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University of Massachusetts Amherst

University of Massachusetts Amherst

W.E.B. Du Bois Department

PREVIOUS EVENTS


GENERAL GORDON BAKER, JR. MEMORIAL SERVICE AND TRIBUTE                           
Saturday, May 24, 2014
4:00pm - 7:00pmUAW Local 600
10550 Dix Ave, Dearborn, Michigan 48120

REVEREND EDWIN ROWE (RETIRED - Central United Methodist Church) WILL PRESIDE.ALL ARE WELCOME - COME CELEBRATE GEN'S LIFE  General Gordon Baker, a national and internationally known labor leader, is one of the most important revolutionaries in American history. He was a leader of the Detroit wildcat strikes in the 1960s, a founder of the legendary League of Revolutionary Black Workers, the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement (DRUM), and the first American to refuse induction to fight in Vietnam. His case was a landmark in draft resistance, symbolizing the beginning of the anti-war movement.  Some of General Baker's writings and speeches
General Baker speaks on current auto crisis
General Baker video on Youtube
(Justice Rally against Whirlpool)
Vietnam Draft : Lessons for Today

DRUM article, 30th Anniversary, 1998
Labor Day Speech, 2005

Historical writings of General Baker
Letter to the Draft Board, Detroit, 1965
Open Letter to Chrysler Corporation, May, 1968
General Baker at a press conference during the 1960s (photo)http://www.speakersforanewamerica.com/gen.html
Charles Ezra FerrellCharles H. Wright Museum of African American HistoryConsultant: Liberation Film Series, Founder & Program Director248-229-6619

LFS: 2013-2014  www.chwmuseum.org/liberationLFS 2012-2013  http://vimeo.com/77468644
Honoring Ibn Project (HIP) http://thewright.org/explore/liberation-film-series/hip


Black Note: A Senior Afro-American Studies Project in Jazz

Saturday, April 26th at 2 pm

Augusta Savage Art Gallery, New Africa House

 

 


 

“Hendrix: Red, Black, & Blues - A Program Confronting Stereotypes in African and Native Music”

When: 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m., Wednesday April 23, 2014

Where: Campus Center Auditorium, University of Massachusetts Amherst


Widely acclaimed as an innovative instrumentalist and songwriter, Jimi Hendrix was also one of the most prominent Afro-Native Americans of the twentieth century. Highly conscious of his Native roots, Hendrix’s Cherokee heritage deeply influenced his lyrics and musical stylings. “Red, Black, & Blues: A Program Confronting Stereotypes in African and Native American Music” will bring to the fore this often-overlooked aspect of the late guitarist and composer.


Featured on the program is internationally renowned musician and songwriter Martha Redbone who will give a talk on Indigenous and African American musical intersections. Also on the program is Native American Drum ensemble Urban Thunder and acclaimed Native American Poet and professor of American Studies Ron Welburn who will be on hand to read several of his works. Scholar-Musicians Jon Hill (Anthropology) and Donald Geesling (Afro-American Studies) will offer remarks, bringing their academic expertise to bear on various cultural intersections that informed Hendrix’s music and life experiences.


These talks will be complemented by a live performance of Hendrix songs that will exemplify the ways in which Afro-Native influences impacted the famed guitarist’s musical imagination. The evening’s featured band is anchored by several members of the New Africa House Ensemble - drummer Bob Sommer, guitarist Jon Hill, and keyboardist Donald Geesling - and rounded out by Pioneer Valley favorites Dave Picchi on bass, and Kevin Sharpe on lead vocals.


The event is sponsored by The W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies, the Center for Student Development, The Josephine White Eagle Cultural Center, the UMass English Department, CMASS, and The W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies Graduate Student Association.


For more information, contact either Jon Hill at jhill@anthro.umass.edu or Donald Geesling at dgeeslin@afroam.umass.edu


"Sociology of W.E.B. Du Bois:

Why Du Bois is the Founder of American Scientific Sociology"

by Aldon Morris

Leon Forrest Professor, Northwestern University

Thursday, April 17th

12-2 p.m. Meet & Greet with Graduate Students

2nd Floor Reading Room, New Africa House

Lecture at 4:00 p.m

Cape Cod Lounge

Student Union

UMass Amherst


Madiba’s Gifts: Nelson Mandela’s Life and Legacies – A Tribute

Friday, April 4, 2014
4:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Bowker Auditorium, Stockbridge Hall

A celebration and reflection of the impact of Nelson Mandela’s life and work, this Five College Africa Day event features panel conversations focusing on the South African Struggle and performances by the Amandla Chorus, the Amherst Area Gospel Choir, the Five College West African Music Ensemble, and the Wonberi Dancers. A reception immediately follows the event, which is free and open to the public.

Featured Keynote entitled Mandela’s Words: Mightier than the Sword, will be presented by Garrey M. Dennie, Former Speech Writer for Nelson Mandela. Dr. Garrey Dennie is a Professor of History at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. He obtained his first degree at the University of the West Indies, in Barbados. He later obtained his Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University, in Baltimore. His principal fields of research and teaching are African History and Caribbean popular culture. He has taught in Jamaica, South Africa, and the USA. These experiences underline the fact that for him the African Diaspora is not simply an intellectual construct but his lived reality. He has written extensively on the politics of death in modern South Africa. His major works include: Flames of Race, Ashes of Death: Re-inventing Cremation in Johannesburg and The Standard of Dying: Race, Indigence, and the Disposal of the Dead Body in Johannesburg. In 1990, while still a graduate student, Dr. Dennie had the remarkable experience of serving as one of Nelson Mandela’s speech writers.

Sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor with the support of the Five College African Studies Council.

For additional information, please contact the Office of External Relations and University Events at 413.577.1101 or events@admin.umass.edu.

 


Career Event

Afro-Am, History, Labor Center, STPEC and WGSS

Thursday, March 27th, 4:30 p.m.

Cape Cod Lounge

Student Union


UMass History Department Presents

Adam Hochschild

"Rewriting the Spanish Civil War"

Wednesday, March 26th at 4 p.m.

Cape Cod Lounge

Student Union


See photos on facebook!

 Toni Morrison, Bernice Johnson Reagon and Sonia Sanchez

“Black Women and the Arts in the 21st Century”

March 10th, 2014

7:00 -9:30 p.m.

Mullins Center, UMass Amherst

AMHERST, Mass. – An event featuring three prominent African-American artists — Nobel Prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison, singer and social activist Bernice Johnson Reagon and poet and playwright Sonia Sanchez.


Critical Feminist Thought and the African Diaspora Symposium

Friday, February 28, 2014

Amherst Room, 10th Floor Campus Center

*Event is free, please register at www.umass.edu/wost



Sat., February 22nd at 1 p.m.

2nd Floor, New Africa House
Poetry by Askia Toure and Everett Hoagland.
Roundtable discussing Amiri Baraka's legacies.
Music and refreshments
*Flier designed by Jason Hendrickson, Ph.D. candidate


Artists Come Together to Create Expansive Production of ‘Street Scene

Perhaps the most influential show you’ve never heard of, “Street Scene” is an artistic hybrid, the result of an unlikely collaboration among playwright Elmer Rice, poet Langston Hughes and composer Kurt Weill, that left a huge mark on musical theater, with everyone from Cole Porter to Stephen Sondheim taking inspiration from its innovations. See News and Media Relations for more info...

 


Project Unspeakable

February 21, 2014 at 7:00 pm

Commonwealth Honors College Building

A staged reading of "Project Unspeakable" with a focus on El Hajji Malik El Shabazz/Malcolm X.

Director:  Prof. Gilbert McCauley
Readers:  Students and Faculty members

A student talk back after the discussion with cast and director will follow. The discussion will be led by Emeritus Prof. William Strickland, Court Dorsey - the  chief scriptwriter Court Dorsey and Prof. McCauley - Director of the reading.


Conversation: Growing Up Bond --February 12, 2014 at 4 p.m., Student Union Ballroom


image

June 9, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

1425 Christian Street
Philadelphia, PA

Jane Golden, Executive Director of the Mural Arts Program, Sonia Sanchez, Professor Emerita, Temple University and Poet Laureate of the City of Philadelphia, poets, performers, and citizens from across the region to celebrate the dedication of Peace is a Haiku Song.

This multifaceted, participatory public art project consists of a large vibrant mural; peace sites and benches situated around the city; smaller temporary works of art; writing, art, and mindfulness workshops with youth; and a book of peace haiku. Some of the peace haiku are now included in the book and in temporary and permanent public art installations throughout Philadelphia. Ms. Sanchez collaborated with visual artists Josh Sarantitis andParris Stancell to create a peace mural featuring her own haiku along with the words of luminaries such as Maya Angelou, John H. Bracey, Jr., Common, Martin Luther King, Jr., Toni Morrison, Bernice Johnson Reagon, Charles Albert Tindley, and Alice Walker.

The dedication featured live performance, readings by Dr. John H. Bracey, Jr., Bernice Johnson Reagon, YolandaWisher, Frank Sherlock, Lyrispect and others, reflections on peace, and a special peace-inspired giveaway for each attendee.

FUNDED BY: City of Philadelphia Department of Human Services, Hummingbird Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, The Lattner Family Foundation

Peace is a Haiku Song ©2012 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Josh Sarantitis and Parris Stancell
Photo by Steve Weinik for City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program

 


Professor Manisha Sinha of Afro-American Studies gave a keynote address on April 27, 2013 at “Maine in the Civil War,” a public symposium at the University of Southern Maine in Portland.


Professor Manisha Sinha spoke on “Race and Equality in the Age of Lincoln,” at the annual Lincoln Lecture at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas, on Feb. 6.

Recently, Sinha was a featured commentator on “The Abolitionists” part of the “American Experience” series on PBS. Sinha consulted on the script for the series and is featured prominently on screen discussing the era and her upcoming book on the abolitionists. Sinha is the author of “The Counterrevolution of Slavery: Politics and Ideology in Antebellum South Carolina” and “To Live and Die in the Holy Cause: Abolition and the Origins of America’s Interracial Democracy,” forthcoming from Yale University Press.  See full article here.

Check out Professor Manisha Sinha's recent activities:

"The Forgotten Emancipationists"

"Lincoln Again"

Kansas First News

The Washburn Spotlight


Diverse: Issues in Higher Education
Professor John Bracey in a panel discussion with Sonia Sanchez, and Professor Paula Giddings


“African American Health Activism and the Long Civil Rights Era: The Case of the Black Panther Party”

Lecture by Dr. Alondra Nelson, Columbia Univ., Department of Sociology and the Institute for Research on Women and Gender

4:30 p.m., Campus Center, Room 904


Book Signing for Dr. Rose Ihedigbo-Franklin's book, "Sandals In The Snow"
a true story of one African family's journey to achieving the American Dream

April 16th at 4:30 p.m.

Food For Thought Bookstore

North Pleasant St, Amherst


Professor Bracey featured in the new MEF Film "How Racism Harms White Americans"

Thursday, March 28th at 7:00 p.m., Thompson Hall, Room 104

Presented by the Media Education Foundation (MEF), the Department of Afro-American Studies, and the Department of Communications, UMass Amherst


'No Name, No Banner': Slave Agency beyond Literacy and Literature

Lecture by Dr. Gene Andrew Jarrett

4:30 p.m., Campus Center, Room 904


"Seeking Soul Sister: Grace Halsell and the Quest for a Compassionate World"

Lecture by Dr. Robin D.G. Kelley

4:30 p.m., Paino Lecture Hall, Amherst College


Brown Bag Lunch with Dr. Robin D.G. Kelley

12-1 p.m., Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House

Come talk with Professor Kelley, the History Department's 2012 Writer in Residence


"The Long Rise and Short Decline of American Democracy"

Lecture by Dr. Robin D.G. Kelley

4:00 p.m., Cape Cod Lounge, UMass Amherst


AfroAm Meet & Greet with Dr. Martha Biondi

10:00 a.m., Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House


The New Africa House Ensemble Performance

Featuring UMass Amherst Talent

7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

August Savage Art Gallery


The Black Revolution on Campus: Student Activism and the Transformation of Higher Education

Lecture by Dr. Martha Biondi

4:30 p.m., Campus Center 904-908


 

Du Bois' Gifts to Black Art: A Roundtable Discussion

Featuring Professor Yemisi Jimoh, Jim Carroll, Ph.D. candidate, and Craig Harris, trombonist and composer

3:00-4:30 p.m., Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House


Langston Hughes Then & Now

Featuring Prof. Steve Tracy and Alex Carter, Ph.D. candidate

6:00-8:00 p.m., MXCC


A Discussion on Ida B. Wells
with John Bracey, Paula Giddings & Sonia Sanchez

Thursday January 31, 2013, 7pm
District 1199C Philadelphia Headquarters, 1319 Locust St, Philadelphia, PA 19107, 215-735-1300


Students Against Mass Incarceration

Featuring Emahunn Campbell, Ph.D. candidate

6:00-8:30 p.m., MXCC


Darrick Hamilton

Associate Professor, Urban Policy

From Dark to Light: Skin Shade Stratification and Life Outcomes?

November 28th @ 4:00 pm, Room 919, Thompson Hall

The presentation will be based on the following two papers:

1. From Dark to Light Skin Color and Wages Among African-Americans

2. Shedding ‘light’ on marriage: The influence of skin shade on marriage for black females


A Lecture by Dr. Mark Anthony Neal
Professor of Black Popular Culture, Duke University
* What if the Greensboro Four Had Twitter? Social Justice in the Age
of Social Media *
Thursday, November 29
5:00-7:00PM
UMass Campus Center, Room 904-08


Dr. Walter Sistrunk

Visiting Scholar in the UMass Department of Linguistics

“Pugilistic Linguistics”: The Study of African American (English) in Theory and Practice

This lecture highlights the value of interdisciplinary approaches to studying African American language from perspectives that combine both Africana Studies and linguistic theory

Monday, November 19th
1:00 p.m. in the Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room
2nd Floor New Africa House


Sinha is panelist on Lincoln and the Constitution

Professor Manisha Sinha of Afro-American Studies took part in a panel on the National Constitution Center's traveling exhibition "Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War" on Nov. 7 at Norwalk Community College in Connecticut. The exhibition is administered by the American Library Association and funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The panel included professor James F. Simon of the New York Law School, professor J. Ronald Spencer of Trinity College, and prize-winning Lincoln biographer professor Michael Burlingame of the University of Illinois. See In The Loop.


Black Consciousness & Literature in Brazil: Black Consciousness & Literature in Brazil
A Conversation with Writer Conceição Evaristo & Prof. Eduardo de Assis Duarte November 2, 2012 @ 12.30 p.m. Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room | New Africa House, Rm. 203 | UMass Amherst

 


Saturday, October 13th

James Baldwin symposium featuring John Edgar Wideman

2:30-4:00 p.m.
Hampshire College, Franklin Patterson Hall (MLH)

The legacy of James Baldwin will be discussed by celebrated author
John Edgar Wideman
and scholars Greg Thomas and McKinley Melton on
Hampshire invites the public to this symposium, "Branches of Baldwin:
The Writer and His Legacy." Admission is free.


97th Annual ASALH Convention

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) next convention will be September 26 -30 2012, at the Westin Convention Center | Pittsburgh, PA. It will follow the 2012 National Black History Theme: Black Women in American Culture and History. For details, go to http://www.asalh.org/annualconvention.html


Celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation!

Unitarian Society in Northampton
220 Main Street

September 22nd from 1:00-2:20 p.m.


Reverend Andrea Ayvazian and Professor John Bracey
will speak on the importance and significance of this preliminary proclamation, which ultimately led to
the end of slavery. The Hope Church choir and others will perform at
this event, which is free and open to the public. Then on New Year's
Day, January 1, churches will ring their bells at 2:00 p.m. to
recognize the moment that Lincoln signed the final Emancipation
Proclamation and it became effective. For more information contact Robert Romer




A Conversation with Free Jazz Reedman

 Peter Brötzmann

Augusta Savage Gallery, Thursday, September 6, 4 P.M.

For Peter Brötzmann, 40-plus years of playing improvised music has produced - even just on recorded evidence - a list of associates that include just about all the major figures in creative music: Derek Bailey, Cecil Taylor, Han Bennink, Rashied Ali, Evan Parker, Misha Mengelberg, Anthony Braxton, Marilyn Crispell and Andrew Cyrille. Always characterized as an energy player - and the power-rock setting of Last Exit with Ronald Shannon Jackson, Sonny Sharrock and Bill Laswell, did little to disperse this conviction - his sound is one of the most distinctive, life-affirming and joyous in all music.


A lecture with Professor John H. Bracey

August 7th at 7:00 p.m.

106 Seelye Hall, Smith College

http://us1.campaign-archive2.com/?u=4a967ce6778dd83793e575b66&id=22109c99a9&e=20ca066e72

On August 7, the Media Education Foundation will be filming *a talk with renowned UMass professor and historian John H. Bracey Jr. * focusing on the devastating economic, social, and political costs of racism for white Americans.


Dissertation Defenses of 2012

Allia Matta successfully defended her dissertation, "Uncovering the Covered Word and Image:
Framing a Blackwoman's Diasporan Stage-Space"
on September 17, 2012. Professor James Smethurst chaired the committee.

Ernest Gibson, III successfully defended his dissertation, "In Search of the Fraternal: Salvific Manhood and Male Intimacy in the Novels of James Baldwin" on April 9, 2012. Professor James Smethurst chaired the committee.

McKinley Melton successfully defended his dissertation, "Pen Stroking the Soul of a People: Spiritual Foundations of Black Diasporan Literature" on June 23, 2012. Emeritus Professor, Michael Thelwell chaired the committee.


Du Bois Department

2012 Annual

Graduation Celebration

May 11th at 12 noon

Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room

2nd floor, New Africa House

All of our doctoral students, majors, minors, and your families are invited to attend!

Please RSVP us as soon as possible so we can order enough food for all.


The Du Bois Department is offering some exciting learning opportunities this summer and fall. Check it out:

Summer Program in Cuba

The UMass Summer Program on Afro-Cuban/Afro-Caribbean History, Culture, and Politics has accepted a group of graduate and advanced undergraduate students for a special academic program that includes more than two weeks in Cuba. Profs. Agustin Lao-Montes and Amilcar Shabazz will first meet the students at UMass and by online connection beginning June 11. The class will then be in Cuba from June 25 to July 10, with students earning 6 credit hours. The porogram includes lectures from scholars, artists, musicians, religious leaders, and community workers, and visits to cultural sites and community centers in Havana, Guanabacoa, Mantanzas, and Santa Clara. It also includes a visit to Varadero Beach as well as participation in the Caribbean Festival in Santiago. For details go to http://blogs.umass.edu/afroam597a-shabazz/ [for the program leaflet, click here and visit http://www.ipo.umass.edu/?go=SummerCuba]. 



Prof. Bill Strickland at the Left Forum Opening Plenary 2012
http://www.leftforum.org/content/william-strickland-left-forum-opening-plenary


An interview with South African Poet Laureate Keorapetse Kgositsile: http://wumb.libsyn.com/webpage



Prof. Trimiko Melancon ('05), has been awarded a prestigious Woodrow Wilson fellowship.


Prof. Manish Sinha gave a speech at the 11th Annual Underground Railroad History Conference in New York. See video at  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHbZQ-lFs1A


Congratulations to Professor Agustín Lao-Montes who participated in the closing panel of the Casa de las Americas' conference commemorating the fifty years that have passed since Frantz Fanon died in 1961. The four-day conference in Cuba launched the publication of Casa's premier Spanish edition of Fanon's last work Los condenados de la tierra (The Wretched of the Earth). Professor Lao-Montes' introduction appears before the original preface written by Jean Paul Sartre.

His work complements Professor John Bracey's introduction that appears in the Casa edition of Los Jacobinos Negros (The Black Jacobins) by C.L.R. James, published in 2010.

(L to R) Yolanda Wood Pujois, Ana María Cabellero, Roberto Fernández Retamar, Lao-Montes, Mireille Fanon

See http://www.casadelasamericas.com/

centroestudios/eventos/2011/fanon/programa.html

http://www.pathfinderpress.com/Los-Jacobinos-Negros-.


 

 

 

 

Racial Justice Politics: Reflections on the Trayvon Martin Case
An Urgent Call for Educators and Activist/Panel & Open Dialogue
Wednesday April 25, 1-3pm, Campus Center Room 168C

Panelists:
Professor Amilcar Shabazz, Department of Afro-American Studies

Professor Agustin Lao-Montes, Department of Sociology; Center for Latin American, Caribbean & Latino Studies; Dept of Afro-American Studies

Professor K.C. Nat Turner, SOE Language, Literacy & Culture

Professor Brenda Juarez, SOE Social Justice Education

Join us for a critical dialogue about racial justice organizing & anti-racist education. Sponsored by: Student Bridges, Education Radio Collective, Center for Multicultural Advancement and Student Success, Civic Engagement & Service Learning, and School of Education graduate studentse


Talk/Book-Signing with
Profs. James Smethurst & Steven Tracy

on their newest books

@ Food For Thought Books Collective

106 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA

April, 25th, 6-7:30PM 

 

The Fire Next Tine Colloquium presents...

Prof. Lianggong Luo, Central China Normal University

"Langston Hughes in China"

Monday, April 23rd at 4pm

Du Bois Reading Room, New Africa House, UMass Amherst

*Refreshments!

Black Truth Thursday, April 19, 2012: Hip Hop & Community Engagement: Zell Miller III, Will Power, Chris Tinson, & Nat Turner, panel moderated by Priscilla Page; A Reading by Poet Nikky Finney, 2011 National Book Award-Winning Author of "Head Off and Split;" 17th Annual Kaplan Lecture: Professor Daphne Brooks, Princeton University, 17th Annual Sidney Kaplan Lecture. @ different times and venues on the UMass campus.

Congratulations to all who attended the

2012 Black Alumni Reunion, April 12-15

The W.E.B. Du Bois Department, the UMass Amherst Alumni Association, and Center for Multicultural Advancement and Student Success tppk part in a reunion weekend packed with social, cultural, and educational events. On Friday, April 13, an Alumni Meet & Greet was held at New Africa House. On Sunday, Prof. John Bracey was honored by returning alums. Onward to 2013!

          


 

18th Annual Du Bois Lecture

Derrick Alridge, University of Virginia
Author of
The Educational Thought of W.E.B. Du Bois: An Intellectual History

Thursday, February 23, 2012, 4:30PM
Cape Cod Lounge, UMass Amherst campus

The W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studiesco-sponsors the lecture with our Library's Special Collections and University Archives, and we annually invite a distinguished speaker to discuss Dr. Du Bois’ life and work in commemoration of his birth on February 23, 1868.


CULTURAL EVENT          Wadada Leo Smith: In Conversation

Wadada spoke about his production "Ten Freedom Summers," a large work inspired by the activity of the civil rights movement from The Niagara Falls congress in 1905, President Harry S. Truman in 1948 signing Executive Order 9981 that began the racial integration of the U.S. military, to Dr. Martin Luther King's Memphis speech in 1968.

December 2nd at 2 P.M.
New Africa House

Shirley Du Bois Reading Room

Sponsored by the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies in cooperation with The Fine Arts Center Magic Triangle Series.

For more info. on his other appearances at UMass, click here.

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Theater in Post-Apartheid South Africa

Thursday, November 10, 2011 • 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm, Herter • 231
The Du Bois Department was pleased to join with The Interdisciplinary Seminar in the Humanities and Fine Arts (ISHA) to host the noted South African theater director and playwright, Malcolm Purkey, presented a talk entitled "Theater in Post-Apartheid South Africa: Lessons from an Artistic Director." Purkey is Artistic Director of the Market Theatre in Johannesburg, one of the primary sites of anti-apartheid theater in South Africa before 1994, and still one of its most innovative centers. He is an award-winning director and playwright, and a founder member of the Junction Avenue Theatre Company. A teacher and academic, Purkey holds an MA in Theater Studies from the State University of New York and taught at the University of the Witwatersrand (Johannesburg) for twenty years. Click here for more information

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Black in America

Past, Present, Future?

A Discussion by Professor John Bracey

October 24th at 7:00 p.m.

Malcolm X Cultural Center


At our Fire Next Time Colloquim on October 18, Trimiko Melancon, Professor of English at Loyola University New Orleans, presented “Reading Race and the Difference It Makes”: (Post) 9/11 and Words Never Said."

Prof. Melancon graduated from the Du Bois doctoral program in 2005, and has received numerous honors including a Marquette Fellowship at Loyola University (2011), being named a James Weldon Johnson Institute for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies Visiting Scholar at Emory University (2008-2010), and a J. William Fulbright Scholar of American Literature and American Studiesin Berlin, Germany (2006-2007). Her talk will begin at 12 noon in New Africa House, in the Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room on the 2nd floor.


Robert Romer, author of Slavery in the Connecticut Valley of Massachusetts, spoke at 4PM on October 18, in 128 New Africa House. Since 2001, Prof. Romer actively taught in the Physics Department at Amherst College for 45 years and was an undergraduate student there from 1948-1952. For the past few years he has engaged in local heritage work and published "Higher Education and Slavery in Western Massachusetts," in the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education (2005). His talk is part of a special appearance in Prof. Amilcar Shabazz's class "Heritage of the Oppressed," being taught for The Social Thought and Political Economy Program (STPEC), an interdisciplinary undergraduate program in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at UMass Amherst that was founded in 1972, by Robert Paul Wolff, Emeritus Professor in the Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies.


"Civil War Causes and Consequences"

The Five Colleges (UMass, Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges) hosted a Sesquicentennial Civil War Conference, on October 14 and 15. It was keynoted by Eric Foner and David Blight and included Tera Hunter and other historians from across the country.

Recent Chancellor’s Medal winner and Du Bois Department faculty member Manisha Sinha, along with John Higginson, Leo Richards and Bruce Laurie, were among the UMass Amherst participants.

 

Click here for details.

 


"Du Bois, Black Feminist Archaeology, and the Veil of Black Womanhood"

Assistant professor of Anthropology and Afro-American Studies, Whitney Battle-Baptiste discussed gender, race and class and the development of Du Boisian archaeology on Friday, October 14, from 3-5 pm on Floor 26 in the Du Bois Library. She also read from and offered signed copies for sale of her new book, Black Feminist Archaeology. Light refreshments will be served.


More information


Members of the Du Bois Department family, faculty, students, and alumni had a significant presence at the 96th annual convention of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the oldest organization dedicated to the study and promotion of Black history.

 

ASALH 2011 Convention PSA 1 from ASALH Media Productions on Vimeo.

Prof. John Bracey presented the paper "St. Clair Drake, The Roosevelt University Years" and chaired three sessions on topics ranging from Chicago working class activism to Black Power and Black Arts Movement Studies. Prof. James Smethurst presented the paper "Black Arts Southwest: The Black Arts Movement in Texas" and participated in ASALH's Authors' Book Signing for his new book. Prof. Bill Strickland presented two papers: "The Lynching of the Black Political Body: How Post-Civil War Political Terror Overthrew Reconstruction & Founded the Jim Crow South,1866-1877" and ""Reinventing" or Rescripting?: Interrogating Manning Marable's Biography of Malcolm X." Du Bois Department doctoral students Vanessa Fabien and David Swiderski, as well as doctoral candidate in history Julie de Chantal (working with Prof. Shabazz) are on the ASALH program. Department alums on the program included Catherine L. Adams, Shawn Alexander, Stephanie Y. Evans, Lloren Foster, David Goldberg, Alesia McFadden-Williams, Tanya Mears, Zebulon Miletsky, and Andrew Rosa.


The 2011 Du Bois Library Fellows, our own Markeysha Davis and Rickey Fayne of Northwestern University, gave talks based on their research on Friday, September 16th, 4-6 p.m. in the 26th Floor Conference Room of the Library. Markeysha presented the paper "Daring Propaganda for the Beauty of the Human Mind: Redefinition and Reaffirmation of the Black Self in Poetry and Drama of the 1960s and 1970s".   For details click here.


Meet & Greet Afro-American Studies for our Faculty, Graduate Students, Majors, Minors, & Friends

Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House

Friday, September 16th, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.


Ernest Gibson, III, made it onto the 2011 Boston Lizard Lounge National Poetry Slam Team. The team competed at the National Poetry Slam, an annual poetry slam championship tournament against teams from all over North America and Europe that took place August 8-13th in Boston, Massachusetts.   Click here for more...


Steve Tracy and his blues band, The King Bees, at the Creative Souls Art and Music Festival performed on August 20th at the Energy Park in Greenfield.


Distinguished Faculty Lecture Series

Manisha Sinha, Did the Abolitionists Cause the Civil War?
Wednesday, April 27th at 4:00 p.m. Massachusetts Room, Mullins Center, UMass Amherst
For more than thirty years, the campus has recognized the distinguished achievements through the series. The lectures honor individual faculty members and celebrate the value of academic excellence. Faculty members chosen for the series receive the Chancellor's Medal following their lectures. The Chancellor's Medal is the highest honor bestowed on individuals for exemplary and extraordinary service to the University. The lecture is open to the public and a reception follows immediately after the lecture. Previous Du Bois Department faculty members that were named the Distinguished Faculty Lecturers include John H. Bracey, Julius Lester, Chinua Achebe, and Robert Paul Wolff. For additional details click here.


Strickland Gives Lecture on Malcolm X

"Malcolm X: The Theoretician We Never Knew", a lecture Bill Strickland, gave at the Malcolm X Festival in Omaha, Nebraska (4/20/11)--hear it by clicking his photo or the link below. Professor Strickland speaks from his personal knowledge of Brother Malcolm. As head of the Northern Student Movement, he arranged the meeting between Malcolm and Fannie Lou Hamer when the MFDP (Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party) came to Harlem. A founding member of the independent black think tank, the Institute of the Black World, he was the senior consultant and wrote the companion book for the PBS documentary, Malcolm X : Make It Plain. He has been in Du Bois Department for over 35 years. Go to the audiofile.


"Racism & Racial Politics in Contemporary Cuba"  A conversation with Tomas Fernandez Robaina, Researcher, National Jose Marti Library in Havana, Cuba; Author of Numerous Books and Articles

Friday, April 8th at 12:00 p.m., Shirley Graham Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House, UMass Amherst
Sponsored by the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies and the Center for Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies, Afro-Latino Diasporas: Black Cultures & Racial Politics in the Americas


Jonathan Fenderson's Dissertation Defense

"‘Journey Toward a Black Aesthetic’:
Hoyt Fuller, the Black Arts Movement & the Black Intellectual Community”
 
  

Thursday, April 7th  at 12:30 p.m.; Room 118, School of Management (SOM)


MAKING CONNECTIONS: The 2011 Internships, Jobs, and Social Change Fair Networking with STPEC, Afro-Am, Labor Center, and Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies Alumni/ae UMass Amherst alumna Shannan Magee

Thursday, April 7th, 5:30-7:00pm, Cape Cod Lounge, Student Union

A Career Fair Event jointly sponsored by the Du Bois Department together with Labor Studies, Women Gender Sexuality Studies, Social Thought and Political Economy Program, and Career Services. Du Bois Department and STPEC alumna Shannon Magee (class of '96, '97G), who cut red tape on two continents to open a school for girls in Ghana in 2006, is our featured speaker at the Career Fair. She will discuss how Afro-American Studies prepared her for her post-UMass experiences and activities. She comes to UMass with two Ghanaian students at the schools she founded and a video production team at work on a documentary about the schools. See "Bringing Change to Ghana: Alumna Shannan Magee opens a school for girls," for details.


A LOOK INSIDE SB1070

Monday, March 28th, 6:30 p.m., Machmer Hall

Equipped with a video camera and curiosity, a delegation of university students visited the border regions of Arizona to learn more about the enactment of the controversial anti-immigrant law SB1070.  

In recognition of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the STPEC department is organizing a viewing of this documentary.  A panel discussion will follow, including Professors John Bracy (Afro-Am) and Agustin Lao-Montes (Sociology).  Pizza will be provided for those who attend!


Screening: "Freedom Riders" Thurs., March 3, 7PM, Bartlett Rm. 65

Immediately after the film a panel discussion will take place featuring former Freedom Riders and Emeritus Professor Ekwueme Michael Thelwell. Co-sponsored by the History and Afro-American Studies Departments at UMass Amherst and WGBY.


W.E.B. Du Bois Lecture 2011

Monday, February 28 at 4.30 p.m. Cape Cod Lounge, Student Union, UMass Amherst

“W.E.B. Du Bois: Personal Stories/Political Reflections”
Bettina Aptheker, Distinguished Professor of Feminist Studies and History, University of California, Santa Cruz
Bettina Aptheker

Bettina Aptheker is Distinguished Professor of Feminist Studies and History at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she has taught for more than 30 years. Her most recent book is a memoir, Intimate Politics: How I Grew Up Red, Fought for Free Speech and Became a Feminist Rebel (2006). It contains many stories of her early friendship with W.E.B. and Shirley Graham Du Bois. Other major books include, The Morning Breaks: The Trial of Angela Davis (1976; 2nd edition, 1999); Woman’s Legacy: Essays on Race, Sex, and Class in American History (1982) and Tapestries of Life: Women’s Work, Women’s Consciousness, and the Meaning of Daily Experience (1989). She is the biographer of Shirley Graham Du Bois for Notable American Women, and is currently writing a critical essay on Graham Du Bois’ creative career as an opera composer, playwright, biographer, and novelist. She is also at work on a major research project: “Queering the History of the American Left: 1940s-1980s.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Professor Aptheker visited New Africa House to meet with Afro-Am Students and Faculty before her lecture


Commonwealth Honors College Lecture

"Reading W.E.B. Du Bois in the Context of the Present Economic Crisis"

Professor Amilcar Shabazz

Wednesday, February 23rd at 6:30 p.m., Student Union Ballroom


The State of African American and African Diaspora Studies: Methodology, Pedagogy, and Research

at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, January 6-8th, 2011

Du Bois Dept faculty John Bracey and Amilcar Shabazz; plus PhD candidate Jonathan Fenderson, and PhD alums Carolyn Powell, Chris Tinson, David Goldberg, and Ousmane Power-Greene) presented research at the conference.


The Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies thanks all the scholars and activists, writers and artists, youth and elders, who came together November 18-20, 2010, to mark our 40th year on the University of Massachusetts Amherst campus, as well as to support the exchange of knowledge about the dynamic period in which academic Black Studies units like ours were established. The Art & Power in Movement conference drew over 400 participants. Please click the poster to go to the conference website. We will be posting photos, as well as links to video and audio files of many conference presentations, especially by our keynoters Sister Sonia Sanchez, Amiri Baraka, and others.

Go to TRGGR Megia Group for audio from keynote sessions at http://trggradio.wordpress.com/ 

Also, click here for the Conference Program (pdf). Continue to check the blog of our Working Group on Black Arts & Black Power Movement Research for additional post-conference developments.

The opening event in our 40th anniversary conference

November 18th at 4:00 p.m

Melba Joyce Boyd, Distinguished Professor and Chair of Africana Studies at Wayne State University and editor of the award-winning Roses and Revolutions: The Selected Writings of Dudley Randall lectured on Wrestling with the Muse: Dudley Randall and the Broadside Press

W.E.B. Du Bois Library, 25th Floor, UMass Amherst


Tuesday, November 2nd at 5:00 p.m.

Augusta Savage Gallery opening reception for An Untouchable Reaches Out: The Dalit Art of Savi Savarkar exhibiting prints from a renowned Indian artist and activist; Amherst-based Art historian Gary Tartakov curates this show (open until November 23). 


Tuesday, October 26th at 4:00 p.m.

“40 Years of Academic Innovation at UMass Amherst” featured a keynote lecture by Professor James Hall from the University of Alabama and a panel discussion on 40 years of interdisciplinary experimentation in American higher education, jointly sponsored by BDIC and the Du Bois Department in the Bernie Dallas Room of Goodell Building.


Professor Hall, an extraordinary teacher, mentor and educational innovator, is an Associate Professor of African-American Studies and English at the University of Alabama. Since 2002, he also has served as Director of New College, an interdisciplinary liberal arts program. He is the author of Mercy, Mercy Me, African-American Culture and the American Sixties, and the winner of the Morris Lehman Mayer Award which recognizes "integrity, selfless service and leadership at the University of Alabama and in the community. A panel discussion will follow the lecture.

Click this link for a PDF on his visit: Hall Flyer


John Anthony Kendrick: “An Artist at Rest" Augusta Savage Gallery exhibit honoring a promising artist who died suddenly at the age of 30; his sister, author of a forthcoming book on Kendrick’s work and life, curates this exhibit (open until October 28).


Charles Payne Visits the Five Colleges and the Springfield Public Schools

*Open to 5 College Students and Faculty*

Tuesday, October 19, 1:30-3:00pm, Smith College – A Conversation with Charles Payne: The Persistence of Failure in Urban Schools, Stoddard Hall G2. Wednesday, October 20, 8:00-8:50am, UMass – I've Got the Light of Freedom: The Organizing Tradition and the Mississippi Freedom Struggle and the History of the Civil Rights Movement, Thompson 102. Thursday, October 21, 2:45 – 4:00pm, Mount Holyoke College – Dr. Payne on Urban Education and the Reform Movement, Cleveland Hall, L2.For information on Dr. Payne and his Springfield appearances, click this link for a PDF on his visit: Payne_Flyer


Thursday, October 21st at 9:00 a.m.

Professor Manisha Sinha gave a Keynote Address for a National Public Conference on Secession at the Filson Historical Society, Louisville Kentucky. 


Tuesday, October 12 6:30 - 7:30 pm Augusta Savage Gallery, New Africa House, UMass Amherst Campus, FILM SCREENING of "Umlando - Through My Father's Eye" (45 mins) featured legendary South African musician Hugh Masekela and his American-born son Selema, an ESPN reporter for FIFA World Cup. Together they explore the people, culture and inspiring landscapes of South Africa/Azania and the nation's history. Sal Masekela will introduce this film and host a question and answer session immediately following the screening. This 10-part series was featured during 2010 FIFA World Cup. Also there will be an ARTIST TALK with Hugh & Sal Masekela on Wednesday, October 13, 1:30 - 2:45pm, with Hugh Masekela in concert at 7:30p.m., both in Bowker Auditorium. See http://www.umass.edu/fac/calendar/centerseries/events/HughMasekela.html


Meet & Greet Afro-American Studies Faculty, Friends, Alums, Graduate Students, Undergraduate Majors and Minors! Learn about the Du Bois Department, who we are and what we do. Join us in celebration as we launch our 40th anniversary year, 1970-2010. See special exhibits in the New Africa House Lobby and Augusta Savage Art Gallery.

Friday, October 15th at 12:00 p.m

Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House. Du Bois Department Homecoming 2010


The Fire Next Time Colloquium Series

Doctoral Programs in Africana/Black Studies: Context, Trends, and Research

Friday, Oct. 15th at 2:00 p.m.

Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room, 2nd Floor, New Africa House

Stephanie Evans, Ph.D. from the Du Bois Department, class of 2003
Associate Professor and Director of the African American Studies Program at the University of Florida (Gainesville). Co-editor, "Africana Studies at the Graduate Level: A Twenty-first Century Perspective," special issue of The Western Journal of Black Studies * vol. 34, no. 2 * Summer 2010. See http://www.professorevans.com/BSTPHD.asp

Kabria Baumgartner, Jonathan Fenderson and Jason Hendrickson
Du Bois Department doctoral candidates in Afro-American Studies and participants in the National Council for Black Studies and Ford Foundation Summer Institute for Ph.D. Students


The Du Bois Department is the source of numerous events every academic year, both those we directly sponsor as well as those we sponsor jointly with others. The link to the PDF below offers a gallery of press releases, flyers, and posters of our past events since 2007.

Events2007_09

The list includes:

Brazilian Minister Matilde Ribeiro lectured at an event the Du Bois Department co-sponsored with the Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies on September 13, 2007.


“Genius” writer and filmmaker Charles Burnett visited Amherst Cinema on October 21-22, 2007, for co-sponsored showings of his classic works, and New Africa House. He gave the Afro-American Studies Department an exclusive screening of his newest work Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation.


Du Bois Distinguished Lecture: “The Obstacles of Leadership in Africa & Prospects for the Future,” His Excellency Antonio Monteiro, Former President of Cape Verde (1991-2001), November 26, 2007, 11th Floor, Campus Center.


The Fire Next Time Colloquium, November 28, 2007: Dr. Whitney Battle-Baptiste, Assistant Professor of Archaeology, Shirley Graham Du Bois Library, 2nd Floor, New Africa House


Leader of the Strategic Alliance of Afro-descendants in Latin America, Jesus “Chucho” Garcia, speaks on “The Afro-Venezuelan Social Movement and the New Left in Latin America,” February 19th, 2008, 12:00 p.m., Shirley Graham Du Bois Library, 2nd Floor, New Africa House


An Evening with the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies, February 21st, 2008, 6:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. Memorial Hall


14th ANNUAL W.E.B. DU BOIS LECTURE: Arnold Rampersad, author of acclaimed works on W.E.B. Du Bois, Langston Hughes, and Ralph Ellison, on “W.E.B. Du Bois & Ralph Ellison,” February 28, 2008, 4:30PM, Lower Level, Du Bois Library


Book Party & Signing! Contested Democracy: Freedom, Race, and Power in American History by Manisha Sinha, March 6, 2008 at 7:00 p.m.


A Memorial Tribute to Max Roach, 1924-2007, March 25th 2008


Poetry and Short Stories by Keli Stewart, April 23rd , 7:00 p.m., August Savage Gallery


National Hip Hop Conference, “Triggering Change: HipHop, Media, Justice & Social Responsibility,” April 25th and 26th, 2008, School of Management, UMass Amherst


The Fire Next Time Colloquium, April 30, 2008: Dr. Melissa Wooten, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Shirley Graham Du Bois Library, 2nd Floor, New Africa House


Esther Terry Award Event, April 23, 2008


“Look Back and Wonder,” A Documentary Film by Ernest Allen, Jr., April 30, 2008, Room 137, School of Management (part of the Massachusetts Multicultural Film Festival)


Graduation Party 2008, May 23, 2008, Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room, New Africa House


Emergent Research Colloquium #1: Pd.D. Student Allia Matta, “Sweet, Nasty, and Sassy: Black Women’s Salt Sprinkles of the African Diaspora,” November 7, 2008, 2PM, 309 New Africa House


DISTINGUISHED LECTURE: William Darity Jr., Professor of African and African-American Studies and Economics, Duke University, on “Forty Acres and a Mule in the 21st Century” November 17, 2008 4PM, Studio Arts Building Commons, UMass Amherst campus. Co-sponsored with the 2008-09 Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series and the Department of History


“Bunker Hill,” Film and Introduction by Director Kevin Willmott, Professor, University of Kansas, November 17, 2008, 7:30PM, Herter Hall, Room 231, UMass/Amherst [PUMA event]


W.E.B. Du Bois Lecture Series/Black Europeans: Race and the New Europe, Professor Dominic Thomas, UCLA, “Immigration and National Identity in the New Europe,” February 5, 2009, 4:30PM, 917 Campus Center. Co-sponsored with the College of Humanities and Fine Arts “Visioning” Grant Recipients, the Program in German and Scandinavian Studies, UMass Amherst.


Opening Reception: “Gems in the Valley: A Toast to Nelson Stevens,” February 9, 2009, 5PM, Augusta Savage Gallery, New Africa House


W.E.B. Du Bois Afro-American Studies Department and the Five College Public School Partnership Black History Month Event: Charles E. Cobb, Jr., “Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement,” February 10, 2009, 2:30PM, 311 New Africa House


Public Engagement Project (PEP) Event: “Working with Social Movements: Lessons from the Front Lines,” February 27, 2009, 2PM. Featuring Sonia Alvarez, Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for Latin American Studies; M. V. Lee Badgett, Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration; Stephanie Luce, Associate Professor and Acting Chair of the Labor Center; Amilcar Shabazz, Du Bois Department Professor and Chair


Five College Center for Crossroads in the Study of the Americas (CISA) and the Afro-American Studies Department Event: Professor Kwame Dawes, the Louise Frye Scudder Professor of Liberal Arts & Distinguished Poet in Residence, University of South Carolina, on “How Reggae Shaped the Way We Understand History,” February 24, 2009, 7:30PM, Augusta Savage Art Gallery


Du Bois Department, Campus Center Book Store, Vice Provost for Research, Five Colleges, Inc., & the Springfield Public Schools’ Teaching American History Program Black History Month Event: “Remembering Lincoln & the Black Struggle for Freedom in the Age of Obama,” February 23, 2009 5:30PM, Memorial Hall, with John Stauffer, Professor of English, Harvard University, “Douglass, Lincoln, Obama: Influences & Studies, and Manisha Sinha,“Allies for Emancipation: Black Abolitionists and Lincoln,” Chair: John Bracey

Emergent Research Colloquium #2: Professor John Higginson, History Department, “Scorched Earth: The Etiology and Spread of Guerilla Organization in the Western Transvaal, July 1900 to December 1902,” February 20, 2009, 2PM, New Africa House


Film: “Look Back & Wonder” by Professor Ernest Allen, Jr., February 12, 2009, 5:30PM, Malcolm X Cultural Center. Office of Programs and Services for ALANA Students


Black Women & Black Power: A Roundtable on Politics & Art of the 1960s, with Cheryl Clarke, Rutgers University; Andrea Rushing, Amherst College; Daphne Lamothe, Smith College; Dayo Gore & Yemisi Jimoh, UMass; March 12, 2009, 6:30PM, New Africa House


Emergent Research Colloquium #3: Ph.D. student Jim Carroll, “Astro-Blues and Cosmo-Spirituals: Sun Ra the Traditionalist,” March 27, 2009, 2PM, New Africa House

Making Connections: Life After UMass—A Student/Alumni Networking Event featuring Afro-American Studies, STPEC, Labor Center, and WS alums, April 2, 2009, 4PM, Cape Cod Lounge


SYMPOSIUM: “Roots & Routes in Afro-American Studies: Past, Present & Future,” Keynote Talks by Esther Terry and Ekwueme Michael Thelwell, Panels by students and faculty members from the Five College Black Studies Departments, April 25, 2009, 11AM, New Africa House


Emergent Research Colloquium #4: Professor Melissa Wooten, Sociology, “Organizations Unite!: Collective Action & the Formation of the United Negro College Fund,” May 1, 2009, 2PM, New Africa House


Class of 2009 Graduation Celebration: May 22, 2009, 4:30PM, New Africa House


Du Bois Department and Office of Faculty Development’s Mutual Mentoring Initiative Reception: For faculty connected to interdisciplinary programs and departments that address issues of gender, race, and class, October 7, 2009, 4PM, Shirley Graham Du Bois Reading Room, New Africa House


Black Poetry of the 1960s and 70s: Panel of Distinguished Artists featuring Sam Cornish, Everett Hoagland, Sonia Sanchez, Askia Toure, November 19, 2009, 4PM, Campus Center Amherst Room


Du Bois Department and the Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies “Lessons from the Cuban Revolution” Series: Rountable #1—“Contested Visions of Cuba’s Domestic & International Revolutionary Practices,” September 23, 4PM; and Roundtable #2—“Race in Contemporary Cuba: Demographics, Rights, and Culture,” December 1, 2009, 4PM, Campus Center