2012-2013 Fellows

Michael Blim
Professor of Anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center
Email: mblim@gc.cuny.edu
Michael Blim is Professor of Anthropology at the Graduate Center and the author of Made in Italy: Small-scale Industrialization and Its Consequences as well as Equality and Economy: The Global Challenge. He is currently finishing a ms. tentatively titled “Clear and Present Danger: The Role of the Rich in American Life.”As part of the manuscript preparation, his project consists of an exploration the utility of the concept of “revolution from above” in discussing US worker uprisings in the second half of the 19th Century.
John Whitlow
Professor of Clinical Law at the CUNY School of Law
Email: whitlowj@mail.law.cuny.edu
John Whitlow is a clinical law professor and supervising attorney in the Community Economic Development Clinic at CUNY Law School. Prior to joining the faculty at CUNY, he was a supervising attorney at Make the Road New York (MRNY), where he oversaw the organization’s housing and public benefits legal services and worked on housing and criminal justice policy initiatives. While at MRNY, he taught in NYU Law School’s Litigation, Organizing and Social Change Clinic, which is based on MRNY’s model of combining legal services and community organizing. He has also worked as a staff attorney at the Urban Justice Center’s Community Development Project (CDP) and as a staff attorney at Bedford-Stuyvesant Community Legal Services. At CDP, he represented tenant associations in group litigation and provided transactional legal assistance to not-for-profit organizations and worker-owned cooperatives. He holds a BA from the Johns Hopkins University, an MA from the New School for Social Research, and a JD from CUNY School of Law. He is currently on the Board of Directors of the Bushwick Housing Independence Project.


Postdoctoral Fellow

Christina Heatherton
Christina Heatherton is a postdoctoral scholar at the Center for Place, Culture, and Politics at the CUNY Graduate Center. She received her doctorate in American Studies and Ethnicity from the University of Southern California in 2012. Her manuscript, The Color Line and the Class Struggle: The Radical Roots of the American Century analyzes the interrelated developments of U.S. capitalist imperialism and domestic racial regimes in the early twentieth century. The project interrogates how figures influenced by the Mexican Revolution opposed the expansion of U.S. capitalist imperialism and in the process produced new forms of anti-racist internationalism. Her work will appear as a forthcoming chapter of Rising Tides of Color, ed. Moon-Ho Jung (Seattle: University of Washington Press). She has previously taught courses in the department of Sociology and Anthropology at Baruch College and is slated to teach a graduate seminar about Radical Internationalism at the CUNY Graduate Center. She is the recipient of multiple fellowships including the USC Grayson and Judith Manning Endowed Fellowship, several research awards including the W.M. Keck Foundation Fellowship from the Huntington Library, as well as awards for her scholar activism including the American Studies Association’s Community Partnership Grant and the Davis-Putter Scholarship. She is the editor of Downtown Blues: A Skid Row Reader (Freedom Now Books, 2011) and co-editor with Jordan T. Camp ofFreedom Now! Struggles for the Human Right to Housing in LA and Beyond (Freedom Now Books, 2012). She is also a member of the Global Advisory Board of the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership.

Dissertation Writing Fellows

Tara Burk
PhD Candidate in Art History
Email: tburk@gc.cuny.edu
Tara Burk is a doctoral candidate in art history at The Graduate Center. Her dissertation examines shifting notions of political art and urban space in the late 1980s and 1990s, by focusing on feminist and queer art collectives in New York City. In recent peer-reviewed articles she has considered spatial aspects of visual ephemera, in early modern woodcuts of executions and in AIDS activist graphics.
Saygun Gökarıksel
PhD Candidate in Anthropology
Email: sgokariksel@gc.cuny.edu
Saygun Gökarıksel is a doctoral candidate in cultural anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center. His research focuses on the political and legal aspects of “democratic transitions” from authoritarian rule and specifically, the post-1989 ethico-political and judicial reconstructions of East European socialist experience on the basis of Communist Secret Service archives. Central to his research are themes of popular sovereignty, state formation, and political violence, concepts of truth, justice, and the public, and ethics of knowing, reconciliation, antagonism, and political life. He has taught in the Anthropology Departments of Lehman College and Queens College. His writing has appeared in Polish, Romanian, and Turkish journals.
Chris Grove
PhD Candidate in Anthropology
Email: cgrove@gc.cuny.edu
Chris Grove is a PhD candidate in cultural anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center and the Director of the International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Chris has been involved in grassroots education and organizing for human rights in the United States–including struggles to end poverty, secure economic justice, and stop gender-based violence–and he has worked closely with grassroots organizations in Cambodia, India and Romania. Chris holds a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University and has taught university courses in anthropology, history, and social theory. Attentive to concepts of crisis and hegemony, Chris undertook his dissertation research in the US Midwest, examining political responses and formations emerging in the wake of the current economic downturn and their relationships to historical trajectories within the US.
Ryan Mann-Hamilton
PhD Candidate in Anthropology
Email: rasmann6@yahoo.com
Ryan Mann-Hamilton is a Ph.D candidate at the CUNY Graduate Center Dept. of Anthropology and a board member of the afrolatin@ forum. He has an Undergraduate degree in International Studies and a Masters in Environmental Systems with a focus on renewable technologies and community development. Ryan has taught courses in History, Anthropology and Ethnic Studies and has worked for many years as a community organizer and popular educator giving a variety of workshops on social justice issues, environmental activism and social constructions of race.
Lauren Santangelo
PhD Candidate in History
Email: lsantangelo@gc.cuny.edu
Lauren Santangelo is a Ph.D. candidate in history at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center, and an adjunct lecturer at Lehman College. Lauren received her MPhil from the Graduate Center in 2010 and her BA in political science and history from Marist College. Her dissertation analyzes the relationship between the suffrage movement and America’s largest metropolis, New York City.
Eva Tessza Udvarhelyi
PhD Candidate in Environmental Psychology
Email: evatessza@hotmail.com
Eva Tessza Udvarhelyi is a doctoral candidate in environmental psychology at the CUNY Graduate Center. She has an MA in cultural anthropology from ELTE University in Budapest where she researched the exclusion of homeless people from public spaces. At CUNY, she got an MA in Psychology with a thesis that focused on the Critical Mass movement in Budapest as a form of embodied democratic practice. In 2009 Udvarhelyi co-founded a group called The City is for All, which is the only homeless-led advocacy organization in Hungary. Udvarhelyi’s dissertation is about the criminalization of homelessness and the potential for homeless people to resist it.

Visiting Scholars

Mariana Fix
Professor of Economics, University of Campinas (Unicamp), São Paulo, Brazil
Email: mfix@uol.com.br
Mariana Fix is a professor at the Institute of Economics at UNICAMP, and author of Partners in Exclusion (Parceiros da exclusão, 2001) and São Paulo Global City (São Paulo, Cidade Global, 2007), both published in Brazil by Boitempo Editorial. She holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Campinas (2012), a master’s degree in Sociology from the University of São Paulo (2003), and a professional degree in Architecture and Urbanism from the University of São Paulo (1996). She has also published several articles and book chapters on the right to the city, planning and housing policies, slums and tenements in São Paulo, financial investments in land markets, real estate promotion and homebuilders, inner-city gentrification, globalization, and public-private partnerships.
She has just won the 2012 award for best PhD thesis in Economics, granted by the Brazilian institution CAPES (coordinating institute for the development of higher-education professionals).
Mariana is a visiting research scholar at CUNY’s Graduate Center as an Urban Studies Foundation fellow from November 2012 until March 2013. The main goal of the sabbatical is for her to assess the findings of her doctoral dissertation, and to prepare a book manuscript and articles on the subject. In this project, she discusses the growing connections between the financialization of the economy and the promotion of real estate by means of a comparative study between Brazil and the USA. She also addresses the impact of these connections for the built environment and urban life.
Mariana is a member of the Housing and Human Settlements Laboratory at the School of Architecture and Urbanism of the University of São Paulo, and has been working with Right to the City organizations for several years.
Her master’s thesis, entitled Sao Paulo Global City: Financial Foundations of a Mirage, won the 4th Brazilian Urban and Regional Policy and Planning Award for best thesis, given by ANPUR (the Brazilian Association for Urban and Regional Planning Research).Selected publications in English and Spanish:

  • A bridge to speculation or the art of rent in the staging of a global city. In: Valença, Cravidão and Fernandes (Editors), Urban developments in Brazil and Portugal, Nova Publishers. (2012)
  • Nuevas fronteras imobiliarias: el caso ejemplar de la operación urbana Faria Lima en San Pablo. In: Cuenya; Novais y Vainer (Compiladores) Grandes Proyectos Urbanos. Lecturas críticas de la experiencia argentina y brasilera, Buenos Aires: Café de Ciudades. (2012)
  • How the Lula Government Claims to Solve the Housing Problem, Network of Social Justice and Human Rights, 2009. (co-author with Pedro Arantes) (2009)
  • Case study: São Paulo, Brazil. In: Patrick Wakely; Kate Clifford, Alex Walker; Anna Soave. (Org.). Understanding slums: 33 city case studies prepared for the UN Global report on Human Settlements Available on www.ucl.ac.uk/dpu-projects/Global_Report/cities/saopaulo.htm, and in CD-ROM Understanding Slums (2003)
Alf Gunvald Nilsen
Email: alfgunvald@gmail.com
Dr. Alf Gunvald Nilsen is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Sociology, University of Bergen, Norway. His work revolves around social movement theory and research, critical development research, and Marxist approaches to capitalist development. He has published on the Narmada Valley anti-dam struggle, social movements in the global South, and Marxism as a theory of social movements.His book “Dispossession and Resistance in India: The River and the Rage” was recently reviewedin Economic and Political Weekly.Selected publications:


Victoria Habermehl
PhD Candidate in the School of Geography, Cities and Social Justice Research Cluster, University of Leeds
Website: http://www.geog.leeds.ac.uk/people/v.habermehl
Email: vhabermehl@gmail.com
Victoria Habermehl is a PhD candidate in the School of Geography at the University of Leeds.
Her work is focused on contestations in the city; investigating relationships between the city, people, capital and space in order to develop understandings of how ruins are created in the city and to whom they are productive. In particular she is focusing on how capital in the city can inform attempts to ‘occupy’ and subvert space, affecting movements abilities and struggles to address their social reproduction.

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