Catalyzing Support for Caribbean Studies

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KATE RAMSEY
Faculty Lead Hemispheric Caribbean Studies
Coral Gables, Fla. (March 29, 2017) - Faculty members whose research focuses on the Caribbean came together at the University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas on Wednesday to share current initiatives, evaluate possibilities for cross-disciplinary collaboration, and discuss how the institute can support these efforts.

 

"There is great potential to do interdisciplinary work and we are very happy to catalyze support," said Dr. Felicia Marie Knaul, the institute's director.

The discussion was moderated by Kate Ramsey, associate professor of history and faculty lead for Hemispheric Caribbean Studies at the institute. "Extending cross-disciplinary communication among faculty and graduate students working in Caribbean studies may lead to new collaborative possibilities," Ramsey noted.

Faculty members from Educational and Psychological Studies, Biology, Modern Languages and Literatures, History, the Cuban Heritage Collection at the UM Libraries, International Studies, English, Musicology, and Obstetrics and Gynecology shared ideas on how to support each other's work and achieve better communication.

"What does it really mean for us to have an interdisciplinary conversation and produce something that is uniquely UM?" asked Donette Francis, associate professor of English.

Kathleen Sealey, associate professor of Biology, added, "We have an obligation and an opportunity to help the Caribbean countries and be  their resource."

As the discussion evolved, Knaul asked the group for a "dashboard of projects" to forge a more robust Caribbean-focused scholarly community at UM. "What we are doing here is reaching out to the Caribbean in a very strong way," she said.