Thanks to Tim and all the other contributors for the invitation to join the blog.
I am a Ph.D. Candidate in the History Department at Michigan State University. I’m in the very middle of writing my dissertation in African American Intellectual history. I study a group of African American intellectuals and activists whom W. E. B. Du Bois and J. E. Spingarn identified as the best black minds of the 1930s. These men and women critiqued the NAACP for its failure to connect with the African American “masses” at the Second Amenia Conference. They created a network of friends and colleagues that sustained them through the next decades of their professions and activism. I explore and challenge the dichotomies between detached intellectual and committed activist, between economic- and race-based activism, and between activist and accommodationist. I also explore the differences between men’s and women’s plans to improve the status of African Americans in the nation. In this exploration, I have found several important but unstudied African American women leaders whose work in black colleges, the YWCA, the League of Nations, and the New Deal change our perceptions of Depression-era black leadership.
I got my BA at Arizona State University, going straight from there to MSU. I grew up in Arizona, but actually enjoy the climate in Michigan. Seasons are glorious things and provide me with constant amusement.
I look forward to contributing to the blog. Others’ posts have already stimulated my thinking in many productive veins.