Childhoods in Motion: Children, Youth, Migration, and Education Conference

March 3-5, 2017
UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration

Children and youth—as people and as socially constructed categories—move in many ways: across geopolitical borders, through developmental time and culturally-defined stages of life, across spaces designed to shape their experiences of growing up or being raised by adults (homes, schools, churches, after-school programs), and within or across real and virtual spaces of their own choosing. These movements both shape and are shaped by local and global flows of people, capital, ideas, discourses, and values. In diverse spaces and discourses, young people may be viewed or treated as innocents; victims; passive recipients of adults’ socialization efforts; or active agents in their own lives as well as in their families, communities, and other institutions. In social science research, different aspects of their identities are made salient: most often as students or family members, but sometimes as immigrants/refugees, targets of violence, laborers, warriors, and more. As members of society who are often vulnerable to adult power, children’s lives and experiences are also shaped by ideas that circulate through media and in public policies and educational practices. Movement— across communities, spaces, social identities or social systems—shapes particular children’s experiences of childhood and the meanings that attached to this life stage. As young people navigate multiple cultural, physical, and electronic landscapes, research from diverse disciplines that highlights children’s migration, motion, and movement across space and time may help us understand children and childhoods in new ways. It may inform our understandings of educational institutions, cultural practices, and political, legal and economic systems.

This conference seeks to unite scholars and practitioners across the fields of migration, education, and anthropology to investigate the conceptual and physical mobility of children and youth across diverse contexts.

Conference Details

Keynote: Lynn Stephen, PhD is a distinguished Professor of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Oregon. She will present her recent ethnographic film Sad Happiness: Cinthya’s Transborder Journey, which explores the differential rights that U.S. citizen children and their undocumented parents have through the story of one extended Zapotec family. Shot in Oregon and Oaxaca, Mexico, and narrated by 11-year old Cinthya, the film follows Cinthya’s trip to her parent’s home community of Teotitlán del Valle with her godmother, anthropologist Lynn Stephen.

Theater Performance: CalArts Center for New Performance and Duende CalArts will present a movement-based theatrical performance, Shelter, which shares stories of young people crossing the U.S. border and passing through the U.S. detention system. Shelter is written and conceived by Marissa Chibas, directed by Mexico City-based director Martin Acosta, and choreographed by Fernando Belo.

Conference Registration: To register, please click here. Rates are professional ($60), non-UCLA student ($30), UCLA students (free). Panelists must register by February 15, 2017. Attendees must register by February 28, 2017. There will be limited on-site registration (cash or check only). Cancellations after February 28, 2017 will incur a 50% cancellation fee.

Koreatown/Pico Union/UCLA Community School Tour tickets: Join us on Friday morning for a guided tour of the UCLA Community School, a pilot program that links UCLA to this LAUSD school, at the former site of the Ambassador Hotel, where Robert Kennedy was killed. (See for more information about the school.) We will see the remodel of the Coconut Grove, hear about the school’s innovations in education, see murals painted by such artists as Judy Baca and Shepard Fairey, and learn about the surrounding community, home to migrants from Mexico, Central America, Korea, the Philippines, Bangladesh and more. Following the visit, we will take a brief car tour of the area (Koreatown/Pico Union) and eat lunch at Guelaguetza (3014 W. Olympic Blvd; LA, CA 9006, a Oaxacan restaurant famed for its mole! Carpooling will be arranged, leaving from UCLA around 8 am and returning by 2 pm. Tickets are $30 which includes the tour, meal and a donation to the school. Space is limited to 25 people. Tickets must be purchased in advance.

Conference Banquet tickets: Join us for the conference banquet at Palace Seafood & Dim Sum for a price-fixe meal of $40. Palace Seafood is located within a short car ride at 11701 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90025 Carpooling will be available. Space is limited so you must purchase banquet tickets in advance.


Accommodations: A limited block of hotel rooms has been reserved at the Luskin Conference Center, a new state-of-the-art facility located right at the gateway to the UCLA campus: Make your reservations early by calling 855-LCC-UCLA or by visiting (Select "Book a Room"). The conference code is 170303CH for a rate of $229 (singles/doubles). Additional accommodations can be found at:

Room share: If you are interested in a room-share, please email with your name and any information that will help in making matches (e.g. roommate gender preference and/or your gender identity; dates of needed, etc.). We will put you in touch with others seeking to share a room.

Transportation: For information on transportation to/from UCLA, visit:

Parking: Driving to UCLA? For visitor parking information and maps, visit:

Campus map: For a downloadable map, visit For an interactive map, visit

Should you have any additional questions, please contact: We look forward to seeing you in March!

On behalf of the co-sponsors,

UCLA’s Center for the Study of International Migration, Anthropology of Children and Anthropology Interest Group (ACYIG), and the Council on Anthropology and Education (CAE).

Conference Program

Conference Abstracts

publish icon

Published: Monday, December 5, 2016

Subscribe to our Email list

  • facebook
  • twitter

© 2024 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved. Terms of Use / Privacy Policy