New DIALOGUES Installation Online November 6Matthew Andrews
Anthropologist Nadine Naber and literary critic Allan Punzalan Isaac explore the experiences of Filipino caregivers in the Middle East and the obstacles and possibilities for worker solidarity.
LOS ANGELES, CA (November 6, 2013) -- The Center for Art and Thought (CA+T) announces the premier of a new DIALOGUES installation: Filipino Workers in the Middle East: Frictive Histories and the Possibilities of Solidarity. The dialogue is the second in CA+T's ongoing DIALOGUES series and is featured on CA+T website (centerforartandthought.org/work/project/dialogues).
Building on the success of CA+T's first DIALOGUES installation, Migrant Musicians: Filipino Entertainers and the Work of Music Making and its publication as a limited-run print (centerforartandthought.org/publications), Filipino Workers in the Middle East continues CA+T's exploration of the themes of Filipino global migrancy and labor. In this edition, anthropologist Nadine Naber and literary critic Allan Punzalan Isaac join in a conversation moderated by cultural critic Sarita Echavez See. They talk about the many ways in which Filipinos as caregivers have become part of the national family throughout the Middle East. Naber discusses her experiences in Egypt with Filipino nannies on the cusp of the Arab Spring, and Isaac offers an analysis of the Israeli documentary Paper Dolls. Both reveal how Filipinos’ incorporation into the national family is frequently ambivalent and always strategic. Drawing on the work of anthropologist Martin Manalansan, Naber and Isaac consider how “frictive histories”— the distinct histories and experiences that trail migratory bodies into sometimes uncomfortable contact — mediate and complicate the possibilities for worker solidarity between Filipinos and Palestinians who are variously and unequally deployed by the Israeli state in its construction of racial and geographic hierarchies.
CA+T's DIALOGUES series brings together a selection of artists, writers, and scholars for sustained, thematically-driven conversations. Taking place over extended periods and moving between email, Facebook messaging, and other electronic forms of communication, the interlocutors bring their academic, artistic, and personal knowledges to bear on questions and dynamics relevant to the Philippines, the Filipino diaspora, the arts and literature, and beyond.