Kiese Laymon will talk with Courtney R. Baker about whether the actual histories of American colleges and universities should be ripe sites for Black American horror and comedic narratives. Laymon will create a live novella and a live essay during this talk, while questioning the ethics of making art “for” an audience longing for both titillation and innocence from the horrific histories of Black Americans in and around American institutions of higher learning.
The Julia S. Phelps Annual Lecture in the Arts and Humanities was established to honor the late Julia S. Phelps, longtime instructor in the Radcliffe Seminars, and is supported by the generous contributions of her family, friends, and colleagues.
Kiese Laymon is a 2020–2021 William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Fellow at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute, and Hubert H. McAlexander Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi.
Discussant is Courtney R. Baker, Associate Professor for the Department of English at the University of California, Riverside.