Speakers 2012

Dr. William Hurst

William Hurst, assistant professor of political science, came to the University of Toronto in 2011 after four years at the University of Texas. Trained principally as a specialist on Chinese politics, he took his first steps toward researching Southeast Asia as a graduate student at UC-Berkeley in the early 2000s by studying Indonesian language, including intensively at the COTIM program in Manado in 2004. After two years in a China studies postdoc, he renewed his work on Indonesia in 2008 and spent the 2009-2010 academic year as a Fulbright scholar attached to Airlangga University in Surabaya. His research and teaching interests focus on the politics of Indonesian courts and legal institutions, as well as social movements and contentious politics, labor politics, and the political economy of land.

Dr. Rachel Silvey

Dr. Silvey’s research interests involve migration, Indonesia, feminist theory, critical development studies, and the politics of transnationalism. Expertise is in the gender dimensions of migration and economic change in Indonesia. Recent research focuses on the ways in which the gender politics of migration are inflected by religion.

Dr. Tania Li

Dr. Li’s early research in Southeast Asia concerned urban cultural politics in Singapore. Since 1990, her research has focused on questions of culture, economy, environment, and development in Indonesia’s upland regions. She has written about the rise of Indonesia’s indigenous peoples’ movement, land reform, rural class formation, struggles over the forests and conservation, community resource management, and state-organized resettlement. She recently published The Will to Improve: Governmentality, Development, and the Practice of Politics (Duke University Press, 2007). The book explores governmentality in its colonial and contemporary iterations, tracking interventions devised by experts to improve landscapes and livelihoods in Indonesia. It includes programs of Dutch missionaries, New Order officials, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, the Nature Conservancy, and Indonesian NGOs.

Dr. Joshua Barker

Joshua Barker is currently Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Toronto, where he is also affiliated with the Asian Institute. Barker received his B.A. from Trent University, his M.A. from SOAS at the University of London, and his Ph.D. from Cornell University. Prior to arriving at U of T he taught and conducted research at the Bandung Institute of Technology in Indonesia and Twente University in The Netherlands. His research focuses on Indonesia, where he has examined various themes relating to his two main topics of interest: crime and security; and new technologies. Barker is currently conducting a three-year research project funded by SSHRC and the Connaught Foundation. The project is entitled ‘Engineers and Political Dreams: Indonesia’s Internet in Cultural Perspective.