Comparative Human Development Colloquium Series

2016-17 Colloquia

October 25, 2016

Marco del Guidice, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of New Mexico.

February 28, 2017

Christine Legare, Associate Professor of Psychology, The University of Texas at Austin

May 9, 2017

Dominique Béhague, Associate Professor of Medicine, Health, and Society Vanderbilt University

2015-16 Colloquia

April 26, 2016

Sarah Lamb - Brandeis University

Professor Sarah Lamb of Brandeis University visited the Department of Comparative Human Development on April 26th to give a talk titled “On Being (Not) Old: The Cultural Biopolitics of Life-Course Aspirations in the U.S. and India”. The talk drew on ethnographic research exploring the ways that differently situated elders in communities in the U.S. and India aspire to age well, or, in some cases, to not age at all. It drew a spirited audience comprised of students and faculty not only from Comparative Human Development, but also from the departments of Anthropology and Sociology. Throughout her visit Dr. Lamb also made herself readily available for mentorship and engaging conversation with numerous students within the department.
The event was co-chaired by Professors Guanglei Hong and Jennifer Cole and organized by PhD students Kelsey Robbins and Alexis Howard.

April 5, 2016

Carlos Santos - Arizona State University
Professor Carlos Santos, of Arizona State University, visited the University of Chicago on April 5th to give a colloquium presentation to the Comparative Human Development Department. The talk, titled “The Intersections of Ethnic-Racial and Gender Identity Among Latina/o Youth" focused on models of ethnic-racial identity and gender identity, examining how these dimensions of identity intersected and varied in terms of familial ethnic-racial and gender socialization, as well as well-being. Throughout the day Dr. Santos engaged faculty and students within the Comparative Human Development department in discussion about his exciting work, and provided mentorship to students within the department. The colloquium presentation was an opportunity for these discussions to be extended and provided an opportunity for students and faculty to come together and discuss the intersectionality of identity. His talk challenged all those in attendance, scholars from psychology, as well as sociology and anthropology, to think more deeply about how to account for the intersections of identities in their own work.
The event was co-chaired by Professors Guanglei Hong and Micere Keels and organized by PhD students Carly Offidani-Bertrand and Emily Lyons.

March 8, 2016 

Robert Crosnoe - University of Texas-Austin
Professor Robert Crosnoe, of The University of Texas at Austin, visited the University of Chicago on March 8th to give a colloquium presentation to the Comparative Human Development Department. The talk, titled “Physical Attractiveness, Adolescent Development, and High School Social Life” focused on the risk and protective factors associated with being perceived by peers as more or less physically attractive during adolescence.
Along with Comparative Human Development students and faculty, the talk drew attendees from several additional departments, including Sociology and Anthropology, and generated lively discussion both within and across departments.
The event was co-chaired by Professors Guanglei Hong and Anna Mueller and organized by PhD students Xu Qin and Emily Lyons.

February 18th, 2016

Joseph Gone - University of Michigan
Professor Joseph Gone, formerly an Assistant Professor for the Committee on Human Development at the University of Chicago from 2000-2002, returned on February 18th, 2016 to give a colloquium presentation to the Department in its new seminar room in Rosenwald Hall. His talk, titled "American Indian Therapeutic Traditions and Professional Mental Health Treatments: Contestations of Knowledge and Evidence," discussed the difficulty in applying evidence-based interventions (EBIs) to American Indian populations. He described the multifaceted reasons for the unavailability of EBIs for American Indians obtaining treatment for mental health problems, and then argued for several ways in which Indigenous traditions can be incorporated into the therapeutic endeavor. These strategies could reduce mental health disparities currently facing American Indian populations, but still diverge in their basic assumptions about the nature of mental health. The event was co-chaired by Professors Rick Shweder (pictured below with Professor Gone) and Guanglei Hong, and organized by PhD students Gabriel Velez and Rebecca Frausel.

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December 1st, 2015

Todd Disotell – New York University
The Professor addressed the Comparative Human Development department with our first colloquium of the year, a talk titled, “Postmodern Phylogenetics: it’s complicated.” In his talk, Todd discussed how biologists have traditionally presented evolutionary development as overly simplified linear or strictly bifurcating trees. He argued that these trees are not strictly what is occurring in evolution and with the rise of genomic data, first with bacteria, and more recently with hundreds of species and individuals of various mammals and other groups, we now need to recognize the complex and often reticulating patterns of evolutionary relatedness, with a lot of evidence coming from the primate and early hominid families. The event was chaired by Professor Jill Mateo, and organized by PhD student Sean Coyne. Over 50 faculty and students from The University of Chicago and other nearby institutions were in attendance.

2014-15 Colloquia

May 19th, 2015

Elinor Ochs - University of California Los Angeles, Dan P. McAdams - Northwestern University, & James Fernandez - University of Chicago
These professors spoke on the topic of "narrative" for twenty-five minutes each. James Fernandez examines the largest possible narrative--narratives of humankind. Dan P. McAdams researches life stories of individuals. Elinor Ochs examines narratives in everyday conversations. Following the three presentations, the speakers engaged in a conversation about each others' presentations, and then answered and debated questions posed by members of the audience. The event was chaired by Professor Don Kulick and organized by PhD student Rebecca Frausel. Nearly 100 faculty and students both from the University of Chicago as well as surrounding universities, including students from Professor Fernandez's course on Oral Narrative and Folklore, were in attendance.

(Left to right: McAdams, Ochs, Fernandez) 

April 21st, 2015

Elliot Turiel - Berkeley University, Alan Fiske - University of California Los Angeles, & Paul Bloom - Yale University
These Professors spoke on the topic of "Morality" for twenty minutes each involving their research about, and understanding of, the subject. For the next hour, the speakers questioned and debated each others presentations, then answered and debated questions posed by members of the audience. The event was chaired by Professor Rick Shweder and organized by PhD candidate Séamus Power. Nearly 100 faculty and students both from the University of Chicago as well as surrounding universities were in attendance.

(Left to right: Turiel, Fiske, Bloom) 


November 18th, 2014

Jim Sidanius - Harvard University, Hazel Markus - Stanford University & Alex Gillespie - London School of Economics 
These Professors spoke on the topic of "intergroup conflict" and illustrated the ways in which different levels of analysis can or cannot complement one another in relation to this specific phenomenon. The talk was attended by a broad range of people from Comparative Human Development, other University Chicago departments and guests from surrounding universities. Sponsored by a grant from the Council on Advanced Studies and the Norman Wait Harris Memorial Fund.

2013-2014 Colloquia

April 3, 2014

Brady Wagoner, Aalborg University
Revolutions are dramatized performances that use powerful symbols and narratives to win over audiences that are both national and international. The general strategy of revolutionaries since 2011 has been the combination of occupying public space (for visibility) and online activism (for coordination and dissemination). The 2011 Egyptian Revolution presents a powerful case study to explore these dynamics. This lecture begins by describing some general features of Egyptian society that provide a background for understanding the ongoing revolution. It proceeds to look at the conditions that set the stage for the revolution and events that have happened since. Special focus is given to the artistic symbols (such as graffiti) used by revolutionaries to create solidarity, empower, remember tragic events and critique powerful actors. The lecture also considers the differing narratives of Morsi's removal, as well as the future of Egypt from the standpoint of Moghaddam's "Springboard to Dictatorship" model. This colloquium was sponsored by a grant from the Norman Wait Harris Memorial Fund.

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Brady Wagoner

October 3, 2013

Tanya Luhrmann, Stanford University
Tanya Marie Luhrmann is the Watkins University Professor in the Stanford Anthropology Department. Her books include Persuasions of the Witch’s Craft, (Harvard, 1989); The Good Parsi (Harvard 1996); Of Two Minds (Knopf 2000) and When God Talks Back (Knopf 2012). In general, her work focuses on the way that ideas held in the mind come to seem externally real to people, and the way that ideas about the mind affect mental experience. One of her recent project compares the experience of hearing distressing voices in India and in the United States.

November 19, 2013

Joel Robbins, Cambridge University
Joel Robbins’s research interests include the anthropological study of religion (and of Christianity in particular), cultural change, values and ethics.  His fieldwork has been in Melanesia, and he maintains a strong interest in that region.  His current research concerns helping to develop a comparative, cross-cultural study of notions of the good, and he is beginning a new project focused on the study of religious knowledge and education.

December 3, 2013

Reed Stevens, Northwestern University
Learning and activity in a wide range of places and situations; design of learning tools — curriculum, activities, and technologies.

February 4, 2014

Micere Keels-- 2/4, University of Chicago
My research interests span issues of race/ethnicity, poverty, and inequality. Demographic context: How the gender imbalance in college-educated adults, an imbalance that is particularly large among blacks and Hispanics, is associated with the decline in marriage and rise in non-marital fertility, and other aspects of well-being. Family context: How poverty, ethnicity, and acculturation are associated with children’s early developmental environments. Neighborhood context: The extent to which poverty deconcentration residential mobility programs meaningfully change low-income, minority children’s developmental experiences. The effects of gentrification on neighborhood public schools.

March 4, 2014

Thom McDade, Northwestern University
Thom McDade is a biological anthropologist specializing in human population biology. His work is primarily concerned with the dynamic interrelationships among society, biology and health over the life course, with an emphasis on life course approaches to stress and the human immune system. The development and application of minimally-invasive methods for integrating physiological measures into population-based research is also a major area of interest. Prior research in Samoa, and ongoing research in Bolivia and Ecuador, investigates how local cultural transitions associated with globalization affect human development and health, while research in the Philippines is exploring the long term developmental consequences of early nutritional and microbial environments. He is currently applying conceptual and methodological tools from this work to US-based research on health disparities, with an emphasis on the potential contributions of stress and environments in infancy.

April 22, 2014

Elinor Ochs, UCLA
Primary among Professor Ochs' many research interests is the role of language and culture in life span human development and learning across social groups. Her work with children and their caregivers in Samoa, as well as her collaborative work with anthropologist B. Schieffelin, helped to develop the field of inquiry known as language socialization.

2012-2013 Colloquia

Tues. October 30, 2012

Laurence Kirmayer (Social and Transcultural Psychiatry, McGill University)
"Revisioning psychiatry: Cultural phenomenology, critical neuroscience and global mental health"
Noon – 1:30 PM, 5727 South University Ave. Room 112
Co-sponsored by the Center for Health and the Social Sciences and the Self and Subjectivity Workshop

Laurence Kirmayer, "Revisioning Psychiatry: Cultural Phenomenology, Critical Neuroscience, and Global Mental Health" from Clinical Ethnography on Vimeo.

 Tues. January 22, 2013

Michal Engelman (Sociology, University of Chicago)
"Frailty in Transition: Variation and Vulnerability in Aging Populations"
Noon – 1:30 PM, Location TBA

Tues. February 26, 2013

Clarence Gravlee (Anthropology, University of Florida)
"How Race Becomes Biology: Genes, Environments, and Health"
4:30 – 6:00 PM
5727 South University Ave. Room 112

Tues. March 12, 2013

Kristen Jacobson (Psychiatry, University of Chicago)
"Individual Differences in Youth Sensitivity to Social Environment"
4:30 – 6:00 PM
5727 South University Ave. Room 112

Tues. April 23, 2013

Adam Gamoran (Sociology and Educational Policy Studies, University of Wisconsin—Madison)
"Causal Effects of Social Capital on Child Outcomes"
Noon – 1:30 PM
Stuart Hall, Room 104
Co-sponsored by the Education Workshop

Tues. May 21, 2013

Ariel Kalil (Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago)
"Parenting and the Home Environments of Poor Children: What role for Public Policy?"
4:30 – 6:00 PM, Stuart 105