Spring 2020 Speaker Series

  • richard bell
    Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and their Astonishing Odyssey Home

    January 27,  2020
    4:00 p.m.
    Cabell Library, room 250

    The speaker for this event...

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  • leisy abrego
    Communists, Criminals and Caravans: The Social Construction of Central Americans

    February 12, 2020
    4:00 p.m.
    Cabell Library lecture hall

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  • ana gonzalez-barrera
    [Cancelled] Mexican Migration to the U.S.: Current Trends and Global Context

    This event has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis. 


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  • christopher schaberg
    [Cancelled] Public Humanities and Media Ecology in the Anthropocene

    This event has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis. 


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  • robert nixon
    [Cancelled] Environmental Martyrdom and the Fate of the Forests

    This event has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis. 


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Fall 2019 Speaker Series

  • Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor
    Virginia’s Past, Present, and Future: Elizabeth Pryor

    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    "The N-word: History, Race and the College Classroom"

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  • Christina Sharpe
    Virginia’s Past, Present and Future: Christina Sharpe

    Tuesday, September 24, 2019

    "Wake. Seed. Soil."

    Christina Sharpe, Ph.D. Read More

  • Clifford Edwards
    Powell-Edwards Lecture in Religion and the Arts

    Wednesday, October 16, 2019

    "Van Gogh's Second Gift"

    Clifford Edwards,...

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  • Alok Vaid-Menon
    Virginia's Past, Present and Future: Alok Vaid-Menon

    Monday, November 4, 2019

    "Femme in Public"

    Alok Vaid-Menon

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Spring 2019 Speaker Series

  • Michael Guasco
    Virginia’s Past, Present, and Future: Michael Guasco

    Thursday, January 31, 2019

    "1619: Rethinking the History of Africans and Slavery in Early...

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  • Rebecca Goetz
    Virginia’s Past, Present, and Future: Rebecca Goetz

    Thursday, February 21, 2019

    "Race and Christianity in Early Virginia"

    Rebecca Goetz

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  • Philip Francis
    Powell-Edwards Lecture in Religion and the Arts: Philip Francis

    Thursday, March 14, 2019

    "When Art Disrupts Religion"

    Philip Francis
    Assistant Professor of...

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  • Alan Taylor
     Virginia’s Past, Present, and Future: Alan Taylor

    Thursday, March 28, 2019

    "The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832"
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  • Leslie Harris
     Virginia’s Past, Present, and Future: Leslie Harris

    Tuesday, April 9, 2019

    "Slavery and the University: Histories and Legacies"

    Leslie Harris Read More

  • Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor
    Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor

    Coming Fall 2019:

    Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor,
    Associate Professor of History, Smith College


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  • Alok Vaid-Menon
    Alok Vaid-Menon

    Coming Fall 2019

    Gender non-conforming performance artist, writer, and educator.

    Alok Vaid-Menon’s eclectic...

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Fall 2018 Speaker Series

  • Erica Dunbar
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Erica Armstrong Dunbar

    Wednesday, September 5, 2018

    Declaring Freedom from a Founding Father: The Life of Ona...

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  • Bob Woodward
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Bob Woodward

    Tuesday, September 25, 2018

    Truth, Freedom of Expression, Democracy and the Age of the...

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  • Clare Sears
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Clare Sears

    Wednesday, October 10, 2018

    Arresting Dress: Cross-Dressing, Law and Fascination in Nineteenth-Century San Francisco Read More

  • Emily Skidmore
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Emily Skidmore

    Monday, October 29, 2018

    True Sex: The Lives of Trans Men at the...

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  • Fariba Enteshari
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Fariba Enteshari

    Wednesday, November 7, 2018

    Rumi's Poetry and His Vision of Love Among Faith Traditions Read More

  • Julio Capo Jr.
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Julio Capó Jr.

    Wednesday, November 14, 2018

    Making Fairyland in Twentieth-Century Miami: Gender, Sexual and Racial Transgressions Read More

  • Aren Aizura
    Fall 2018 Speaker Series: Aren Aizura

    Wednesday, November 28, 2018

    Transgender Vlogs on Thailand: Transnational Imaginaries of Gender Reassignment Surgery
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Spring 2018 Speaker Series

  • Frankenstein dissected
    Spring 2018 Speaker Series: Frankenstein Dissected

    Thursday February 8, 2018

    Frankenstein Dissected:  21st Century Legacies of a Nineteenth-Century Classic


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  • Liz Covart
    Spring 2018 Speaker Series: Liz Covart

    Wednesday February 21, 2018

    The Ben Franklin's World Project: Podcasting and the Future of Digital History
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  • Su'ad Abdul Khabeer
    2018 Spring Speaker Series: Su'ad Abdul Khabeer

    Tuesday March 27, 2018

    Muslim Cool: Race, Religion, and Hip-Hop in the United States Read More

  • Stefano Adamo
    2018 Spring Speaker Series: Stefano Adamo

    Thursday April 12, 2018

    The Humanities Respond!  Literary and Cinematic Depictions of the 2007...

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Fall 2017 Speaker Series

    Fall 2017 Speaker Series: Junot Diaz

    Tuesday September 12, 2017

    A Public Reading by Junot Díaz, Winner of the Pulitzer Prize...

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    Fall 2017 Speaker Series: Diane Apostolos-Cappadona

    Monday September 25, 2017

    Fruit of Pleasure, Source of Sustenance, Object of Shame: The...

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  • Balfour Declaration Centennial
    The Balfour Declaration Centennial: How a 1917 Proclamation Shaped Israel and Palestine

    Friday November 3, 2017

    Guest Speakers: Noura Erakat, J.D. (Assistant Professor of Legal Studies...

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  • Gender Revolution
    Screening of GENDER REVOLUTION and panel discussion featuring Gavin Grimm

    Wednesday, September 6, 2017

    In partnership with the Southern Film Festival:

    A Screening...

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  • Dean Spade
    Trans politics and Criminal Punishment Reform

    Thursday October 26, 2017, 7pm

    In partnership with the Department...

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  • Cary Costelle
    The Fight for Intersex Human Rights in the 21st Century

    3:00 PM, October 13, 2017
    MCALC 1105

    Cary Costello, Associate Professor of Sociology and...

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Spring 2017 Speaker Series

What the ‘Literary Greats’ Have to Say to Us Today

Over the last few decades there has been much discussion of how literary canons evolve over time and which authors rightfully belong to that canon. Many works by women, LGBTQ authors, African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, and non-Europeans have now made their way into college literature courses, though whether these authors should become a permanent part of the college curriculum, or whether there really ought to be a literary canon at all, are matters of heated debate. But meanwhile, what do the mostly white and male ‘literary greats’ who used to be firmly embedded within the high school and college literary curriculum have to say to us today? Are they still relevant to our increasingly diverse twenty-first-century global society? Next spring four highly respected scholars address these questions in a series of provocative talks about the place that the ‘literary greats’ can still occupy in our lives today. This series is co-sponsored by the Department of English.

Admission is free and all are welcome!

  • Ayanna Thompson
    Spring 2017 Speaker Series: Ayanna Thompson

    Wednesday February 1, 2017

    Is Shakespeare Beyond Race?

    Ayanna Thompson, Professor of English,...

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  • Emma Smith
    Spring 2017 Speaker Series: Emma Smith

    Wednesday March 15, 2017

    What’s it worth? Shakespeare’s Value Then and Now

    Emma Smith,...

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  • Joseph Valente
    Spring 2017 Speaker Series: Joseph Valente

    March 22, 2017

    From Whiteboys to White Nationalism: A Joycean Prophecy of the Trump...

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  • Devoney Looser
    Spring 2017 Speaker Series: Devoney Looser

    Wednesday April 5, 2017

    Jane Austen Then and Now: Reinventing a Literary Legend


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Fall 2016

We have two speaker series this fall in addition to our Meet VCU’s Authors series.

Native American Knowledge and the Environment

As we ponder the implications of climate change and environmental damage inflicted by human behavior, alternative sources of energy such as wind and water are attracting increasing attention. But less attention is being paid to alternative knowledges, or different ways of conceptualizing our relationship with our environment. This speaker series features three leading scholars of Native American Knowledge as it relates to the environment. These three scholar activists explore Indigenous knowledge systems and their applications in diverse contexts including water and environmental governance, environmental justice, forest policy and management, and sustainable development. They offer different ways of engaging with our world and exciting possibilities for our collective future.

    HRC Speaker Series: Dr. Daniel Wildcat

    September 8, 2016

    “Exercising Indigenuity: The Role of Indigenous Knowledges in Healing the Planet” Read More

    HRC Speaker Series: Dr. Deborah McGregor

    October 6, 2016

    “Applying Indigenous Legal Traditions to Conceptualizing Water Justice”

    Dr. Deborah...

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    HRC Speaker Series: Dr. Clint Carroll

    November 3, 2016

    “Landscapes of Renewal: Cherokee  Adaptation and Environmental Governance”

    Dr. Clint...

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This series is co-sponsored by the Science, Technology, and Society Program at Virginia Commonwealth University. Admission is free and all are welcome!

Celebrating Forty Years of LGBTQ Activism at VCU

Forty years ago VCU’s first LGBTQ student group, the Gay Alliance of Students, secured official recognition as a student organization following a two year legal struggle. This year we celebrate that victory, which coincided with the bicentennial of the Declaration of Independence, as an important milestone on the path toward inclusion and acceptance for LGBTQ students, staff, and faculty at VCU. This Humanities Research Center speaker series examines the 1974-76 struggle at VCU, puts that local history into a broader national context with a talk by acclaimed historian Professor Marc Stein, and concludes with a keynote address by tennis superstar and advocate for women and LGBTQ people, Billie Jean King. Admission is free and all are welcome!

    Trials and Triumphs, 1974-76: The Struggle for Recognition of VCU’s first Gay Student Group

    Tuesday October 4 at noon
    Cabell Library Lecture Hall, 901 Park Avenue

    Trials and...

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    Students, Sodomy, and the State: LGBT Campus Struggles in the 1970s

    Thursday October 13 at 4pm
    Richmond Salons I & 2, University Student Commons, 907 Floyd...

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  • Billie Jean King
    A Conversation with Billie Jean King

    Thursday October 27 at 6pm
    Siegel Center

    If through her words and deeds...

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This series is co-sponsored by the Office of the President, the Division for Inclusive Excellence, the Office of the Vice President for Health Sciences, the Division of Student Affairs, VCU Athletics, the VCU Libraries, VCU Alumni Rainbow Rams, the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, Equity and Access Services, and Equality VCU, to whom many thanks!

All of these events are free and open to the public.