The “Migration without Borders” conference opened Friday, October 4 with a lively plenary address by Donna Gabaccia of the University of Minnesota on the freedom to move that generated equally lively questions. Afterward conference attendees gathered for dinner. On Saturday morning the conference re-convened for two morning sessions followed a Dutch documentary on the global migration of care givers at lunch time. Closing comments on the study of migration by MSU anthropologist Chantal Tetreault followed the afternoon session. Conversation continued at Beggar’s Banquet. Enough description ~
This conference went smoothly thanks to the direction of the organizing committee that starred History Graduate Students Alison Kolodzy, Brian Van Wyck, Adrienne Tyrey, Emily Elliot, Ella Fratantuono (in absentia), Helen Kaibara, and Jason Black – backed by the efforts of their colleagues. History faculty graciously commented on the eight sessions and lent support in a variety of ways: Kirsten Fermaglich, Lisa Fine, Matt Pauly, Lewis Siegelbaum, and Walter Hawthorne. Jim Porter lent a crucial hand. The Department of History, Graduate School, and the Sweet Professorship were the major history-based sponsors of Migration without Borders.
Faculty from outside the department – Andrea Louie and Chantal Tetreault from Anthropology, Anna Pegler-Gordon from James Madison, Estrella Torrez from the Residential College, and Donna Gabaccia from the University of Minnesota – all expressed their admiration for the work of our students and for the high level of conversation engendered by the conference. Graduate student presenters came not only from history, but also from anthropology, sociology and education and from Berkeley, Minnesota, Central Michigan, the University of Ottawa, Indiana University, Penn State, the University of Houston, Case Western, the California Institute of Integral Studies, the University of Illinois, Wayne State, Paris Ouest Nanterre and the University of Turku in Finland. This was a fine and productive conference, for which our students deserve much praise, and our faculty many thanks ~