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In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in discussion with Professor Kristin Henning about the criminalization of Black youth in the U.S. and the juvenile justice system. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Henning is an attorney and nationally recognized trainer and consultant on race, adolescence and policing. She is currently the Blume Professor of Law and Director of the Juvenile Justice Clinic and Initiative at the Georgetown University Law Center and previously the lead attorney of the Juvenile Unit at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia. Henning is also the author of The Rage of Innocence: How America Criminalizes Black Youth (Pantheon Books, 1921). 
Race and Medieval Studies

Race and Medieval Studies


In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in discussion with Drs. Heide Estes and Mary Rambaran-Olm about race and Medieval Studies. Estes is Professor of English in the Department of English at Monmouth University where she regularly teaches medieval literature, ecocriticism, history of the English language, and linguistics. She is also Chair of the University Qualifications Committee and a member of the Faculty Association and Inclusion working group. Estes is also editor of the journal Medieval Ecocriticisms and the author of Anglo-Saxon Literary Landscapes: Ecotheory and the Environmental Imagination published by Amsterdam University Press in 2017. Rambaran-Olm is a literary historian specializing in the literature and history of early medieval England with a focus on the fifth to eleventh centuries. She has written several articles, essays and book chapters and is currently working on a book project about race in early medieval England. She is currently the Provost’s Post-doctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto.  Some resources shared by Dr. Rambaran-Olm:This is an intro into race in Early English studies: if people want a primer on the term "Anglo-Saxon" I wrote that and it's open access here: for people to follow on Twitter who work on the Middle Ages and are doing good things:@erik_kaars@DrDadabhoy@archaeofiend@chantermestuet@ShammaBoyarin
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Erika D. Gault about digital Black Christians and Hip Hop. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University. Gault is Assistant Professor of Africana Studies at the University of Arizona. Dr. Gault’s scholarly work focuses on the intersection of religious history, technology, and urban Black life in post-industrial America. She is also the author of Networking the Black Church: Digital Black Christians and Hip Hop (New York University Press, 2022). The focus of this show is on Dr. Gault’s innovative way of rethinking the Black Church and the new generation of Black Christians that she refers to as “digital Christians” and their engagement with religion. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in discussion with Professor Melissa Ziobro. Williams is Associate Professor of African American History at Monmouth University and Ziobro is a Specialist Professor in Public History at Monmouth. This discussion centers on the history of Black women in the U.S. military as this is a subject that does need to be studied further by scholars and public historians more generally. See below for Professor Ziobro’s recommendations/sources on Black women in the U.S. military. Resources on Black Women in U.S. Military History: Glory in Their Spirit: How Four Black Women Took On the Army during World War II, by Sandra Bolzenius, 2018. Standing Up Against Hate: How Black Women in the Army Helped Change the Course of WWII, by Mary Farrell, 2019.Excellent Library of Congress bibliography on Black women in the military: also: National Association of Black Military Women 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Kerry Rizzuto about book banning and multicultural children’s books that focus on the African American experience. Williams is an Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Rizzuto is an Associate Professor in the School of Education at Monmouth University. She has shared her children’s book recommendations with us below. The 1619 Project: Born on the Water Nikkole Hannah Jones and Renee WatsonThe 1619 Project’s lyrical picture book in verse chronicles the consequences of slavery and the history of Black resistance in the United States, Bell Hooks:Homemade Love The world-renowned poet, cultural critic, feminist theorist, intellectual, and award-winning author, bell hooks, brings together with the resplendent artwork of Shane W. Evan, a beautiful board book perfect for little hands.Hair Love by Matthew CherryZuri's hair has a mind of its own. It kinks, coils, and curls every which way. Zuri knows it's beautiful. When Daddy steps in to style it for an extra special occasion, he has a lot to learn. But he LOVES his Zuri, and he'll do anything to make her -- and her hair -- happy.Ain't Burned All the Bright Hardcover – by Jason Reynolds  (Author), Jason Gri (Illustrator)Utterly unique and evocative, Ain’t Burned All the Bright is a masterful mash-up of art and text from Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin. This powerful piece captures what it’s like to be young and Black in America right now. Though the text is sparse, the feeling behind it will linger with readers long after the last page.Prepare yourself for something unlike anything: A smash-up of art and text for teens that viscerally captures what it is to be Black. In America. Right Now. Written by #1 New York Times bestselling and award-winning author Jason Reynolds.  Jason Reynolds and his best bud, Jason Griffin had a mind-meld. And they decided to tackle it, in one fell swoop, in about ten sentences, and 300 pages of art, this piece, this contemplation-manifesto-fierce-vulnerable-gorgeous-terrifying-WhatIsWrongWithHumans-hope-filled-hopeful-searing-Eye-Poppingly-Illustrated-tender-heartbreaking-how-The-HECK-did-They-Come-UP-with-This project about oxygen. And all of the symbolism attached to that word, especially NOW.The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family The first day of school includes a new backpack and light-up shoes for Faizah, and a new hijab for her sister Asiya, a sixth grader wearing hijab for the first time. Asiya chose blue “the color of the ocean” for her first hijab. Faizah knows someday she’ll choose the same. But at school, when kids ask what Asiya is wearing, Faizah’s voice comes out in a whisper. “Asiya’s hijab isn’t a whisper. Asiya’s hijab is like the sky on a sunny day.” All because you matter by Tami Charles“Long before you took your place in this world. You were dreamed of, like a knapsack full of wishes, carried on the backs of your ancestors as they created empires, pyramids, legacies.” A poetic second-person text addressed to Black children begins by speaking of the universe and ancestors before moving on to the specifics of a contemporary child's life.
Black Women Gamers

Black Women Gamers


In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams discusses with Dr. Grace D. Gipson Black women in gaming. Gipson is an Assistant Professor in the Department of African American Studies at the Virginia Commonwealth University. She received her PhD in African American Studies from the University of California at Berkeley. Her research focus is feminist/pop culture and Black popular culture more specifically. Gipson’s current book project seeks to explore Black female identities as personified in comics and fandom culture. She is also working on a project on how online Black female academic and popular networks produce cultural and technical capital. Gipson has published several essays, book chapters and articles on Black popular culture. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams discusses African Americans and American labor history with Dr. Brian Greenberg Emeritus Professor of History at Monmouth University. Williams is an Associate Professor of History at Monmouth University and Greenberg is one of the foremost scholars of U.S. labor history. He is also the author of Upheaval in the Quiet Zone: A History of Hospital Workers’ Union Local 1199 (University of Illinois Press, 1989) with Leon Fink. Greenberg is also the author of several other books including The Dawning of American Labor: The New Republic to Industrial Age (Blackwell, 2017), Social History of the United States: The 1900s with Linda S. Watts and numerous scholarly articles, essays and book reviews. Here he takes us through the arc of American labor history and the connections between this history and the Black freedom struggle. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams discusses the basics of critical race theory with her Monmouth colleagues Drs. Anwar Uhuru and Manuel Chavez. Dr. Uhuru is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Monmouth University and Dr. Chavez is a Professor of Philosophy in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University. Uhuru specializes in African Diaspora literatures, gender, sexuality and critical race studies while Dr. Chavez is a Lecturer of Philosophy who specializes in the philosophy of race, gender and decolonial theory. This conversation focuses on the basics of critical race theory (CRT) including the core principles of the theory: the social construction of race, intersectionality and interest convergence. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Clifford Mason about Black Shakespearean actors and Denzel Washington as Macbeth. Williams is a Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Mason is a celebrated playwright, actor, director, critic and author who has written 34 plays. He is also the author of Macbeth in Harlem: Black Theater in America from the Beginning to Raison in the Son (Rutgers University Press, 2020). Joel Coen’s The Tragedy of Macbeth is the first film completed without his brother Ethan Coen and the film has opened to positive reviews. Mason discusses the fact that Black actors such as Ira Aldridge and Paul Robeson have mastered Shakespearean roles in America and the world for more than 100 years. Here is more critical of the Coen film and Denzel’s role as Macbeth in that he sees the movie as largely failing at bringing the power of Shakespeare’s words to life. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses death, love, and life with Dr. Farah Jasmine Griffin. Williams is an Associate Professor of History in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University. Dr. Griffin is inaugural chair of the African American and African Diaspora Studies Department at Columbia University where she is also the William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature. She is also the author of several books and a 2021 Guggenheim Fellow. Griffin's book Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature (W.W. Norton, 2021) is the main focus of this conversation. This is a profound work of memoir, intellectual history, cultural and literary studies. 
This episode is a conversation between Dr. Hettie V. Williams, Drs. Nancy Mezey, Chad Dell and Michelle DeFossett producers of a documentary film on African Americans in World War II. Mezey and Dell are professors at Monmouth University and DeFossett is an executive with a non-profit. The story tells the history of her father and his friends who all served in World War II as members of the 369th regiment. My Buddy: The WWII Documentary Project is a research and documentary group based out of Monmouth University (MU) in West Long Branch, NJ. The purpose of the project is to examine the military and cultural history of the 369th Antiaircraft Artillery Regiment during the WWII era, as well as the contributions of the 369th Veterans Association and the 369th Historical Society since the 1950s. This ongoing documentary project is based on original interviews conducted in 2004 with members of the 369th Veterans Association, additional interviews being currently conducted, as well as family photos and memorabilia, news articles, and other artifacts. The initial work suggests several important themes, including family, community, identity, masculinity, race, and social justice. See more about the project here:
Nella Larsen's Passing

Nella Larsen's Passing


In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in discussion with Dr. Anwar Uhuru and Dr. Zaneta Rago-Craft about Nella Larsen’s Passing in literature and on film. Williams is an Associate Professor of African American history in the Department of History at Monmouth University. Dr. Uhuru is an Associate Professor of African American literature at Monmouth University and Dr. Rago-Craft is the inaugural Director of the Intercultural Center. She also identifies as multiracial. Uhuru’s teaching and research interests include Afro-Diaspora literature, critical race theory and gender/sexuality theory. This conversation focuses primarily on race, gender and sexuality in Larsen’s text and in the recent Netflix film adaptation of Passing. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams is in discussion with Dr. Noliwe Rooks on a range of subjects. Williams is an Associate Professor at Monmouth University and Rooks is Chair and Professor in the Africana Studies Department at Brown University. She is an interdisciplinary school and her work examines how race and gender impact and are impacted by popular culture, social history and political life in the United States. More specifically, her work explores race, capitalism and education as well as Black women and material culture. Rooks is also the author of four books, many articles, essays, and journalistic pieces having received funding from several foundations including Mellon, Ford and the Woodrow Wilson Center and the architect of the phrase segrenomics. In this episode, she discusses race, gender, capitalism and segrenomics including some discussion of her experience as a woman of color in higher education. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Anwar Uhuru about the Netflix series The Chair. Dr. Uhuru is an Assistant Professor of African American literature in the Department of English at Monmouth University. His research and teaching interests focus on Afro-Diaspora literature and culture, gender, and critical race theory. The focus of this discussion is on race and gender in The Chair a limited comedy-drama series focused on academic life at the fictional Pembroke University that premiered August, 2021. Dr. Ji-Yoon Kim, a Korean American woman, is the main character in the show. She is the first woman to become Chair of her Department and faced with a series of challenges including issues related to race, age and gender. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams discusses the cult classic Candyman with Dr. Lisa Dinella and Professor Claude Taylor. Dinella is Professor of Psychology at Monmouth University, Principal Investigator of the Gender Development Laboratory, and Director of the Program in Gender and Intersectionality Studies (PGIS), and Professor Taylor is Director of Academic Transition and Inclusion at Monmouth and he also teaches several courses in media studies at Monmouth. This conversation is focused specifically on race and gender in the slasher film with a focus on the 1992 and 2021 versions of Candyman starring Tony Todd as “Candyman.” Dinella and Taylor consider how gender and race are represented in this genre and how filmmakers Jordan Peele and Nia DaCosta have extended the boundaries of this genre to focus more intently on race, gender and social problems. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Alyssa Goldstein Sepinwall about Haiti in history and popular culture. Dr. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Dr. Goldstein Sepinwall is Professor and Graduate Studies Coordinator in the Department of History at California State University, San Marcos. Her research specialties include the French and Haitian Revolutions, modern Haitian history, Slavery and Film, and French colonialism as well as French-Jewish history. Dr. Goldstein Sepinwall’s latest book is Slave Revolt on Screen: The Haitian Revolution in Film and Video Games (University Press of Mississippi, 2021) and she is also the author of The Abbé Grégoire and the French Revolution: The Making of Modern Universalism (University of California Press, 2005) and Haitian History: New Perspectives (Routledge, 2012).  
In this episode, Dr. Katie Parkin discusses Pushing Cool with Dr. Keith A. Wailoo. Parkin is a Professor of History at Monmouth University and the Jules Plangere, Jr., Endowed Chair in American Social History. She is the author of Food is Love: Advertising and Gender Roles in Modern America (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2005) and Women at the Wheel: A Century of Buying, Driving, and Fixing Cars (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2017). Wailoo is currently the Henry Putnam University Professor of History and Public Affairs and former Chair of the Department of History at Princeton University. His latest book is Pushing Cool: Big Tobacco, Racial Marketing, and the Untold Story of the Menthol Cigarette (University of Chicago Press, 2021).  
Black Reconstruction

Black Reconstruction


In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams in conversation with Dr. Chris DeRosa about Black Reconstruction and “reconstructions” in U.S. history. Dr. DeRosa is Associate Professor of History and Chair of the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University. Black Reconstruction in America, 1860-1880 is the title of a book published in 1935 by W.E.B. Du Bois likely the foremost African intellectual of the twentieth century. In this study, Du Bois presents a more favorable view of Reconstruction while countering the racism that was written into much of the scholarship of this era illustrated with the work of Columbia University historian William A. Dunning or the “Dunning school.”  
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Clare Corbould about Black Internationalism—a growing subfield in African American history. Corbould is a historian specializing in African American cultural and intellectual history. She is currently an Associate Professor of North American History at Deakin University in Australia and the author of Becoming African Americans: Black Public Life in Harlem, 1919-1939 (Harvard University Press, 2009) listed as a Choice “Outstanding Title” and winner of several awards in Australia. She has written articles and book chapters on many topics including on anti-lynching plays, African American ideas about Haiti, and African American cartoonist E. Simms Campbell. 
In this episode, Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Dr. Nicole Pulliam inaugural Director of Monmouth University’s Social Justice Academy.  The Monmouth University Social Justice Academy, generously funded by the Grunin Foundation, offers direct support to K-12 school systems in Monmouth and Ocean counties for their ongoing social justice education and curriculum development efforts.The academy kicked off its inaugural class in July 2021 with a two-week inaugural summer workshop to establish a strong experiential foundation for the program and will continue throughout the year with a year-long professional development series, including seminars and lectures led by experts in diversity, equity, and inclusion. In 2022, the Social Justice Academy will expand to include five two-week summer workshops. Each academy cohort will be engaged in vibrant discussions that foster professional development growth on social justice issues in education. At the conclusion of the academy, participants will be positioned to serve as social justice leaders within their schools and throughout their districts, while implementing the core curriculum and practices gained during the academy. The goal is to imbue new practices, new thinking, and new dispositions into the fabric of the interactions between students and school professionals to create a more equitable experience for their students. There is no cost to participating K-12 schools or individual educators.
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