Clements Center for Southwest Studies

Calendar Highlights: Sept. 13, 2012

Graphic poetry: Together the Meadows Museum and Bridwell Library acquired a copy of Picasso’s Vingt Poëmes. This is one of fifteen deluxe copies of the book itself and features 20 sonnets by famed Spanish poet Luis de Góngora y Argote; complementing the sonnets are 19 full-page etched female heads. The artist’s book is available for viewing in the Meadows Museum Sept. 16, 2012  Jan. 13, 2013. This exhibit is free for students, faculty and staff.

Rock the vote: Join SMU as we celebrate the U.S. Constitution in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 18. Participants will have the opportunity to win prizes for their Constitution knowledge as well as register to vote for the 2012 Presidential election Nov. 6. Don’t miss this opportunity – remember, every vote counts! For more information, contact Lisa O’Donnell or 214-768-9206.

Bon voyage: If the travel bug has bitten your students, remind them to stop by the SMU Abroad Fair. SMU offers 148 study abroad programs in 50 countries. At the fair, students can find out the requirements for study abroad and hear from past abroad students about their experiences. Travel to the Owen Arts Center Lobby from 11 a.m. -1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19 for all the information.

Local borders: Join Anthony Mora, associate professor of history, American culture, and Latina/o studies at the University of Michigan, as he discusses the New Mexican towns Las Cruces and La Mesilla, and how they shaped Mexicans’ historic role in the United States. Las Cruces was built north of the border while La Mesilla was built south of the border, creating conflicting views of the relations of race and nation. This topic is the focus of his recent book, Border Dilemmas: Racial and National Uncertainties in New Mexico, 1848-1912. His lecture, “Local Borders: Two Towns and the Making of the U.S.-Mexico Boundary,” will be held 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012,  in DeGolyer Library. and is presented by SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies. It’s free and open to the public.

Sweet symphony: The 2012-13 season of the Meadows Symphony Orchestra opens Friday, Sept. 21, with 19th- and 20th-century works. The program includes Symphony No. 1: Holocaust by Simon Sargon, Meadows professor of composition, with guest artist Kelly Markgraf, noted American baritone. Performances begin at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 21 and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 23 in Caruth Auditorium. Tickets are $7 for students, faculty and staff. Call 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS for more information. (Below, photo courtesy Meadows School of the Arts.)

Sunbelt prisons are focus of 2012 Clements Center Symposium

Logo image for 2011-12 Clements Center SymposiumDeclaring that today’s racially disproportionate rates of incarceration represent “a New Jim Crow,” scholar Michelle Alexander has argued that “we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it.” This assertion, and its exploration, provide the theme of the 2011-12 Annual Public Symposium presented by SMU’s William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies.

“Sunbelt Prisons and the Carceral State: New Frontiers of State Power, Resistance and Racial Oppression” is cosponsored by the Clements Center, SMU’s Embrey Human Rights Program and The Center for the American West at the University of Colorado. It will take place 8:15 a.m.-5 p.m. March 24 in McCord Auditorium, 306 Dallas Hall.

The event brings together historians, legal experts, civil rights veterans and formerly imprisoned activists to discuss “The Age of Mass Incarceration” in the American Southwest. The international slate of presenters and panelists includes U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson ’76 and 2010 Clements Book Prize winner Kelly Lytle Hernández.

The symposium is open to the public and has been approved for Continuing Education Credit for teachers.

The $10 registration includes the conference fee, refreshment breaks and a light buffet lunch. Read more about how to register or contact the Clements Center for Southwest Studies, 214-768-3684.

Find a complete schedule at the Clements Center Annual Symposium homepage

Calendar Highlights: Nov. 15, 2011

Kit Carson tombstone in Kit Carson Park Memorial Cemetery, Taos, New MexicoInto the west: Clements Center Fellow Susan Lee Johnson uses her study of amateur Kit Carson historians Quantrille McClung and Bernice Blackwelder and their published works to map relationships between women historians and male historical subjects, and between professional and nonprofessional U.S. western historians, at a key moment in the 20th century. She will present a Clements Center Brown Bag Lecture, “Bury My Hero at Wounded Knee: Gender, Race, and Historical Practice in the Long 1970s,” at noon Wednesday, Nov. 16, in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. Johnson, a professor of history at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is completing her new book, A Traffic in Men: The Old Maid, the Housewife, and Their Great Westerner. Presented by SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies. (Right, tombstone in Kit Carson Park Memorial Cemetery, Taos, New Mexico.)

Cover of 'The Ten Lost Tribes: A World History'A secret history: Renowned historian and author Zvi Ben-Dor Benite will present the 11th Nate and Ann Levine Endowed Lecture in Jewish Studies at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, in McCord Auditorium, 306 Dallas Hall. Benite, professor of history and Middle Eastern and Islamic studies and acting director of the Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies at New York University, will discuss “The Truly Other Jewish World History: The Ten Lost Tribes Between Jews and Christians.” His subject is a little-known but intriguing episode of early 16th-century Jewish and Christian history, in which Pope Clement VII and the Ten Tribes (almost) defeated Islam and won the Holy Land. Benite’s 2009 book, The Ten Lost Tribes: A World History, traces the legends surrounding the ancient Israelite tribes that were exiled by the Assyrians in the 8th century BCE and vanished from the pages of history, but not from popular imagination. For more information, contact Serge Frolov, 214-768-4478.

Art for sale: Update that holiday gift list – SMU’s Hamon Arts Library holds its 2011 Book Sale at 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday Nov. 17-18 in the Hamon Arts Library, Owen Arts Center. Items for sale include music scores; CDs; DVDs and laserdiscs; and, of course, books on art, music, theater, dance and film, as well as fiction titles. Most items are priced between $1 and $10, and all have no sales tax – plus, the Library will take an additional 50% off all items after 3 p.m. Friday. All sales are final, cash or check only. No holds, bulk discounts or previews. For more information, contact the Hamon circulation desk at 214-768-3813.

Hernández’ Border Patrol history wins 2010 Clements Book Prize

Kelly Lytle HernandezThe untold history of the U.S. Border Patrol will be honored with SMU’s William P. Clements Prize for Best Non-Fiction Book published in 2010 in a series of campus events Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011.

Kelly Lytle Hernández (right) earned this year’s Clements Book Prize for Migra! A History of the U.S. Border Patrol (University of California Press), which presents the Border Patrol’s story from its beginning in 1924 to its emergence as a professional police force.

The public is invited to a reception at 6 p.m., with an award ceremony, lecture and book signing at 6:30 p.m. in SMU’s DeGolyer Library.

Migra! greatly expands our knowledge of the formation, imperatives, and internal architecture of the U.S. Border Patrol, a surprisingly understudied organization,” says Andrew Graybill, director of the Clements Center for Southwest Studies in SMU’s Dedman College. “But Professor Hernández’s book does far more than merely fill a gap in the historical literature – rather, Migra! revolutionizes our understanding of the Border Patrol by exploring its evolution from an ad hoc collection of federal officers to a professional constabulary that had profound (and in many cases, unintended) effects in shaping both policy and perception along the U.S.-Mexico border.”

Book cover of 'Migra! A History of the U.S. Border Patrol' by Kelly Lytle HernandezHernández, associate professor of history at UCLA, is also co-director of K-12 programs in its National Center for History in the SchoolsMigra!, her first book, received honorable mention from the American Studies Association’s 2011 Lora Romero First Book Prize and John Hope Franklin Book Prize.

The $2,500 Clements Book Prize honors fine writing and original research on the American Southwest. The competition is open to any nonfiction book, including biography, on any aspect of Southwestern life, past or present.

> Read more about the 2010 Clements Book Prize from SMU News

Andrew Graybill becomes SMU’s new Clements Center director

Andrew R. Graybill, director of the Clements Center for Southwest Studies at SMUAndrew R. Graybill, an expert on the American West, has been appointed director of SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies. The Clements Center in the University’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences is internationally known as an incubator for research, writing and programming related to the American Southwest.

Graybill arrived at SMU Aug. 1, 2011, after eight years at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where he directed its interdisciplinary Program in Nineteenth-Century Studies and served as associate professor of history.

The San Antonio native returns to familiar hallways on the Hilltop. Graybill completed his first book, Policing the Great Plains: Rangers, Mounties and the North American Frontier, 1875-1910 (University of Nebraska Press, 2007), while a fellow at the Clements Center in 2004-05. He also collaborated with the Clements Center in 2006-07 to coordinate its symposium, “Bridging National Borders in North America: Transnational and Comparitive Histories,” and to co-edit the resulting collection of papers.

Graybill earned his Master’s degree and Ph.D in history from Princeton University. He is the author of numerous scholarly articles, essays, chapters and introductions on topics ranging from environmental history to changing racial landscapes in the American West to the Texas Rangers. His second book, A Mixture of So Many Bloods: A Family Saga of the American West, is under contract with W.W. Norton & Co. and due to be published in 2013. Graybill was awarded a 2010-11 National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship to support completion of the book.

Graybill succeeds Clements Center founding director David J. Weber, the Robert H. and Nancy Dedman Professor of History, who died Aug. 20, 2010.

“Andy Graybill comes to SMU with top-notch scholarly credentials and a passion for the Southwest,” says William Tsutsui, dean of Dedman College. “He understands well what makes the Clements Center so special, not just for Dedman College and SMU, but for Texas, the region and the historical profession more broadly.”

Graybill calls directing the Clements Center “the opportunity of a lifetime.”

“The study of the borderlands is poised to go global,” he says. “I’d like the Clements Center to be a leader in that conversation.”

> Read more from SMU News
> Visit the Clements Center for Southwest Studies online

Gov. Bill Clements remembered as SMU alumnus and supporter

Bill and Rita Clements at SMU-in-TaosFormer Texas Governor William P. Clements Jr., a longtime major supporter of SMU academic programs, died May 29, 2011 in Dallas. He was 94 years old.

Clements’ relationship with SMU began in the mid-1930s, when he was an engineering student. Through the years he and his wife, Rita, have contributed more than $21 million for some of SMU’s highest academic priorities, including support for his special interest in the Southwest.

“Bill Clements’ generosity and guidance have made a significant impact on academic programs throughout SMU, with major gifts supporting engineering, theology, mathematics and history,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “By endowing the Clements Department of History, including a new Ph.D. program, and the Clements Center for Southwest Studies, he enabled students ranging from undergraduates to doctoral fellows to learn more about the history and cultures of this region. Bill and Rita Clements also made it possible for SMU to acquire, rebuild and offer academic programs at SMU-in-Taos, located on the site of historic Fort Burgwin in northern New Mexico. This facility has given generations of students and faculty a tremendous and unique resource for teaching, learning and research.

“Earlier, as chair of SMU’s Board from 1967-73 and again from 1983-86, Bill Clements led the formation of an endowment committee resulting in dramatic increases in market value. He led funding of the campus master plan that continues to guide our academic offerings, and with an eye for detail in bricks and mortar, he preserved the continuity of SMU’s Collegiate Georgian architecture.

“All this he accomplished with his typical no-nonsense approach and direct style of communication. His legacy as a business leader, public official and supporter of SMU will stand the test of time. He was a member of the SMU community for more than 70 years and he will be greatly missed.”

A memorial service honoring the life of Governor Clements will be held 4 p.m. Thursday, June 2 at St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church.

Gifts to SMU in memory of Governor Clements can be directed to the William P. Clements Jr. Memorial Fund. Visit the SMU Giving homepage for information on how to make a gift to SMU.

> Read more on Gov. Clements and his more than 70-year relationship with SMU

Above, Bill and Rita Clements at the 2009 opening of new student housing they helped to provide for the SMU-in-Taos campus on the grounds of Fort Burgwin, New Mexico. Photo by Hillsman S. Jackson.

Calendar Highlights: April 12, 2011

Elizabeth TurnerClements Brown Bag Lecture: SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies takes the Brown Bag reins with a guest lecture by University of North Texas Professor Elizabeth Turner (pictured) noon-1 p.m. Wednesday, April 13 in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. She will discuss the history behind Texas’ Hall of Negro Life in “The Miraculous Fall Upwards.” The Hall, an exhibition created at the 1936 Texas Centennial Exposition in Dallas, was an important part in cultivating a black culture and history in North Texas and ultimately establishing an African-American presence within the Southwest as its own complete cultural force. The lecture is free – bring your lunch.

The celebration begins: Get ready for the party to begin this weekend, as SMU’s inaugural Founders’ Day celebration kicks off the University’s 5-year Centennial celebration. The festivities begin at 1:30 p.m. Friday, April 15, with a public celebration at the Main Quad, a performance by the Mustang Band and a special fireworks show. The centennial flag will also be raised during this performance, and there will be refreshments for all attendees on the quad. The party is only the first part of a weekend-long celebration, which will include the annual Relay for Life (5:30 p.m.-5:30 am, starting Friday on the Boulevard) and the University Park egg hunt from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, April 16 at Goar Park. A complete list of the events is online at the SMU 100 website. For more information, call 214-768-1384. Happy birthday, SMU!

‘Contested Spaces’ key to 2010-11 Clements Center symposium on the early Americas

Antonio Pereiro map, 1545, courtesy of the John Carter Brown LibraryThe common history of the Americas – bridging conceptions of borderlands both continental and hemispheric – is the theme of the 2010-11 Annual Public Symposium, presented by SMU’s William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies.

“The Contested Spaces of Early America” is cosponsored by the McNeil Center for Early American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania and the Clements Center. It will take place 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. April 2 in McCord Auditorium, 306 Dallas Hall.

This year’s event takes as its model and inspiration the work of the late David J. Weber, Clements Center founding director and Dedman Professor of History in SMU’s William P. Clements Department of History. The symposium theme was originally organized to honor Weber upon his retirement.

“We wanted a theme that would transcend some of our usual models for understanding the histories of the Americas and the borderlands,” says symposium co-organizer Juliana Barr, associate professor of history at the University of Florida and former Clements Center Fellow. “David was expansive in his own work in using a larger framework to understand the histories of those lands that were colonies of New Spain, as well as the borders of Mexico and the U.S. Southwest.

“There are a number of interesting commonalities across the histories of North and South America,” she adds. “It’s a good exercise to step back and take a larger look and think in new ways about framing these histories.”

An initial meeting and program took place in Fall 2010 at the McNeil Center. The participants will gather at SMU this Saturday to present their revised papers.

One highlight of the conference is its diversity of both scholars and scholarship, Barr says. “Our presenters include a Canadian scholar who specializes in the history of New France, scholars from Mexico and Argentina, a literature scholar, a Native American scholar, one former Ph.D. student of David Weber’s, and three former Clements Center Fellows, as well as traditional ethnohistorians,” she says. “With that kind of diversity, you begin to build bridges among these seemingly disparate areas of scholarship. It’s the conversation among them all that will be the most exciting.”

The symposium is open to the public and has been approved for Continuing Education Credit for teachers. “Texas teachers face a lot of challenges in the classroom,” says Barr, herself a native Texan. “The state is such a crossroads for so many histories. It’s one of the most fascinating states to teach about because of its own diversity. How can we look at all these individual communities and link them across borders that include everything from European empires to Native American lands?

“These larger frameworks may help teachers help their students create those bridges between the histories of the larger American and global worlds.”

Preregistration cost is $5 for general admission ($20 including lunch at the SMU Faculty Club) and $2 for graduate students ($10 including lunch). Register online or contact the Clements Center for Southwest Studies, 214-768-3684.

> Find a complete schedule at the Clements Center Annual Symposium homepage

Above, Antonio Pereira’s 1545 map of the Americas, courtesy of the John Carter Brown Library.

Calendar Highlights: Feb. 15, 2011

Joshua Cooper RamoTate Series welcomes China expert: Author, journalist and strategic adviser Joshua Cooper Ramo will give the Anita and Truman Arnold Lecture in SMU’s 2010-11 Tate Distinguished Lecture Series at 8 p.m. Feb. 15 in McFarlin Auditorium. Called “one of China’s leading foreign-born scholars” by The World Economic Forum, Ramo served as China analyst for NBC during the 2008 Olympic Games and as the youngest-ever Foreign Editor of TIME magazine. In his 2009 book, The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us And What We Can Do About It, Ramo argues that instead of relying on traditional models and institutions, people and nations must adapt to an age of unprecedented global change with innovative solutions and creative problem-solving. Ramo will answer questions from the SMU community and local high school students during the Tate Lecture Series Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Admission to the Student Forum is free. For more information, call Program Services at 214-768-8283 (214-SMU-TATE).

Dance, dance, revolution: American studies scholar Jason Mellard, a postdoctoral Fellow of SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies, will discuss the cultural politics of 1970s Texas in the next Clements Center Brown Bag Lecture. Mellard, the Summerlee Fellow for the Study of Texas History, will present “Bull Chic: Urban Cowboy, Saturday Night Fever, and Seventies Discourses of Region, Class and Gender” at noon Feb. 16 in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. Mellard examines the narratives of the two popular ’70s films as primers on an American sense of region, and the importance of place, in a moment in which the social mobility preached by both movies came under considerable strain. Bring your lunch. For more information, visit the Clements Center website.

Calendar Highlights: Oct. 4, 2010

Ray KurzweilBrown Bag, Part 1: SMU’s Clements Center for Southwest Studies hosts a discussion of a 17th-century cultural upheaval in a Brown Bag Lecture at 12:30 Oct. 5. in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. “Now the God of the Spaniards is Dead”, presented by Clements Center Fellow Matthew Liebmann, chronicles the near-successful uprising of the Pueblo Native Americans in their quest to take back an occupied New Mexico from the Spanish in what is known as the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. As always, attendees are invited to bring a lunch. For more information, visit the Clements Center online.

A night for invention: The next installment of the Tate Distinguished Lecture Series features renowned inventor Ray Kurzweil (right) at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 5 in McFarlin Auditorium. Kurzweil is known for such inventions as the CCD flat-bed scanner, a print-to-speech reader for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of imitating instruments such as a grand piano, and the first commercially marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition program. Kurzweil has won numerous awards including the 1999 National Medal of Technology and the MIT-Lemelson Prize (valued at $500,000.) He was also inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2002. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by contacting the Tate Office at 214-768-8283.

Jim LehrerDallas journalist’s homecoming: The NewsHour‘s executive editor and anchor Jim Lehrer (right), who got his start working for The Dallas Morning News and The Dallas Times Herald, will give this year’s Rosine Smith Sammons Lecture In Media Ethics. Lehrer, who also frequently moderates presidential debates (including one between Barack Obama and John McCain in 2008,) will speak at 8 p.m. Oct. 6 in Caruth Auditorium, Owen Arts Center. Tickets are free, but reservations are required. For information and reservations call 214-768-ARTS.

Revisiting old wounds: University of Richmond President Edward Ayers investigates the different and conflicting layers of loyalty among families and governments during the Civil War – and how these conflicting loyalties became the key struggle of the era – in a Stanton Sharp Lecture at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 7 in the Martha Proctor Mack Grand Ballroom, Umphrey Lee Center. Hosted by the Clements Department of History. Admission is free, reservations not required. For more information, call 214-768-2967 or email the Clements Department of History.

Brown Bag, Parts 2-6: Meadows’ famous Brown Bag Dance Series returns to dance another day (or five). Throughout this week (Oct. 4-8), the program will feature numerous short improvisations and exercises on original jazz, ballet and modern compositions created by students of the Meadows Division of Dance. The performances begin at noon Wednesday and Friday, and at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday. All sessions will be performed in the Bob Hope Theatre Lobby, Owen Arts Center. Admission is free; bring your lunch. For more information, call 214-768-2718.

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