A monthly update on your
Social Sciences news and up-coming events

Former President Jimmy Carter to visit UC Irvine May 3, 2007

Center for the Study of Democracy and
Model United Nations

in association with

Center for Citizen Peacebuilding and
Department of Political Science

invite you to a lecture and discussion with
Jimmy Carter,
39th President of the United States of America
"Remarks on the Mid-East Conflict, Israel and Palestine"
Thursday, May 3, 2007
10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Bren Events Center

Click here for admission information. For further ticketing and event information, please visit the event website at: http://www.socsci.uci.edu/events/carter/

April Headlines

Prof. Alison Brysk Receives Distinguished Mid-Career Faculty Award for Research

Alison Brysk, political science professor, was recently named the 2007-2008 recipient of the Distinguished Mid-Career Faculty Award for Research by the University of California Academic Senate. Considered one of the most prestigious honors a UC faculty member can receive from their colleagues, the award recognizes Brysk's contributions to scholarship through her distinguished research on issues concerning human rights, globalization, social movements/civil society, as well as Latin American politics. Read on...

Former President of Ireland and UN High Commissioner visits UC Irvine
"Growing up wedged between two older and younger brothers, I developed a very early interest in human rights," Mary Robinson cleverly explained in her Gaelic accent to a crowd of UC Irvine students, faculty, staff and local community members. The former President of Ireland and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights visited the UC Irvine campus on April 19, 2007 to share her international experiences as an advocate for human rights as the UC Irvine Center for the Study of Democracy's Peltason lecturer and a guest of the Chancellor's Distinguished Fellows Series. Read on...

MUN travel team returns from Geneva, Switzerland
Nine UC Irvine students recently returned from the World Model United Nations (MUN) conference in Geneva, Switzerland where they joined over 1,700 students from across the world to debate key topics of international concern. Earning a diplomacy award for her overall public speaking, research and negotiation skills was Dana Ballout, a UC Irvine international studies major. Read on...

UC Irvine sociologist warns of impending demographic crisis in China
The first systematic examination of China's fertility policy and practice reveals that, despite government exemptions in rural areas, 63 percent of Chinese couples are strictly limited to one child. Furthermore, the policy has proven remarkably effective, with actual birth rates decreasing nearly to the mandated levels. Read on...

Boellstorff publishes A Coincidence of Desires
Anthropologist Tom Boellstorff's A Coincidence of Desires was released this month by Duke University Press. The book includes case studies about Indonesians who call themselves "gay" or "lesbian," and examines how these terms are transformed in the context of self-published magazines, slang and Islam (Indonesia is home to more Muslims than any other country). He also includes a study of "warias," persons born as men who feel they have women's souls, and a comparative study of sexuality and gender across Southeast Asia. Through these case studies, Boellstorff argues that both queer studies and anthropology would be enriched by greater interdisciplinary collaboration.

Member of the Afghanistan Parliament visits UC Irvine
Faizullah Zaki, a Jowzjan Province representative of the lower house of parliament in Afghanistan, led an open discussion on Wednesday, April 17, 2007 with Social Sciences students and faculty as well as members of the Irvine community, detailing his experiences in the developing democratic nation. Zaki's visit was hosted by the Department of Political Science and the Center for the Study of Democracy as part of its "Dialogue on Democracy and Islam" series. Read on...

War veteran sends school kits to students in Iraq
War experience inspires benefit concert for school kids in Iraq.
By Greg Hardesty
The Orange County Register
IRVINE - Nick Masellis is sitting in the campus Starbucks at UC Irvine. To him, it's Luxury Central, with hot drinks, cushy chairs, books, pens and paper - a sanctuary of consumerism and knowledge. To most of the students and faculty sipping drinks and studying in the crowded coffee shop, it's a routine hangout. Read on...

3 UC Irvine students selected for competitive public policy summer program
Three School of Social Sciences students were recently selected to attend the Public Policy and International Affairs Junior Summer Institute (PPIA JSI) program at the University of Michigan. PPIA is a competitive summer fellowship program designed to prepare students from diverse backgrounds for graduate studies in public and/or international affairs and future professional roles in public service. Read on...

Research study finds no sign that ethnic groups' genes cause diabetes
No sign that ethnic groups' genes cause diabetes, international research team says

A study by U.S. and Australian researchers is helping dispel the 40-year-old "thrifty genotype theory," which purports that certain minority groups are genetically prone to diabetes. Read on...

Afghans favor and understand democracy, survey shows
Violence and instability at borders threaten political freedom, UCI researcher finds

An overwhelming majority of Afghans favor democratic government and demonstrate a surprisingly sophisticated understanding of democracy, according to a new analysis by UC Irvine political scientist Russell Dalton. Violence and instability in certain regions, however, remain a significant threat to democracy's development. Read on...

Panel on US patent law ethics finds compromises and hope
Linda Cohen, economics professor and associate dean of graduate studies in the School of Social Sciences, was a panelist at the March 29, 2007 "Ethical Issues in Patent Law" symposium held at the Columbus School of Law, Catholic University in Washington, D.C. For more details on the symposium and its outcomes, please visit

If you have a good idea for a feature story or would like to post a news item to the School of Social Sciences website, please contact your department manager or Heather Wuebker, hwuebker@uci.edu.

May 2007 Events
(as received prior to April 30, 2007)

May 2, 2007
Human Rights in the Vernacular: Plural Legalities and Traveling Rights in India, China and the USA

Sally Engle Merry, Professor of Anthropology and Law and Society, New York University is scheduled to speak in the Crystal Cove Auditorium on May 2, 2007. Further details...

Colloquium: State Power and Nationalism: Mexico in Comparative Perspective
Matthias von Hau, Brown University, is scheduled to speak in SSPB 4206 from 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. on May 2, 2007.

May 3, 2007
Anthropological Perspectives on Human Rights and Global Legal Pluralism

Sally Engle Merry, Professor of Anthropology and Law and Society, New York University, is scheduled to speak on Thursday, May 3, 2007 in SE II 2372 at 12:00 p.m. A light lunch will be served. Further details...

Ethnography Workshop
Sally Engle Merry, Professor of Anthropology and Law and Society, New York University will be leading a workshop on Ethnography on May 3, 2007 from 3:30-5:00pm in SSPB 4250 (Anthropology Library). Further details...

May 4, 2007
Author-Meets-Reader Discussion

Sally Engle Merry, Professor of Anthropology and Law and Society, New York University will lead a discussion with students on her new book, Human Rights and Gender Violence: Translating International Law into Local Justice, on May 4, 2007 in SSPB 4206 from 12:00 - 3:00 p.m. Further details...

What is so hard about soft law? A Graduate Student- Faculty Workshop
Sponsored by the Center for Ethnography and the Department of Anthropology, this graduate student-faculty workshop will seek to understand how and why legal practitioners, bureaucrats, academics and other 'experts' adopt, adapt, and transform soft law as both a discursive and functional category. Second, we seek to xamine the new forms of governance and geographical topographies that may emerge when soft and hard laws are de-(re)-constructed.

The workshop will be held in SSPB 1208 on May 4, 2007 from 2:00 - 6:00 p.m. and May 5, 2007 from 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Further details...

May 9
Colloquium: Getting a Bonus: The Effects of Social Networks on Pay Among Commercial Bankers

Mark Mizruchi, University of Michigan, is scheduled to speak in SSPB 4206 from 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. on May 9, 2007.

May 15, 2007
Colloquium: Violence, Space, and Remapping Globality: New Frontiers in Jamaica

Deborah A. Thomas, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania is scheduled to speak in SSPB 4250 (Anthropology Library) on May 15, 2007 from 3:30 � 5:00 p.m. Further details...

May 17, 2007
Anthropology Undergraduate Awards Ceremony

Please join the Anthropology Department on May 17, 2007 from 3:30-5:00pm in SSPB 1208 as they congratulate undergraduate students who have fulfilled the requirements for receiving one of the following awards:

*Membership to Lambda Alpha, National Anthropology Honors Society

*Graduating with Honors in Anthropology

*Recipients of "The Malinowski Prize for Undergraduate Research" and "The Ruth Fulton Benedict Paper Prize."

*Recipients of the Department of Anthropology Certificate Programs

Further details...

May 19 - 20, 2007
Model United Nations High School Conference

Working to develop a better understanding of current international issues is at the heart of the UC Irvine School of Social Sciences' Model United Nations' (MUN) mission. Nowhere is this goal more evident than in the group's high school conference and outreach program. On May 19 and 20, 2007, over 1,000 students from nearly 30 high schools throughout California will visit the UC Irvine campus for the MUN's fifteenth annual high school conference. Further details...

May 21
The Center for Global Peace and Conflict Studies invites you to the 16th Annual Margolis Lecture with

Dr. Graham Allison,
Director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
and Douglas Dillon Professor of Government,
Harvard 's John F. Kennedy School of Government

Lecture topic:
"Nuclear Terrorism: The Ultimate Preventable Catastrophe"

Monday, May 21, 2007
5:00 PM
Social Science Lecture Hall 100

Public Lecture - Open and Free to the Public;
first come first served, seating is limited.

Reception Following Lecture in Social Science Plaza
Further details...

May 24, 2007
Colloquium: Economics and Sociology (A Game-Theoretic Proof)

Piotr Swistak, Department of Government and Politics, University of Maryland, is scheduled to speak in SSPA 2112 on May 24, 2007 from 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. Further details...

The Quest for Justice after Terror
Susan Hirsch, George Mason University, is scheduled to speak on May 24, 2007 at 12:00 p.m. Further details...

The Challenge of Global Justice
Susan Hirsch, George Mason University, is schedule to speak in SSPB 4250 (Anthropology Library) on May 24, 2007 from 3:30-5:00pm. Further details...

For current Social Sciences events, make sure to visit our website, www.socsci.uci.edu/events.php.

If you would like to post an event to the School of Social Sciences calendar, please contact your department manager or Heather Wuebker, hwuebker@uci.edu.