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Dissertation Fellows

Tanjerine Vei

2020-2021 Dissertation Fellow

Tanjerine Vei is a Ph.D. candidate in Education, Culture, and Society, at the University of Utah. Their research focuses on the development of pedagogies that promote critical consciousness and healing, spiritual activism, and community building. A central focus of these pedagogical approaches is creating teaching and learning environments that take on a playful spirit that can facilitate dialogue across difference. Within this approach, artmaking, broadly defined, becomes a means for both generating personally meaningful creations as well as for engaging in collective processes of meaning-making as participants explore the personal and systemic complexities of current social issues. Their dissertation, titled “Spiritual Activism in Activist Education: Examining the Spirit of Transformative Pedagogies,” is a critical participatory action research project wherein the research conducted is in community with those for whom the research is intended. In this project, a team of activist educators utilizes queer phenomenology to trace the presence of underlying oppressive forces that can manifest in activist approaches to teaching and learning and seeks to turn toward spiritual activist and decolonial ideologies as guides for undoing and creating anew their educational practices in an ongoing process of studied change. Tanjerine is also an artist and gardener who enjoys creating visual art on paper and canvas as well as in living landscapes and they delight in making kombucha and taking care of their three cats with their partner.

‘Ilaheva Tua’one

2019-2020 Dissertation Fellow

N.S. ‘Ilaheva Tua’one’s dissertation, Tahitian Beaches and London Parlors, argues that British and, later American, subjectivities and identities are produced through explorer and discovery narratives. Her close readings of 18th c. and 19th c. British and American literature – both fiction and non-fiction – expose and destabilize some of the most persistent and pernicious myths about the Pacific and Pacific Islanders while also demonstrating how these narratives produced British and American subjects at home and in the colonies. Beginning in Fall 2020 she will begin a tenure-track assistant professorship in the Women’s and Ethnic Studies Program (WEST) at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.