Free Public Lecture with Laura Briggs
WGST is proud to host Laura Briggs for a free public lecture on October 3rd at 4pm in Middlebush 12.
Where did Trump come from? Reproductive Politics, Whiteness, and Neoliberalism
For many inside and outside the United States, the election of Donald J. Trump seemed to come out of nowhere—what happened to the voters who just four years earlier had elected Barack Obama? This talk argues the opposite: Trump is not exceptional. It explores the ways that both white supremacy and neoliberalism have been enacted through attacks on the reproduction and family forms particularly of women of color —from welfare “reform” that eliminated support for single mothers (by portraying those receiving government benefits as Black and Latinx) to crackdowns on immigrants that have particularly targeted household workers to a home-loan debacle that crashed the global economy while blaming (surprise!) Black and Latinx single mothers, not banks or lenders. Meanwhile, the pain of the neoliberal austerity policies that these events authorized was centered on households, by turning an ever-widening series of former government functions into the “private” labor of households, all the while enacting a strong-armed government program of limiting access to birth control and abortion.
Laura Briggs is professor and chair of Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies at the University of Massachusetts and an interdisciplinary scholar of reproductive politics and the U.S. relationship to Latin America. Her new book is entitled How All Politics Became Reproductive Politics: From Welfare Reform to Foreclosure to Trump (University of California Press Reproductive Justice Series). She is the author of Somebody's Children: The Politics of Transracial and Transnational Adoption (2012), which won the Rawley Prize from the Organization of American Historians for the best book on US race relations, and Reproducing Empire: Race, Sex, Science and U.S. Imperialism in Puerto Rico.