The Sonja Haynes Stone Center will be hosting TaKeia N. Anthony at the Bull’s Head Bookshop on Tuesday as part of the Stone Center’s Writer’s Discussion series. Anthony plans to explore the African diaspora, its history and the 20th-century development of mobilization to fight imperialism and fascism.
Anthony is an assistant professor of history of North Carolina Central University, her alma mater, and recently published "The Universal Ethiopian Students’ Association, 1927-1948." The book and its contents will be the main focus of her lecture, which will thoroughly discuss the African diaspora and the UESA’s influential efforts to mobilize.
“The African diaspora is a very young field,” Anthony said. “... It’s in its infancy state, so this builds onto it. To get the information from the foundation, from the ground level, as you continue to build, is extremely important for how we continue to study the African diaspora.”
Anthony wants to introduce new ideas and topics to the research of the diaspora, particularly the influence of mobilization.
“This is a new direction in the study," Anthony said. "So, bringing forth something brand new that a lot of people have not heard of, they’re going to walk away understanding the diaspora more and our new direction.”
The Stone Center staff hopes to bring forward new ideas regarding the diaspora to a public stage on campus. Sheriff Drammeh, programs associate for the Stone Center, said programs like the Writer’s Discussion shed light on ideas that advance the center’s philosophy and mission.
“Our overall philosophy and mission is to critically examine African-American and African diaspora cultures and history," Drammeh said. “... Getting in people who have just published research on these topics, that normally don’t see the light of day, creates and generates public discussion.”
Stephanie Cobert, public communications manager for the Stone Center, said that Anthony’s work and research embody the values that the center is trying to convey to the University.
“The topic, as well as her work, fits perfectly with our mission, because it talks about (the UESA) and their literary organ that helped bring awareness to the topic of the African diaspora,” Cobert said.
Both Anthony and the Stone Center are ultimately trying to bring issues regarding Africans, African Americans and the diaspora to a broader stage and make issues involving these groups or topics more visible to students at the University.
“Folks that attend her lecture will hopefully learn from the event the histories of struggle and resistance, and how ideas that started out with ordinary folk just like us working together and putting their minds and efforts and struggles together (stood up) against oppression,” Drammeh said.
Anthony, despite being an NCCU student, said she frequented the Stone Center when she was in school because of its extensive library and research regarding the diaspora. She said she is honored to be lecturing somewhere that has been so important to her academic career.
“To come back to the Stone Center and to give this presentation, it’s a treat for myself,” Anthony said. “Being a student of the area when I was at North Carolina Central, it’s just so surreal.”
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