Suffer the Little Children: Child Migration and the Geopolitics of Compassion in the United States, with Anita Casavantes Bradford

by Illuminations: The Chancellor's Arts & Culture Initiative

Lecture Advocacy Reading And Writing Social Justice

Wed, Jan 18, 2023

4 PM – 5 PM PST (GMT-8)

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In this online event, UCI author Anita Casavantes Bradford talks with UCI author Héctor Tobar about her new book, Suffer the Little Children, which uncovers the role that unaccompanied minors have played in successive waves of migration to the United States.

In Suffer the Little Children, Anita Casavantes Bradford traces the evolution of American policy toward unaccompanied children, starting with the European children who fled the perils of World War II and ending with the Central American children who arrive every day at the U.Sthis. southern border. Even after the creation of the Unaccompanied Refugee Minors program in 1980, the federal government has failed to see migrant children as individual rights-bearing subjects. The claims of these children, especially those who are poor, nonwhite, and non-Christian, continue to be evaluated not in terms of their unique circumstances but rather in terms of broader implications for migratory flows from their homelands. This book urgently demonstrates that U.S. policy must evolve in order to ameliorate the desperate needs of unaccompanied children.

Anita Casavantes Bradford is associate professor of Chicano/Latino studies and history at the University of California, Irvine. She is also the author of The Revolution Is for the Children: The Politics of Childhood in Havana and Miami, 1959-1962 (2014). Dr. Casavantes Bradford is a former University of California Presidents’ Postdoctoral Fellow, and her work was awarded the 2011 UC-Cuba Marta Abreu Dissertation Prize. Her research has been supported by a UCI Cultural Research Grant, the Cuban Heritage Collection Research Fellowship program at the University of Miami, the UC-Cuba Multi-Campus Research Program, and the University of California San Diego Latino Studies Research Initiative.

Dr. Héctor Tobar is professor of Chicano/Latino Studies and English at UC Irvine. He has taught writing at Pomona College and the University of Oregon. He is the author of The Barbarian Nurseries, The Last Great Road Bum, Translation Nation: Defining a New American Identity in the Spanish-Speaking United States, and the novel The Tattooed Soldier.

This UCI Authors Talk is co-sponsored by the UC Humanities Research Institute, as part of its initiative on Refuge and Its Refusals.


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