University of Massachusetts Amherst

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I am a doctoral candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where I also received my Graduate Certificate in Advanced Feminist Studies. My research interests include contemporary social and political thought, critical theory, transnational feminisms, and queer politics. My dissertation project The Promise(s) of Resilience: Governance and Resistance in Complex Times offers a critical examination of the rise and circulation of “resilience” within 21st Century political life and the ways it is fundamentally re-ordering peoples’ understanding of themselves, the world, and possibilities of action.  I argue that discourses of “resilience” intensify and extend the power relations of late liberal governance, even as its promises (like security and progress) are evidently revoked as anachronistic expectations in a globalized world. My dissertation work has been supported by the Center for Research on Families, the UMass Amherst Diversity Fellowship and the Five College Women’s Studies Research Center. I have published several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and am the recipient of the American Political Science Association's (New Political Science) Christian Bay Award. At UMass-Amherst, I have designed and taught courses for the Political Science and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies departments and have received the university-wide Distinguished Teaching Award and the Residential First-Year Experience Student Choice Teaching Award. This is my third year organizing and directing the UMass Amherst “Many Voices. One Community,” a Convocation event emphasizing diversity/inclusion as campus goals for 5500 incoming students.  I am currently serving as program chair for the New Political Science division of APSA at the 2018 annual meeting.Prior to doctoral studies, I toured internationally for over a decade as a spoken word artist where I was the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship and the OutMusic National Artist-Activist Award. I have published widely outside of academia including editing the first U.S. all-women’s spoken word anthology Word Warriors: 35 Women Leaders in the Spoken Word Revolution.  (www.alixolson.com).