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Symposium to focus on redefining black America

Author: Arts and Letters


The fifth annual Erskine A. Peters Fellowship Symposium, titled “Redefining (Black) America: Socio-Economic Variance in the Black Community,” will be held Thursday (March 13) at 7p.m. in the Eck Visitors’ Center auditorium at the University of Notre Dame. The event is free and open to the public.

Sponsored by the Department of Africana Studies, the symposium will feature panelists discussing political, class and social differences and other diversity issues within the black community and what they mean for the broader American culture.

The symposium will be moderated by Shayla C. Nunnally, an assistant professor with a joint appointment in political science and African-American studies at the University of Connecticut.

Notre Dame political scientist Darren Davis, who specializes in racial politics, will serve as a panelist, along with Erskine Peters fellows Tony Carey from the State University of New York, Stony Brook; Denise Challenger, York University; Marlene Daut, Notre Dame; Gladys Mitchell, University of Chicago; and Shana Redmond, Yale University.

Erskine A. Peters was a distinguished and beloved English professor at Notre Dame with a legendary commitment to scholarship, community service and graduate education and a passion for urging African-Americans to “rewrite their blueprint,” or code of behavior, for success in the 21st century. Peters died in 1998, and a year later, in memory and honor of his passion for empowering black Americans, Notre Dame established the Erskine A. Peters Dissertation Year Fellowship for outstanding African-American doctoral candidates in the arts, humanities and social sciences.

*Contact: * Tiwanna DeMoss, program coordinator, Erskine Peters Fellowship, 574-631-5628,

Originally published by Shannon Chapla at on March 10, 2008.