Visiting Fellows 2011-12
Robert (Bob) Parris Moses grew up in Harlem, attended Stuyvesant High School (1952), Hamilton College (BA, 1956), Harvard University (MA Philosophy, 1957) and taught middle school math for three years (Horace Mann School, NY) before traveling South in the summer of 1961 to join the burgeoning sit-in movement as a field secretary for the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).
He initiated SNCC’s Mississippi Voter Registration Project that summer, was appointed its director in 1962, and together with Medgar Evers (NAACP), David Dennis (CORE) and Aaron Henry (SCLC), revitalized and led the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO) into the Mississippi Summer Project (1964 Freedom Summer), which parachuted the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) to the National Democratic Convention in Atlantic City, where Fannie Lou Hamer led the MFDP insurgency which eliminated Jim Crow from the National Democratic Party.
When Moses turned 18 in the middle of his freshman year at Hamilton, he petitioned his Harlem based draft board for Conscientious Objection (CO) to war. He was granted student deferment status through his Hamilton, Harvard and Horace Mann years, but, soon after joining SNCC, he was denied CO status at a hearing in 1961. A speaker at the first national student rally against the war in Vietnam (organized by Students for a Democratic Society, SDS, Spring 1965), he joined Staughton Lynd, Dave Dellinger and Women’s Strike For Peace to organize The Congress of Unrepresented People (summer 1965), spoke out against the war (1965-’66), and left the country (August 1966) when ordered to report to the Army. He and his wife, Janet Jemmott, made their way to Tanzania where they served as teachers for its Ministry of Education until 1976.
He and Janet returned to the States with their family (Maisha, Omo, Taba and Malika) where Bob returned to Harvard’s PhD Philosophy program in the summer of ’76 to study W.V.O. Quine’s philosophy of mathematics. While Janet worked with the children on their language arts, Bob organized their mathematics education and used a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (1982-87) to enter their school as a parent volunteer, teach Maisha algebra and initiate the Algebra Project, and the use of mathematics as an organizing tool for a Quality Public School Education (QECR) for all students.
- Radical Equations—Civil Rights from Mississippi to the Algebra Project (Beacon, 2001)
- Quality Education as a Constitutional Right-creating a grassroots movement to transform public schools (Beacon Press, 2010)
While at CAAS, Danielle will work on her manuscript, Uncovering Blackness: Racial Ideology and Black Consciousness in Contemporary Cuba. The project examines racial ideology in Cuba, a union of the ideology of racial democracy and socialist ideology, and its effects on racial attitudes among Cubans and identity formation and racial consciousness among blacks in particular. Uncovering Blackness focuses on state rhetoric and policy in Cuba that have promoted national identity and unity as supreme over racial identity, creating an institutional framework that does not allow for the proliferation of alternate racial ideologies and promotes the philosophy that race is not a cleavage that matters in revolutionary Cuba. She explores black political thought in Cuba amidst this ideological context, both among elites and in everyday conversation, showing that the relevance of racism and experiences with discrimination in Cuba are correlated to feelings of racial solidarity and attitudes that challenge the dominant racial ideology. Danielle's research uses survey data on black racial attitudes and identity and interview data among Cubans of all races that she collected in Havana in 2008 and 2009 to determine not only the scope of black identity, but how whites, blacks and mulattoes view race in their everyday lives. Her research highlights the political importance of race and the racial dialogue that comes out of black communities as racial difference determines modes of access and influences everyday social interactions for nonwhites. Her work is part of a larger conversation about the intersection of ideology and black political thought, both in Cuba and throughout the Americas.
Stanhope Hall 008
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2008
Emily Lutenski received her Ph.D. in English and Women’s Studies from the University of Michigan in 2008. Before coming to CAAS, she served as an Instructor in Ethnic Studies and Affiliated Faculty in Women’s Studies at Bowling Green State University. Her teaching and research focus on 20th century American literature, with emphasis in comparative ethnic literatures and cultures, gender and feminist studies, and modernism.
While at CAAS, Emily will continue work on her book manuscript, “Beyond Harlem: New Negro Cartographies of the American West,” which is under contract with the University Press of Kansas for the CultureAmerica series, edited by Erika Doss and Philip J. Deloria. This project introduces African American writers to the scope of the American West in the early 20th century, calling into question the geographical limits—urban, Atlantic—of the New Negro. By locating modern African American literature the unexpected geography of the American West, “Beyond Harlem” rethinks tropes of black diaspora by considering the U.S.-Mexico border, bringing central paradigms of black studies into conversation with Chicana/o studies.
Emily has published essays in MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States and Western American Literature, and has work forthcoming in SAIL: Studies in American Indian Literatures. Her essay from MELUS, “ ‘A Small Man in Big Spaces:’ The New Negro, the Mestizo, and Jean Toomer’s Southwestern Writing,” was recently reprinted in Cane: A Norton Critical Edition, edited by Rudolph P. Byrd and Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
After concluding her fellowship, Emily will begin her appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of American Studies at Saint Louis University.