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African American Studies Program

  • Speaker in a mid-sized auditorium

    Join the Celebration

    Fifty Years of Consciousness and Community

50th Anniversary Events

Our 50th anniversary event series will highlight the cultural and historical importance of the African American experience throughout the 2021-2022 academic year.

Spring 2022

To make sure we are following health and safety protocols, we are requiring registration for all events this year. Registration links will be added as event details are confirmed. Events with asterisks (*) are being hosted by another unit at UofSC (or are not directly related to the 50th). 
 

January 

Zoom

Free. Open to the Public 

Register via Eventbrite  

This event will feature reflections on the creation of Invisible No More: The African American Experience at the University of South Carolina and two roundtable discussions with contributors to the volume. 

Cosponsored by the African American Studies Program, the University of South Carolina Press, and the University of South Carolina Black Alumni Council. 

The African American Studies Program at the University of South Carolina is pleased to host visiting scholar and poet Fred Moten in the Spring semester. Dr. Moten's events are now postponed for March 2022.

Zoom 

Free. Open to the Public. 

Register via Eventbrite 

February

Columbia Museum of Art  

Free. Open to the Public. 

Hosted by the McKissick Museum. 

Register here.

The cultural climate in museums is currently facing a reckoning brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as racial unrest and protest. One of the voices calling for museums to address matters and movements pertinent to the moment is Stephanie Johnson-Cunningham. She will present the vision for Museum Hue, the sector at large, as well as outline ways museums can help shape, define and preserve today for the future. In this discussion, she will shed light on museum practices that boldly respond to the needs of their community and current issues through their narratives, programs, exhibitions and services. Stephanie Johnson-Cunningham has worked as a United Nations Human Rights Fellow, and in 2019, she received the American for the Arts, American Express Emerging Leader Award. 

Location TBA 

Cosponsored with the Humanities Collaborative 

Zoom 

Free. Open to the Public. 

Register via Eventbrite. 

March

Zoom 

Free. Open to the Public. 

Zoom

Free and Open to the Public.

Register via Richland Library

Join us as we honor A Year of Black History with a candid conversation with the American philosopher, political activist, Grammy-award winner, artist, actor, author and intellectual. Moderated by Dr. Todd Shaw, UofSC African-American Studies Program.

This program is in partnership with the South Carolina Humanities Council. UofSC African-American Studies Program, UofSC Institute for African-American Research, and the Richland Library African-American History and Cultural Events Committee (AAHCE).

Zoom 

Free. Open to the Pubic. 

Register via Eventbrite

Capstone Campus Room

Free. Open to the Public. 

Registration Details to Follow 

April

Zoom 

Free. Open to the Public. 

Register via Eventbrite 

Booker T. Washington Auditorium 

Free. Open to the Public. 

Registration Details to Follow 

Location TBA 

Additional Details to Follow 

 
 
 
 
 

Fall 2021 

Gambrell Rooftop Patio (3rd Floor)  
Registration (Faculty, Students, Staff Only)  

Presented by the School of Music in collaboration with the Auntie Karen Foundation 
Reserve Tickets via the Koger Center  

Thursday, September 9 at 7:30pm
UofSC School of Music Alumni & Colour of Music Festival Octet  
USC School of Music Recital Hall  

Friday, September 10 at 8:00pm  
Auntie Karen Foundation All-Star Band/Vanessa Williams  
Koger Center  
  
Saturday, September 11 at 7:30pm  
20th Anniversary September 11th Memorial Concert   
Koger Center  

50th Anniversary Launch
Zoom
Register to Attend

"Creating Crescent: On Black Studies, Black Girls, and Personal, Passionate, Participatory Inquiry"
Zoom
Free and open to the public  
Visit Eventbrite for more information and to register to attend.

Gambrell 153
Panelists: Dr. Bobby Donaldson (Professor of History, UofSC); Jazmyne McCrae (Project Coordinator, Collaborative on Race, UofSC); John Monk (Journalist, The State newspaper); Former State Senator Maggie Wallace Glover
Moderator: Lyric Swinton (UofSC alumna) 
Free and open to the public
Register to Attend via Eventbrite
The documentary Downing of a Flag  "tells the story of the Confederate Battle Flag and its inglorious relationship with the state of South Carolina and how this relationship has reflected and impacted its image in American society for nearly six decades." It is a film by SCETV, South Carolina Public Radio, Strategic Films, and Susie Films.

“In Search of My Grandparents’ Gardens: Musings on How Family and Community Informs Curatorial Practice” 
Williams Courtroom, University of South Carolina School of Law
Free and open to the public
Visit Eventbrite for more information and to register to attend.

Cosponsored with Richland Library and African-American History and Cultural Events Committee (AAHCE)
Free and Open to the Public
Registration for October 9 event

South Carolina ETV Lobby
(Faculty, Staff, and Alumni Only)
Join us in the Telecommunications Lobby of South Carolina ETV for a homecoming tailgate. Refreshments will be provided. This is a 21+ event. Please note: Parking for tailgate guests will not be available at ETV.
Register to Attend

Russell House Patio and Stage
Join the African American Studies Program for an evening celebrating student artists and creators. Students are encouraged to share their artwork, music, poetry, dance, and more.
Register to participate

Theme: Researching Performance – The Black Dancing Body as A Measure of Culture 
All Events are Virtual
Dr. Brenda Dixon Gottschild is a Professor Emerita of Dance Studies at Temple University. She is the author of Digging the Africanist Presence in American Performance: Dance and Other ContextsWaltzing in the Dark: African American Vaudeville and Race Politics in the Swing Era (Winner of the 2001 Congress on Research in Dance Award for Outstanding Scholarly Dance Publication); The Black Dancing Body: A Geography from Coon to Cool (Winner, 2004 de la Torre Bueno Prize for Scholarly Excellence in Dance Publication); and Joan Myers Brown and The Audacious Hope of the Black Ballerina - A Biohistory of American Performance.
  
Wednesday, October 27 at 6:30pm  
“Dance as Social Practice – Protest, Purpose, Performance” Lecture
Free and Open to the Public
Register to Attend
  
Thursday, October 28 at 6:30pm  
The Black Dancing Body: Open Student Forum  
(Faculty and Students Only)
Register to Attend
  
Friday, October 29 at Noon  
“Dancing Minds, Thinking Bodies: Dancer-Scholar-Choreographer-Educators Talk About Past and Present Futures”: Roundtable
Panelists: Dr. Brenda Dixon Gottschild (Professor Emerita of Dance Studies, Temple University); Dr. Halifu Osumare (Professor Emerita African American & African Studies, University of California, Davis); Dr. S. Ama Wray (Professor of Dance at the University of California, Irvine); Professor Tanya Wideman-Davis (Associate Professor of Dance and African American Studies, University of South Carolina); and Professor Thaddeus Davis (Associate Professor of Dance and African American Studies, University of South Carolina)
Free and Open to the Public
Register to Attend  

Created by two of the country’s most esteemed artists, composer Michael Abels and poet Nikky Finney, and brought to life by the most legendary ensemble in contemporary classical music, the Kronos Quartet, “At War With Ourselves - 400 Years of You” is a major, evening-length work about the African American experience in the New World.

For a full list of events, visit the Kronos Quartet and Michael Abels Residency main page.

Wednesday, November 3 at 7:30-9:00pm
A Night to Celebrate and Thank Poetry
featuring Nikky Finney and UofSC Students
The Big Apple, 1000 Hampton St.
Attendees are invited to share a poem.

Thursday, November 4 at 7:00-9:00pm (Seating at 6:30 p.m.)
Screening of the film Us
Film Screening, Nickelodeon Theatre, 1607 Main St.

Thursday, November 4 at 9:05-9:45pm
Post-Screening Discussion with Composer Michael Abels
Nickelodeon Theatre
Talk and Q&A about Abels' music for the films Get Out and Us, hosted by Dr. Birgitta Johnson, UofSC Professor of Ethnomusicology and African American Studies

Purchase tickets at the Nickelodeon. You must see the film in order to attend the post-screening discussion.

Sunday, November 7 at 2:00-2:30pm
Pre-Concert Conversation with Nikky Finney and Michael Abels
Koger Center for the Arts
Led by Michael Harley, Artistic Director of Southern Exposure New Music Series.

Sunday, November 7, 2021 at 3:00pm 
At War With Ourselves Featuring Kronos Quartet
Koger Center

Purchase Tickets

Theme: “Black Creativity as Black Thought”   
  
Wednesday, November 10, at 8:00pm  
“Queer Performance and Black Expression” Lecture  
The Big Apple, 1000 Hampton St.
Free and Open to the Public  
Register via Eventbrite
  
Thursday, November 11, at 4:25pm  
“Sankofa: Afropessimism, Afrofuturism, and Black Thought”    
Williams Brice Nursing Building 125  
(Students and Faculty Only)   


  
Friday, November 12, at 7:00pm  
“Where We Danced: Sites of Black Materialization”  
Public Performance by Thomas F. DeFrantz,  Professor Tanya Wideman-Davis and Professor Thaddeus Davis  
Talk by DeFrantz to follow performance. 
Gambrell 153
Free and Open to the Public 
Register via Eventbrite 
 

“Dance Theatre of Harlem: Radical Black Female Bodies in Ballet” 
Zoom
Free and Open to the Public
Register via Eventbrite 

Explore the history, culture, and climate of Pearl Fryar’s legendary garden on a day trip with topiary artist Mike Gibson and the African American Studies program at UofSC. The trip includes:

• Shuttle transport to and from Bishopville

• Screening of the documentary, A Man Called Pearl

• Tour of Pearl Fryar’s Garden

• Hands-on Topiary Art Workshop

• Open to UofSC students, faculty, and staff. Transportation, lunch, and workshop will be provided free of cost. Participants must bring their own gloves and safety glasses.

About Pearl Fryar

Pearl Fryar is a self-taught topiary artist who created and nurtured his three-acre garden for nearly forty years. Fryar's evergreen garden is located at his home in Bishopville. In 1998, the SC General Assembly declared June 27 Pearl Fryar Day for his "humanitarian ideals and artistic influence."

About Mike Gibson

Mike “GibbySiz” Gibson is a self-taught property artist, topiarist, and entrepreneur, who has spent over 20 years beautifying residential and community spaces. He was recently featured on the Discovery+ TV series, “Clipped.” With the support of the Central Carolina Community Foundation and McKissick Museum, Gibson is working to restore and preserve Pearl Fryar's Topiary Garden.

This event is presented as part of the AFAM 50 Celebration and the Climates Theme Semester in the College of Arts & Sciences.

Register to Attend

Booker T. Washington Auditorium
This event will feature the film, Mossville: When Great Trees Fall, followed by a conversation with Michelle Lanier, Executive Producer.
Free and open to the public. 
Cosponsored with Institute for African American Research and McKissick Museum
Register via Eventbrite

 

 

 


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