History

Professor Colin Gordon: “Dividing the City: Private Racial Restrictions and the Architecture of Segregation in the Midwest.”

The Department of History is pleased to announce the 48th Carl L. Becker Memorial Lecture in History: Professor Colin Gordon (University of Iowa) will present “Dividing the City: Private Racial Restrictions and the Architecture of Segregation in the Midwest.”

Dividing the City traces the efforts of developers, realtors, and white homeowners to restrict property by race in the first half of the twentieth century. Drawing on archival research in property records in St. Louis City and St. Louis County in Missouri, and Black Hawk and Johnson Counties in Iowa, Gordon underscores the scope, the intensity, and the impact of such restrictions—both on contemporary housing opportunities, and on patterns of racial segregation and racial inequality that run to the present day.

The lecture will take place at 7:00 pm in Seerley 115 and via Zoom. Register to receive a Zoom link here: https://bit.ly/UNI-Becker2022

We hope to see you there, in person or virtually!

48th Carl L. Becker Memorial Lecture, given by Professor Colin Gordon

The Department of History is pleased to announce the 48th Carl L. Becker Memorial Lecture in History: on February 23, 2022, Professor Colin Gordon (University of Iowa) is scheduled to present “Dividing the City: Private Racial Restrictions and the Architecture of Segregation in the Midwest.” The lecture will take place at 7:00 pm in Seerley 115 and by Zoom.

To participate via Zoom:

https://bit.ly/UNI-Becker2022

Dan Hicks: The Brutish Museums

Author Dan Hicks will talk give a talk on The Brutish Museums: The Benin Bronzes, Colonial Violence and Cultural Restitution on Friday, April 16, at 1 p.m., via Zoom. 

"Walk into any European museum today and you will see the curated spoils of Empire. They sit behind plate glass: dignified, tastefully lit. Accompanying pieces of card offer a name, date and place of origin. They do not mention that the objects are all stolen." - excerpt from The Brutish Museums

Everyone is welcome to join; register to attend: http://bit.ly/BrutishMuseums

Caste: the Origins of our Discontents, Book Discussion

In conjunction with the Department of History's annual Phi Alpha Theta Lecture Series and in recognition of Black History Month, UNI Professor Lou Fenech, noted scholar of India, and Cheryl Dong, researcher of African-American history, will lead a book discussion of Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents. Professor Fenech notes, "The book is an interesting one, appealing to me as an Indologist as it covers a terrain well-trod by scholars since the early twentieth century, India's millennium-old caste system. But it also provides a new frame from which to view African American history." This event is free and open to the public, and completion of the book prior to the event is encouraged.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson says racism is an insufficient term for the systemic oppression of Black people in America. Instead, she prefers to refer to America as having a "caste" system.

Wilkerson describes caste as an artificial hierarchy that helps determine standing and respect, assumptions of beauty and competence, and even who gets the benefit of the doubt and access to resources.

"Caste focuses in on the infrastructure of our divisions and the rankings, whereas race is the metric that's used to determine one's place in that," she says.

Wilkerson notes that the concept of caste has been around for thousands of years: "[Caste] predates the idea of race, which is ... only 400 or 500 years old, dating back to the transatlantic slave trade."

Caste, she adds, "is the term that is more precise [than race]; it is more comprehensive, and it gets at the underlying infrastructure that often we cannot see, but that is there undergirding much of the inequality and injustices and disparities that we live with in this country." -- NPR.org, August 4th 2020 (https://www.npr.org/2020/08/04/898574852/its-more-than-racism-isabel-wil...

Blackdom

UNI History alumnus, Dr. Timothy E. Nelson the Historian is passionate about the significance of the Afro-Frontier in American history, and he uncovers the forgotten history of Blackdom, New Mexico.
Dr. Nelson merges Blackdom’s history with New Western History, Borderland Studies, Diasporic Studies, and Blacks in the West, placing Afro-Frontierists® at the center of their histories, rather than as footnotes of other people’s histories.
Through his dissertation as well as his current outreach, Dr. Nelson’s goal is uncovering and advocating for untold stories. He unequivocally raises the voices of Afro-Frontierists®.