host a symposium on Joan Miró. Joan Miró: Painting – Poetry will focus in the main on Miró’s dream of merging painting and poetry, as well as his awareness of the existence of an inexorable duality between the text and the image. His simultaneous exploration in his works of these two contradictory paths constituted a major contribution to the art of his time. This symposium will also provide greater insights into the influence of French and Catalan poetry on Miró and his contemporaries.

NYU Shanghai Course Focuses on Recycling Plastic – Re-Made in China

More than two billion tons of solid waste is generated every year by the world’s cities — a challenge that if left unaddressed, will continue to have serious health, safety and environmental consequences. This semester, nine IMA students accepted the challenge of “learning everything about plastic and plastic pollution” and finding ways to sustainably upcycle it in a new course, Re-Made in China.

“Our goal is to become as knowledgeable as possible about our subject, and to come up with viable project ideas and prototypes that can be sustainable and fair business models generating a positive social impact for local communities,” says Clinical Instructor of Arts Marcela Godoy.

The two-credit course, guided by the principles of sustainable design philosophy, will introduce students to both traditional and new technologies to address social and environmental problems. The goal is to remake plastic waste into “something valuable and even extraordinary,” be it accessories, handcrafts or an art project.

In class, students are divided into 3 groups: one focusing on developing machines to process plastic, such as shredding and melting; another experimenting with what materials plastic can be transformed into; and the third on designing new products. “I want students to work together like a design firm, where we learn about plastic together and collaborate on projects,” Godoy says.

Suhyeon Lee ‘19, who took Godoy’s class on Digital Fabrication last semester and has signed on for Remade in China, says she is excited about learning what can be done with the overflow of trash. “I am going to gather discarded materials and combine them to produce an object that we can enjoy again — either an artistic sculpture, musical instrument, daily necessity, or even something personal that is meaningful to someone.”

Godoy’s idea of recycling emerged in 2012, when she was working in New York at YesYesNo, a studio for interactive arts and technology projects. She noticed the huge amount of waste generated from projects, and decided to upcycle the materials to make necklaces and other accessories.

“How ironic that things to make people feel beautiful can be made out of the opposite,” she says.

Marcela Godoy on the right, showing a student how to use the plastic shredder that she built.

Godoy is encouraging her students to become even more deeply engaged with the community they live in, by assigning projects that take them out of the classroom, such as creating “trash maps” tracking plastic trash routes through Shanghai.

“I am going to invite a person who collects recyclables from trash in Shanghai to share his experience,” Godoy says, “Students will then be assigned to research and interview people on their own to find out where the plastic trash is produced and disposed of.”   

Godoy also plans to invite seasoned designers from Precious Plastic Shanghai,a social enterprise devoted to raising plastic pollution awareness in China, to offer hands-on coaching to students in a workshop later in November. Godoy worked with the team after moving to China in 2015.

At the end of the course, Godoy plans to launch a “Re-Maker Space” for the benefit of the whole NYU Shanghai community, where all students and faculty can drop by to process plastic and make something valuable of their own.

The seven-week course is expected to conclude on December 11. Following the end of the semester, Godoy will present her class’ work at the Precious Plastic WANA Conference in Abu Dhabi on December 16-17.  

 

This post comes to us from NYU Shanghai and the original can be found here.

NYU Sydney Anthropology Lecturer Petronella Vaarzon-Morel on Students Experiencing the Warmth of Walpiri Culture

The Warmth of a Walpiri Welcome

By Petronella Vaarzon-Morel, NYU Sydney Anthropology Lecturer

This September, students in the Anthropology of Indigenous Art and Anthropology classes were privileged to meet with Warlpiri cultural experts Selina Williams Napanangka and Julie Kitson Napaljarri from Willowra, an Indigenous community which is located 350 kilometres north-west of
Alice Springs in Central Australia.

NYU Sydney was recently honoured to host Warlpiri cultural experts Selina Williams Napanangka and Julie Kitson Napaljarri from Willowra. Selina and Julie were guests for two classes within a week on campus. The occasions brilliantly illustrated the opportunities afforded by the anthropology classes and the Sydney campus for meaningful cross- cultural exchanges between Indigenous Australians and NYU students.

Julie and Selina are both skilled artists and performers of the Warlpiri women’s yawalyu ceremonies, which celebrate their ancestral connections to country through song, dance, and body painting.

Both women are currently involved in two collaborative projects with NYU anthropology lecturer Petronella Vaarzon-Morel. The first is a cultural mapping project which involves traditional owners visiting their ancestral countries in the Lander Warlpiri Anmatyerr region and mapping ancestral tracks, sites and cultural heritage information. The second is a cultural returns project, an Australian Research Council Linkage project involving the Indigenous body the Central Land Council, and researchers from The University of Sydney and The University of Melbourne. The project has been running for three years and is near completion.

During this period the researchers have located large collections of Central Australian Indigenous cultural materials which are held in diverse public and private collections. Applying international best practice, material (primarily images and audio-visual ) has been digitised and reconnected with rightful Indigenous people.

The project has helped preserve Indigenous heritage, improve community access, safeguard at-risk materials, support intergenerational knowledge transfer, and provide a framework for the development of a repatriation policy. At the time of their visit to NYU Sydney, Julie and Selina were visiting archives in Sydney and Canberra for the project.

The theme of the Indigenous Art class for the week was Warlpiri and Anmayerr art. In addition to providing insights into the different Warlpiri modes of artistic practice, and providing feedback on the readings for the week, Julie and Selina taught students the basics of the Warlpiri traditional iconographic system. The iconography is employed in body painting, sand drawing and the contemporary Western Desert style of acrylic painting on canvas which has become renowned throughout the world.

In a fascinating cross-cultural exercise, students later viewed video clips made by Petronella of Julie and Selina providing their interpretations of works such as Jackson Pollock’s Blue Poles in the American Masters Exhibition, which was on display next to the Indigenous Gallery.

Following their visit to Sydney, Julie and Selina visited the National Gallery in Canberra, where they expressed great pride in seeing Aboriginal art in the nation’s capital. Julie commented “it’s so amazing to see Aboriginal art displayed so beautifully here. The last time I came with you [Petronella] to Canberra in the late 1970s we hardly saw any Aboriginal art. It’s good to see the increased recognition of Aboriginal people in Australia.”

Julie and Selina joined students of the Anthropology class to view the virtual reality film Collisions, directed by Lynette Wallworth with Indigenous elder Nyarri Nyarri Morgan. The film, recounts Nyarri Nyarri Morgan’s recollections of his first contact with Europeans during the 1950s, and the fallout of the atomic bomb over his people, the Martu in the region known as the Pilbara in Western Australia. The viewing provided a great opportunity for the Warlpiri guest speakers to share their reflections on the violent history of settler colonisation of Australia and Indigenous responses. This in turn prompted exchanges. For example, one student spoke of the feelings the film stirred concerning the bombing of Japan, her homeland during the 2nd World War.

Julie told the students about the murder of her relatives during the Coniston Massacre, which took place in the Willowra region in 1928. Coniston is officially recognised as the last massacre of Aboriginal people in Australia. The students also heard excerpts from radio interviews with Aboriginal people including Julie’s son Dwayne Ross, sister Maisie Napaljarri, and also Petronella about the Massacre. The interviews were recorded during the recent Coniston Massacre memorial day, which was held at Yurrkuru, the place where the massacre began.

During this commemorative event Warlpiri spokespeople called for a National Remembrance Day to remember the victims of massacres of Indigenous people that have occurred throughout Australia. The exchange between the NYU students and Julie and Selina were respectful and relaxed, and they highlighted the importance of the recognition of Indigenous Australians, of the true history of Australia, and of reconciliation.

During the Anthropology class Selina and Julie instructed the students in Warlpiri kinship and classificatory or “skin” system. Each student received a skin name and had to work out how they were related to Julie and Selina. In learning about their kinship relationships, they also learnt about appropriate marriage partners and kinds of behaviors associated with different kinspersons. In illustrating the importance of the relational ontology which is foundational to Warlpiri society, the exercise facilitated understanding of different ways of being in the world. Selina later commented to Petronella, “the students were pretty quick in learning their skin names. They feel proud of them. They will have them forever and will take them back to their country and share the names and their experiences. If they want to come to central Australia, we would welcome them.”

Both students and Julie and Selina felt that there wasn’t enough time to share all they could and hoped that there will more opportunities for cross-cultural exchanges at NYU Sydney in the future.

NYU London Student Life Coordinator Julia Thanh Interviewed by BBC

NYU London Student Life Coordinator Julia Thanh, who runs NYU London’s volunteering program, was interviewed by the BBC about her life. Her interview was posted to the BBC’s Vietnamese web service this July. Fortunately for those of us who do not speak Vietnamese, the interview is in English. Julia talks about her “very meaningful” work for NYU London towards the end. She also shares her work on a photography exhibition featuring portrait Vietnamese British people in London, demonstrating the diversity of that community. Julia’s thoughtful discussion of matters of identity and finding one’s place in the world in the interview reflects the rich perspectives of NYU’s global staff.

You can watch Julia’s interview here.

Exploring Interdisciplinary Approaches in Israel via NYU Tel Aviv

Professors Sasson and Embry at Tel Ha Shomer Hospital in Tel Aviv.

Lisa Sasson is the dietetic internship director and a clinical professor in the Steinhardt School of in the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies Department.  After directing the Nutrition and Food Study program at NYU Florence for many years, in May 2018 Professor Sasson directed the Nutrition and Food Study program at NYU Tel Aviv campus.

During the January intersession Professor Sasson co-teaches an interdisciplinary course, Case-Based Management of Dysphagia (swallowing difficulty), with Erin Embry, a speech pathologist from Communicative Science Disorders. This course is designed to promote the development and application of interdisciplinary, collaborative approaches to evidence-based management of patients with complex needs. Through the use of case studies, student led discussions and learning exercises, students work as a team to review and critique treatment and management practices. Students also participate in a hands-on and interactive dysphagia cooking competition.

 A week before Professor’s Sasson’s departure for Tel Aviv, she received a call from a professor in speech pathology in Israel who saw a clip of the Dysphagia course on the internet and wanted to learn more about this class.  There is growing interest in Israel interdisciplinary teaching. A couple of conference calls later, both Professor Sasson and Professor Embry were on their way to Israel to discuss this course in more detail and also explore possible future collaboration.

Professor Sasson was on her way to Israel to prepare for the study abroad program but for Professor Embry it was her first time in Israel and she had only a few days to prepare for the trip!

During their time in Israel, Professor Sasson and Professor Embry met with government representatives, NGO representatives, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, nutritionists, and hospital representatives.  Professors Sasson and Embry learned so much about health care and treatment in Israel.

Everyone agreed to stay in touch and share research, ideas and possible future collaboration. For professors Sasson and Embry it was proof that “NYU’s global network can lead to amazing opportunities for faculty and students.”

 

NYU Abu Dhabi Hosts the Story Behind the UAE’s First Multi-Organ Transplant Program

Today, families in the UAE wait in hope that a life-saving organ may be donated to a critically ill loved on. In 2018, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi created history in the UAE by developing a comprehensive multi-organ transplant program which is already transforming patients’ lives. This talk explores how the transplants for four major organs – kidney, heart, liver and lung – are giving hope to families in the UAE and around the region by delivering a world-class level of care here in the nation’s capital, meeting the needs of the community while contributing to the sustainability of the country’s healthcare sector. On 24 October, 2018, NYU Abu Dhabi hosted an event on this topic.

 

Speakers
Rakesh Suri, MD; Chief Executive Officer, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi
Bashir Sankari, MD; Chief of the Surgical Subspecialties Institute, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi

Hosted by
NYU Abu Dhabi Institute

 

Madeline Albright Visits NYU Washington, DC for Event on Women in Politics

The Risk Element: Safeguarding Women in Politics
 
NYU Washington, DC and the National Democratic Institute (NDI) launched NDI’s Women’s Political Participation Risk Index, and a safety planning tool to help women who are or intend to become politically-active, to mitigate the threat of violence that they face.

As more women step forward and engage in political activity, there is a rising backlash against their equal participation. This is an abuse of human and civic rights, and the exclusion of women undermines the quality of democracy.

Speakers for the launch evening, 22 September at NYU Washington, DC, included Dr. Madeleine K. Albright, NDI Chairman and Former Secretary of State, Farida Bemba Nabourema, Executive Director at Togolese Civil League, and Sandra Pepera, Director for Gender, Women and Democracy at NDI.

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