Books and Literature

  • [AAS Podcast] Episode #17: Legacy and Racialized Politics

    Friday, Sep 6, 2019
    by Department of African American Studies
    We sit down with Eddie Glaude Jr. and Julian E. Zelizer, Author, and Professor at Princeton University, to discuss the challenges of balancing and teaching within the academic and public media arena. They then explore the historical cycle of racialized politics displayed by President Donald Trump and its impact within America as we approach the 2020 Elections
  • White Supremacy and Artificial Intelligence

    Tuesday, Sep 3, 2019
    In her new book Race After Technology: Abolitionist Tools for the New Jim Code, Ruha Benjamin breaks down the “New Jim Code,” technology design that promises a utopian future but serves racial hierarchies and racial bias. When people change how they speak or act in order to conform to dominant norms, we call it “code-switching.” And, like other types of codes, the practice of code-switching is power-laden. Justine Cassell, a professor at Carnegie Mellon’s Human-Computer Interaction Institute, creates educational programs for children and found that avatars using African American Vernacular English lead Black children “to achieve better results in teaching scientific concepts than when the computer spoke in standard English.” But when it came to tutoring the children for class presentations, she explained that, “We wanted it [the avatar] to practice with them in ‘proper English.’ Standard American English is still the code of power, so we needed to develop an agent that would train them in code-switching.” This reminds us that whoever defines the standard expression exercises power over everyone else, who is forced to fit in or else risks getting pushed out. But what is the alternative?
  • Princeton Ethiopian Miracles of Mary Project Receives CDH Research Partnership Grant

    Tuesday, Jun 25, 2019

    Stories have been told for almost two millennia about the Virgin Mary and the miracles she has performed for the faithful who call upon her name. One of the most important collections of such folktales is the body of almost 700 Ethiopian Marian miracles, written from the 1300s through the 1900s, in the ancient African language of Gəˁəz (also known as classical Ethiopic).

  • JEZEBEL UNHINGED, Reviewed by Ahmad Greene-Hayes

    Tuesday, Jun 25, 2019
    In Jezebel Unhinged: Loosing the Black Female Body in Religion and Culture, black feminist scholar of religion Tamura Lomax contends with and deconstructs deeply racialized, gendered, and sexualized cultural pathologies about Black women and girls. Lomax builds on the work of Black feminists and womanists, including but not limited to bell hooks, Hortense Spillers, Kelly Brown Douglass, and Emilie Townes, though Lomax does so with expressed attention to the sexual politics inside of “the Black church” among Black churchgoing people (4-5).
  • AAS Faculty Book Suggestions: Reena Goldthree

    Wednesday, May 22, 2019
    What is Professor Goldthree reading? We sat down with Reena Goldthree, Professor of Caribbean History at Princeton University, and talked about some of the most exciting books on her shelf right now. Here is what she had to say...
  • ‘Reading’ Toni Morrison: Students explore Princeton’s literary icon from archive to page

    Monday, May 13, 2019
    Morrison came to Princeton in 1989 to teach literature and creative writing. During her 17 years of teaching, she played a key role in expanding the University’s commitments to the creative and performing arts and to African American studies. In 1994, she founded the Princeton Atelier, which brings together undergraduate students in interdisciplinary collaborations with acclaimed artists. In 2016, Princeton University Library announced that the the major portion of the Toni Morrison Papers, which had been part of the permanent library collections since 2014, were open for research to students, faculty and scholars worldwide. (One item from the Morrison Papers, a handwritten manuscript draft of “Beloved,” is on view through June 23 in the exhibition “Welcome Additions: Selected Acquisitions 2012-18” in Firestone Library’s Milberg Gallery.) In 2017, the University dedicated the naming of Morrison Hall, formerly West College, in her honor.
  • Imani Perry awarded the 2019 PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography

    Friday, Mar 1, 2019
    The PEN/Jacqueline Bograd Weld Award for Biography is awarded for excellence in the art of biography. This prize of $5,000 goes to the author of a distinguished work published in the United States during the previous calendar year. The winning title is considered by the judges to be a work of exceptional literary, narrative, and artistic merit, based on scrupulous research.
  • Succeeding While Black

    Wednesday, Mar 13, 2019
    by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
    Michelle Obama’s new book reduces racial inequality to a matter of psychological impairment that can be overcome through grit and grin. This is a dangerous proposition.
Subscribe to Books and Literature