Four Black Women Scholars Who Are Taking on New Assignments in Higher Education

Tracey Denean Sharpley-Whiting, who holds the Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Chair in the Humanities and is a professor of African American and diaspora studies and French at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, is taking on the added duties of vice provost for arts and libraries. She has stepped down as associate provost and chair of African American and Diaspora Studies.

Professor Sharpley-Whiting is the author of many books including Pimps Up, Ho’s Down: Hip Hop’s Hold on Young Black Women (New York University Press, 2007), Black Venus: Sexualized Savages, Primal Fears, and Primitive Narratives in French (Duke University Press, 2009), Bricktop’s Paris: African American Women in Paris Between the Two World Wars (State University of New York Press, 2015) and Negritude Women (University of Minnesota Press, 2002). Professor Sharpley-Whiting holds a Ph.D. from Brown University.

Nontsikelelo Mutiti was appointed director of graduate studies in graphic design at the Yale School of Art. She has held assistant professorships at Virginia Commonwealth University and Purchase College of the State University of New York.

Mutiti holds a diploma in multimedia from the Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts and a master of fine arts degree in graphic design from the Yale School of Art.

Noémie Ndiaye has been named the Randy L. and Melvin R. Berlin Assistant Professor of Renaissance and Early Modern English Literature at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Scripts of Blackness: Early Modern Performance Culture and the Making of Race (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2022).

Dr. Ndiaye is a graduate of Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris. She earned a Ph.D. at Columbia University in New York City.

Shola K. Roberts will be joining the dance faculty in the School of Music, Dance and Theatre at Arizona State University. Her research interests include developing pedagogy and curriculum rooted in African diasporic dances — specifically dances indigenous to her native Grenada.

Roberts is a graduate of Howard Univerity in Washington D.C., where she majored in dance and Caribbean studies. She holds a master of fine arts degree from Hunter College of the City University of New York and is currently completing a doctorate in dance education from Columbia University.


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