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James Peterson, Ph.D.
Connie Clayton Lecture, April 2, 2015, 4:30PM
Houston Hall, Hall of Flags
3417 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA
With the senseless murders of Black and Brown youth across America over the last year and past decades, educators, politicians, parents, and youth are stunned and torn with what to say and what to do. When the media coverage of these events fail to portray the life experiences of Black and Brown people as human or worthy of compassion, our collective societal trauma is multiplied.
Urban education is arguably the best public stage upon which the debate on resolving youth trauma should take place. Can children learn without engaging this trauma directly? While the incidents in Ferguson, Mo have rallied many of us to hold our hands up and declare the obvious importance of human life, the question of “Do Black and Brown Lives Matter?” remains.
Recasting the narratives of media portrayals of the lives of Black and Brown people involves telling whole stories of youth trauma, protest, and genius. The burden of not debating these deficit narratives has implications for how well educational leaders teach all children, engage their parents, prepare their teachers, and develop future leaders committed to urban school reform.
We are delighted to invite you to hear Dr. James Braxton Peterson to give the Connie Clayton Lecture on April 2, 2015, to discuss this question of “Do Black and Brown Lives Matter?”
Dr. Peterson (Duke ’93, UPENN 2003) is the Director of Africana Studies and Associate Professor of English at Lehigh University. He has been Associate Professor of English at Bucknell University, a visiting lecturer and preceptor in African American Studies at Princeton University and the Media Coordinator for the Harvard University Hip Hop Archive. He is also the founder of Hip Hop Scholars, LLC, an association of Hip Hop generational scholars dedicated to researching and developing the cultural and educational potential of Hip Hop, urban, and youth cultures. Peterson has written numerous scholarly articles on Hip Hop Culture, Multiculturalism, African American Literature, Culture, and Linguistics as well as Urban Studies. He has conducted interviews with Gil Scott Heron, Dr. Manning Marable, Sistah Souljah, Snoop Dogg, Dead Prez, DJ Jazzy Jeff and generally applies his journalistic skills and his ethnographic training toward innovative academic inquiry. In the last year, Dr. Peterson’s voice has been central in representing the unheard voices of Black and Brown youth from Ferguson and around the country.
Please join us. Howard Stevenson, Connie E. Clayton Chair