Blacks on the Left Symposium

The Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (Rose Library) at Emory University is pleased to announce the symposium, “Blacks on the Left" (May 31-June 1, 2019). 

The Rose Library is home to one of the world’s premier archives of African American History and Culture. For 21 years we have documented hundreds of individuals and organizations, resulting in the preservation of over 5,000 linear feet of manuscripts and 13,000 print titles. Included in our holdings are the papers of Louise Thompson Patterson (1901-1999) and Matt (1903-1996) and Evelyn Crawford (1899-1972), who were prominent African American Communists in the Harlem Renaissance era. This symposium will be held in honor of their contributions to American life and letters.

In this spirit, we invite proposals for papers that will illuminate the braided histories of struggles against racism, state violence, and capitalism alongside the individuals and organizations that engaged in those conflicts. ‘Blacks on the Left’ is a symposium that we hope can bring together a variety of disciplines that document the role of left-wing anti-capitalist politics in struggles for black liberation. (Or, for that matter, cases in which these forces part ways.) 

Suggested topics include, but are not limited to: identity, liberation, struggle, political motives and commitments, contradictions, intersections, relevance/irrelevance, and the notion of “blackness” in activism.

The submission deadline is December 1, 2018. Proposals for individual papers should be limited to 500 words. Proposals for organized panels should be limited to 500 words for each speaker, plus a 300 word abstract addressing the overall themes and goals of the panel. Please use the form for submissions.

Graduate students are encouraged to submit; two sessions will be reserved for students currently enrolled in a graduate degree program.

Notifications of acceptance will be sent January 2, 2019.