SSA conference, lecture to honor research contributions of CaffertyBy William Harms
In honor of Pastora San Juan Cafferty’s research contributions, the School of Social Service Administration will sponsor a conference titled “Race and Ethnicity in American Life: Diversity and Society.” The event will recognize a distinguished career at the University that began in 1971, as Cafferty, Professor in SSA, prepares to retire.
“The conference will reflect Pastora’s unique career,” said Jeanne Marsh, Acting Dean and the George Herbert Jones Professor in SSA. “It will be a convergence of critical inquiry, social advocacy and public discourse, exploring how race, ethnicity and social class interact with the larger society, social institutions and communities.”
SSA also will recognize Cafferty’s retirement by establishing the Pastora San Juan Cafferty Annual Lecture on Race, Ethnicity and Class, the first of which will be given in 2006. Chartered sponsors of the endowed lecture fund include Exelon Corp., Harris Bank and Waste Management Inc.
Scholars participating in the conference, scheduled from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, April 15, at the University’s Gleacher Center, will address themes that have been central to Cafferty’s work. Those include cultural diversity, race and ethnicity; immigration; social institutions, community organization and development; and urban societies in the context of American politics and government.
Panel discussions will look at the demographic changes that have impacted concepts of race, ethnicity and social class; the diverse ways in which cultural beliefs are transmitted and how they affect individuals’ ability to navigate the social tensions that come from living in a heterogeneous society; and the way inequities are concentrated in three institutions: the workplace, the political system and the criminal justice system.
Cafferty, a graduate of St. Bernard College, earned an M.A. and Ph.D. in American literary and cultural history from George Washington University. She has published numerous books, articles and reports, including The Chicago Project: A Report on Civic Life in Chicago, and The Dilemma of Immigration in America: Beyond the Golden Door, co-written with Barry Chiswick, Andrew Greeley and Teresa Sullivan. Most recently, she has co-edited Hispanics in the U.S.A.: A New Social Agenda with David Engstrom.
The National Association of Social Workers will publish material from the conference papers in a book titled The Diverse Society: Race, Class and Ethnicity in the United States. This publication as well as the conference will build on the 1976 book The Diverse Society, which Cafferty co-edited with Leon Chestang.
A complete schedule of the conference topics and panel sessions is available online at http://www.ssa.uchicago.edu/faculty/pcaffert-gleacher.shtml.