Stephen Duncombe is an author, professor and co-founder of the Center for Artistic Activism, where he has trained activists and artists around the world to be both more effective and affective in their protests. Even when protesting issues that are deadly serious, activists have long used humor to break down barriers and build affective solidarities with audiences, deploying critical satire to highlight the absurdity or brutality of the status quo. But humor can also have a prophetic function: demonstrating, through laughter and jubilation, what a better world might look like.
The Beinecke Library stewards a set of 22 pencil drawings of the Amistad captives as they awaited trial in New Haven, 1839-40. The sketches were done by William H. Townsend, a New Havener who was about 18 years old when he made the drawings. George Miles of the Beinecke Library will discuss the drawings. and Joy Burns, a member of the contemporary Amistad Committee, will discuss the resonance of this event in history for New Haven and the nation today and share efforts to commemorate the Amistad now and for the future.
Michael Kelleher, Director of the the Windham Campbell Prizes, will discuss the papers of Donald Windham and Sandy Campbell, great creatives and life partners, and their legacy in the Windham Campbell Prizes.
Zoom webinar registration: https://bit.ly/2M1e7Hx
Finding aid for the Windham Campbell Papers at the Beinecke Library: https://archives.yale.edu/repositories/11/resources/1579
Melanie Chambliss will discuss some of the early donations to the James Weldon Johnson Memorial Collection and the motivations behind these gifts.
Zoom webinar registration: https://bit.ly/3plscNA
Chambliss is an assistant professor of history at Columbia College Chicago. She is currently working on her manuscript “Saving the Race: Black Archives, Black Liberation, and the Remaking of Modernity.” She earned her PhD in African American Studies at Yale and was a Graduate Student Fellow at the Beinecke Library.
Kodwo Eshun is a writer, theorist, and filmmaker. His research interests include contemporary art and critical theory with particular reference to postwar liberation movements, modern and contemporary musicality, cybernetic theory, the cinematic soundtrack and archaeologies of futurity.
Zoom webinar registration: https://bit.ly/3dhmr0T
Eshun will speak about his ongoing research in relation to Richard Wright and the Gold Coast, including work with materials in the Richard Wright Papers in the Beinecke Library.
Anthony Obayomi is a storyteller from Lagos, Nigeria who uses photography, filmmaking, and other storytelling techniques that combine art and technology in both traditional and experimental media. Obayomi’s documentary work is aimed at offering alternative perspectives to diverse audiences. He portrays people, society, and culture with the aim of fostering tolerance, mitigating stereotypes, questioning traditional opinions, and addressing issues of social justice. Obayomi earned a bachelor’s degree in visual arts from the University of Lagos.