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Saidiya Hartman

February 17–18, 2020

Bio

Saidiya Hartman is an American writer, researcher, and professor, whose major fields of study range from African American and American literature to cultural history, slavery, law and literature, and performance studies. Hartman gives a beautiful and generous attention to individual stories in the process of writing about large topics of collective history and culture such as race, queer identity, slavery and more, an attention she sometimes shines on her own individual story as in the memoir Lose Your Mother: A Journey Along the Atlantic Slave Route. Born and raised in New York City, Hartman has been a Cullman Fellow at the New York Public Library, a Fulbright Scholar in Ghana, a Whitney Oates Fellow at Princeton University, and a Rockefeller Fellow at Brown University. She is the author of three major works, Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-making in Nineteenth Century America, (Oxford University Press,1997), Lose Your Mother: A Journey Along the Atlantic Slave Route (Farrar,Straus and Giroux, 2007), and most recently Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments: Intimate Histories of Social Upheaval (W. W. Norton, 2019). Hartman currently teaches in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University and is working on a new project surrounding ideas on photography and ethics.