Black History Month + Black Futures Month

Posted Posted in HBW

  We are proud to celebrate Black History Month in conjunction with Black Futures Month at HBW. Each day we will feature works from our archives that celebrate the glory that is #BlackExcellence and the Black freedom movement.     Today we start with Langston Hughes, born on this day in 1902 in Joplin, Missouri. A poet, novelist, playwright, and essayist Hughes spent part of […]

Podcast Alert: “Dr. King and Donald Trump’s America”

Posted Posted in HBW

As we celebrate #MLKDay2018 take a moment to listen to the latest from our good friend Kevin Powell. “Host Kevin Powell delivers a passionate and captivating solo take on the life and legacy of Dr. King, then and now. Free-flowing, historical, and of these times too, Kevin does a deep dive into the whole man, not just the fragments many of us have been taught […]


Posted Posted in Guest Blogger

[By: Jerry W. Ward Jr.] Alexander, Stephon.  The Jazz of Physics: The Secret Link between Music and the Structure of the Universe.  New York: Basic Books, 2016. In her 2007 poem “In Search of Grace,” Quo Vadis Gex Breaux makes an elegant plea for an enabling virtue.  Those lines which trigger my imagination are I pray for grace, as I dance on life’s tabletops, as I scale the […]

#FBF: “Bree Newsome Visits KU”

Posted Posted in Guest Blogger, HBW

[By: Anthony Boynton, III] As the tension of the 2015 Charleston church shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal thickened the air, Bree Newsome climbed into the sky to tear down hatred’s flag. Social media and mainstream media outlets were abuzz over the activist’s act of civil disobedience and subsequent arrest. Since then, Newsome has gained national attention and has been touring the country giving talks […]

Publishing Without Walls

Posted Posted in HBW

AFRO-PWW Projects The Jay Z Mixtape, created by Kenton Ramsby, is a Scalar open access book published through the African American Studies PWW series housed at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This innovative digital humanities publication offers a brief glimpse into the creative output of the Brooklyn rapper by organizing online content into a single composition. From Tableau Public visualizations to an assortment of […]


Posted Posted in Guest Blogger, HBW

[By: Jerry W. Ward, Jr.] Hype matters. In his foreword for Joan Didion’s South and West: From a Notebook (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2017), Nicholas Rich asserts that Didion’s prose has “cool majesty” as well as “an immaculacy as intimidating as Chelsea porcelain” (xi).  The assertion and the subject of the assertion invite scrutiny.  Truth be told, the sentence “Everyone in the place seemed to have […]