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Faculty Fellows

We are pleased to announce our 2022-2023 cohort of CAH Faculty Fellows.

Julianna Blair Watson (Modern Languages and Literatures), "Unheard Voices, Unknown Faces: Raoul Peck and Transnational Black Consciousness"

Blair’s project examines aesthetics of self-representation across Anglophone and Francophone Africa and their diasporas in the cinema of Raoul Peck. Through a transnational, transcultural and translingual reading of Peck’s films on Haiti, the Congo, Rwanda, and the U.S., the project argues that Peck enacts a new mode of representing Blackness, enabling each iteration of the African diaspora to speak its own (hi)stories to and through one another. This cinematic dialogue performs a transnational Black consciousness that defies borders and creates a space for justice and contrapuntal responses to anti-Blackness narratives. Click here to learn more about Blair.


Sonia Gomez (History), "A Gendered Diaspora: Intimacy and Empire in the Making of Japanese America, 1908-1952" This book project explores the complicated and changing race and gender logics that alternately excluded and included Japanese women in the United States. It demonstrates how intimacy (marriage) and empire (immigration policies) intersect in the making of Japanese America in the Twentieth Century, and discusses how marriage -- as a contested mode of immigrant incorporation -- shaped the process of immigration and settlement for women and their families. To learn more about Professor Gomez and her fellow's project, read the Q&A with her at her profile.


Tony Hazard (Ethnic Studies), "Afro-Indigeneity, Family Remembrance, and The Narragansett of Rhode Island" Tony’s project emerges from research into his indigenous Narragansett ancestors of Rhode Island, leading back six generations to James Monroe Hazard II (1825-1908) who appears on the original federal tribal roll of 1881. He explores this moment of “detribalization” (1880s) to uncover the contours and legacies of the racial logics of enslavement and colonialism that animated state and federal policy toward the Narragansett people in the 20thcentury. Additionally, he examines the inconsistent “racial” categorization of my Narragansett ancestors during this period, as the Narragansett people continued to define themselves and their own indigeneity within this context of settler violence and erasure.


Amy Lueck

Amy Lueck (English), "Indigenous Remembrance of the Winchester Mystery House" On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Winchester Mystery House’s public opening in 1923, Amy’s project is an examination of public memory at this local attraction, with a focus on indigenous representation and remembrance at this site. Exploring the role of local and national indigenous history in the legends and contemporary experience of this site, I want to use this project to encourage public audiences to recognize the deeply layered and entangled histories of such memory sites, and to critically examine the role of whiteness and settler colonialism in animating such stories. Click here to learn more about Amy and the inspiration for the project.


Lee Panich

Lee Panich (Anthropology), "Insurgent California: Native Resistance and the Collapse of the Missions" This collaborative project examines Native Californian resistance during the final decade of the mission system. Though overshadowed by the annexation of California by the United States in 1846, the period between 1835 and 1845 was one in which Native people in the San Francisco Bay region fought to retain their lands and livelihoods as the previous colonial system crumbled around them. Work during the fellowship period will focus on the translation of primary documents and community outreach to contextualize the liberation movement of the late mission period with continued Ohlone activism today.


Mukta Sharangpani (Women's and Gender Studies), "Aging Across Borders: Towards an Ethnography of Loss and Hope" Mukta Sharangpani is an anthropologist whose work is situated at the junctures of kinship, modernity and mobility.Her project examines the shifting scapes of family-making among South Asian Bay Area multigenerational families. It centers the experiences of later life immigrants who, propelled by the uncertainties and anxieties brought about by the pandemic, have recently left their own homes and lands to join their children. Through their narratives of mourning and yearning, unsettling and resettling, forgetting and remembering, it highlights the coping strategies they deploy as they move across borders, and considers what avenues exist for them to find meaning, hope, and joy in this new and often final phase of their lives. As first generation immigrant and caregiver to her elderly parents, Mukta Sharangpani is drawn to this project at a personal as well as intellectual level. 


An exciting part of these projects is how they will engage with student, faculty, and community partners. Stay tuned for more details about these collaborations.

Past Faculty Fellows

2021-22 Faculty Fellows

Chris Bacon, Environmental Studies and Sciences: “Framing Food Justice: Diverse Perspectives towards Building Back Post-COVID Food Systems with Equity and Resilience.” 

Sonia Gomez, History: “A Gendered Diaspora: Intimacy and Empire in the Making of Japanese America, 1908-1952.”

Maggie Levantovskaya, English: “Writing Illness and Disability.” 

Juan Velasco, English: “A Film Treatment/Screenplay Based on Salaria Kea’s Biography.”


2020-21 Faculty Fellows

The Center for the Arts and Humanities announces its 2020 Faculty Fellows. This year the Center has encouraged Fellows to explore how they might collaborate on similarly themed projects. More information on those projects and how they will eventually be shared with the compus and community will be forthcoming as circumstances permit. The Fellows will also be working with Student Fellows to be named later.

Michelle Mueller, Religious Studies: Adam the Father, Eve the Mother: The Adam-God Doctrine & 'Heavenly Parents' in Mormonism

Robin Tremblay-McGaw, English (in collaboration with Megan Nicely, Performing Arts, University of San Francisco): The Art of Reflection, Resistance, and Dissensus

Ryan Carrington, Art and Art History: Contradictions-Solo Exhibition at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, 11/28/20-1/10/21

Roya Ebtehaj, Art and Art History: In-between

Allia Ida Griffin, Ethnic Studies: The Afterlife of Loss: On Writing from the Iranian Diaspora

Danielle Morgan, English: 'A Bogeyman's Family': The Black Uncanny in the 21st century

Tricia Creason-Valencia and Emily Reese, Communication: A Short Film: ¡Aguas!

2019-20 Faculty Fellows

Renee Billingslea, Art and Art History: Ten Japanese Concentration Camps. 

Katharine Heintz, Communication: Saint Clare School media project

Jackie Hendricks, English, Theresa Conefrey, English,  Maura Tarnoff, English,:  A Humanities Annotation App

Mathew Kroot: Anthropology, Treasures of the Old Quad: Tangible and intangible heritage in a Santa Clara neighborhood

Kristin Kusanovich, Theater and Dance and Child Studies: Sustainability and Environmental Justice project

Roberto Mata, Religious Studies:  Latinx Religious Art & The Degentrification of Aesthetics in San Jose

Danielle Morgan, English: Frank Sinatra Fellow

Nico Opper, Communication and Sonja Mackenzie, Public Health, Gender Justice.

David Popalisky  Theater and Dance: Water

Enrique Pulmar, Sociology

Julia A. Scott, Neuroscience: Controlling your reality: Transforming ancient meditative practices into a virtual reality experience 

2018 Frank Sinatra Faculty Fellow

Danielle Morgan, Assistant Professor of English 

Danielle Morgan specializes in African American literature in the twentieth and twenty-first century. She is particularly interested in the ways that literature, popular culture, and humor shape identity formation. Her writing has been published on Racialicious, in Post-Soul Satire: Black Identity after Civil Rights, Humanities, and is forthcoming in Afterlife in the African Diaspora and Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly. She has recently completed a manuscript entitled Just Kidding: African American Satire, Selfhood, and the 21st Century.

2018 Faculty Fellows

Renee Billingslea, Lecturer, Art and Art History Department

Project: Ten Japanese Internment Camps

This project will create a “comprehensive picture of this part of American and California history, bringing together imagery of the campsites today, historical imagery, and stories of the people who were imprisoned in each camp, demonstrating the depth and magnitude of Order 9066.

Renee Billingslea received her MFA in Photography from San Jose State University and teaches in the Department of Art and Art History at Santa Clara University. Her Nationally known installation, The Fabric of Race: Racial Violence and Lynching was recently on exhibit at the Rosa Parks Museum in Montgomery, Alabama. Currently, Billingslea is creating a photographic installation, entitled Ten Internment Camps that address the unjust incarceration of Japanese Citizen living in the United States during WWII. The installation will include her imagery of each of the ten Interment Camp sites, as well as historical photographs helping to tell a complete story of this part of American history, and its impact on racism and immigration issues today. 


Blake de Maria, Harold and Edythe Toso Professor, Art and Art History Department

Project: The Built Environment: Architectural History in the Digital Age

Utilizing her training as an architectural historian, Blake de Maria plans to develop a technology-based course and digital exhibition entitled "The Built Environment: Architectural History in the Digital Age." The course will focus on the historical development of three categories of public spaces – educational, commercial, and industrial – with a specific emphasis on structures on the Santa Clara campus and in Silicon Valley. Students will create a digital exhibition showcasing architectural developments on campus as well as those built at neighboring institutions, including Apple, Google, and Adobe. The exhibition will be accompanied by a GuidiGo app that will offer additional information concerning the exhibition, as well as materials concerning spaces of architectural interest in Silicon Valley.

Dr. de Maria received her undergraduate degree from UCLA, where she specialized in Islamic Art, and then attended Princeton University where she continued her focus on the early modern Mediterranean.  Her publications include the books, Becoming Venetian: Immigrants and the Arts in Early Modern Venice (Yale 2010) and Reflections on Renaissance Venice: Essays in Honor of Patricia Fortini Brown - which was awarded the Gladys Krieble Delmas Award by the Renaissance Society of America as well as essays on The Oracles of Leo the Wise and the material culture of dining in early modern Venice.  She is currently completing the manuscript, "Facets of Splendour: Gemstones and Jewellery in the Republic of Venice." In this study, she explores the mining, trade, and use of precious stones in a variety of venues, including the Treasury of San Marco in Venice.


Angela Holzmeister, Lecturer, Classics Department

Project: Interdisciplinary Conversations on Ancient Art in the Modern World

This project involves conversations between academics and local museum curators, disseminated via podcasts. The goal is to explore “the ethics of finding and acquiring objects, the presentation of artifacts, and the history of collections, as well as issues of identity, nationalism, and repatriation”.

Angela Holzmeister is Lecturer in the Classics Department, where she teaches Ancient Greek and Latin at all levels, as well as courses on mythology, friendship, and ethics. Her research focuses on Greek Imperial literature. She is also co-organizer of the upcoming SCU event "The Ethics of Collecting Art" (May 11, 2018), which is supported through a Hackworth Grant.


2017 Faculty Fellows

  • Elizabeth Drescher, Religious Studies: Living Religions Collaborative Multimedia Website Development
  • Teresia Hinga, Religious Studies: Religion and The Arts in (global) Silicon Valley: Building Resilience and Hope Through (Sacred) Song, Dance and Story Among (The African) Diaspora(s)
  • Kristin Kusanovich, Theater and Dance:  Art and Democracy
  • Amy Lueck, English: Extending Digital Archival Research on our Campus
  • Takeshi Moro, Art and Art History: Digital Storytelling through Virtual Reality Video Art
Several of these projects will also involve faculty and staff collaborators serving as Associate Fellows as well as Student Fellows.