Lecture spotlight: ‘America’s Racial Pandemic’; ‘Deadly Metaphors’; ‘Dictator Novel’; ‘Friends of Japan’

“The Legal and Social Ramifications of America’s Racial Pandemic,” with William Generett Jr., vice president for Community Engagement, Duquesne University
12:30-1:30 p.m. Sept. 29, online

The Pitt School of Social Work presents the annual Rubash Distinguished Lecture Series. Prior to joining Duquesne, Generett served as the inaugural president and chief executive officer of Urban Innovation21, a public-private partnership that was recognized for its work to connect Pittsburgh’s underserved communities and their residents to the Pittsburgh region’s growing innovation economy. Generett has worked in various capacities as a nonprofit executive, entrepreneur and attorney. In 2014, Generett was appointed by President Barack Obama to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Register here.


“Overthrowing Deadly Metaphors,” featuring Yale scholar Emily Greenwood. Part of the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics’ “Collective Protest and Rebellion: A Black Study Intensive” Series
1 p.m. Sept. 28, online.

Emily Greenwood’s opening talk for the Black Study Intensive, shows us how, without our knowing, the language we take up can have a trail of repression. But, there’s hope. “Overthrowing Deadly Metaphors” takes a single Greek phrase that has a long and difficult entanglement in American racial slavery and that is still very much of our moment, and shows how various black authors give us the tools to dismantle and subvert this phrase. This event is co-presented with the Humanities Center and will be moderated by Dan Kubis, senior lecturer in the Department of English. Register here.


“The Dictator Novel: Writers and Politics in the Global South,” by Magali Armillas-Tiseyra, associate professor of Comparative Literature at Penn State 
12:30 p.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 1, online

Where there are dictators, there are novels about dictators. But “dictator novels” do not simply respond to the reality of dictatorship. While these works may take a particular historical referent as starting point, Armillas-Tiseyra argues that they are as much about the existing conventions for thinking and speaking about dictatorship as they are about dictatorship itself. Presented by the Humanities Center. Register through the University Calendar.


“Friends of Japan: African-American Women’s Visions of Afro-Asian Solidarity,” by Keisha N. Blain, associate professor of History
12:30-2 p.m. Oct. 8, online

This presentation examines how African-American women engaged Japan during the early 20th century. It foregrounds the ideas of a cohort of women who envisioned political collaborations with Japanese people as a strategy to combat racism and global white supremacy. Presented by the Humanities Center. Register through the University Calendar.