Brown Bag: “Writing Histories of Environmentalism in the U.S. South” @ Barnard Observatory
Mar 28 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

MARCH 28 at noon

Ellen Spears
“Writing Histories of Environmentalism in the US South”

Building on histories of environmental activism in the Southern US, Spears’s talk explores the challenges facing American environmentalism in 2017. Ellen Griffith Spears is an associate professor in the interdisciplinary New College and the Department of American Studies at the University of Alabama. Her research is broadly interdisciplinary, combining environmental and civil rights history with studies of science, technology, and public health. Her book, Baptized in PCBs: Race, Pollution, and Justice in an All-American Town, published in 2014 by the University of North Carolina Press, explores key questions faced by communities that seek to address systemic class and race inequalities and to tackle toxic pollution.


Visiting Documentarian Series: Emily Yellin and Darius Williams @ Tupelo Room, Barnard Observatory
Apr 10 @ 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm

On Tuesday, April 10 at 5:30pm in Barnard Observatory, Emily Yellin and Darius Williams will give a public talk on their project Striking Voices, which tells the story of the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Workers’ strike. From late March to early April, the Center’s Gammill Gallery will exhibit a series of portraits by Darius Williams that are part of the project.

Striking Voices is a multimedia journalism project centered around in-depth video interviews with the 1968 Memphis sanitation strikers and their families. The photos, taken between 2015 and 2017 after each interview, are meant to portray the real, relatable people from that historic time, but also to show how present these heroes are in our modern lives.

Journalist, producer and author Emily Yellin and the Striking Voices crew are in the process of producing a series of video stories, based on their interviews, that will focus on the lives of these men and women who were on the front lines of an iconic American battle.

Striking Voices will roll out in the first four months of 2018 on



Brown Bag: “‘Cautious but Solid Character’: Southern Feminists and the State” @ Barnard Observatory
Apr 11 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

APRIL 11 at noon

Jennifer Bingo Gunter
“‘Cautious but Solid Character’: Southern Feminists and the State”

Gunter’s talk is an investigation of the interactions of feminists and the state from 1966 through 1985. Nationally, women cooperated with officials of state agencies to push their agenda of self-sovereignty. Inspired by the Second Wave of the women’s movement, southern women worked with the state and manipulated state reactions to suit their needs.

Jennifer “Bingo” Gunter is a historian who specializes in the intersections of gender, race, health, law, and activism. Her upbringing by a feminist in Mississippi has led her to focus on inequalities and empowerment. With a passion for public history she looks for ways to bridge the town-gown gap. She now resides in Columbia, South Carolina, with her husband, two dachshunds, and a cat.

Brown Bag: “Saving Slave Houses” @ Barnard Observatory
Apr 18 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

APRIL 18 at noon

Jobie Hill
“Saving Slave Houses”

Since 2011 Jobie Hill’s research and professional work has focused exclusively on domestic slave buildings. She is engaged in interdisciplinary research examining the dwellings of American slavery, the influence these dwellings had on the lives of their inhabitants, and the preservation of slave history. In 2012 she started an independent project titled the Slave House Database in an effort to ensure that slave houses, irreplaceable pieces of history, are not lost forever.

Documenting LGBTQ Histories in Mississippi – Oral History Presentation @ Burns-Belfry Museum and Multicultural Center
Apr 25 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Dr. Jessica Wilkerson’s graduate seminar on southern queer history will present “Documenting LGBTQ Histories in Mississippi,” an oral history performance and exhibit. Students will reflect on oral history interviews completed for the class and connect the interviews to broader themes in southern and American LGBTQ history.

Light refreshments. Free and open to the public.