International Microfinance with Shivani Siroya ’04 and InVenture — 12/4, 5 p.m.

International Microfinance

Revolutionizing the financial services sector by creating greater transparency and access

Shivani Siroya ’04, CEO and founder of InVenture, unleashes the potential of developing entrepreneurs to lift themselves and their communities out of poverty by leveraging mobile technology to create credit scores for unbanked individuals around the world.

WHEN: Tuesday, December 4, 5pm      WHERE: Allbritton 311

Networking reception to follow

 To register contact

 The Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship

Film Screening: “My Neighbor, My Killer” with director Anne Aghion — 5/1, 5 p.m.

Screening of “My Neighbor, My Killer”

& Discussion with Filmmaker Anne Aghion

Tuesday, May 1, 5:00pm Center for Film Studies

Gacaca (Ga-CHA-cha), which literally means “justice on the grass,” is a form of citizen-based justice which Rwandans decided to put into place in an attempt to deal with the crimes of the 1994 genocide. Filming for over a decade in a tiny rural hamlet, director Anne Aghion has charted the impact this experiment in transitional justice has had on survivors and perpetrators alike. Through their fear and anger, accusations and defenses, blurry truths, inconsolable sadness, and hope for life renewed, she captures the emotional journey to coexistence.

As a filmmaker, Anne Aghion has been drawn to places as far-ranging as rural Rwanda, the ice fields of Antarctica and the slums of Managua. She has been praised by critics, both as a director of unique and poetic vision, and a documentarian who conveys a strong sense of the people and places she covers. Her work has also earned her, among other honors, a UNESCO Fellini Prize, a Guggenheim fellowship, an Emmy, and the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival’s Nestor Almendros Award for courage in Filmmaking.

Summer Employment Abroad App. due 4/15

I wanted to let you know of a very exciting international internship opportunity from They are looking to place interns in 17 countries to learn about local culture and recipes, and blog about them weekly. The internship is PAID, $15.00/hour for 40 hours a week (10 week internship). In addition, they will pay all expenses to train you in their Seattle office at the beginning of the summer. This is an excellent opportunity for those going home internationally this summer, or those looking to spend the summer abroad. Opportunity is open to ALL CLASS YEARS, and both American and International students! Deadline to apply is April 15th! Attached is a PDF of the internship description sent by my contact at and more information can be found on MyCRC.

 Rachel M. Berman, Operations Coordinator, Wesleyan Career Center, 860-685-2180,

Lecture Commemorating One Year Anniversary of Japanese Earthquake and Tsunami — 3/8, 5 p.m.

Lecture: Tohoku One Year Later

Thursday, March 8, 5:00 pm at Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies

This event commemorates the anniversary of the March 11, 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. We are very excited to have two eminent speakers, Michael Yamashita of the National Geographic magazine, and Ted Bestor, Chair of Anthropology at Harvard and author of Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World. Both have visited northern Japan repeatedly since the disaster.

Instead of just seeing “the one photo” in Michael Yamshita’s slide lecture, you’ll see other, unpublished images of the same scene, giving a sense of the scale of the disaster. Michael Yamashita talked about taking off in a helicopter from near the Fukishima Nuclear Plant a few weeks after the disaster, flying north for 2 1/2 hours and seeing nothing but destruction. He had been to Kobe right after the earthquake there and said that in that disaster, some buildings failed but others withstood the shaking: he said after Tohoku everything was simply swept away.  

Ted Bestor’s work on the Tsujiki Fish market (Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World (University of California Press, 2004) is generally credited with saving that institution. His research on the state of northern Japan after the disaster highlights the devastation of the fishing economy which experienced a double hit: its physical plant wiped out by the earthquake and tsunami, and then its market devastated by fear of nuclear poisoning from water released during the meltdown of the Fukushima Plant.

 For info contact Ann Gertz at X2300

 Caption for image: March 11 Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. Measuring 9, biggest ever to hit Japan destroying the NE coast line cities and villages for 200 plus miles.  Toshiya Kanaka, 79, doing the clothes he found in his house that was in the background.  He now lives in a refugee center during the day but stays with his wife in a small workshop where he has gathered together all he needs to survive happily making knots with ropes he has recovered from wreckage.  It’s a hobby of which he has many.  A very resourceful man who challenges this to undo him. © Michael Yamashita


The “North Africa Spring” Symposium — 3/2 afternoon

You are invited to attend the symposium on the “North Africa Spring” on Friday, March 2nd. The symposium will run from 2pm – 5.30pm at the Russell House (including a reception after the event). It will feature two speakers. Leonardo Villalon, a political scientist at the University of Florida, will speak on “Spring Storms Across the Sahara: The Francophone Sahel in the Wake of the north African Spring”. Katherine Hoffman, an anthropologist at Northwestern University, will discuss: “Revolution’s Refugees: Tunisian Amazigh Responses to Displaced Libyans and their Commuter Rebellion”. Their presentations will be followed by commentary from Wesleyan faculty in Religion, Middle Eastern Studies, and Philosophy. 

 See below for more information about our guest speakers. We also have a website: 

Sponsored by The African Studies Cluster, the Government Department, the Thomas and Catharine McMahon Memorial Fund of the Romance Languages and Literatures Department, the Dean of the Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Programs, the College of Letters, and the Anthropology Department.

“Is the University Universal?” by Prof. Neha Vora ’96 — 2/28

Is the University Universal?: South Asian Diasporas and Globalized Education in the Gulf Arab States

Neha Vora
Assistant Professor, Texas A&M University
Tuesday February 28, 4:30-6:00pm
Russell House

A graduate of Wesleyan’s Feminism, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program, Prof. Vora is currently an assistant professor of anthropology and women’s studies at Texas A&M University.  Her book “Impossible Citizens: Dubai’s Indian Diaspora” is forthcoming with Duke University Press. Prof. Vora’s talk is sponsored by the South Asia Studies program, the Feminism, Gender and Sexuality Studies program, and the Middle East Studies program.
Talk Description
Extreme budget cuts, corporate partnerships, and neoliberalization of education have left many scholars wondering about the future of American universities. In particular, what will happen to liberal arts curricula, academic freedom, diversity, and critical thinking within higher education? The proliferation of branch campuses, particularly in Gulf Arab cities like Doha, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai have added to these questions. This paper explores, through the experiences of South Asian diasporic youth in Dubai, some of the early impacts of this new distributed knowledge economy on forms of identification, belonging, and citizenship in the Gulf Arab States.

Neha Vora’s research focuses on forms of citizenship, belonging, and exclusion within the contemporary Gulf Arab States. In particular, she explores how economic, political, and social changes in countries like the United Arab Emirates and Qatar shape the on-the-ground experiences of the large Indian diaspora residing in the region. Although many accounts of migrants in these countries emphasize their lack of belonging, since legal citizenship is mostly unattainable, Dr. Vora’s research follows anthropological and interdisciplinary scholarship that multiplies and expands the concept of citizenship to include different forms and scales, including urban, diasporic, transnational, flexible, and substantive.