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Dislocations & Migrations Symposium: Exploring Human Displacement

Deeply rooted in history around the globe, dislocations and migrations uniquely characterize the human experience, but all migrations are not alike. At the 2018 Helmerich Center for American Research Symposium, “Dislocations and Migrations: A Cultures of the Americas Symposium” March 30-31, attendees will explore the multiple dimensions of human displacement.

H.G. Barnard Associate Professor of Western American History Brian Hosmer who is the mastermind behind the symposium, explained, “We chose dislocations and migrations because it’s a hot topic in public discourse right now. We have all kinds of conversations about immigration, borders and people crossing borders.”

Teaming up with the Helmerich Center for American Research, Cultures of the Americas, a TU faculty-driven initiative that nurtures cross-disciplinary teaching and research, came up with the migrations and dislocations theme.

“No one discipline owns this question of dislocations and migrations. We all look at it very differently,” Hosmer said.

The symposium draws on a variety of academic approaches. Historians examine migrations through documents, while artists may look for visual representations of dislocation. “We find the most intriguing conversations involve people from different disciplines with their own research coming together and speaking about these broad topics,” Hosmer said. The panel topics include:



  • Graduate Student Panels in Association with Oklahoma State University
  • The Tulsa School: Poetic Departures and Returns
  • Caribbean Migrations and Dislocations: Comparative Perspectives on Jean Rhys
  • Tulsa Artist Fellowship Panel – Artists from Afar Engaging Oklahoma

Because migration and displacement are lived experiences and not simply conditions to be described, they involve trauma, reshaping identities, and re-creation of communities, and thus refocus our notions of belonging, citizenship, community, family and health. From searing images of asylum seekers crowded onto leaky vessels plying dangerous waters to the divisive political discourse surrounding immigration, scholars are compelled to address intersecting dimensions of human displacement and migration.

For registration and ticket information, click here.