During my three week stay in Pennsylvania for the NEH Summer Institute on Contemporary African American literature, I decided to take the opportunity to visit the home of my paternal grandfather in nearby Pittsburgh. As some families are wont to do, mine took the liberty to write my father out of my personal narrative. It … Continue reading Finding Home in John Edgar Wideman’s Homewood
I remember my first ever CLA Conference. I was finishing the final course of my doctoral degree and studying for my comprehensive exams. It was April 2005 and the good colored folks were gathering at University of Georgia that year. I had heard of CLA only the previous year, as my mentor and the … Continue reading Why I Love CLA (College Language Association)
This August marks my sixth year in the professoriate. It has been six years since I defended my dissertation and was hooded by my esteemed advisor Darryl Dickson-Carr. Six years beyond the Ph.D. signifies another milestone in the academic career, particularly for the tenure track appointed, depending on which one of us takes a … Continue reading Promotion and Tenure–The Long Sojourn
On my application for the NEH Summer Institute on Contemporary African American Literature I articulated my desire to think through and discover how African American literature could lend itself to a digital humanities project. I hoped to come away from the institute with a better understanding of what such a project would look like. … Continue reading African American Literary Studies and the Digital Humanities: Finding an Entrance
I was privileged to be among the chosen to participate in the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute on Contemporary African American Literature, directed by Lovalerie King at Penn State University. As I reflect on the experience, it is hard to articulate what actually took place in that space. Sure, I can tell … Continue reading Trans-itioning: Moving across Academic Spaces
I recently completed my first semester in an African American Studies Department where 1 of the 16 seminar participants was an English major. This was a completely new landscape and as I prepared the course I gave little thought to adapting my teaching approach to accommodate students who did not have a literary background. … Continue reading Teaching English Majors vs. Black Studies Majors: A Reflection on Pedagogy
In my secret, undercover life I am an amateur genealogist and have been working on compiling my family pedigree since I was about seventeen. Recently, I discovered a familiar name in the most unlikely of places!!! As I was preparing to teach my ENGL 3960 course, "The Gullah Presence in African American Literature by Women," … Continue reading Geechee Relatives????
Back in September, my good friend and I ventured to St. Simons Island to visit the ocean and place ourselves on historic Ibo Landing and other various places our slave ancestors formerly occupied (See: http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?id=h-2895 for the story behind Ibo Landing). Much to our dismay NONE of the visitor's center brochures/maps even made mention of … Continue reading In Search of Ibo Landing….