Hortense Spillers TODAY!


from the Daily Bulletin:

Visiting scholar speaks on campus

by Arts Communications

Professor Hortense SpillersOne of the most influential scholars in African American studies and a pioneer in feminist criticism, Dr. Hortense Spillers, will be delivering two guest lectures on campus this week.

“The visit of Dr. Hortense Spillers will be a significant occasion of intellectual enrichment for faculty, students, and community members,” says Fraser Easton, chair of English Language and Literature. Spillers was a professor at Cornell University before joining Vanderbilt University where she is the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of English.

As a distinguished visiting scholar, Spillers will speak at the university on March 19 and 20. In the first lecture, “The Idea of Black Culture,” Spillers considers conceptualizations of black culture with reference to a number of theorists including Raymond Williams, W.E.B. Du Bois, and thinkers of the Frankfurt School. The second is titled “Women and the Republics: Intimate Life and Revolution During the 18th Century” and is focused in part on the relationship between Thomas Jefferson and his black housekeeper and slave Sally Hemings. Scheduled to be delivered later this year at Harvard University’s Du Bois Lectures, this second talk explores “what it might mean for the relationship between private and public at the beginning of some of the first republics of our modernity” observes English professor Win Siemerling, who arranged the visit. The talk will be followed by a reception.

Fraser Easton notes that this visiting scholar event is made possible by donations to English in support of the Department’s activities. Details of Professor Spillers’ two lectures are posted on Arts Events. Everyone is welcome.

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