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This Week in Black History, Society, and Culture

Author: Black and African Diaspora Forum United (BADFU)

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"This Week in Black History, Society, and Culture" is a weekly podcast produced by the Black and African Diaspora Forum United (BADFU) an interracial group of faculty at Monmouth University concerned about issues pertaining to the Black/African American experience. BADFU members will periodically interview scholars, authors, activists, and community leaders on matters related to the history, society, and culture of Black and African American communities in the United States (U.S.) and beyond. These podcast episodes are on a variety of subjects including, but not limited to, higher education, economics, criminal justice, reparations, mental health, history, science, gender, popular culture, women, and politics. A new episode will be released weekly on Monday mornings from September to May during each academic term.
72 Episodes
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Women of Color in Academia

Women of Color in Academia

2023-04-2301:07:20

This is the finale episode of season 6. In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses women of color in the academy with Drs. Zaneta Rago-Craft and Nicole Pulliam. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University and Rago-Craft is the inaugural director of the Intercultural Center at Monmouth. Pulliam is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Educational Counseling and Leadership as well as the founding director of the Social Justice Academy at Monmouth University. These two women are campus leaders with a wealth of experience in their fields and higher education administration more broadly. Their discussion of the issues, struggles, and obstacles faced by women of color in academia including some discussion of self-care is insightful. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Black athletes, political protest, and social justice with Shaun M. Anderson. Williams is an Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University located in West Long Branch, New Jersey and Anderson is Associate Professor of Organizational Communication at Loyola Marymount University and the founder of CSR Global Consulting LLC, a firm dedicated to helping sport organizations develop strategic plans to effectively communicate their corporate social responsibility efforts. Anderson has become a major voice in the conversation regarding sport and social change and his work has been featured in several media outlets including in The Huffington Post, Black Enterprise Magazine and the Washington Times.  
Season 6, Episode 9In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses the broomstick wedding ritual with Tyler D. Parry. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University located in West Long Branch, New Jersey and Parry is Associate Professor of African American and African Diaspora Studies at the University of Las Vegas, Nevada in the Department of Interdisciplinary, Gender, and Ethnic Studies. Parry’s research focuses on slavery in the Americas, cultures in the African Diaspora, the historical memory of slavery in the Americas, cultures in the African Diaspora and historical memory. This conversation is about his first book Jumping the Broom: The Surprising Multicultural Origins of A Black Wedding Ritual published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2020. In this fascinating history of the broomstick wedding ritual, Parry traverses a series of cultures including African Diaspora communities to trace the long history of this ritual that has become important in the history of African American life. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses the origins and impact of hip hop with Anwar Uhuru as part of a series of episodes to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Uhuru is Assistant Professor in the Department of African American Studies and an affiliate faculty member with the departments of Philosophy and Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. Their research focuses on human value based on race, gender, sexuality, and ableism with publicans in the Journal of Hip Hop Studies, The APA Newsletter, Philosophy and the Black Experience, and Radical Philosophy Review. They are also known for teaching popular courses at Wayne State on Black Detroit and Politics and Culture in Anglophone Caribbean. Uhuru is a frequent guest on the show as a rising public intellectual and scholar who has a wide range of expertise on subjects related to race, gender, sexuality, and culture. 
In this episode Hettie V. Williams discusses the African Presence in Latin America with Luis Mora-Ballesteros. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Mora-Ballesteros is Lecturer of Spanish and Literatures of Latin America and the Caribbean in the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Monmouth University. This conversation focuses primarily on the African influences on Latin American dance, literature, and culture including some discussion on how these influences also represent connections to the afterlives of slavery. This is particularly evident in the song, dance, and music culture of the African descended communities of Latin America and the Caribbean.   
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses the Golden Age of Hip Hop in the 1980s and 1990s with Professor Claude Taylor. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Taylor is Director for Academic Transition and Inclusion and Professor of communication and media at Monmouth University. Taylor also works with the First To Fly program at Monmouth that focuses on the development and support of first generation college students. He is a popular professor and his area of teaching interests include race, rhetoric, and discourse. This episode is one of a series of episodes this season to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Hip Hop now a global phenomenon. 
Fear of a Black Republic

Fear of a Black Republic

2023-03-0501:01:11

In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Haiti and Black internationalism with Leslie M. Alexander. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University. Alexander is the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Professor of history at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. She is the author of several essays, articles, book chapters, and books about the African Diaspora including her latest text Fear of a Black Republic: Haiti and the Birth of Black Internationalism in the United States recently published by the University of Illinois Press. The groundbreaking text is the subject of our conversation as Alexander elaborate on the centrality of Haiti to Black consciousness and Black activism across the African Diaspora in the nineteenth century.  
Black in Graduate School

Black in Graduate School

2023-02-2601:01:351

In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Black in graduate school with Lauren T. Rorie. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Rorie is currently an adjunct professor in the perspectives program at Monmouth. She discusses her experiences as a Black student at the undergraduate and graduate level and provides Black graduate students with advice on how to navigate PWIs as graduate students or part time instructors in their post graduate life. Rorie has recently been accepted into several prestigious graduate programs in history.  
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses the Black Church in film and television with Dr. Anwar Uhuru. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Uhuru is Assistant Professor in the Department of African American Studies and an affiliate faculty member with the departments of Philosophy and Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. Their research focuses on human value based on race, gender, sexuality, and ableism with publicans in the Journal of Hip Hop Studies, The APA Newsletter, Philosophy and the Black Experience, and Radical Philosophy Review. They are also known for teaching popular courses at Wayne State on Black Detroit and Politics and Culture in Anglophone Caribbean. In this episode, they discuss with Williams the satire Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul a recent film by Monkeypaw Productions and executive producer Jordan Peele directed by Adamma Ebo. They also discuss the Black Church in film and tv more generally in this episode. This film about the Black megachurch culture in the American South is currently viewable on Netflix. 
In this episode Hettie V. Williams discusses mentoring and the African/African American experience with Julius O. Adekunle. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Adekunle is Professor of African history in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University. Adekunle is the author/editor of several books including Converging Identities: Blackness in the Modern African Diaspora, Religion in Politics: Secularism and National Integration in Modern Nigeria, and Culture and Customs of Rwanda. His area of teaching/research is religion and culture in Nigeria with a focus on the Colonial Era and the twentieth century. He has also written enumerable essays, book chapters, reviews and commentaries for various academic journals and other academic outlets. Julius also teaches a variety of courses on the African experience at Monmouth including the History of Africa, Nationalism in Africa, and Colonialism in Africa. He is a much-loved teacher professor and friend to many at Monmouth and beyond. 
Black Men and Policing

Black Men and Policing

2023-02-0553:44

In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses race, masculinity, Black men, and policing with Dr. Karanja Keita Carroll. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Carroll is a Lecturer in Black and Latinx Studies at as a member of the Department of Black & Latinx Studies at Baruch College (CUNY). Carroll’s teaching and research interests revolve around African-centered theory and methodology with an emphasis on social and psychological theory. He is also an activist and advocate of Prison Education having taught at various facilities including SCI-Chester, Shawangunk (NYSDOC), Sullivan (NYDOC) and Brookwood Secure Center (NYSDJJOY). His writings have appeared in multiple outlets including in the Journal of Pan African Studies, Western Journal of Black Studies, and the Journal of the International Society of Teacher Education. Carroll discusses the recent events in Memphis, Tennessee from both a personal and academic perspective in this episode.  
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses empowering young Black males with Dr. Vernon Smith. Williams is an Associate Professor of African American History in the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University and Smith is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Counseling and Leadership. Smith teaches courses centered on social justice advocacy in educational counseling and has published several papers on the subject including in the Journal of Professional School Counseling, The Family Journal, and in the Journal of School Counseling. He is a passionate scholar and teacher interested in the issues concerning Black youth in the African Diaspora. Smith has worked to develop and create Empowering Young Black Males Leadership Mentoring Program that has serviced dozens of Black youth out of the Neptune High School by pairing these young men with Monmouth University students. This is the focus of our conversation today.   
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses race, gender, and sexuality in Renaissance by Beyonce Knowles with Dr. Anwar Uhuru. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Uhuru is Assistant Professor in the Department of African American History at Wayne State University in Detroit. He is an expert in gender and culture studies working on a forthcoming book about reparations. Uhuru is a frequent guest on the show and one of the founding members of BADFU at Monmouth University where he was previously employed as an Assistant Professor of African American Literature in the Department of English. Uhuru provides with some terrific insight here on the place of Knowles in the history and culture of the African Diaspora. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses jailing and mass incarceration with Dr. Melanie D. Newport. Williams is Associate Professor of African American History at Monmouth University and Newport is an Assistant Professor of history at the University of Connecticut and the author of This is My Jail: Local Politics and the Rise of Mass Incarceration (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2022). This conversation is structured mainly around Newport’s recently published book on jailing with a focus on the Cook County Jail in Chicago. In this text, Newport argues that jailing has been central to the mass incarceration project in the modern history of the United States. She links jailing to local politics and, also, community activism. Newport contends that there is a longer history of mass incarceration connected to racialized “politically repressive” jailing. She includes in this history a discussion of a host of historical actors key to this history such as wardens, correction officers, sheriffs, jailed people themselves and the network of community activists who sought to reform and imagine “their jail.” This is a groundbreaking work in the ever-expanding history of the carceral state. 
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Black music, culture, and criticism with Dr. Guthrie Ramsey. Williams is Associate Professor of African American History at Monmouth University and Ramsey is Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Pennsylvania and the author of Who Hears Here? On Black Music, Pasts and Present published by the University of California Press in 2022. Ramsey is a noted pianist, composer, and Professor of African American music, history, and culture. He is also a Guggenheim Fellow and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Ramsey has authored several books on African American music history and culture. He is one of the nation’s foremost scholars of Black music culture. 
In this episode, Hettie. V. Williams discusses Black women and roller skating with Lauren T. Rorie. Williams is Associate Professor of African American History at Monmouth University and Rorie is an Adjunct Instructor in the Interdisciplinary Perspectives Program at Monmouth. Rorie’s work centers on Black women in art, culture and the Africa Diaspora including popular culture. She is currently interested in and writing about the history of Black women in roller skating, the Black freedom struggle, and community building. She finds that there are connections between social movements and Black recreation such as with activities surrounding roller skating.   
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Black soldiers and families through the Civil War era with Holly A. Pinheiro, Jr. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University and Pinheiro is Assistant Professor of African American history at Furman University and the author of The Families’ Civil War: Black Soldiers and the Fight for Racial Justice published by the University of Georgia Press in 2022. This conversation is focused on Pinheiro’s discussion of Black free born soldiers from Philadelphia, their war time service, and post-war attempts to secure their pensions including how the Civil War impacted Black families. These families faced racial discrimination before, during, and after the war. This was particularly prevalent in their attempts to receive their pensions when the war was over leading to in some cases the devastation. Pinheiro finds that the processes for securing pensions were often discriminatory and invasive. This book The Families’ Civil War is a groundbreaking work of history that anyone interested in the history of the Civil War, gender politics, family and race in U.S. history should consider readings.        
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses a short documentary film on Asbury Park, New Jersey titled “The Great Migration and Asbury Park” with Erin Fleming, and Claude Taylor. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history at Monmouth University, Fleming is the Director of Production Services at Monmouth, and Taylor is a Professor of Communication and Director for Academic Transition and Inclusion at Monmouth. Fleming is the producer and director of the short film “Asbury Park and the Great Migration.” This short film features Claude Taylor, who was born and raised in Asbury Park, New Jersey, and Madonna Carter Jackson, who also spent her early life in Asbury Park, and preeminent scholar of African Americans in New Jersey Graham Russell Gao Hodges. Hodges is author of Black New Jersey: 1664 to the Present published by Rutgers University Press. African Americans have populated the city of Asbury Park for decades and this is a region that has contributed greatly to the history of African Americans from the rise of the Great Migration, the formation of the NAACP, through the Civil Rights Movement, to the present.  
In this episode Dr. Hettie V. Williams is in conversation with Christopher Willoughby. Williams is Associate Professor of African American history in the Department of History at Monmouth University. Willoughby is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the History of Medicine and Health at Pitzer College and the author of Masters of Health: Racial Science and Slavery in U.S. Medical Schools published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2022. He is also the editor of Medicine and Healing in the Age of Slavery. This conversation focuses primarily on Willoughby’s Masters of Health and the disturbing history of race, medicine, and health in the U.S. White supremacist thinking and racial science permeated American medical schools alongside the rise of modern medicine through the era of racial slavery. Willoughby traces this history in startling detail and including some conversation about the misuse and abuse of Black bodies in medical science down to the present.   
In this episode, Hettie V. Williams discusses Black and Asian solidarity with Dr. Zaneta Rago-Craft founding Director of the Intercultural Center at Monmouth University. Dr. Z identifies as multiracial and tells us some about her own Asian ancestry. She speaks here as both a DEI expert and from her personal experiences as a woman of color in the academy. This is Part II of our series on Black and Asian solidarity. We find this to be a necessary ongoing conversation, at the moment, with the rise of Anti-Asian hate that has emerged with the COVID-19 pandemic. There is an expansive history of Black and Asian solidarity as illustrated with the life-long collaboration between James and Grace Lee Boggs, Robert Williams and his travels to China, and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s friendship with Buddhist Monk Thich Nhat Hanh. 
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