The next virtual meeting of the Critical Internationalization Studies Network will take place on September 13, 2019. We will welcome Dr. Gerardo Blanco from the University of Connecticut (https://education.uconn.edu/person/gerardo-blanco/) His talk is entitled, “Can We Critically Approach Work That Has Been Framed Uncritically? Doing Internationalization as Collective Account-Giving”, and our meeting will take place on Friday, September 13th at 9am Pacific/12pm Eastern (US and Canada time). The abstract follows: Despite best intentions, internationalization work is not always framed with sufficient attention to issues of power, inequity and coloniality. Scholars and practitioners of comparative and international higher education often need to decide whether to engage with unsavory actors, uncritically-framed activities or national regimes with questionable records. In a context where academic boycotts of countries and states are heatly debated, this session explores the limits of international engagement. I explore Jean Baudrillard’s notion of “undoing history” in the larger context of globalization as “integral reality.” Secondly, I rely on Judith Butler’s notion of “giving account” to outline my personal ethic of international engagement, which is often collectively-driven. These theoretical entanglements are grounded in personal accounts of teaching in China, hosting international visiting scholars, examining dissertations in Ethiopia, becoming American, and embodying internationalization in U.S. universities. Rather than presenting a finished idea, I intend—with much trepidation—to open space for exploring unquestioned assumptions, unrecognized motivations and patterns of behavior, but also to encourage a much needed collective soul-searching regarding the internationalization activities we undertake.
We will have an informal network meet-up at the Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) in Portland, OR in November, 2019 (https://www.ashe.ws/conference). More details to come!