Remembering Buchi Emecheta

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[By Shelia Bonner] Florence Onyebuchi “Buchi” Emecheta was born July 21, 1944 in Lagos, Nigeria, to Igbo parents, Jeremy and Alice Nwabudinke. Her childhood was spent in Ibusa, the birthplace of her parents. In the 1950s she met her future husband Sylvester Onwordi. Between 1960 through 1966, the young couple bore five kids, two boys and three girls. Emecheta and her husband raised their family in […]

GUEST BLOG: Remembering Derek Walcott

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[By Dr. Giselle L. Anatol] Around the year 2000, the University of Kansas hosted the African Studies Association International Conference, and I was delighted to be able to chat for a few moments with Derek Walcott, Nobel Laureate, MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Fellow, Guinness Poetry Award winner, Royal Society of Literature Awardee, Rockefeller Foundation Fellow, etc., etc. etc. Walcott was a keynote speaker at the conference […]

Remembering Robert “Bobby” Sengstacke

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Famed Chicago Defender photographer Robert “Bobby” Sengstacke passed away March 7, 2017. His photos of Black life and culture are widely revered, collected, and published. We celebrate his life and work: The History Makers: Robert Sengstacke Prominent Photojournalist and Former Chicago Defender Editor, Robert A. Sengstacke Dies At 73 National Association of Black Journalists (Chicago Chapter): Remembering Famed Photographer Robert “Bobby” A. Sengstacke Images of Black Chicago, The Robert Sengstacke Archive […]

Mari Evans: An Oral History

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Over two days in March 2013, the Project on the History of Black Writing conducted what would become the last formal interview Mari Evans gave. Alysha Griffin (former HBW Special Projects Coordinator) and Shayn Guillemette (former Graduate Assistant) visited Mari Evans at her residence in Indianapolis, IN. This interview was later transcribed by the Spencer Research Library at the University of Kansas. This unpublished interview served as […]

Remembering Derek Walcott

Posted on Posted in HBW, Shelia Bonner

[Shelia Bonner] Derek Walcott 23 January 1930-17 March 2017 Derek Walcott’s poetry explores the African diaspora and the many ways chattel slavery impacted his identity as a young man growing up on the British, colonized, island-nation of Castries, Saint Lucia. His “A Far Cry from Africa” is one of several poems that addresses the complexities of identity. As Dr. Dance so eloquently writes, Walcott’s poetry […]

Celebrating the Lives of Norman Jordan and Samuel Allen

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[by Matthew Broussard] [editor’s note: see bottom of post for press release of Norman Jordan’s Memorial Service] The world lost two great minds in the month of June: Norman Jordan and Samuel Allen (aka Paul Vesey). Norman Jordan (1938- 2015) Samuel Allen (1917-2015) Norman Jordan was born in Ansted, West Virginia in 1938, but moved to Cleveland, Ohio as a youth to attend school. Unable […]