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Course & Subject Guides

Black History Month 2019: Black Migrations @ Pitt

Events

February 1: "Ferguson Voices: Disrupting the Frame" Traveling Exhibit 

Opening Reception

Date: Friday, February 1, 2019
Time: 3:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

Americans often view police violence and related issues of structural racism as if they were unique to the United States, when in fact these challenges are common globally.  Making these global connections can help us learn something valuable about our own society – about the shared histories that give rise to distinctive forms of race relations, about transnational processes shaping race relations, law enforcement, and so on.  Situating these issues in a global context can also help to defuse what are often tense debates by providing us with valuable critical distance on our own politics and society: it’s often easier to make sense of a situation about which we are relatively dispassionate than it is to make sense of one in which we are deeply invested.  Notwithstanding these benefits, drawing transnational connections can itself be profoundly unsettling, forcing us to confront troubling issues such as colonialism, genocide, and white privilege. The Global Studies Center believes that there is a great opportunity to continue and enrich conversations on diversity and inclusion by situating these issues within their wider global and historical context.  Doing so will provide a literal and metaphorical space for discussion of issues important to all of us and create a unique opportunity to experience diversity through consideration of multiple perspectives on a prominent – and still present – moment in recent American history. By speaking to the global context in which the events in Ferguson, MO unfolded, GSC and its partners will enable students, faculty, and staff to consider these events in new ways that may contribute to a deeper understanding of the events themselves and the broader processes of which they are apart.

For more information about the exhibit, visit www.fergusonvoices.org/exhibit

 

February 7: Black Lives Matter: intersectional and transnational perspectives

Discussion

Date: Thursday, February 7, 2019
Time  12:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

Americans often view police violence and related issues of structural racism as if they were unique to the United States, when in fact these challenges are common globally. Making these global connections can help us learn something valuable about our own society – about the shared histories that give rise to distinctive forms of race relations, about transnational processes shaping race relations, law enforcement, and so on. Situating these issues in a global context can also help to defuse what are often tense debates by providing us with valuable critical distance on our own politics and society: it’s often easier to make sense of a situation about which we are relatively dispassionate than it is to make sense of one in which we are deeply invested. Notwithstanding these benefits, drawing transnational connections can itself be profoundly unsettling, forcing us to confront troubling issues such as colonialism, genocide, and white privilege. The Global Studies Center believes that there is a great opportunity to continue and enrich conversations on diversity and inclusion by situating these issues within their wider global and historical context. Doing so will provide a literal and metaphorical space for discussion of issues important to all of us and create a unique opportunity to experience diversity through consideration of multiple perspectives on a prominent – and still present – moment in recent American history. By speaking to the global context in which the events in Ferguson, MO unfolded, GSC and its partners will enable students, faculty, and staff to consider these events in new ways that may contribute to a deeper understanding of the events themselves and the broader processes of which they are apart.

Donna Auston is a doctoral candidate, Anthropology Department at Rutgers University. She is a writer, and activist whose body of work focuses on race, ethnicity, gender, religion, media representation, and Islam in America. Her dissertation is an ethnographic exploration of Black Muslim activism and spiritual protest in the Black Lives Matter era. Some of her written work includes book chapters on the historical contributions of African American Muslims in the arts, culture, and social justice movements, and the intersection between Islamophobia and Black Lives Matter.

Donna has a forthcoming co-authored book chapter on Black Islam and U.S. Politics, and she has also published a number of short essays, including, “Mapping the Intersections of Islamophobia and #BlackLivesMatter: Unearthing Black Muslim Life and Activism in the Policing Crisis,” and “Recalled to Life: On the Meaning and Power of a Die-In." Her work has been covered by national news outlets, including NBC News, and The Huffington Post, and she was named one of the top 100 Muslim Social Justice leaders by MPower Change in 2016.

Janette Jouili is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research and teaching interests include Islam in Europe, secularism, pluralism, popular culture, moral and aesthetic practices, and gender. She is author of Pious Practice and Secular Constraints: Women in the Islamic Revival in Europe (Stanford, 2015), has published articles in various peer-reviewed journals (such as Comparative Studies in Society and History, Anthropology Quarterly, Feminist Review, and French Culture, Politics and Society,). Currently, she is working on her second book project: Islam on Stage: British Muslim Culture in the Age of Counterterrorism

 

February 7: Sophisticated Giant: The Life & Legacy of Dexter Gordon

A Book Talk on Dexter Gordon by Guest Author Maxine Gordon

Date: Thursday, February 7, 2019
Time  4:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

Sophisticated Giant presents the life and legacy of tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon (1923-1990), one of the major innovators of modern jazz. In a context of biography, history, and memoir, Maxine Gordon has completed the book that her late husband began, weaving his "solo" turns with her voice and a chorus of voices from past to present.

Reading like a jazz composition, the blend of research, anecdote, and a selection of Dexter's personal letters reflects his colorful life and legendary times. It is clear why the celebrated trumpet genius Dizzy Gillespie said to Dexter, "Man, you ought to leave your karma to science."

About the Author: Maxine Gordon is an independent scholar with a lifetime career working with jazz muscians. As an oral historian and archivist in the fields of jazz and African American cultural history, Sophisticated Giant fulfills the promise she made to her late husband, jazz saxophonist and Academy Award-nominated actor Dextor Gordon, to complete his biography.

Free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. 

 

February 12: Black History Month Pop-Up Exhibit at Hillman Library

Date: Tuesday, February 12, 2019
Time: 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Location: Hillman Library, room TBD

Details forthcoming.

 

February 13: Wylie Avenue Days Film Presentation

Date: Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Time: 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Location: Hillman Library, Latin American American Lecture Room (First Floor)

Wylie Avenue Days focuses on the Great Migration in Pittsburgh, primarily the Hill District section. The film depicts heyday of Pittsburgh's Hill District that lasted from the 1930's through the 1950's, when many African Americans migrated to the North for jobs in mills and such, and this eloquent documentary recaptures it all... the music clubs that attracted both black and white, the best Negro League baseball teams in America, the church picnics and family businesses that comprised the essence of life in this vibrant neighborhood.

Gather for a screening of the film, followed by a brief discussion.

 

February 13: Advancing Health Equity and the Human Right to Health: Social Policy Perspectives on Public Health

Date: Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Time: 4:30pm - 6:00pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

At its 2018 annual meeting, the American Public Health Association adopted 12 new policy statements on the most pressing public health concerns. The statements relate to hold mortality, environmental health, gun violence, refugees, police violence, and food security-- all areas in which we find significant racial disparities. This panel features Dr. Tiffany Gary-Webb, Associate Professor in Pitt's Graduate School of Public Health, and other experts exploring the implications of this effort of health professionals to confront inequality and racism and its health impacts. Panelists will consider the role of scholars and practitioners in advancing health equity in these areas as well as the wider lessons for advancing human rights today

 

February 18: The Great Migration’s Impact on Black Pittsburgh

Date: Monday, February 18, 2019
Time: 10:00am - 2:00pm
Location: Pitt Community Engagement Center in Homewood, 622 N. Homewood Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15208

Presented by The University of Pittsburgh Library System

Join us as we explore the impact of the migration of African Americans to Pittsburgh, featuring resources from ULS’ Archives & Special Collections. Topics will include The Urban League & NAACP, Black Sports in Pittsburgh, Black Performing Arts, and more!

* Neighborhood Historians are encouraged to attend and share their wisdom!

This event is FREE and Open to All and is part of the CEC's Black History Month programming! RSVP by phone 412-383-0830, email cecinfo@pitt.edu, or via Eventbrite at https://thegreatmigration.eventbrite.com.

Lunch will be provided.

 

February 18: Racial Regimes in Transnational Context: A Conversation with Michael Hanchard

Date: Monday, February 18, 2019
Time: 12:00am - 1:30pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

Michael Hanchard is Professor and Chair of the Africana Studies Department at The University of Pennsylvania and director of the Marginalized Populations project. His research and teaching interests include nationalism, racism, xenophobia and citizenship.

 

February 25: Hands-On Community Workshop with Poet/Artists Saretta Morgan and Bekezela Mguni

Date: Monday, February 25, 2019
Time: 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Location: Hillman Library, Digital Scholarship Commons (Ground Floor)

Special thanks to the event organizers and co-sponsors, the Center for African American Poetry & Poetics, The Black Unicorn Library and Archives Projects, and ULS.

 

February 27: Faculty Book Talk: To Obama by Jeanne Marie Laskas

Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2019
Time: 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Location: Hillman Library, Thornburgh Room (First Floor)

Every day, President Obama received ten thousand letters from ordinary American citizens. Every night, he read ten of them before going to bed. In To Obama, Jeanne Marie Laskas interviews President Obama, the letter-writers themselves and the White House staff in the Office of Presidential Correspondence who were witness to the millions of pleas, rants, thank-yous and apologies that landed in the mailroom during the Obama years.

Part of the ULS Faculty Book Talk series, where University of Pittsburgh faculty read selections and moderate discussions focused around their recently published work of non-fiction.

 

 

The Black History Month 2019: Black Migrations @ Pitt banner features "During World War I there was a great migration north by southern Negroes" by Jacob Lawrence, 1917-2000. n.d.  National Archives at College Park. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:During_World_War_I_there_was_a_great_migration_north_by_southern_Negroes_-_NARA_-_559091.jpg.