Black Lives Matter Statement
The Department of English wholeheartedly supports the Black Lives Movement. We reject police brutality and the everyday violence that white supremacy visits upon Black people everywhere. We reaffirm our commitment to the University at Albany's Black students: to actively mentor and support you; to practice an anti-racist pedagogy that centers BIPOC and LGBTQ+ of color voices and expressive practices, as well as global histories of colonialism and imperialism; and to continue urging the UA administration to replace the two tenure-track professorships in African American literature and rhetoric that our department has recently lost. The University at Albany has committed itself to diversity and dismantling structural racism. We believe in making the study of African American literature available to students. This is because Black Lives Matter.
"Dickinson Variations" by Erica Fretwell published on Avidly
Professor Erica Fretwell's, "Dickinson Variations," reflections on the Dickinson television series, has been published on Avidly, a channel of the LA Review of Books.
Erica Fretwell has just published an important and timely piece in Aljazeera entitled “From Lynchings to the Capitol: Racism and the Violence of Revelry."
A snippet of Erica Fretwell's piece, “From Lynchings to the Capitol: Racism and the Violence of Revelry.”: “The braiding of entertainment and violence that occurs when white people riot is the twisted line that leads from 19th-century lynching to the insurrection. Lynching photographs teach us that today’s images of the failed coup – on the one hand clownish, on the other terrifying – are not dissonant; in reality, they go hand-in-hand. Enjoyment is not a by-product but a central feature of white people’s violence towards Black people and, more broadly, Black political power.”
Eric Keenaghan interviewed on Interchange
Eric Keenaghan’s interview on Interchange (hosted by Doug Force)--"How to Be Antifascist"--about Muriel Rukeyser & her book The Life of Poetry was aired and published online.
Edward Schwarzschild at Northshire Bookstore, Virtual Event, 1/22/21
Edward Schwarzschild will discuss his novel "In Security" with Adam Johnson, author of "The Orphan Master's Son." The event is online and will be held from 6:00-7:00 pm Friday, January 21. Tickets are available through Eventbrite by clicking the article title.
Poetry of James Crews featured in NYT magazine
Naomi Shihab Nye wrapped up her poetry column this year by featuring James Crews' poem "The Body Electric." James Crews is a lecturer in the English department, and regularly teaches creative writing. The article, including his poem can be found here.