Harvard Looks to Rehire Black Studies Professors Bobo and Morgan

Two years ago the esteemed African-American sociologist Lawrence Bobo announced that he was leaving Harvard for Stanford University. The move came about after then-Harvard president Lawrence Summers had overruled a unanimous recommendation from the faculty of the African and African-American studies department to grant tenure to Bobo’s wife, Marcyliena Morgan. Professor Morgan, a respected scholar of hip-hop culture, received a tenure offer as an associate professor of communications at Stanford.

Now Lawrence Summers is gone and the African and African-American studies department is aiming to persuade Bobo and Morgan to return to Harvard. The department has petitioned the Harvard administration to reopen Morgan’s application for tenure. 

Department chair Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham told the Harvard Crimson, “We don’t even know if they want to come back.” But James Sidanius, professor of psychology at Harvard, said it is “my understanding that if they are both offered a position, they are most likely to return.”