‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌
 
Click here to see this online
 
 
 
 
 

Welcome Back to Campus!

 
 
  A headshot of Helen Jun
 
Greetings,
 
I wanted to welcome back all our amazing Black Studies students to UIC.  I hope the start of your semester went well and that you were able to see some familiar faces and reconnect with each other and your teachers. 
 
We have an exciting upcoming year with 3 new professors who will be permanently joining the Department this January, including a new Departmental Head. We are optimistically hoping that by Spring semester, we will be able to host some in-person events so you get a chance to meet our new faculty and re-engage with those you've already worked with.  
 
We do plan on organizing some events this year including, a few film watch parties, wellness "breathwork" sessions with the amazing Chauna Bryant (to alleviate stress and anxiety), and workshop opportunities to learn more about the process of applying to law school and grad school, as well as how to connect with local community social justice organizations.   
 
We will also jump-start our Black Studies undergraduate student committee this semester which allows all of you to help shape the programming and student culture of our Department. All BLST majors, minors, and students who have taken at least 2 BLST courses are invited to join (we will be meeting online a couple of times this Fall Semester and we hope to meet in person in the Spring). You'll be getting an email inviting you to join, or feel free to email me at junhelen@uic.edu if you want to be added to this group. 
 
While most of our courses are being offered in-person this Fall, we are still being asked to conduct Drop-In hours over Zoom.   The good news is that this offers most of us more flexibility so please don't hesitate to let an instructor know that you want to touch base. We miss seeing you. My Drop-in Hours this semester are Tuesday and Friday 10:30 AM-12:00 PM -- please feel free to drop in with any questions or just to catch up and say hey! https://go.uic.edu/BLSTadvising 
 
Sincerely, 
Helen Jun
 
 
 
 
 
     
 

Faculty Spotlight: Professor Jaira Harrington

 
 
An image of Jaira Harrington on a bridge overlooking a roadway  
 

Professor Jaira Harrington joined UICs Black Studies Department in Fall of 2020. As many classes have resumed being in person we wanted to sit down with Professor Harrington and introduce her to the UIC community. 

For the full interview visit the Black Studies Department webpage: https://go.uic.edu/ProfHarringtonSpotlight 

 

 

As a new professor within Black Studies, what are you looking forward to doing within the department? What courses are you most excited to teach/bring to students at UIC?

I am looking forward to putting a fresh spin on some of our traditional courses like Introduction to Black Diaspora Studies. I anticipate leading discussions on Black populations in Latin America that are responsive to the challenges of the present moment. I currently teach “The Politics of Blackness in Latin America” and I will offer the graduate-level course, “Global Black Feminisms”.

Could you expand upon how your research interest fits within the sphere of Black Studies?

My research that focuses on paid household domestic work in Brazil centers the racial, gender and class politics of their union organizing. Anti-Blackness is global and the intersecting identities of marginalized groups only compounds the struggles of daily life. And yet, the community thrives.

You’re from Chicago, how does this impact your teaching at UIC?

Chicago raised me to have a strong sense of self. I hope to pass on that mindset to my students to push boundaries and create new worlds. It is my desire that they courageously define themselves for themselves as many times as they wish. I hope they discover their core values while also being open to deep reflection and the wisdom of lived experience. You can be as multifaceted as you wish for a lifetime. I know I will be leading by example. Last year’s professor is not this year’s professor. Keep up!

Which courses are you teaching this semester?

I am teaching an online cross-listed undergraduate course, “The Politics of Blackness in Latin America.” So far, so great! This semester’s students in Black Studies (BLST) and Latino and Latin American Studies (LALS) have a synergy like none other. In light of 2020’s clarion call to value Black life globally, my BLST and LALS students expressed a sincere desire to learn more about the triumphs and struggles of Black communities in Latin America. We share open dialogue that is informative, restorative, reflective and provides a space for deeper analysis of the long impacts of colonialism, slavery, and imperialism on Black folks in the Western Hemisphere.

 
 
Jaira Harrington sitting at a table in front of a mural with four painted faces
 
     
 

Event Recap: Afrofutrism Talk

 
 
An image of the flyer used in advertising the October 6th Afrofuturism event.  
 

October first marked the start of Black Speculative Fiction Month, The Black Studies Department along with UICs African-American Cultural Center kicked off the month by hosting the virtual Afrofuturism: Resilience & Creating Futures discussion.

The discussion was led by Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci-Fi and Fantasy Culture author, Ytasha L. Womack. Students, staff, and faculty throughout UIC were given the opportunity to discuss:

How do we imagine and plan new futures and the relationship between past, present, and future, from an Afrofuturist perspective? 

A recording of the conversation will soon become available.

 
 
 
 

 

October is Black Speculative Fiction Month!

Continue to consider Black futures and the Afrofuturism conversation through reading one of the many books on the topic of Afrofuturism!

Chicago Public Library List - HERE

 
     
 

Events Around Campus

 
 

If you are looking for ways to connect around UICs campus, consider attending the events below. 

 
 
In Celebration of our 30th anniversary, the African American Cultural Center has commissioned a new mural to be created by Chicago-based mural artist Damian Lamar Reed.  
 

TOMORROW: Community Paint Day 

October 19, 2021
12:00pm - 1:00pm 

In Celebration of our 30th anniversary, the African American Cultural Center has commissioned a new mural to be created by Chicago-based mural artist Damian Lamar Reed. Come and share your ideas and your creative skills as we envision UIC's Black mosaic. 

Mural Project Sign Up Here!

 
 
  Join our monthly discussions and workshops focused on the meaning of environmental, economic and social sustainability and see how we, along with local activists, can promote environmental justice for our communities at UIC and throughout the city of Chicago.  October 26th, 2021 2:00pm - 3:00pm
 

 

Carver Sustainability Project

October 26th, 2021
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

This year the African American Cultural Center launches the Carver Sustainability Project, a series of programs that examine the importance of environmental stewardship for local and global Black communities.

Join our monthly discussions and workshops focused on the meaning of environmental, economic and social sustainability and see how we, along with local activists, can promote environmental justice for our communities at UIC and throughout the city of Chicago.

RSVP here for Zoom link

 
 
Voices lectures are presented by artists, designers, critics, curators, and art historians at the leading edge of artistic discourse. All events are free and on Zoom. Register in the link in our bio!  
 

 

Gallery 400 - Fall 2021 Voices Lecture Series lineup!

Gallery 400, a not-for-profit arts space at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), supports contemporary art, architecture, and design through exhibitions, lectures, publications, and programs that prioritize interpretative reflection and critical inquiry. Voices lectures are presented by artists, designers, critics, curators, and art historians at the leading edge of artistic discourse.

Click Here for More Information!

 
     
 

 

Looking for ways to get connected and stay in the know about campus events? Check out the Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change: 

African American Cultural Center
Arab American Cultural Center
Asian American Resource and Cultural Center
Disability Cultural Center
Gender and Sexuality Center
Latino Cultural Center
Women's Leadership and Resource Center

 
     
 

Stay in Touch!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Make sure to stay up to date with everything happening with @uicBLST by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter and Instagram! 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
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