Over @Medium – Doing the Work | Princeton African American Studies Response Series

I wrote a thing…a final, short reflection for the inaugural Princeton University Department of African American Studies Response Series on ‪#‎BlackLivesMatter‬. It posted a week or two ago, but seems appropriate to post today in light of ‪#‎BlackOnCampus‬, ‪#‎Mizzou‬, and student and faculty strikes occurring across the country.

I mention several people doing the work: Talitha LeFlouria, Michelle Alexander, Simone Browne, Tanisha C. Ford, Uri McMillan, LaMonda HStallings, Kimberly Juanita Brown. By this writing, that list seems rather short. I should have added Aimee Meredith Cox‘s Shapeshifters, Shana L. Redmond‘s Anthem, slavery books on the list for 2016 by Sowande’ Mustakeem, Sasha Turner, Natasha Lightfoot, Marisa Fuentes, and Aisha Finch; the two-part special issue of The Black Scholar Journal | Journal of Black Studies and Research, the book Rae Paris is writing, the ‪#‎BlackFemmesSaveLives‬ curriculum La Bianca created, the faculty at #Mizzou who walked out in protest, their Special Collections division who let the world know via Tumblr that social change on their campus isn’t new….

“Darlene Clark Hine, at the 100th Anniversary of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, asked a plenary on the future of Black Women’s Studies what those with knowledge, history, research skills, and a desire to make change need to be doing NOW to change the world, to make this a world we want to live in, that we remain alive in. If the issue is doing the work by publishing, teaching, and mentoring, then we are doing the work. If the work is bringing our questions, vulnerabilities, and fears to light in forums like this one, then we are doing the work. If the work is showing up at Black Lives Matter conferences, at workshops in our local communities, at rallies and marches, but also at city council meetings, police forums, and planning meetings with activists, we are doing the work. The next step appears to be crossing boundaries (and here I deliberately invoke Hine and Jacqueline McLeod’s edited collection Crossing Boundaries: Comparative History of the Black Diaspora) and making connections, doing very necessary kinship work of building with each other in radical new ways. We are still working on how to do this….”

Read the entire thing: Doing the Work — African American Studies Response Series — Medium


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