General Biography: Carlos Figueroa holds a dual Ph.D. in Political Science and Historical Studies from the New School for Social Research. He is an Associate professor of politics at Ithaca College (USA) who researches and writes on race, religion, and class politics, interpretative policy analysis, the politics of Quakerism, U.S. Puerto Rico affairs, the Quakerism of Bayard T. Rustin, and his work has appeared in the Journal of Public Affairs Education, Journal of Race and Policy, Political Science Quarterly, Annales: Ethics in Economic Life, Fair Observer, Common Dreams, the University of Virginia Press, Kansas University Press, and Routledge Press. He is completing his first book, Quakers, Race, and Empire: Political Ecumenism and U.S. Insular Policy in the Early Twentieth Century, which shows how and why progressive era Quakers intervened in U.S. foreign policy debates, in particular, insular policy discourses over the organizing and governance of acquired territories (Puerto Rico and the Philippines), and the struggles for self-determination, and citizenship within the context of an expanding American empire from 1898 to 1917. Figueroa is also working on a second book Bayard T. Rustin: The Pragmatic Quaker, 1912 - 1987, that examines how and why Rustin's tacit pragmatic Quaker faith informed his political thought, organizing, and activism in the context of dealing with the various social injustices and inequalities facing working & poor people, and other marginalized groups in the U.S. and abroad during his 50-year public life. Figueroa has recently published two chapters on the Pragmatic Quakerism of Bayard T. Rustin in The Quaker World, C. Wess Daniels and Rhiannon Grant, Editors, 1st edition (Routledge Press, 2022/2023).
I teach courses at various levels: 100 (lectures), 300 (seminars), and 400 (seminars & tutorials), including -- Introduction to U.S. Politics; The Politics of U.S. Citizenship; Social and Racial Justice Politics: Quakers in America; Black American Politics and Political Thought; Faith & Race in American Political Life; and Race, Class and the Geographies of Housing. I am currently designing three seminars (300 and 400 levels): 1) The Politics of U.S. Labor, 2) Faith, Labor Rights, and Bayard T. Rustin, and 3) Puerto Rican Revolutionary Leader Pedro Albizu Campos.
I also serve as the faculty advisor to Buzzsaw Magazine.
I am a First-Generation who holds a dual Ph.D. degree in political science and Historical studies from The New School for Social Research, an M.S. in General Administration from Central Michigan University, and a B.A. in Political Science from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Florham Park/Madison, N.J. I have studied British politics, history, and literature abroad at Wroxton College in Oxfordshire, England (FDU), and democratic and constitutional theory at the Trans-regional Center for Democratic Studies (New School). I have been active in working-class politics (starting with my own lived experiences) and labor organizing/collective bargaining since the early 1990s, which also informs my intellectual, research, and teaching work.
My expanded scholarly interests include studies in U.S. politics and policy development; U.S. Quakers, race and citizenship; interpretive policy analysis (IPA); Afro-American politics and political thought; Latino/a politics in the U.S. & border studies; interpretive & qualitative methodology/methods; U.S. intellectual History; and public leadership (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oafbLDV6X8).
Broader academic and teaching work: https://digitalcommons.ithaca.edu/do/search/?q=Carlos%20Figueroa&start=0&context=7614640&facet=
My most recent publications (https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1972-2022):
1) "The Duty to Resist: Bayard T. Rustin’s Pragmatic Quaker Faith" in Friends Journal: https://www.friendsjournal.org/the-duty-to-resist/
2) Book Foreword to Surendra Bhana's The United States and the Development of the Puerto Rican Status Question, 1936 - 1968 (Kansas Press, 2021 ): https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctv1p2gkbn.4?refreqid=excelsior%3A6a81d53f5cde66c335dab3b5aae49e62&seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents
3) "Working-Class America Needs Real Change, Not Slogans": https://www.fairobserver.com/region/north_america/carlos-figueroa-2020-us-presidential-election-donald-trump-joe-biden-working-class-americans-73991/?fbclid=IwAR0jZRiA_MqXeLFrIql_R26rz36nvbeGxYrFjoic1WjV4xW6BMuyeTCePpc
4) "The Puerto Rico Crisis: A Reflection of a Flawed US Democracy": https://www.fairobserver.com/region/north_america/puerto-rico-us-territory-ricardo-rossello-world-news-34709/
Also published separately in Spanish at Revista Comun: https://www.revistacomun.com/blog/la-crisis-de-puerto-rico-reflejo-de-una-democracia-estadounidense-defectuosa
5) "US Supreme Court and its educative role within a deliberative democratic system": https://czasopisma.uni.lodz.pl/annales/article/view/4440
My first book project, Quakers, Race, and Empire: Political Ecumenism and U.S. Insular Policy in the Early Twentieth Century, shows how and why progressive era Quakers intervened in U.S. insular policy discourses over the organizing and governance of acquired territories (Puerto Rico and the Philippines), and the struggles for self-determination, and citizenship within the context of an expanding American empire from 1898 to 1917. Related to this book project is a recent publication, "Quaker Political Interventions, and US Puerto Rico Policy Development, 1900 - 1917" The Journal of Race and Policy, Vol. 11, No. 1 (Spring/Summer 2015), pp. 36 - 54. Also, see the related public lecture in Quaker Times -- http://sco.lt/52Ljc1
I am also working on several research studies on black gay Quaker labor and civil rights thinker & activist Bayard Rustin. In February 2016, I gave an invited talk on Rustin at Illinois State as a University Speaker and as part of their Black History Month celebration. Please listen to my National Public Radio (Normal, Illinois) conversation on Rustin and his Quakerism here (17 minutes): https://www.wglt.org/show/wglts-sound-ideas/2016-02-23/gay-civil-rights-leader-grounded-in-quaker-upbringing#stream/0.
Quoted in various places related to U.S. politics, race, class, and citizenship:
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