Northwestern Experts and Initiatives
Vilna Bashi Treitler
Vilna Bashi Treitler is the Weinberg College’s Osborn Professor of Sociology and a Northwestern Buffett Institute Faculty Fellow. As a sociologist and visual artist, Bashi Treitler’s scholarship and art centers on the intersection of race, migration, and inequality. She is the author of The Ethnic Project: Transforming Racial Fiction into Ethnic Factions, which traces the histories of immigrant and indigenous groups in the United States to show how different ethnic groups have negotiated America’s racial hierarchy. Since 2015, she has served as Vice-Chair of the United Nations Committee for the Elimination of Racism, Afrophobia, and Colorism as well as a Board member and UN Representative for the Drammeh Institute, an NGO committed to archiving and producing film footage to educate the world on issues of central importance to the African Diaspora.
Jairo Lugo-Ocando is director of executive and graduate education and professor in residence at Northwestern University in Qatar. Lugo-Ocando’s academic areas of focus include poverty, social exclusion and the media; journalism and representation of development; humanitarian communication and public relations; and the use of statistics and data by journalists and news media. His latest book, Foreign Aid and Journalism in the Global South, examines the way in which foreign aid has shaped professional ideologies of journalism as part of systematic and orchestrated efforts since the beginning of the twentieth century to shape journalism as a political institution of the Global South.
Lina Britto is an historian of modern Latin America and the Caribbean. Her work situates the emergence and consolidation of illegal drug smuggling networks in the Caribbean and Andean regions of Colombia in the context of a growing articulation between the South American country and the United States during the Cold War. Her recent book, Marijuana Boom: The Rise and Fall of Colombia's First Drug Paradise (University of California Press, 2020), is based on extensive fieldwork and oral history in the Colombian Caribbean, as well as archival research in Colombia and the United States. Britto’s courses at Northwestern focus on the hemispheric history of the drug trade and the war on drugs, popular music and nation-state formation, oral history and Cold War terror, and contemporary Latin America in historical perspective.