Professor pens article on historic election of Kamala Harris

Professor Janell Hobson is framed by heads in the audience as she speaks from a podium
Professor Janell Hobson reading her tribute article during a celebration of the life of Toni Morrison in 2019 in the Standish Room of the Science Library.

ALBANY, N.Y. (Feb. 4, 2021) — Kamala Harris’s historic election as vice president is a reason to celebrate many firsts: the first woman, the first child of immigrants, the first Black and the first South-Asian vice president, writes UAlbany Professor Janell Hobson in the latest edition of Ms. magazine.

Hobson, who chairs the Department of Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies, adds that Harris is on a trajectory that could lead to becoming the first female president of the United States.

In her article, Kamala Harris and the Feminist Future of America, Hobson takes note of the many women who came before her, the hard work ahead and the importance of having women in the highest offices.

“These symbolic changes matter,” Hobson writes. “Despite all the political and racial divisions, despite revelations of the #MeToo movement, despite our public health and climate change crises, there is reason to hope.”

Hobson, who holds a PhD from Emory University, has been at UAlbany since 2001, researching and teaching courses on intersections of race, class, gender, media, popular culture and feminist theory. She is the author of Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture (Routledge, 2005, second edition, 2018) and Body as Evidence: Mediating Race, Globalizing Gender (SUNY Press, 2012), and the editor of Are All the Women Still White? Rethinking Race, Expanding Feminisms (SUNY Press, 2016).