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Building Publics 2022: Language Pedagogy and Social Justice

Public Humanities, Building Publics

dateMay 11, 2022 timeWednesday, 7:00pm–9:00pm EDT locationVirtual Event
  • The registration link includes a field for accessibility requests. If you have any questions please contact [email protected].

  • The Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities
  • Free and open to the public
  • Registration required. See details.
Title and date of event in the style of a Google Translate screenshot

Building Publics showcases how our Public Humanities Graduate Fellows bridge humanistic thinking with civic engagement and social justice, scholarly research with public building and communication in order to unleash new, more critical modes of scholarly imaginations.


David Borgonjon, Public Humanities Fellow and PhD Candidate in EALAC, Columbia University

Maya Krinsky, Associate Director of Multilingual Education, Rhode Island School of Design

João Nemi Neto, Senior Lecturer in LAIC, Columbia University

Karim ElHaies, Worker-Owner, Algarabía Language Co-op

Aldo Ulisses Reséndiz Ramírez, Worker-Owner, Algarabía Language Co-op

Pamela Rose, Mandarin Educator

When we learn a new language, questions of social justice are often reserved for "advanced" levels. Even worse, language pedagogy can sometimes reproduce dominant ideologies that are racist, classist, sexist, ableist, and/or homophobic. What if we tried to integrate questions of social justice into language pedagogy from the very first day? This roundtable discussion will invite educators working with English, Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese and other languages to share their theoretical and practical perspectives. Participants, especially those with experience of language teaching/learning and multilingual environments, will also be invited to share their reflections. The event will conclude with us working on a provisional set of questions and tips for people interested in practicing language pedagogy with an eye to social justice.

If you have any questions, please reach out to David Borgonjon ([email protected]).

About the Speakers:

Maya Krinsky (she/hers) is a visual artist and language learning specialist based in Providence, Rhode Island. Central to her work in art and education is the pursuit of compatibility between language learning and lived experience. She teaches studio and seminar courses at Brown and Rhode Island School of Design, where she is Associate Director for Multilingual Learning at RISD's Center for Arts & Language. Her interdisciplinary art practice consists primarily of photography, film, drawing, and collaborative projects.

João Nemi Neto (he/him) is a Senior Lecturer at Columbia University where he teaches Portuguese language, and courses on sexuality and Brazilian Lusophone cultures. His research focuses on queer pedagogy, Brazilian culture and visual media. His latest book is Cannibalizing Queer: Brazilian Queer Cinema from 1970 to 2015 (Wayne State University Press, 2022).

Aldo Ulisses Reséndiz Ramírez (elle/le; they/them) is a multilingual, queer immigrant from a farm-working family of Indigenous hñähñu and xi’oi descent. They graduated with a M. A. in Applied Linguistics from Teachers College, Columbia University. Aldo is co-founder and worker-owner of Algarabía Language Co-op and currently sits on the board of NYC Network of Worker Cooperatives. They are a writer, interpreter, translator, grassroots tenant organizer and language justice promoter in community organizing spaces across New York City. Aldo works on critical language pedagogy and popular education approaches to teaching emergent bilinguals, Spanish bilinguals, and speakers of all languages and language varieties.

Karim ElHaies (he/his), a worker-owner of Algarabía Language Co-op, is an Egyptian American multilingual graduate student of Middle Eastern Studies, History, and Cinema. He teaches Arabic language and Arab cinema classes at several New York colleges and universities. Believing that language structures social lives, he is interested in teaching Arabic language and history (cinema, culture, etc.) in light of the various political, cultural, and economic factors that manufactured the social fabric of the modern Arab World.

Pamela Rose (she/hers) is a Mandarin educator based in New York City. She graduated with an MA from the Graduate Institute of Teaching Chinese as a Second Language at National Taiwan Normal University. Pamela has primarily taught language at the elementary and middle school levels, sharing her passion for Chinese history and culture with her students. She volunteers in different capacities at Womankind, a NYC based non-profit that helps survivors of gender based violence.