Humanities Labs #2

CALL FOR Multidisciplinary Humanities/Social Science Labs PROPOSALS

Call #2: For University of California Grant period: May 2020 through June 30, 2021 (end of grant)

Application deadline extended to Monday, February 17, 2020

The Humanities Labs are multidisciplinary collaborations that may focus on a single mission or may also identify a series of related sites or take up a particular theme. The humanities labs allow for a broader collaboration with a statewide scope, including a larger group of participating researchers. Applications are submitted by a team that includes UC faculty and graduate students, faculty and graduate students from outside the UC, community members and leaders, artists, tribal historians, museum professionals, curriculum specialists, and public historians. The work of the lab runs for the duration of the grant may typically be concentrated in the summers. For administrative purposes, each of these labs will be sited at one of four participating UC campuses: UCLA, UCR, UCSC, or UCSD.

The UC Critical Mission Studies projects invites proposals for humanities labs related to the California missions, including California Indian histories and survivance in relation to the missions and their legacy, and from Mexican or Mexican-American Studies of the missions. New projects in their initial stages during the grant year are preferred, although a new phase of an ongoing or long-term project will be considered. Humanities labs are funded for between $10,000-$20,000 each.

Eligible Recipients:
Participation is open to any community member, Tribal nation or group in California, UC faculty and graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, and graduate students. While projects typically focus on the California Indian experience, we also welcome proposals from Chicanx studies, Asian/Asian American studies, and from other communities whose histories are impacted by the Missions.

Application Materials and Process:

The application consists of a cover page(s) with a list of the proposed team with a brief bio or resume/CV for each participant: a two-page narrative describing the proposed humanities lab and how it will work and the deliverable(s) to be produced during the funding period; and a budget with timeline of activities.

Other Requirements:

Proposals will incorporate the Critical Mission Studies  research protocol located in the tab (menu) above. Please see the posted list of subject areas for research of interest to California Indian tribal nations.  Recipients of Critical Mission Studies funding will participate in one or more dissemination activities to raise public and community awareness, a major goal of CMS. Potential dissemination activities include public conferences, workshops, as well as publications. Meaningful collaboration between the UC and California Indian research partners, institutions, or organizations is encouraged. Proposals focused on the experiences of CA Indians require substantial partnership with CA Indian people, institutions, or organizations.

All grant recipients will be required to submit a middle and final report on their project.

Evaluation Criteria:

Does/do the applicant(s) possess the qualifications to complete the proposed project?

If the project is focused on the experiences of California Indians, does the study involve multiple missions, tribal collaboration, or other type of collaboration?

For projects focused on topics related to the California Indian experience, a letter of support from tribal government would strengthen the application.

Does the project make contributions to the history of the missions, to understanding of the missions today, or to the contemporary/ongoing impacts of the mission system?

Are the timeline and budget realistic?


 Please address questions to Charlene Villaseñor Black, or

Funded by the University of California Office of the President (UCOP), Critical Mission Studies is a two-year initiative (Jan 2019-June 2021) that seeks a new critical engagement with our state’s history through the lens of the missions, vastly mythologized and profoundly understudied. Through reconsideration of the missions as both physical sites and foci of interpretation, we pursue new research that surfaces both Native and Mexican/Mexican-American voices in the history of California and the US. Reflecting trends in public history over the last decade, our research will foster more complex, multidimensional public engagements with difficult histories. California’s 21 missions are an imperfect, partial, yet essential lens to access California’s various histories and engage in nuanced and frank encounters with the past, particularly with the genocide of California Indians, with UC scholars at the helm, producing data-driven studies.

“Critical Mission Studies at California’s Crossroads,” University of California Multicampus Research Program Initiative (MRPI):