Feb
26
Mon
SouthTalks: The Warehouses @ Barnard Observatory
Feb 26 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

NEW DATE!

The Warehouses Ivette Spradlin

Ivette Spradlin is a Cuban American artist whose work centers on the emotional aspects of transition, adaptation, and communal ties. She holds an MFA from Tyler School of Art at Temple University and a BFA from the University of Georgia. Since the 1990s she has photographed and recorded the stories of members of different subcultures and their environs, such as punks and skateboarders, Cuban exiles in the United States, female-identifying artists, elderly jazz musicians in Pittsburgh, people who have experienced a Bigfoot sighting, and her friends and neighbors during the 2020 lockdown.

Spradlin’s project Wild Wild West End Oral History was originally developed from the fall of 1999 to the spring of 2000. Tenants of four warehouses in the West End of Atlanta, Georgia—punks, artists, dreamers—agreed to be photographed. Each subject was also asked to give a quote to accompany their image. Their likeness, their musings, and the warehouse itself were then turned into a handmade book called The Warehouses. The book is coptic-bound and filled with screen-printed collages from photographs of their living environs and silver gelatin prints of the tenants. All text was letter pressed with handset type. Only one complete copy of the artist book was ever made.

The video of these oral histories offers a new perspective and accounting of this unique warehouse living experience. While the book documents Atlanta’s DIY scene at the turn of the last century, the oral histories offer memories of a specific place and time in a subculture. If the book is the facts, the videos are the feeling. Former warehouse tenants tell stories about the freedom they felt and the friendships and bonds created there.

Ivette Spradlin’s photography project, titled The Warehouses and based on her Wild Wild West End Oral History, will exhibit in the Gammill Gallery in Barnard Observatory now. A walk-through exhibition talk with Spradlin will take place on Feb. 26.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

Mar
2
Sat
SouthTalks: Our Turn @ Barnard Observatory
Mar 2 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Our Turn

Daniela Griffin, Princeton James, and Zaire Love

Our Turn is more than an exhibition; it is a powerful declaration of reclamation. Daniela Griffin, Princeton James, and Zaire Love, three Black southern artists, are returning to the campus where they once walked as students all set to make their mark with unapologetic creativity. The exhibition promises to be a captivating and immersive experience. Together, these three multidisciplinary artists reclaim their space in art creation and showcase their talent and creativity powered by the gift of Blackness nurtured in the South.

Daniela Griffin is a sociological philanthropist, a model, and an actress. She holds a BA in sociology from the University of Florida and an MA in sociology from the University of Mississippi. She is the director of the North Mississippi Get2College center in Southaven, Mississippi. Princeton Echols is a playwright, producer, director, actor, and vocalist who wrote directed, and produced the play The Royal Family. Zaire Love is a music maker, writer, educator, and the Pihakis Documentary Filmmaker for the Southern Foodways Alliance.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

Mar
6
Wed
SouthTalks: Unearthing Black Midwifery Stories and Traditions  @ Barnard Observatory
Mar 6 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Linda Janet Holmes, former director of the New Jersey Health Department Office of Minority and Multicultural Health, began recording interviews with traditional African American midwives decades ago.   Her most recent book, Safe in a Midwife’s Hands:  Birthing Traditions from Africa to the American South, focuses on the practices of Black midwives whose holistic approaches are essential counterbalances to a medical system that routinely fails Black mothers and babies. Her award-winning book, Listen To Me GoodThe Life Story of an Alabama Midwife, was co-authored with Margaret Charles Smith, a legendary Greene County Alabama midwife, and documents the contributions of a singular Black midwife. A past faculty member of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey Nurse Midwife Program, Holmes now lives in Hampton, Va. Her previously published books also include A Joyous Revolt: Toni Cade Bambara, Writer and Activist and Savoring the Salt: The Legacy of Toni Cade Bambara, co-authored with Cheryl Wall.
SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.
Mar
20
Wed
SouthTalks: “Amplifying ‘Anotherness’: Disrupting Dominant Narratives about Appalachia” @ Virtual
Mar 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

“Amplifying ‘Anotherness’: Disrupting Dominant Narratives about Appalachia”

a Virtual Event with Neema Avashia

Both Appalachia and the South are frequently represented as monoliths in mainstream media representations of place and people. But for the folks who live in these regions, we know that they are far from monolithic. That they are home to immigrants, to queer people, to Hindus and Buddhists and Muslims and Jews, to people who are politically radical, to every identity not included in a dominant narrative that casts our homes as white, Christian, straight, and conservative. This dominant narrative has been used to vilify Appalachian people, to dehumanize them, and ultimately, to extract the resources from the regions without any accountability for that extraction. In this SouthTalk, Neema Avashia explores what happens when we challenge that dominant narrative, when we write and publish and amplify narratives that complicate understanding of place and people.

Neema Avashia is the daughter of Indian immigrants and was born and raised in southern West Virginia. She has been an educator and activist in the Boston Public Schools since 2003 and was named a City of Boston Educator of the Year in 2013. Her first book was Another Appalachia: Coming Up Queer and Indian in a Mountain Place.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

 

Mar
27
Wed
SouthTalks: “‘Ain’t I Pretty?’: Sweet Daddy Grace and the Sacred Blues of the Badman” @ Barnard Observatory Tupelo Room
Mar 27 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

“‘Ain’t I Pretty?’: Sweet Daddy Grace and the Sacred Blues of the Badman”

Xavier Sivels

From the summer of 1926 until his death in 1959, Charles Manuel Grace made a name for himself as the faith-healing leader of the United House of Prayer for All People (UHOP). Establishing widespread support for his ministry in working-class communities in the American Southeast, he organized the UHOP as an alternative to mainstream churches by blending charismatic religion and secular culture. Grace adapted the “badman” archetype of the blues to inform his ministry, upend traditional notions of Black masculinity, and blur distinctions between the sacred and the profane. The result was a multimillion-dollar religious empire centered around his embodiment of the badman in the pulpit as “Sweet Daddy” Grace.

Xavier Sivels is a doctoral candidate in history at Mississippi State University. His research looks at the intersections of African American history, popular music, and gender/sexuality. His dissertation “Freakish Man: Sexual Blues, Sacred Beliefs, and the Transformation of Black Queer Identity, 1870–1957,” uses Black popular music and religion to trace how Black working-class culture changed from accepting, and even celebrating, queer sexuality in the public sphere to insisting that it remain closeted. Sivels was the 2023 Study the South Research Fellow.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

Xavier Sivels in a green suit with a flower in the lapel

Apr
9
Tue
SouthTalks: After Sherman @ Overby Center Auditorium
Apr 9 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

After Sherman

Jon-Sesrie Goff

Returning to the coastal South Carolina land that his family purchased after Emancipation, filmmaker Jon-Sesrie Goff desired to explore his Gullah/Geechee roots, a journey that transformed into a poetic investigation of Black inheritance, trauma, and generational wisdom amid the violent tensions that define America’s collective history.

Jon-Sesrie Goff is a multidisciplinary artist, curator, and arts administrator. His work, including his documentary film After Sherman, includes extensive research, visual documentation, and oral history interviews in the coastal American South on the legacy of Black landownership and Gullah/Geechee heritage preservation.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

 

Apr
10
Wed
SouthTalks: “Good Night, New Deal: The Waltons and the South’s Great Depression in American Memory” @ Barnard Observatory Tupelo Room
Apr 10 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

“Good Night, New Deal: The Waltons and the South’s Great Depression in American Memory”

Darren E. Grem

The Waltons, a popular television show airing from 1972 to 1981, re-remembered and re-framed for millions what the Great Depression and New Deal meant, using Virginia writer Earl Hamner Jr.’s personal remembrances and novels to present southern whites as exemplars of family ties, communal bonds, and self-reliant work. Tapping into a growing conservative outlook in American life and politics, The Waltons joined—and conflicted with—other southern memory myths that erased or enhanced the New Deal and federal state’s role in the Depression-era and modern South. This talk will consider what The Waltons’s regional, racial, and rural storylines offered Americans reeling during the recessionary 1970s. More broadly, it will use The Waltons as a springboard for considering the memories and myths we allow to be aired when capitalism falters or fails, whether derived from the distant hard times of the 1930s or 1970s or the recent hard times of the Great Recession and Covid-crash.

Darren E. Grem is an associate professor of history and Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi. He is the author of The Blessings of Business: How Corporations Shaped Conservative Christianity, and his next book, Hard Times, USA: The Great Depression and New Deal in American Memory, explores how Americans after World War II remembered and used the Great Depression via popular culture and in political activism for and against the New Deal state.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

Apr
16
Tue
SouthTalks: Deep Inside the Blue @ Barnard Obervatory
Apr 16 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Deep Inside the Blue

Margo Cooper, Joe Ayers, and Trent Ayers

In this SouthTalk, photographer and author will be joined in conversation by blues musicians Joe Ayers and his son Trent Ayers. Cooper had the privilege of interviewing both Ayers men for her book Deep Inside the Blues. She describes Joe Ayers as kind, wise, and passionate about playing guitar. Trent Ayers grew up listening to a variety of blues music with his father—tapes of Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup, Muddy Waters, R. L. Burnside, and Junior Kimbrough, and Trent and his father recently worked on an album together called A Father Son Legacy. Joe and Trent Ayers will play music during this SouthTalk.

Margo Cooper’s recently published book, Deep Inside the Blues, collects thirty-four of her interviews with blues artists and is illustrated with more than 160 of her photographs. Many of the key blues players of the period have already passed, making their stories and Cooper’s photographs of them all the more poignant and valuable.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

black and white photo of man playing fife

Apr
24
Wed
SouthTalks: “Cold War Country: Music Row, the Pentagon, and the Sound of American Patriotism” @ Barnard Observatory
Apr 24 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

“Cold War Country: Music Row, the Pentagon, and the Sound of American Patriotism”

Joseph M. Thompson

Country music maintains a unique, decades-long relationship to the US military, but these ties didn’t just happen. Joseph M. Thompson explores how country music’s Nashville-based business leaders on Music Row created partnerships with the Pentagon to sell their audiences on military service while selling country music to US servicemembers and international audiences. Beginning in the 1950s, the military flooded armed forces airwaves with the music, hosted tour dates at bases around the world, and drew on country music artists to support recruitment programs. Over the last half of the twentieth century, the close connections between the Defense Department and Music Row gave an economic boost to the white-dominated sounds of country while fueling divisions over the meaning of patriotism.

Joseph M. Thompson is assistant professor of history at Mississippi State University. His first book, Cold War Country: How Nashville’s Music Row and the Pentagon Created the Sound of American Patriotism, analyzes the economic and symbolic connections between the country music business and the military-industrial complex since World War II.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

illustration

May
1
Wed
SouthTalks: “Faulkner’s Enduring Queerness” @ Barnard Observatory
May 1 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Phillip “Pip” Gordon, UM visiting assistant professor of gender studies in the Sarah Isom Center for Women’s and Gender Studies, discusses “Faulkner’s Enduring Queerness” at noon May 1. Gordon discusses Faulkner’s relevance to broadening fields of trans and ace studies and the value such approaches have to our understanding of Faulkner and the South.

SouthTalks is a series of events (including lectures, performances, film screenings, and panel discussions) that explores the interdisciplinary nature of Southern Studies. This series is free and open to the public, and typically takes place in the Tupelo Room of Barnard Observatory unless otherwise noted. Visit southernstudies.olemiss.edu for more information about all Center events.

May
3
Fri
Spring Documentary Showcase @ Barnard Observatory
May 3 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Gammill Gallery and Tupelo Room

Barnard Observatory

 Spring Documentary Showcase

The Spring Documentary Showcase is a celebration of the work by our documentary students. Each artist will present their work. Attendees will have an opportunity to engage with the artists and their work during a reception.