The relatively new Critical Ethnic Studies Association is giving me a lot to think about as we gear up for our 3 Minors program review and planning a new UNH Ethnic Studies Center.  To me, these goals are mutually supportive: the 3 Minors could be very fruitfully blended into a single Ethnic Studies Minor (and, eventually, a major) that would enable us to join forces around our existing strengths, while pushing us forward, thinking about what UNH students and scholars really need in this new century. 

The CESA wants to honor "the spirit of the decolonial, antiracist, and other global liberationist movements that enabled the creation of Ethnic Studies (Asian American Studies, Black Studies, Native American Studies, Arab-American Studies, Latino/a Studies, and Postcolonial Studies) and continues to inform its political and intellectual projects."  At UNH, the 3 Minors arose at a particular institutional moment (or set of moments), in response to very specific concerns and on-the-ground realities.   Today, as it begins to appear that such identity-based programs might not be sustainable (at least not at UNH), we might consider what intellectual frameworks we hold in common.  Again the CESA has something useful to say: "An un-disciplinary formation, critical ethnic studies has decolonization not as its goal but sees decolonizing as a set of ongoing theories, practices, imaginaries, and methods in the service of abolishing global oppression. Thus, rather than focusing exclusively on critique, critical ethnic studies stands for decolonizing as a generative praxis of world-making."


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