News

PhD candidate, Ayanna Legros, was awarded one of the 2020 Haitian American Leadership Award Scholarships.  read more about Ayanna Legros Awarded 2020 Haitian American Leadership Scholarship »

Adriane Lentz-Smith, associate professor of history and African American studies, was quoted in The Philadelphia Inquirer about the importance of language in reinforcing racial biases in culture. Lentz-Smith also cautions that changing language shouldn't be mistaken for real structural change. read more about Is the word ‘picnic’ racist? »

History Ph.D. Candidate Travis Knoll has been recognized by the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) for his new documentary tracing the incredible campaign of Catholic-inspired Black movement activists in Rio de Janeiro's urban periphery to expand education access to Brazil's political minorities. This campaign changed Brazilian society's discussion of race in the process. SSRC recently spotlighted Knoll’s work in its newsletter. Written and produced by one of Brazil's most prominent Black journalists and edited by one… read more about History Graduate Student’s Documentary Work Gains Recognition »

What cancelled summer plans—and new ones—say about the Duke student body. One was supposed to be saying goodbye to her childhood home on the other side of the Atlantic. Another was meant to be working with refugees in Ireland. Two more had plans for research projects in Africa. None of it happened… read more about Purpose from Disruption »

"As we honor Juneteenth and the spirit of emancipatory power, we free ourselves by freeing our language to speak back openly to recent communications regarding the loss of Black lives." The Hurston-James Society wrote an open letter which was published in The Chronicle on June 19, 2020.  Six of the signers are History graduate students: Aaron Colston, Tayzhaun Glover, Reina Henderson, Ayanna Legros, Joshua Strayhorn, and Kristina Williams. "The Hurston-James Society is a forum of scholarship and fellowship… read more about Juneteenth: An open letter to Duke  »

History graduate student, Jacqueline Allain, talks history, teaching, and the Duke Graduate Summer Academy.  You can read the full article here. read more about A Love of History and a Passion to Teach »

PhD Candidate Mohammed S. Ali recently placed an essay with the journal History and Theory. The essay is titled "Marking Time and Writing Histories" and asks historians to create new ways of expressing the multiplicity of time instead of relying on the Anno Domini or Common Era dating schemes in their work. The essay is scheduled for publication in the June 2021 issue.  read more about Mohammed Ali placed a journal article in History and Theory »

Duke History alum, Cynthia Greenlee, shares a personal insight of her father's dementia and surviving segregation.  You can read the article at The Guardian. read more about Trauma and triumph: my father, his dementia and surviving segregation »

Travis Knoll expected to be in Brazil this summer. A Ph.D. student in History, he planned to visit film and Catholic Church archives to further his work on the relationship between Catholic thought, modern Black movements and education… read more about Changing Their Summer Plans, Duke Ph.D. Students Find New Options for Virtual Employment »

Prof. Thavolia Glymph's book, Out of the House of Bondage is cited in "Juneteenth and emancipation in America: Your weekly guide to the best in books". read more about Thavolia Glymph's book cited in "The Atlantic" »

Prof. Gunther Peck, Director of the Hart Leadership Program, spotlights some of the work his students in the Democracy have been doing this summer in a letter to the Duke community. He highlights "some of the extraordinary history work that our students have been leading and instigating, using the past to make the present both coherent and livable. All of these students are members of the class of 2021 and are majoring in public policy. And all have expanded my sense of hope in this dire and extraordinary moment." You can… read more about Gunther Peck shares inspiring work of Duke undergrads in letter »

Against a backdrop of dual crises of public health and racial justice, more than 50 Black faculty, staff and students shared personal stories of racism and discrimination, presented research on racial inequities, and issued urgent calls for change.  The day-long symposium, Living While Black, was attended by more than 6,300 members of the Duke community via videoconference. It addressed the national crises of the COVID-19 pandemic, which is disproportionately affecting communities of color, and the spate of police killings… read more about Living While Black: Raw Discussions on Race at Duke and in America »

In this article, Anderson Hagler talks about his new course, Disease through the Ages. The current pandemic pushed Anderson to reflect on the social and cultural impact of diseases over time. He realized that students could use their shared experiences of COVID-19 to analyze historically marginalized individuals like lepers and prostitutes and the policies used to treat these perceived contagions such as quarantine and exile. read more about 3 Summer Courses Show What Goes Into Planning a Duke Class »

By the time Summer Session I started on May 13, Duke’s educators had already been at work for weeks. Before a class can be taught, it must be planned. There are readings to select, assignments to create, questions to prepare, schedules to set. And this year, there was an additional challenge: the… read more about 3 Summer Courses Show What Goes Into Planning a Duke Class »

PhD Candidate Mohammed Ali published an article in the journal Rhizomes: Cultural Studies in Emerging Knowledge. The article is titled "Ethical Archetypes in Environmental Histories" and analyzes the different tropes environmental historians have used to raise the ethical stakes of environmental destruction. The article is available here: http://rhizomes.net/issue36/ali/index.html read more about Mohammed Ali published a journal article in "Rhizomes: Cultural Studies in Emerging Knowledge" »

Broad criminal justice reform is needed to change policing in the United States, and it should originate at the local level, Duke scholars said Thursday. Three Duke experts spoke to media Thursday about a variety of policy and reform issues as well as about what can be learned about policing at the nation’s founding. Here are excerpts: ON POLICING, DEADLY FORCE AND REFORM Brandon Garrett, law professor “Police in America have incredibly broad discretion to use deadly force. About 1,000… read more about Reimagining the Criminal Justice System »

In a lunch-hour conversation on Friday, June 5, the Kenan Institute for Ethics’ signature series, The Ethics of Now read more about Racism, Police Violence, and Protests »

Laura Edwards, Peabody Family Distinguished Professor of History, argues that protesters have a right to oversight on police powers, and that the right has deep roots in Anglo-American law. Read her… read more about The Constitution Demands Police Accountability »

"COVID-19 is Devastating Native American Communities. History Illuminates Why."  was written collectively by Pete Sigal, Robbie Ethridge and Nancy Shoemaker, presidents of the American Society for Ethnohistory.  It is published in the History News Network. read more about Pete Sigal co-authors op-ed in the History News Network »

Even with seemingly convincing video evidence, prosecutors may struggle to convict a former Minnesota police officer charged with the third-degree murder of a man he was restraining, a Duke law scholar said Tuesday. Duke law professor James Coleman Jr. said the case against Derek Chauvin may come down to a jury’s interpretation of precisely what caused the death of George Floyd, who Chauvin restrained with a knee hold for nearly nine minutes. Chauvin is white, Floyd was black, and the incident led to mass race protests in… read more about Duke Scholars Examine Protests and Police Conduct »

Due to the cancellation of the Association of Asian Studies 2020 Annual Conference, 2019-20 AAS President Prasenjit Duara did not have the opportunity to deliver his Presidential Address in Boston. We are pleased to announce that Duara’s talk, “The Art of Convergent Comparison: China and India in Modern Times,” is available as a narrated slideshow. read more about Prof. Prasenjit Duara delivers 2020 AAS Presidential Address »

History Ph.D. candidate, Travis Knoll, has just published for the SSRC's The Immanent Frame, on "Social Activism and Rooted Liberationist Religion in Brazil". read more about Travis Knoll publishes in the SSRC's The Immanent Frame »

“I've had so many people tell me over the last few weeks that they feel like they’re losing their identity,” said Sherilynn Black, Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement. “The work that they do—their teaching, research,… read more about Duke Faculty Reexamine Their Roles as Scholars and Mentors in an Uncertain Time »

Assistant Professor of History Nicole Barnes was recently honored with the William H. Welch Medal, which is awarded by the American Association of the History of Medicine. This award is bestowed upon “a book of outstanding scholarly merit in the field of medical history published during the past five years”.  Nicole joins a prestigious list of past recipients.     This is the 2nd national recognition Nicole has received for her first monograph, Intimate Communities: Wartime Healthcare and the Birth of Modern China, 1937… read more about Nicole Barnes Awarded William H. Welch Medal »

Congratulations to the following student award winners from Duke University units in 2020.   African & African American Studies   John Hope Franklin Award for Academic Excellence: Elizabeth DuBard Grantland Karla FC Holloway Award for University Service: Beza Gebremariam Mary McLeod Bethune Writing Award: Jenna Clayborn Walter C. Burford Award for Community Service: Kayla Lynn Corredera-Wells   Art, Art History & Visual Studies        Mary Duke… read more about Student Honors and Laurels for 2020 »

Jocelyn Olcott’s international, interdisciplinary research focuses on caregivers – those low-wage workers who are responsible for our children, our elderly, and as the phrase suggests, taking care of us. Olcott is a professor of history and the director of the Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies… read more about Historian Jocelyn Olcott: Assessing the Value of Caregivers During a Pandemic »

Ashton Merck, 2020 Ph.D. graduate in the Department of History, wrote an essay in Duke's Medium  about COVID-19 and food safety read more about "COVID-19 is a food safety issue" by Ashton Merck »

Farren Yero, was asked to write a piece about the pandemic for the Panorama, a digital platform for the Journal of the Early Republic.  Yero recently defended her dissertation and is slated to graduate this May. read more about When Politics Go Viral: COVID-19 and Lessons from the Atlantic World »