Pembroke Center

Seeing War Differently

Inspired by the 100th anniversary of World War I in 2014, the Pembroke Center launched a four­-year research initiative, "Seeing War Differently: Rethinking the Subject(s) of Warfare." The Pembroke Center hosted seminars, public lectures, conferences, performances and film screenings that re-examine war from a broad range of disciplinary perspectives.

The scholarship on modern war has broadened the scope of analysis from the battlefield to consider questions such as the relationship between civilian societies and their military engagements, practices of commemoration, modes of representation, global politics of security and humanitarianism, the value of human life, and the militarization of disease. This project also engages with critical discourses in such fields as gender studies, postcolonial studies, and the studies of race and ethnicity that have helped us rethink the "we" of the war experience.

In attending to the ways that analyses of war have expanded possibilities for thinking about the subject, we learn that the subject itself, war, has expanded as a category of analysis. It is that expanded category—war as a grid, a concept, an organizing framework, or an archive of knowledge—that will form the object of our critical explorations.


Nonviolence: A Global Lexicon

April 18, 2018, 10am - 5:30pm
Pembroke Hall 305
172 Meeting Street, Providence


  • Jennifer Bagelman, Lecturer of Human Geography, University of Exeter
  • Ashon Crawley, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and African American and African Studies, University of Virginia
  • J. Daniel Elam, Assistant Profressor in Comparative Literature, University of Hong Kong and Humanities, Cornell University
  • Laurie McIntosh, Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology, Duke University
  • Ana Minian, Assistant Professor in the Department of History and Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (CCSRE), Stanford University
  • Koritha Mitchell, Literary Historian, Cultural Critic, and Associate Professor of English, Ohio State University 

Riot, Refuge, Refusal

April 28-29, 2017
Friday 1:45 pm - 6:15 pm; Saturday 9:00am - 4:30pm
Pembroke Hall 305
172 Meeting Street, Providence


  • Banu Bargu, Associate Professor of Politics, New School for Social Research
  • Tina Campt, Claire Tow and Ann Whitney Olin Professor of Africana and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Director of the Barnard Center for Research on Women and Chair of the Africana Studies Department, Barnard College
  • Frances Hasso, Associate Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies, Duke University
  • Alexander Livingston, Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Theory, Department of Government and an affiliate of the American Studies Program, Cornell University 
  • Sharon Sliwinski, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information & Media Studies, Western University
  • Astra Taylor, Activist, Filmmaker and founding member of the Rolling Jubilee Project and the Debt Collective

Rape and War

April 15-16, 2016
Friday 1:45 pm - 6:15 pm; Saturday 9:00am - 4:30pm
Pembroke Hall 305
172 Meeting Street, Providence


  • Kimberly Juanita Brown, Assistant Professor of English and Africana Studies, Mount Holyoke College
  • Dara Kay Cohen, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
  • Miriam Cooke, Braxton Craven Professor of Arab Cultures, Duke University
  • Donna DeCesare, Associate Professor of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin
  • Yukiko Koga, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Hunter College
  • Wendy Kozol, Professor of Comparative American Studies, Oberlin College
  • Emma Kuby, Assistant Professor of History, Northern Illinois University
  • Lyndsey Stonebridge, Professor of Modern Literature and History, University of East Anglia
  • Jacqueline Rose, Professor of Humanities, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, University of London 
  • Xiaming Yang, Professor of International Relations, Jiangsu Institute of Public Administration 
  • Lianhong Zhang, Professor of History, Nanjing Normal University

This conference is cosponsored by the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, Cogut Center for the Humanities, Comparative Literature, Modern Culture and Media, East Asian Studies, Anthropology, Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice, English, and History.

Rape and War: Critical Interdisciplinary Perspectives

May 7, 2015, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Pembroke Hall 305
172 Meeting Street, Providence

Dagmar Herzog
Distinguished Professor of History, City University of New York
"Sexual Violence and the Nazi Holocaust"

Wendy Kozol
Professor and Chair of Comparative American Studies, Oberlin College
"Gazing at Precarity: Military Conflict and the Ambivalence of Visual Witnessing"

Moderated by Lynne Joyrich, Professor of Modern Culture and Media, Brown University 

David Kennedy
Manley O. Hudson Professor of Law and Faculty Director of the Institute for Global Law and Policy, Harvard Law School
"Regulating Warfare in the Age of Lawfare" 

Yukiko Koga
Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Hunter College
“Between the Law: The Unmaking of Empire and the Persistence of Redress in Post-Imperial East Asia”

Moderated by Nina Tannenwald, Director, International Relations Program, Senior Lecturer in Political Science, Brown University

The Pembroke Center gratefully acknowledges support from the Watson Institute for International Studies Collaboration Grant program.