Hampton University
HU Annual Read-In Selects Michael Eric Dyson's 'The Black Presidency'
03/06/2017 - #164

HAMPTON, Va.— The Hampton University School of Liberal Arts and Education has selected Dr. Michael Eric Dyson’s “The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America” as the 2017 Hampton University Read-In book. The 2017 Hampton University Read-In will take place on Wednesday, March 22 to Thursday, March 23.

The Read-In will begin with the Opening Session at 6:00 p.m. in Ogden Hall on March 22, during which Dyson will discuss and entertain questions about the book.  This event is free and open to the public.  Additional activities are scheduled for March 23.  

“Although a new administration has assumed leadership of the White House and our country, Dr. Dyson’s work on former President Barack Obama remains timely as the country begins to take a look back at our first Black president’s work and accomplishments,“ said Margaret Dismond Martin, Hampton University Read-In chair, director of the Liberal Studies Program, and assistant professor of English.

Since 1988, the Hampton University Department of English has hosted the Hampton University Read-In, an event designed to offer all segments of the University community and surrounding communities the opportunity to focus on one particular book for study and discussion.  Through the years, the department and the School of Liberal Arts and Education have selected, primarily, works of fiction by African-American authors such as Ernest Gaines’ A Gathering of Old Men, Ishmael Reed’s Flight to Canada, Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, Toni Morrison’s A Mercy, Mat Johnson’s PYM: A Novel, Jeff Hobbs’ The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace A Brilliant Young Man Who Left Newark for the Ivy League, and Tayari Jones’ Leaving Atlanta.  The 2017 selection The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America by Michael Eric Dyson dives deeply into the true meaning of Barack Obama’s historic presidency and its effects on the changing landscape of race and blackness in America.  

Michael Eric Dyson
Dyson was granted an exclusive interview with the president for this book, and Obama’s own voice shines through. Along with interviews with Eric Holder, Al Sharpton, Maxine Waters, and others, this intimate access provides a unique depth to this engrossing analysis of the nation’s first black president, and how race has shaped and will shape our understanding of his achievements and failures, alike.

Dyson is a best-selling and award-winning author. His speeches and books both provide some of the most significant commentary on modern social and intellectual thought today, interwoven with a combination of cultural criticism, race theory, religion, philosophical reflection, and gender studies. Works such as "Making Malcolm X;" "I May Not Get There with You;" "Holler if You Hear Me;" and "Mercy, Mercy Me: The Art, Loves and Demons of Marvin Gaye" deeply probe social themes and cultural politics.

A popular professor of sociology at Georgetown University, Dyson is a speaker that will never bore audiences; his presentations are thought-provoking, unwavering and foster social change. His excitement about his selected topics -- which range from the sociology of hip hop to Dr. King for the 21st Century, among others -- is contagious.

For more information, feel free to contact the Hampton University Read-In Department at 757.727.5421.

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