RE: [xmca] Call for Proposals and Reviewers

From: Peter Smagorinsky <smago who-is-at>
Date: Fri Jul 11 2008 - 03:04:47 PDT

That's probably Dwight Conquergood, who studied street gangs.

Dwight Conquergood R.I.P.
Professor of the Year in 1993
Read Dwight's Power of Symbols

By Tom Rybarczyk
Chicago Tribune staff reporter
Published November 19, 2004

Northwestern University Professor Dwight Conquergood took his desire to
understand the disenfranchised to a Thai refugee camp, a dangerous Chicago
neighborhood and vigils outside scheduled Death Row executions.

And even if he was thrust into danger, as he was in the 1980s when he was
beaten while living in an Albany Park apartment complex, he kept coming

"He was scared," said his friend and fellow NU Professor Micaela di Leonardo
of his stay in the apartment complex known as Big Red. "It was dangerous and
it was unpleasant ... But he found a community."

Professor Conquergood, 55, of Chicago, died Saturday, Nov. 13, in Rush North
Shore Hospice in Skokie after a prolonged battle with colon cancer.

Friends and colleagues said his ability to communicate and understand were
his greatest gifts. Whether it was giving a lecture to graduate students or
speaking to the Latin Kings street gang's inner circle, Professor
Conquergood worked to see how the disadvantaged view the world and then show
that to the privileged decision-makers.

"What I thought was remarkable about him was he was one of those rare people
who could move between these different worlds," said Michelle Citron, an NU
professor and friend. "There's not many academics who take their work out to
communities and people."

Born in Canada, he moved with his family to Terre Haute, Ind. at age 3.

As a teen, he began to show his intellectual ability, earning the highest
marks in high school and college, said his brother Larey.

"He was such an overachiever," his brother said.

After graduating from Indiana State University in the early 1970s, Professor
Conquergood received his doctorate from Northwestern.

In 1978, he was back at Northwestern as a professor. He taught classes on
anthropology and folklore. He also lectured on performance studies, a field
that combines anthropology and such performance disciplines as theater and

His intense work ethic left little time for a wife and family, his brother

Instead, Professor Conquergood would develop a number of surrogate families,
first among the Hmong in Southeastern Asia and then among Albany Park
residents, including members of the Latin Kings, di Leonardo said.

His knowledge of performance studies helped him teach Hmong refugees in
Thailand the importance of public health and sanitation, di Leonardo said.
Professor Conquergood was able to use their mythology in a theater setting
to get his points across, she said.

Professor Conquergood used film and writing to help others communicate, di
Leonardo said. His documentary on the struggles in Big Red was filmed with
the help of Latin Kings members and challenged the notion that gangs were
racially segregated, di Leonardo said.

Professor Conquergood testified in court on his findings about the Hmong as
well as his experience with North Side gangs as an expert witness, according
to Tribune articles.

In his later years, he would take on the death penalty, publishing an essay
titled "Lethal Theatre: Performance, Punishment and the Death Penalty," that
garnered him national recognition, di Leonardo said.

He won the Illinois Professor of the Year award in 1993 and several NU
teaching awards.

Other survivors include his mother, Dorothea ; two sisters, Carey Konazeski
and Cheryl Wall; and another brother, Kevin.

A memorial service is being planned for January at Northwestern University.

Peter Smagorinsky
The University of Georgia
125 Aderhold Hall
Athens, GA 30602

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On
Behalf Of Mike Cole
Sent: Thursday, July 10, 2008 10:56 PM
To: Lois Holzman
Cc: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: Re: [xmca] Call for Proposals and Reviewers

Vygotsky and Performance Studies in education? Sounds like a fine idea.
I'll check locally. But has anyone else on XMCA heard of Conquergood?

On Thu, Jul 10, 2008 at 7:28 PM, Lois Holzman <> wrote:

> Thanks, Mike, for getting the ball rolling with these suggestions.
> What about reaching out across UCSD to colleagues, like the one who is
> Conquergood? Is there something we could do that would
> performance as either/both an ontological or epistemological
> construct/practice? Also are you interested in organizing a site visit
> it's in SD?
> Lois
> On Jul 10, 2008, at 5:42 PM, Mike Cole wrote:
> Thanks for the reminder, Lois.
>> AERA is going to be here in San Diego I hear. And the theme is
>> interdisciplinarity?
>> The first thing that circumstance brings to mind is that several people
>> here
>> might be induced to contribute to symposia or
>> discussions. But what kind? Some possible themes:
>> Intervention research as a tool of theory testing: Alternative
>> The role(s) of qualitative research in the conduct of research on
>> and development.
>> Learning and Development: Any progress in clarifying the issues since
>> 1934?
>> Second life and Other Virtual Environments for education
>> A cultural-historical approach to organizing higher education in the
>> social
>> sciences
>> Who is interested in what?
>> mike
>> On Thu, Jul 10, 2008 at 2:13 PM, Lois Holzman <
>>> wrote:
>> Dear XMCA-ers,
>>>> We want to remind you that there's less than a month to go before AERA
>>>> proposals are due. We are a creative group of folks doing work that is
>>>> worth
>>>> sharing at AERA! So please let us know if there's any way we can
>>>> you
>>>> to compose proposals and to submit them to the Cultural-Historical
>>>> Research
>>>> SIG. As you know, AERA bases the number and type of session allocated
>>>> each SIG in part on the total number of proposals received by the SIG -
>>>> so
>>>> please submit your proposals to our SIG!
>>>> We also remind you that the quality of the program depends largely on
>>>> the
>>>> proposal review process, and so we encourage those of you who have
>>>> reviewed
>>>> proposals in the past to do so again this year; we also welcome new
>>>> reviewers, including graduate students and new SIG members.
>>>> To submit proposals and to volunteer to review proposals, please log in
>>>> to
>>>> the 2009 AERA Annual Meeting online submission system at
>>>><> This is also the site for
>>>> volunteering as a discussant or session chair.
>>>> Thanks,
>>>> Kevin and Lois
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>> xmca mailing list
>>> _______________________________________________
>> xmca mailing list
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