John Kuo Wei Tchen is a historian, curator, and writer. Professor Tchen is the Inaugural Clement A Price Chair of Public History & Humanities at Rutgers University – Newark and Director of the Clement Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture & the Modern Experience, beginning Fall 2018. He is founding director of the A/P/A (Asian/Pacific /American) Studies Program and Institute and part of the founding faculty of the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University, NYU. He co-founded the Museum of Chinese in America in 1979-80 where he continues to serve as senior historian.
He was the senior historian for a New-York Historical Society exhibition on the impact of Chinese Exclusion Laws on the formation of the US and also senior advisor for the two-hour “American Experience” PBS documentary with Ric Burns and Lishin Yu on the “Chinese Exclusion Act.” Yellow Peril: An Archive of Anti-Asian Fear (2014) is a critical archival study of images, excerpts and essays on the history and contemporary impact of paranoia and xenophobia.
He is also a founder of the New York Newark Public History Project (NYN PHP), funded by the Ford Foundation, which will reframe the history of the estuarial region starting with the twined foundational histories of dispossession and enslavement (work emerging from serving as a Commissioner on the NYC Mayor’s Commission on Monuments.) His Below the Grid Project is pioneering creative historical storytelling with smart, location-sensitive wearable tech.
Dr. Frances Bartkowski
Frances Bartkowski was director of the RU-Newark Women and Gender Studies Program, the oldest such program at Rutgers, from 1989-2002. She served as chair of the Department of English from 2010-2016, and is currently the Interim Chair of the Arts, Culture and Media Department. She also works closely with graduate students in the American Studies doctoral program and the English Department master’s program.
In 2015 Bartkowski was awarded a $75,000 Chancellor’s Seed Grant for her work with The Collaboratory at RU-N. In 2013 Bartkowski team-taught a course about the HBO show The Wire with Sherri-Ann Butterfield, Professor of Sociology, and Executive Vice Chancellor. In a 2014 series of events inspired by that show and focused on Newark, Bartkowski and Professor Roland Anglin, director of the Cornwall Center for Metropolitan Studies, interviewed Michael K. Williams (aka ”Omar”), one of four actors in The Wire who spoke at Rutgers during that year.
Bartkowski published her first novel, An Afterlife in 2018, and is also the author of Feminist Utopias, 1989; Travelers, Immigrants, Inmates, 1995; and Kissing Cousins: A Kinship Bestiary, 2008. Frances Bartkowski has taught courses in feminist theory, literature and criticism, memoir and autobiography, travel writing, utopian fiction, 20th century American and European fiction, and authors Toni Morrison, Philip Roth, Margaret Atwood, Edith Wharton, and Willa Cather. Bartkowski’s research interests include feminism, animal studies, trauma and memory studies.