Migrants, Motherhood Focus of Termini Lecture


Issues surrounding citizenship, reproductive rights and migrant labor in East Asia will be the focus of the 2014 Ben and Trudy Termini Distinguished Anthropologist Lecture on April 10.

Dr. Nicole Constable, director of Asian studies and professor of anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh, is this year’s guest lecturer. The annual lecture event will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10 in the Architecture Auditorium.

Constable’s lecture, titled “Precarious and Privileged Lives: the Politics of Migrant Labor and Motherhood,” will focus on the rights of migrant workers and asylum seekers in Hong Kong.  Assistant Professor Amy Speier (Anthropology) said this year’s topic will go beyond recent media headlines of humanitarian rights and political unrest abroad.

“Our speakers address issues that are of interest to the broader public, such as migration, globalization and women’s health issues,” she said.

Originally from Manchester, England, Constable spent some of her childhood in Canada before beginning her undergraduate studies in California. Her research focuses on four areas: transnationalism, migration and mobilities; the commodification of intimacy; gender and reproductive labor; and ethnographic writing and power.

She is author and editor of several books including, Romance on a Global Stage: Pen Pals, Virtual Ethnography and ‘Mail Order’ Marriages and Maid to Order in Hong Kong: Stories of Migrant Workers. Her newest book, Born Out of Place: Migrant Mothers and the Politics of International Labor, will be available this spring.

“The Termini lecture is very significant because it is the only regular lecture series in the DFW area that invites leading practitioners in the field of anthropology from all over the country,” Speier said. “Nationally known anthropologists lecture on topics in a way that are not too technical, so that they appeal to the public as well as the academic community.”


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