Winter/Spring 2019

Upcoming Lapidus Center events are listed in this season’s gorgeous Schomburg catalog:

Fall 2018

November 8: I will be speaking on a roundtable entitled “Everyday Utopias” at 4:00 pm at the American Studies Association conference, Westin Peachtree, Augusta 2. The other speakers include Bianca Williams, Krista Franklin, Tricia Hersey-Patrick, and Stephanie Batiste (moderator).

October 4-5: I will be participating in a series of events at Texas Christian University, including a mentoring lunch, public talk, and a discussion on conducting research in race and ethnic studies.

Spring 2018 

April 16: I will be discussing Afro-Atlantic Flight at the U.S. Naval Academy’s Africa Forum.

March 30: I will be presenting a part of a new article entitled "Theatrical Speculations" at the Slavery's Reinventions symposium, which will be held at Rutgers University.

January 5: I will be participating in a roundtable discussion at MLA entitled "The Futures of Afrofuturism" with most of the folks who attended the symposium by the same name at UTK in March 2017 (event co-organized by A. Elias and yours truly). The roundtable will run from 8:30 am to 9:45 am. More details here: 

Fall 2017

October 27: I will be taking part in a roundtable discussion entitled "Afro-Atlantic, Latin/x, and Transpacific Speculations: Radical Traditions across Deep Time" with Aimee Bahng and Renee Hudson at the ASAP/9 conference (hosted by UC Berkeley) in Oakland, California, from 10:45 am-12:15 pm. Details here:

November 8: Book event for Afro-Atlantic Flight at Chicago's Seminary Co-Op Bookstore, 6-7:30 pm. For more information and/or to RSVP, click here:

November 9: I'll be chairing the "Activating Dissent/Descent: Epistemologies of the Fantastic" panel at the American Studies Association's Annual Meeting in Chicago. Panel information:

Spring 2017

January 6: Presentation of "Flights toward Social Life: Afro-Speculation as Genre and Modality in post-1965 Black American Literature," on the panel Race, Science, Speculation at the Modern Language Association's Annual Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

 March 27-31:  I will be co-hosting Afrofuturism Week at UTK! Afrofuturism Week will include film showings, events and poster displays at Hodges Library, a 2-day "The Futures of Afrofuturism" symposium with major scholars/authors/artists, and more! You may view the symposium schedule here:

March 28: I will be leading a public book discussion of Octavia Butler's Kindred for the Knox County Library's Books Sandwiched In program. This will be a special evening event at the East Tennessee History Center (601 Gay Street). 6:30-8 pm.


March 30: Award-winning sci-fi and Africanfuturist author, Nnedi Okorafor (, will be giving a talk entitled "At Home" at 6:30 pm in UTK's Hodges Library's Lindsay Young Auditorium.








 March 13: I will be leading the Sunday Symposium at UTK's Ula Love Doughty Carousel Theatre after the final performance of an adaptation of Ernest Gaines' A Lesson before Dying. 

For more information: arts/lesson-before-dying-plays-at-carousel-theatre-2b848322-a52e-17b6-e053-0100007ff6c6-369480762.html


March 23: I will be giving a presentation on Ghana's relationship with the African Diaspora for the UTK Haslam Scholars' Spring 2016 Global Awareness Series. 6-7 pm in Room 118, Howard Baker Center.

For more information:


May 28: I am overjoyed to be giving a conference presentation at the International James Baldwin Conference, American University of Paris (France). My paper is entitled "On the Limitations of Expatriation: Breath and Social Life in Baldwin’s Proto-Speculative Thought and Reginald McKnight’s I Get on the Bus." Panel 22: James Baldwin: Literary Traditions, Receptions and Influences, which begins at 9:30 am.

The conference program is available here:


June 2-4: I am scheduled to give a keynote address on Afro-speculation for Freie Universität's Graduate School for North American Studies' International Graduate Conference (Berlin, Germany): "Flows and Undercurrents - Dimensions of (Im)mobility in North America." What an honor! More information about the GSNAS conference can be found here:

November 17: I will be presenting some new material from my research on plantation tourism, "Troubling Roots Tourism: Democratizing Master Narratives at Sites of Transatlantic Slavery the U.S. South" at the American Studies Association's Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado.