Race, Ethnicity, and Gender Working Group

Diversity Day BreakfastOne of the core strengths of the Department of Politics is the commitment of a wide range of faculty to research and teaching with a focus on race, ethnicity, and gender, and their interconnections. Accordingly, a group of seven faculty members and our Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow have constituted a research group on race, ethnicity, and gender (REG) to collaborate on future scholarship, develop a workshop program, strengthen graduate and undergraduate course offerings in these areas, and attract and retain students who wish to work on REG questions. Our group includes faculty at all levels of seniority and representatives from three of the four traditional subfields of politics (comparative politics, American politics, political theory).

Our short-term goals include the following: encouraging co-teaching among REG faculty; creating classes for a graduate student cohort working on REG; suggesting REG scholars as possible invitees to the department’s existing colloquia in American politics, foreign affairs, and political theory; putting together a workshop that will enable faculty and graduate students at UVA to get feedback on their research and that will bring REG scholars from other colleges and universities, including UVA alumni, to grounds to present their work; and encouragement of co-authorship by faculty and students at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.

Over the longer term, we aim to explore the creation of graduate and undergraduate concentrations; the establishment of dissertation fellowships in REG; new faculty hires in the field; the establishment of prizes to fund graduate and/or undergraduate student research projects in collaboration with REG faculty.

Recent REG Graduate Research

  • Olyvia Christley (CP): interested in how the state creates and upholds unequal power dynamics between genders
  • Chelsea Goforth (AP): dissertation that explores the role of appeals to white racial identification
  • Dan Henry (PT): interested in race and the politics of sympathy
  • April Herlevi (IR): interested in gender and political economy
  • Brittany Leach (PT): interested in intersectional feminist theory
  • Kal Munis (AP): interested in race and ethnic politics
  • Brenton Peterson (CP): ethnic identification in Africa/Kenya
  • Arani Sanyal (PT): ethnicity
  • Paromita Sen (CP): dissertation on what explains why protest on violence against women occurs in India and Turkey
  • Jen Simons (CP): nationalism, identity, and the rise of the Far Right in Europe
  • Chen Wang (IR): ethnicity, nationalism and violence
  • Theo Yakah (CP): dissertation on ethnicity and chiefs in Ghana, investigates variation in the salience of ethnic cleavages in sub-Saharan Africa, with three in-depth case studies as well as statistical analysis across SSA
  • Sally Bonsall: Interested in policy concerning gender equality and its intersections with other identities

  • Mylene Freeman: main areas of study are contemporary thought, feminist theory, democratic theory, continental philosophy, notions of self, political agency, deliberation, and identity

  • Jess Hasper: theology and the organization of religious life in order to question the ways in which power operates within norms, ideologies, government systems, and institutions

  • Leah Malkovich: American politics

  • Alex Nicole Miller: Race and Ethnic Politics; Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies; Political Representation

  • Hana Nasser: Multiculturalism in the European Union

Previous REG Graduate Scholarship

  • Nicole Pankiewicz (AP): dissertation on citizens’ understanding of citizenship and what makes a good citizen

Lucila Figueroa: 2015–17 Diversity Post Doctoral Program