Sandra Harvey

TitlePhD Candidate
DivisionSocial Sciences Division
DepartmentPolitics Department,
Critical Race and Ethnic Studies,
Feminist Studies Department
Phone831-459-4450 (Message)
Web Site
Genomics and Philosophy of Race, UCSC Symposium
OfficeMerrill 12
Campus Mail StopMerrill Faculty Services
Mail1156 High Street
Santa Cruz, CA
Sandra Harvey

Research Interests

My research is concerned with the ways in which structures of race/gender passing shape current political theory and practice in the United States.  It does so by looking specifically at the philosophical, scientific, and legal contexts which give rise to passing narratives, on the one hand, and the political thinking and action that are either made possible or foreclosed by these narratives, on the other.  

I argue that it is imperative to push beyond theorizing passing as narrative in order to understand the intersection of embodiment and the psychic and affective life of passing.  That is, passing (and being passed) is more than a discursive field that is ordered and managed.  It is a material way of being in the world with temporal and affective, and thus, material consequences.  My project seeks to understand the ways in which time and history are constructed through passing and the ways in which these constructions of time make possible and foreclose certain forms of politics and ethics.  For example, if one believes that ethical relationships with the other require a hermeneutics of the indexical present—to know the other as he or she is in this time and space—what sort of impediment does passing, which may seek to elude the indexical present pose?  In terms of phenomenology, the dissertation asks what forms of body schemas do different instances of passing make possible?  And, what forms of affect does passing produce and seek to cover over?  The goal of the dissertation is to understand the ways in which the embodiment and psychic life of passing may shape relationships to the nation and to the US national project of progress.

Teaching Interests

  • Modern Political Thought

  • Indigenous Studies

  • Black Diaspora and Indigeneity

  • Feminist Science Studies and Afro Futurism

  • Feminist and Queer Theory