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Identity, Citizenship and War: A Women’s History Month Presentation at DU

Trinh’s free presentation, Miles of Strangeness, will explore identity, citizenship and war, and what it means to travel—both literally and emotionally. Scheduled for Friday, April 1, at 4 p.m. in the Power Center Ballroom, Miles of Strangeness is free and open to the public.

Born in Hanoi, Vietnam, in 1952, Trinh, who maintains the Vietnamese custom of surname placement, was brought up in the southern part of that nation and came of age during decades in her nation’s history marked by extreme violence. She was trained in Vietnam as a pianist and composer, and today is a professor with appointments in both the rhetoric and gender and women’s studies departments at the University of California at Berkeley.

Trinh is the author of eight books on film, gender and cultural politics, and is an artist who creates large-scale multimedia installations. As a filmmaker, she has six feature-length films that have been honored in 20 retrospectives around the world.

Her thoughts and writings delve into post-colonial theory and other areas that are especially vital and current, according to Dr. Linda Kinnahan, acting director of the women’s and gender studies program and organizer of the Women’s History Month speaker event.

Perhaps most widely read of Trinh’s books, Kinnahan explained, is Women, Native, Other, a work that explains how gender issues can be vastly different in developing nations than for Europeans and Americans. “It is a work that has become a real classic in gender studies and critical theory because it shifted the focus from industrialized nations to the post-colonial experience,” Kinnahan explained.

Kinnahan believes that the expansive, multidisciplinary approach that characterizes Trinh’s art and writing should make Miles of Strangeness interesting for everyone who thinks seriously about questions of identity.

”After all, gender studies deals with how we, as individuals, are shaped by and interact with a wide variety of ideas about gender that are in our culture,” Kinnahan said. “It is not just the study of women, but the study of gender as a social category, which applies equally to the masculine and well as the feminine.”

For more information about this event, call 412.396.1527.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.