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Assistant Professor Nneka Dennie to Deliver DeLaney Center Dialogue Lecture Dennie will present her research on “Southern Black Feminisms at the Turn of the Century” March 20 in the Watson Galleries.

Nneka-Dennie02-scaled-600x400 Assistant Professor Nneka Dennie to Deliver DeLaney Center Dialogue LectureNneka Dennie, assistant professor of history

The Delaney Center at Washington and Lee University will present its third speaker in the 2023-24 DeLaney Dialogues series on March 20. Nneka Dennie, assistant professor of history, will deliver an address on “Southern Black Feminisms at the Turn of the Century” at noon in the Watson Galleries. The talk is free and open to the public, and lunch will be provided.

The Delaney Dialogues was created to engage audiences in conversation about regionally resonant themes, allowing for open discourse and learning opportunities. Exhibiting innovative strategies for teaching and researching Southern racial realities, these programs allow faculty and other interested participants to imagine how this protean region fits into broader professional and public possibilities.

Dennie’s research examines the writings and activism of Anna Julia Cooper (1858-1965) and Ida B. Wells (1862-1931), two of the foremost Black women public intellectuals at the turn of the 20th century. Her lecture will pay particular attention to their analyses of the relationship between race and gender in the late 19th century.

“Cooper and Wells highlight the creative ways Black women simultaneously navigated gender dynamics and Southern race relations in the late 19th and early 20th centuries,” said Dennie. “At a time when advocacy for civil rights tended to focus on Black men and advocacy for women’s rights tended to focus on white women, Black women analyzed their unique experiences and insisted on their involvement in both forms of activism.”

A member of the W&L faculty since 2020, Dennie is a core member of the Africana Studies Program and is an affiliate faculty member in the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program. She specializes in 19th- and 20th-century African American history, and her research examines Black intellectual history, Black feminist thought, transitional feminism and Black radicalism.

Dennie recently published the book “Mary Ann Shadd Cary: Essential Writings of a Nineteenth-Century Black Radical Feminist,” and she was a recipient of the Mellon Just Transformations Fellowship in the Center for Black Digital Research at Pennsylvania State University. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science with honors in Africana studies from Williams College. Dennie also earned a Master of Arts and Ph.D. in Afro-American studies from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where she also received a graduate certificate in Advanced Feminist Studies.

The DeLaney Center is an interdisciplinary academic forum that promotes teaching and research on race and Southern identity. Visit the DeLaney Center website for updates on further DeLaney Dialogues, film screenings and other programming.