Centering Race in the Humanities: Legacies, Interruptions, Futures

Sponsored by the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA) and the Cogut Institute for the Humanities

This roundtable event is designed to confront and respond to the ways in which humanities research and the institutional sites of the humanities (departments, centers, professional organizations, foundations), have historically failed to center race. For most of its history, humanities research in the modern west reinforced larger racial hierarchies and ideologies. As scholars, students, and activists began interrupting this pattern, spaces opened for the centering of race and racial critique, but such interruptions were sometimes short-lived or marginalized. In this roundtable, a group of scholars will discuss the power of entrenched legacies, the impact and outcomes of meaningful interventions, and in what ways new futures might be prepared for or promoted.

Free and open to the public. Please register to attend.

Featuring panelists:

  • Stephen Best, Professor of English, the University of California, Berkeley
  • Farah Jasmine Griffin, Chair, Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies, William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature, and African-American Studies and Professor of African American and African Diaspora Studies, Columbia University
  • Kathryn Lofton, Lex Hixon Professor of Religious Studies and American Studies, Professor of History and Divinity, Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Dean of Humanities, Yale University
  • Dylan Rodríguez, Professor of Media and Cultural Studies, the University of California, Riverside


  • Matthew Guterl, Professor of Africana Studies and American Studies, Chair of American Studies, Brown University
  • Kevin Quashie, Professor of English, Brown University

Hosted and moderated by:

  • Amanda Anderson, Director of the Cogut Institute for the Humanities and Andrew W. Mellon Professor of English and Humanities, Brown University
  • Tricia Rose, Chancellor’s Professor of Africana Studies, Director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA), and Associate Dean of the Faculty for Special Initiatives, Brown University 

Read the full biographies for event participants.