Mark your calendars for a public conversation with performing artists Mick Jenkins and Jamila Woods. Jenkins and Woods are participants in the Princeton African American Studies Graduate Conference, ‘eighteen hundred and more – mourning the needy dead in the chaos of protest.’ The performers will be interviewed by Princeton graduate students, the conference’s organizers – Heath Pearson and Nyle Fort. Join us for a unique conversation about the role of the arts in our current political moment. This conversation is a public event made possible by the occasion of the graduate conference.
mick jenkins Born in Huntsville, Alabama and raised in the South Side of Chicago, MC/poet Mick Jenkins made an impact in the early 2010s’ Chicago hip-hop scene with his socially conscious, intelligent lyrics and tough yet unforced delivery over acid jazz-influenced backing tracks. In August 2016, his official full-length album, The Healing Component, debuted at #9 on the Billboard R&B/hip-hop chart. Recently, he has collaborated with artists such as Chance the Rapper, Joey Bada$$ and Vic Mensa.
jamila woods Tempering sharp and powerful lyrics with a sweetly melodic voice, Jamila Woods is an activist, poet, and R&B singer/songwriter. A native of Chicago, Woods started performing in church. After she graduated from Brown University, she returned home and formed the self-termed “adventure soul” duo Milo & Otis. Woods has recorded and performed alongside Chance the Rapper, singing vocals for the song “Sunday Candy”. Shortly after that Woods released HEAVN, her debut album.
nyle fort is a Ph.D. candidate in the departments of religion and African American studies. His research focuses on the relationship between African American mourning and Black politics. In addition to completing coursework, he is currently co-organizing (with Heath Pearson) Princeton University’s first annual African American studies graduate student conference, ‘eighteen hundred and more: mourning the needy dead in the chaos of protest.’ Nyle received a B.A. in English from Morehouse College and a Masters of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary.
heath pearson is a Ph.D. candidate in the Anthropology Dept. and the Dept. of African American Studies, an affiliate of the American Studies Program, and a fellow in The Center for the Study of Religion. Thanks to funding from The Wenner-Gren Foundation, he is currently undertaking long-term, ethnographic fieldwork in a county on the East Coast with many ghosts and many prisons, constructing a history of the land and looking at what happens over time to human flesh and identities, perceptions and memories, and examining the dynamics of local institutions, and the apparatuses of local governance around rural prison facilities. His most recent academic article, “The Prickly Skin of White Supremacy,” explores the co-constitution of race and place in Huntington, Indiana, and the many ways racialized violence lingers in the land, and on the skin, throughout multiple generations. His most recent collaborative project is with VICE Media: Weediquette, Season 2, Episode 7, ‘Search & Seizure.’ He also spends a great deal of time listening to music.
The conversation will be streamed live on Youtube.