Water, Struggle, and History

By Steven Rhue (Department of Anthropology)

In a time of great uncertainty that has upheaved life and research, the Worlds in Contention Conference offered a welcome moment of academic exchange. As students and faculty, we have found ourselves in a precarious space where many of our scholarly pursuits rest uneasily amid the circumstance of the pandemic. Conversation, assembly, and instruction have become risky actions to oneself and those around us, rendering the traditional conference format impractical and requiring an alternative format. I am thankful that as a university we have the necessary resources and support at our disposal to convene in a virtual space and continue our dialogue. However, I encourage all to be mindful and not take such a privilege for granted, as many have lacked and continue to lack access to technology and reliable internet. To varying extents, visible and hidden, known, and unknown, we have all been impacted by the pandemic. I believe it is imperative to recognize and admire the resilience demonstrated by being present and sharing with colleagues and strangers alike. Continue reading