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New Directions in African Diaspora Studies

a lecture series featuring the works of prominent scholars in the field of african diaspora studies

2015-2016 New Direction Lecture Series


Theme: Geographies of the African Diaspora.

Fall 2015

Thursday, September 24th, 7-8:30 pm

Professor Lynnell Thomas, Department of American Studies, University of Massachusetts at Boston

"Race, Place, and Tourist Space: New Orleans Ten Years after Katrina"

Devlin 101

This talk explores New Orleans's recovery in the 10 years since Hurricane Katrina by examining the relationship between place identity, racial disparities, and tourist geographies.


Wednesday, October 14th , 4:30-6:00 pm

Professor Myriam J. A. Chancy, HBA Chair in the Humanities, Scripps College

"Diasporic Dis(Af)filiations: Re-reading "race" transnationally."

McGuinn Hall 121

This talk proposes that by rethinking terms like "emancipation," "kinship," and "indigeneity," as well as geography and economic status, we can arrive at a more nuanced understanding of the terms that bind the African Diaspora and those that disband its potential for a politically or culturally viable collectivity.


Thursday, November 12th, 4:30-6:00 pm

Olive Senior, Writer

"'Like Soldiers Going to War': The West Indian Builders of the Panama Canal"

McGuinn Hall 121

This talk explores how poverty-stricken workers from the West Indies transformed the fetid Panama jungles, built the Panama Railroad and the Panama Canal, refashioned themselves and moved their colonial islands into the twentieth century.


Spring 2016


Professor Joshua Guild, Department of History, Princeton University

"'This Could Be You:' Confronting the Specter of Racial Violence in Postwar New York and London"

Devlin 101

This talk examines responses to incidents of police and extralegal racial violence in New York City and London in the 1940s and 1950s.


Friday, April 1st, 4:30-6:00 pm

Professor Regine Jackson, Department of Sociology, Agnes Scott College

"Boston Haitians: Between Symbolic Inclusion and Enduring Inequalities"

Devlin 101

Haitians have experienced remarkable successes in Boston. But the rhetoric of a majority-minority, 21st century city masks the enduring inequalities that undermine their symbolic inclusion.