Apr. 30: Digital Storytelling as Narrative Shock: New Views on Young Parenting Latinas, Migration, and Family

Thursday, April 30, 2015

6-8 PM

Knox Hall, 606 W 122nd St., Room 509

Digital stories have the potential to draw on hidden histories and render them visible. Challenges with digital storytelling overlap with those of oral history and ethnography: connecting parts to totalities, redeeming fragments, and co-constructing new narratives from idiosyncratic stories. Small yet poignant stories connect to larger issues, such as growing inequality, that affect everyone. This presentation draws on “Hear Our Stories,” a collaboration with the Center for Digital Storytelling that uses new media to reveal how diasporic youth experience and negotiate sexual health disparities. We prioritize uprooted young parenting Latinas, whose material conditions and cultural worlds have placed them in tenuous positions, both socially constructed and experientially embodied. We aim to recalibrate conversations about young parenting Latinas through a reproductive justice orientation that connects sexual health to young women’s lived experiences in relation to family, migration and movement across generations.

Watch Hear Our Stories featured on Connecting Point

Aline Gubrium, Associate Professor of Public Health and medical anthropologist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is author of Participatory Visual and Digital Methods (Left Coast Press, 2013), which explains participatory visual and digital methodologies for social research, health promotion and practice, and advocacy. Gubrium brings extensive experience in innovative research methodologies such as narrative, participatory, visual, and community engagement. From early research with African-American women living in a southern rural community, to work with women using Depo-Provera contraception and more recent projects working with Latino/a youth to address health inequities, a driving question across the board has been how research participants view their sexual and reproductive health experiences, in particular, how they make sense of, respond to, and confront the many influences that shape their sexuality. Funded by the Ford Foundation, she is working with Elizabeth Krause on a digital storytelling-based research project focused on sexual and reproductive health, rights, and justice with young parenting Latinas. She is also currently funded by the NIH to design and test a culture-centered narrative approach for health promotion in collaboration with young Puerto Rican Latinas.

For the past fifteen years, Elizabeth L. Krause has worked as an ethnographer, writer, and educator. Her research interests include the politics of reproduction, social memory, political economy, im/migration, and globalization. She is professor of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and author of the blurred genre Unraveled: A Weaver’s Tale of Life Gone Modern (University of California Press, 2009) as well as the ethnography A Crisis of Births: Population Politics and Family-Making in Italy (Thomson-Wadsworth 2005). Her paper, “They Just Happened”: The Curious Case of the Unplanned Baby, Italian Low Fertility, and the “End” of Rationality, published inMedical Anthropology Quarterly, won the Polgar Prize for best article from the Society for Medical Anthropology (2013). Her current projects focus on Chinese immigrant parents in Italy and young parenting Latinas in Massachusetts. In 2013-14, she was a Fellow at the National Humanities Center, where she worked on the book manuscript, “Tight Knit: A Biography of Globalization.” Over the years, her research has received support from the U.S. Fulbright Program, Council for European Studies, The Wenner-Gren Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.