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Fall 2023

Tuesday, December 5 | 5:30-7:00 PM
The Artist of The Family: Contemporary Black Artists and The Family Archive
Attend a talk with Dr. Alisa Prince as she explores how contemporary Black artists use family archives as materials and methods. The talk positions the collections of photographs and other memorabilia in Black homes as archives that serve to establish statements for and about their holders. As such, these materials play a critical role in Black self-making. The talk explores how artists such as Deana Lawson, Tyler Mitchell, and Carrie Mae Weems interact with family archives to speak authoritatively to/for/about Black life.

Alisa Victoria Prince is a scholar, artist, and curator of visual arts and artifacts of the Black diaspora. Her work focuses on the history of photography, the roles of race and gender in identity construction, Black Feminist traditions, archival theory, and artistic forms of resistance. Her dissertation takes up vernacular photographs of Black people, particularly those with origins in the family album, and explores the forms of value to which they are subject in different spaces. She has taught courses on Black identity, feminism, photography, and cultural capital and serves on the Editorial Board of InVisible Culture, a journal for visual culture. Register here.
Location: Howard Thurman Center, 808 Commonwealth Ave, FLR 205, Boston, MA 02446

Wednesday, December 6 | 6:00-7:30 PM
Major & Minor Dinner
Attend a delightful evening as we bring together majors and minors of AFAMBDS for a Major & Minor Dinner. This event provides an excellent opportunity to celebrate our collective achievements while enjoying a meal in great company. To help us prepare accordingly, we kindly request that you register your attendance by Wednesday, November 29th. Register here.
Location: AFAMBDS Building, 138 Mountfort St, Brookline, MA 02446

Thursday, December 7 | 4:00-5:30 PM
“Epidemic Orientalism: Race, Capital, and the Governance of Infectious Disease”
For most of the 21st century, much of the world has taken for granted our ability to fight back against pandemics and control them with little effect on day-to-day life. Until the emergence of COVID-19, few in the western world would have had any occasion to consider the histories of infectious disease control that have managed the spread of pandemic threats around the world. In Epidemic Orientalism: Race, Capital and the Governance of Infectious Disease, Prof. Alexandre White tells the story of how epidemic threats become the focus of international management, regulation and control, as well as the political, economic, and racial ideologies that have shaped international coordination to stop pandemic spread. Register to Attend
Location: Pardee Center Conference Room, 67 Bay State Road, Boston, MA 02215

Spring 2024

Thursday, February 29, 2024 | 6:30 PM
Black Trans Poetics
Save the Date! Join us for a mesmerizing poetry reading featuring Cameron Awkward-Rich, Levi Cain, and JR Mahung. This event will be featured in AFAMBDS’s Black History Season. More details to come.
Location: TBD

Past Events

Monday, September 4 | 12-3 PM
CAS First Year Labor Day Welcome Event
Congratulations and welcome to the College of Arts & Sciences at BU! We hope you all take a moment to recognize and celebrate this wonderful achievement. More info to come.
Location: 25 Lenox St, Brookline, MA 02446

Thursday, September 7 | 4-6 PM
Social Sciences Block Party
The Social Sciences of Boston University invites students to celebrate the start of the 2023-24 academic year at a Block Party in CDS 1750! Hosted by the African American & Black Diaspora Studies Program, Department of Anthropology, Center for Innovation in Social Science, Department of History, Department of Political Science, Department of Sociology, and Women and Gender Studies Program. Register here.
Location: 665 Commonwealth Avenue Boston, MA 02215

Thursday, September 14 | 6 PM
The Howard Thurman Center Black Community Reception
Join us as we kick-off the fall semester with our annual community receptions! All students, faculty, and staff at Boston University are invited to the Howard Thurman Center for an evening of celebration, finding community, connecting with student groups, and exploring campus resources. Register here.
Location: 808 Commonwealth Avenue Boston, MA 02215

Friday, September 22 | 2-4 PM
Class of ’73 Black Alumni/Faculty & Administration Session
Presented by the Class of 1973 Black Alumni, learn about the University’s outreach efforts to engage and support faculty, students & staff from racially diverse communities and discuss potential avenues for Black Alumni to serve as a resource. Register here.
Location: Photonics Building RM906, 8 St Mary’s St, Boston, MA 02215

Friday, September 22 | 4-8 PM
Black2BU: Alumni Weekend Celebration
Our annual fall kick-off and alumni reunion event will feature catering from Jamaica Mi Hungry and live music from DJ ATM. Register here.
Location: AFAMBDS Building, 138 Mountfort St, Brookline, MA 02446

Saturday, September 30 | 12:30-3 PM
AFAMBDS Student Lunch & Freedom Trail Walking Tour
Explore Boston with the African American & Black Diaspora Studies Program! Join us for lunch and then a private tour of the Freedom Trail. Spots are limited, so register before space runs out! Register here.
Location: AFAMBDS Building, 138 Mountfort St, Brookline, MA 02446

Wednesday, October 4 | 5:30-7 PM
Lynching & Anti-LGBT Violence: Making the Connection
The violence plaguing LGBT communities has much in common with the brutal practice of lynching, which was at its height from the 1890s through the 1930s. Ultimately, both forms of aggression deny targeted groups recognition as citizens. Having devoted decades to studying racial violence, Dr. Koritha Mitchell brings this expertise to her examination of the data on anti-LGBT attacks collected by the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP). Her research equips audiences to make their environments less hostile for more people.

Dr. Koritha Mitchell is author of the award-winning book Living with Lynching and author of the 2020 book From Slave Cabins to the White House: Homemade Citizenship in African American Culture. She is also editor of Frances E. W. Harper’s 1892 novel Iola Leroy and editor of Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, the first book-length autobiography by a formerly enslaved woman. She has been a professor of English at Ohio State University for eighteen years. As a visiting scholar, she will conduct her teaching and research in community with BU students, staff, and faculty. Register here.
Location: Howard Thurman Center, 808 Commonwealth Ave, FLR 205, Boston, MA 02446

Tuesday, October 17 | 5:30 PM
Screening & Virtual Q&A with Filmmaker Crystal Kwok
What did it mean to be Chinese in Black spaces during segregation? Director Crystal Kwok digs into how her grandmother’s family navigated life as grocery store owners in a black Augusta, Georgia neighborhood. The film weaves personal family stories with memories from the larger Chinese and Black communities, examining both anti-black racism and the deeply rooted structures of white supremacy and Chinese patriarchy. Register here.
Location: BU Faculty of Computing & Data Sciences (CDS), 665 Commonwealth Avenue Boston, MA 02215

Wednesday, October 25 | 7:30 PM
Afro-Cuban Sacred Music
Román Díaz, Dr. Ivor Miller, Michele Rosewoman
Explore the depth, beauty, and complexity of the multiple traditions of Afro-Cuban sacred music with musican, poet, priest, and culture-bearer Román Díaz. In conversation with his frequent collaborator, researcher Ivor Miller, and backed by traditional musicians from Michele Rosewomans acclaimed New Yor-Uba ensemble, Díaz will perform and explain a variety of Afro-Cuban sacred music in an intimate setting. This event is free and part of the BU Residency and 40th Anniversary tour of Michele’s Rosewoman’s New Yor-Uba. Register here.
Location: Marsh Chapel (735 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215)

Thursday, October 26-Saturday October 28
Gentrification & Displacement
“Gentrification, what can we do about it? An international dialogue” is a global symposium on gentrification and displacement. This will be the first international conference on gentrification studies in over 20 years—the last one was held in 2002 in Glasgow, UK. Since then, academic publications on gentrification have taken off massively, case studies have become more global, and new types of gentrification have emerged. Anti-gentrification activism has also increased and gotten more sophisticated globally. Learn more.
Location: 665 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

Friday, October 27 | 8:00 PM
Michele Rosewoman’s New Yor-Uba
New Yor-Uba, founded in 1983 and celebrating its 40th anniversary, is led by the pianist and composer Michele Rosewoman and features masters from the worlds of contemporary jazz and Cuban traditional music such as the legendary Román Díaz.  The band includes jazz instrumentation, Cuban percussionists, and traditional vocals.  New Yor-Uba salutes the Orishas (Yoruban deities) in a contemporary jazz setting with a distinctive repertoire featuring Ms. Rosewoman’s original compositions and visionary arrangements that incorporate a large spectrum of Cuban spiritual-based music, including, Yoruba (Nigeria), Arará (Dahomey), Abakuá (Calabar) and Cuban rumba/guaguanco. This event is free and part of the BU Residency and 40th Anniversary tour of Michele’s Rosewoman’s New Yor-Uba. Register here.
Location: College of Fine Arts Concert Hall (855 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215)

Monday, October 30 | 5:00 PM
CAS Major Fair
This annual event brings together all CAS Academic Departments and other BU colleges and departments in the same space!
Students can better understand their options for declaring a major, changing their major, or adding a major or minor by speaking with faculty, staff and student representatives from all academic disciplines.
This event is open to students of all years in all schools & colleges. One lucky attendee will win a $50 Target gift card! Register here.
Location:Yawkey Center for Student Services, 6th Floor (100 Bay State Road Rm 613 Boston, MA 02215)

Wednesday, November 1 | 6:00-7:30 PM
A Reading & Conversation with Mohamed Mbougar Sarr
Attend a reading and conversation with Mohamed Mbougar Sarr. Mohamed Mbougar Sarr was born in Dakar in 1990. He studied literature and philosophy at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. Brotherhood, his first novel, won the Grand Prix du Roman Métis, the Prix Ahmadou Kourouma, and the French Voices Grand Prize. The president of Senegal named him a Chevalier of the National Order of Merit. The Most Secret Memory of Men won the 2021 Goncourt Prize. Register here.
Location: Rajen Kilachand Center for Integrated Life Sciences and Engineering, 610 Commonwealth Avenue

Thursday, November 2 | 9:30-11:00 AM
“White Saviorism in International Development”
White Saviorism in International Development: Theories, Practices and Lived Experiences, co-edited by Themrise Khan, dives into the complexities of racism and White Saviorism in North/South relations. With contributions from 19 experts across the Global South, this book examines its prevalence within Western initiatives for international development. Through a blend of theoretical topics, testimonies, stories and personal experiences these contributors shed light on implicit as well as explicit forms of White Saviorism – all with sensitivity to broaden an understanding through multi-dimensional approaches that truly transcend borders. Register to Attend
Location: Pardee Center Conference Room, 67 Bay State Road, Boston, MA 02215 & Zoom

Thursday, November 2 | 4:30-6 PM
History on Screen: Exploring Roots & African Queens: Njinga
Join us for a conversation with Dr. John Thornton, Professor of African American & Black Diaspora Studies and History, on historical advising in film & television. Dr. Thornton will share his experience providing historical advising in Hollywood. Register here.
Location: AFAMBDS Building, 138 Mountfort St, Brookline, MA 02446

Wednesdays, October 11-November 8 | 2:30-4:30 PM
Race, Prison, Justice Arts: Creating Our Stories
Boston University’s Race, Prison, Justice Arts project seeks to bring students together with incarcerated individuals at Suffolk County Jail to share in artistic exchange. We believe in the power of the arts to build community and understanding, express and affirm identity, and to cultivate joy and meaningful connection. In this series of visits, we shall share in music, theatre, spoken word, movement, visual art, or other creative play.
For more information, contact: André de Quadros (School of Music)

Tuesday, November 7 | 5:30-6:30 PM
Cuba Study Abroad Info Session
Curious about studying abroad? Join us on Tuesday, November 7th at 5:30-6:30 PM at the Howard Thurman Center (FLR 104) for an information session. Those who attend the information session will receive priority in the application process. Register here.
Location: Howard Thurman Center, 808 Commonwealth Ave, FLR 104, Boston, MA 02446

Thursday, November 9
The American Studies for the Future Lecture Series
Seminar with Charlotte Howell & Victoria Johnson | 2:00 PM
A seminar with Charlotte Howell (BU, Film & TV), who will discuss a pre-circulated chapter entitled “U.S. National Teams: Negotiating Niche and Mass Appeal with Global Soccer Media Events.” Victoria E. Johnson (UC-Irvine) will respond. This event will be held on Zoom and in-person. To receive the pre-circulated paper, please register via Zoom (even if you plan to come in person).
Public Lecture with Victoria Johnson | 5:00 PM
A public talk with Victoria E. Johnson, “ ‘If You Build It…’: The Sports Experience Economy and ‘Flyover’ Dreams.” This event will be held only on Zoom; please register here to receive a link.
Location: 226 Bay State Road, Room 110, Boston, MA 02215 & Zoom

Friday, November 10 | 4:30 PM
Black Classicism: Moving Forward
“W.E.B. Du Bois and the Citationality of Ancient Greece and Rome”
Lecture series featuring Prof. Sonia Sabnis (Dept. of Greek, Latin, and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, Reed College) on Black Classicism.
Du Bois’ interest in and use of sources from ancient Greece and Rome has been a hot topic in recent years, evidenced by a special volume of the International Journal of the Classical Tradition (2019) and a conference at Penn State (2021). In the concluding essay of the former, Patrice Rankine noted “the need to postpone the word citation, given the difficulty of locating Du Bois’s exact sources of influence” and the accompanying turn to Gates’s theory of “Signifyin(g).” This lecture will use archival resources to survey Du Bois’ citations of ancient Greece and Rome. While citations of Greek and Roman sources are minimal features within Du Bois’ enormous oeuvre, they are prominent in his understanding of history and humanism in education. Register here.
Location: 725 Commonwealth Avenue, Room 224, Boston, MA 02215