Hollis Robbins, co-editor of the new Portable Nineteenth-Century African American Women Writers, will discuss this highly- praised anthology. She will be joined in conversation with Professors Tera W. Hunter (Princeton) and Andreá N. Williams (Ohio State), her colleagues and Fellows at the National Humanities Center.
“An extraordinary historical record.” —The New York Times Book Review
The Portable Nineteenth-Century African American Women Writers is the most comprehensive anthology of its kind: an extraordinary range of voices offering the expressions of African American women in print before, during, and after the Civil War. Edited by Hollis Robbins and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., this collection comprises work from 49 writers arranged into sections of memoir, poetry, and essays on feminism, education, and the legacy of African American women writers. Many of these pieces engage with social movements like abolition, women’s suffrage, temperance, and civil rights, but the thematic center is the intellect and personal ambition of African American women and includes well-known writers like Sojourner Truth, Hannah Crafts, and Harriet Jacobs, as well as lesser-known writers like Ella Sheppard, who offers a firsthand account of life in the world-famous Fisk Jubilee Singers. Taken together, these incredible works insist that the writing of African American women writers be read, remembered, and addressed.
Hollis Robbins is Chair of the Humanities Department at Peabody Institute and Director of the Center for Africana Studies at Johns Hopkins University. She was recently named 2017-2018 Delta Delta Delta Fellow at the National Humanities Center in Research Triangle Park.
Tera W. Hunter is a Professor in the History Department and the Center for African-American Studies at Princeton University who specializes in African-American history and gender in the 19th and 20th centuries. https://history.princeton.edu/people/tera-hunter
Andreá N. Williams is an Associate Professor of English at Ohio State University who specializes in African American literature and nineteenth-century U.S. literature and is currently working on a project on single black women. https://english.osu.edu/people/williams.2941