Keynote Speaker: Dr. Paula Chakravartty, New York University

Global Fusion 2018 Keynote Address: Media, Race and the Infrastructures of Empire

The election of a white supremacist president whose immigration policies affirm practices of ethnic cleansing and whose popular political support rests on an anti-globalist, isolationist approach to foreign policy and trade has led to the speculation that the present moment marks a clear sign of the waning of the U.S.’ geopolitical status. Commentators across the political spectrum have remarked that Trump marks the decline if not fall of the American Empire, However, in this paper, I suggest that the history of U.S. racialized liberal empire and the “gift of media freedom” need to be foregrounded in our understandings of global media and society. In my talk, I will outline how critical theories of race and racial violence and postcolonial approaches to the state and citizenship allow us to reconsider and expand the extant literature on US media technologies and empire, a literature and approach that has largely receded from the center in contemporary debates about global media and society.

Paula Chakravartty is an Associate Professor in the Department of Media, Culture and Communication and at the Gallatin School of Individualized Studies at NYU. Her research and teaching focus on global media and politics, labor and migration. She is an affiliated faculty member of the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU, South Asia @ NYU, and the Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies. She is also a member of the NYU Sanctuary Coalition (nyusanctuary.org) and the NYU Coalition for Fair Labor.