DeLaney Center to Host Inaugural Race and Southern-ness Symposium The Dec. 1 symposium will address issues of Southern race relations, culture and politics.
The DeLaney Center at Washington and Lee University will host its inaugural Race and Southern-ness Symposium on Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. in Stackhouse Theater. The symposium will welcome a panel of experts to delve into issues of race and the South, concluding with a question-and-answer session with the audience. The event is free and open to the public.
Contemporary news cycles offer varied opinions about whether and how Southern race relations, culture and politics should be studied, and the Race and Southern-ness Symposium will explore how the South’s racial realities continue to condition American democracy. Specifically, the symposium will feature directors of university centers that study race relations, culture and politics, who will discuss their research and what the current debates about affirmative action, school curricula and Southern destiny can tell us about the future of higher education and the United States.
The panelists include Derrick Alridge, director of the Center for Race and Public Education in the South at the University of Virginia, John Grammer, director of the Southern Studies program at Sewanee University, and Blair LM Kelley, director of the Center for the Study of the American South at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
“At this juncture in the American democratic experiment, I believe that the Race and Southern-ness Symposium can produce revelatory refinements of our mission,” said Michael Hill, professor of Africana studies and director of the DeLaney Center. “I am excited to welcome Professors Alridge, Grammer and Kelley to campus, as they share their considerable talents and engage the audience in thoughtful and meaningful discussions of race and Southern life, and the South’s forceful emergence in 21st century conversations about American identity.”
The DeLaney Center is an interdisciplinary academic forum that promotes teaching and research on race and Southern identity. Visit the DeLaney Center website at my.wlu.edu/delaney-center for updates on DeLaney Dialogues, film screenings and other programming.