Arts and Ideas

Culture Beyond Borders: The Roma Contribution

For more information, see conference website

Sunday, April 9, 2017, 6:30pm | Room 110, Barker Center

I Declare at My Own Risk
Alina Serban
Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, London, U.K.

A young Roma actress tells the tale of her painful journey, looking the public straight in the eyes... far from the flamboyant guitars of Gypsy kings... this solo performance becomes a troubling metaphor for all forgotten children.
- Judith Sibony, Le Monde

Introductory Remarks: Dan Dimancescu, Boston's Honorary Consulate of Romania

Monday, April 10, 2017 | Day-long Symposium | Room 110, Barker Center

Welcome | 9:00am

Jennifer Leaning
Harvard FXB Center

Introductory Remarks: The Roma Contribution in Global Context | 9:10am

Margareta Matache
Director of the Roma Program and Instructor
Harvard FXB Center

Keynote Panel: Word, Image, Thought: Creating the Romani Other | 9:20am


Bettina Kaibach
Visiting Scholar, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies
Harvard University


Homi Bhabha
Anne F. Rothenberg Professor of the Humanities
Harvard University


Kenneth Lee
Author, Orientalism and Gypsylorism

Panel One: The Romani Contribution to World Ideas, Arts, and Culture | 10:15am

Chair and Discussant

Jacqueline Bhabha
Director of Research
Harvard FXB Center


Andrzej Mirga
Roma Education Fund

Alexandra Oprea
Columbia University

Herbert Heuss
Senior Advisor
Central Council of German Sinti and Roma

Aidan McGarry
Author, Romaphobia

Lunch Break & Realizing Roma Rights Book Launch | 11:45am

Panel Two: Roma Identity in Scholarship | 1:00pm

Chair and Discussant

Betty Blythe
Boston College


Jelena Jovanovic
Junior Research Fellow, Center for Policy Studies
Central European University

Cristina Dragomir
Postdoctoral Fellow, Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government
University of Pennsylvania

Kristin Raeesi
Researcher, Institute of Social and Economic Research
University of Alaska

Veselina Lambrev
Program Mentor, Professional Education Practice Doctorate
University of Hawaii at Manoa

Petre Breazu
PhD Candidate on Media and Communication
Orebro University in Sweden

Panel Three: The Production of Roma Culture in Musical and Visual Arts | 2:15pm


Kay Kaufman Shelemay
G. Gordon Watts Professor of Music and Professor of African and African American Studies
Harvard University


Urs Heftrich
Chair of Slavic Literatures, University of Heidelberg and Visiting Scholar Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies
Harvard University


Alina Serban
Actress, Romania

Carol Silverman
Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Folklore
University of Oregon

Erika Lakatos
Photographer, Painter, Singer

Radmila Mladenova
The Slavic Institute, Heidelberg University

Coffee Break | 3:30pm

Panel Four: Self and Other: Literary Representations (and Misrepresentations) of Roma | 3:45pm

Chair and Discussant

Martin Puchner
Professor of Drama and of English and Comparative Literature
Harvard University


Ismael Cortés Gómez
Peace Studies, Instituto Interuniversitario de Desarrollo Social y Paz

Ronald Lee
Author, The Living Fire

Oksana Marafioti
Author, American Gypsy: A Memoir

Jud Nirenberg
Author, Johann Trollmann and Romani Resistance to the Nazis

Closing Session | 5:00pm

Jacqueline Bhabha

Cocktail reception | 6:00pm | Room 110, Barker Center

The FXB Center for Health and Human Rights hosts the Fifth Annual Roma Conference, “Culture Beyond Borders: The Roma Contribution,” at Harvard University to mark International Roma Day.

Free and open to the public. Seating is first-come, first-served.

  • Click here to view a poster promoting this event.