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Candis Watts Smith: Making Black Lives Matter

Do All Black Lives Matter To All Black People?This spring the Department of African & African American Studies continues to commemorate the 50th anniversary of black studies at Duke with a speaker series featuring prominent Duke alumni.

Candis Watts Smith, Ph.D. ’11, associate professor of political science and African American studies at Pennsylvania State University, kicks off the speaker series this month with a talk, “Do All Black Lives Matter to All Black People?”

The talk will be held in the Moyle Room at the Karsh Alumni and Visitor Center on Thursday, Jan. 30, at 4:30 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

Kerry Haynie, chair of Duke’s Academic Council and an associate professor of political science and African & African American studies, will join Smith to discuss her latest book, Stay Woke: A People’s Guide to Making Black Lives Matter.

Haynie chaired Smith’s dissertation committee while she was a doctoral student in Duke’s Department of Political Science. Smith also received a B.A. and M.A. from Duke.

Smith’s expertise highlights race and ethnicity’s role in shaping the American political landscape. Her research agenda illuminates the ways in which demographic dynamics influence citizens’ and denizens’ of the U.S. understanding of their own identity, their political attitudes, and their policy preferences. She is also the author of Black Mosaic: The Politics of Black Pan-Ethnic Identity, and the co-author of Racial Stasis: The Millennial Generation and the Stagnation of Racial Attitudes in American Politics.

Haynie directs Duke’s Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity, and Gender in the Social Sciences, and is one of the editors of the journal, Politics, Groups, and Identities. Haynie’s research and teaching interests are in race and ethnic politics, intersections of race and gender, southern politics, and comparative urban politics. Haynie has traveled widely, attending invited talks in France, Germany, and South Africa. He is the co-winner of the American Political Science Association’s Women and Politics Research Section’s Best Paper Award for 2012.

Candice Jenkins, WSTC ‘01, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, will discuss her new book, Black Bourgeois, at 4:30 p.m., Feb. 27. Jenkins’ talk will be held in the Ahmadieh Family Lecture Hall in Smith Warehouse.

AAAS Speaker Series Highlights Duke Black Studies Alum

Ashon Crawley close up

Ashon Crawley, Ph.D. ’13

On Wednesday afternoon the Department of African & African American Studies will launch its 50th anniversary speaker series with Duke alum Ashon Crawley.

Crawley, Ph.D., ‘13, will deliver a talk, “Migration Stories and the Hammond Sound,” at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 18 in the Moyle Room of the newly opened Karsh Alumni and Visitor’s Center (2080 Duke University Rd., Durham).

The talk is free and open to the public. Free parking is available across the street in the gravel lot. A reception will follow the talk.

Each month, the department will host a lecture by scholars who have been immersed in black studies at Duke. All of the talks will be held at 4:30 p.m. in the Karsh Center.

“The series is an opportunity to acknowledge the impact of Black Studies on the Duke University campus, and there’s no better way to do that than to highlight the fine scholars whose research was directed by current and former members of AAAS faculty, said Mark Anthony Neal, the James B. Duke Professor of African & African American Studies and chair of the department. “The scholars presenting in the series have emerged as some of the leading voices in the field of Black Diaspora Studies.”

Crawley, who earned a Ph.D. in English and a certificate in African & African American Studies at Duke, is an associate professor of Religious Studies and African American and African Studies at the University of Virginia, is the author of “Blackpentecostal Breath: The Aesthetics of Possibility.”

He is also author of the forthcoming, “The Lonely Letters,” described as an exploration of the interrelation of blackness, mysticism, quantum mechanics and love.

Next month, on Oct. 14, Courtney R. Baker, Ph.D. ‘08, an associate professor of English at the University of California, Riverside will give a talk, “Black Humanity, Visible Violence, and Liberation Aesthetics.”

For more information on the Department of African & African American Studies, visit aaas.duke.edu.

AAAS 50th Anniversary Speaker Series

Oct. 14 Courtney R. Baker, Ph.D. ‘08, University of California, Riverside
Nov. 11 Patrick Alexander, Ph.D. ‘12, University of Mississippi
Dec. 4 Kinohi Nishikawa, Ph.D. ‘10, Princeton University
Jan. 30 Candis Watts Smith, Ph.D. ‘11, Penn State
Feb. 27 Candice Jenkins, WSTC ‘01, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
TBA Danny Hoffman, Ph.D. ‘04, University of Washington

AAAS speaker series group poster