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Guest Lecturer Jean Beaman on Citizen Outsider: Race and Racism in France and Beyond

Submitted by Michael Rich on December 16, 2019 - 2:51pm
author and professor Jean Beaman

On October 31st Jean Beaman visited the UW and gave a talk based on past and current ethnographic research in the Parisian metropolitan region. Beaman discussed how racial and ethnic minorities understand and respond to their racialization in a context in which race and ethnicity are not legitimate or acknowledged. Beaman described how racial and ethnic minorities are “citizen outsiders,” as evident of France’s “racial project” (Omi and Winant 1994), which marks distinctions outside of explicit categorization. Beaman’s talk explored not only how race marks individuals outside of formal categories, but also how people respond to these distinctions in terms of a racism-related issue - here, police violence and brutality against racial and ethnic minorities. Beaman also presented how activists can frame this growing social problem given the constraints of French Republican ideology.

Jean Beaman is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research is ethnographic in nature and focuses on race/ethnicity, racism, international migration, and state-sponsored violence in both France and the United States. She is author of Citizen Outsider: Children of North African Immigrants in France (University of California Press, 2017). This event was sponsored by the Center for Global Studies, the Department of French and Italian Studies, African Studies, CHID, Anthropology, History, and Sociology.

 Jean Beaman’s visit was part of the Transcultural Approaches to Europe speaker series, spearheaded by the French & Italian Studies, the departments of Germanics, and Scandinavian Studies which aims to interrogate issues of race, identity, colonialism, and migration within a broad European context. In order to advance ongoing campus-wide conversations on world language and literature study, speakers will present research that focuses on migrant and minoritized cultures, as an extension of these departments’ current initiatives in promoting diversity and equity and in recognition of the transcultural and transnational scale of these scholarly issues.

Please join us for the next speaker in this series, Fatima El-Tayeb, “Queer Diasporic Spacetime and People Of Color Formations: A View from (De)colonial Europe” on Friday, May 29, 2020, 3:30 – 5pm. Stay posted for more details on this event.