Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Congo in African-American Literature and Visual Arts, Talk September 13

Chestertown, MD, August 16, 2005 — Washington College's Sophie Kerr Committee presents "Black Atlantic Routes: The Congo in African American Literature and Visual Arts," a lecture by Dr. Ira Dworkin, University of Miami, Tuesday, September 13, at 4:30 p.m. in the Casey Academic Center Forum. The talk is free and open to the public.

A Post Doctoral Associate in African-American Studies and American Studies, Dworkin earned his doctoral degree from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, where his dissertation, American Hearts: African American Writings on the Congo, 1890-1915, received the Melvin Dixon Prize for the Best Dissertation in African American Studies at CUNY. His work argues that African-American writings about the Congo disclose how American culture has been transformed and reformed by racial ideology and transnational politics and has appeared in American Literature, CLA Journal, The Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance, A Companion to 20th Century American Poetry and XXL, a hip hop magazine.

The talk is sponsored by the Sophie Kerr Committee, which works to carry on the legacy of the late Sophie Kerr, a writer from Denton, Md., whose generosity has done so much to enrich Washington College's literary culture. When she died in 1965, Kerr left the bulk of her estate to the College, specifying that one half of the income from her bequest be awarded every year to the senior showing the most "ability and promise for future fulfillment in the field of literary endeavor" and the other half be used to bring visiting writers to campus, to fund scholarships, and to help defray the costs of student publications.

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