Howard University Teams Up With Columbia University Press for a New Book Series

Columbia University in New York City and historically Black Howard University in Washington, D.C. are jointly launching a new book series entitled Black Lives in the Diaspora: Past/Present/Future. Books in the new series will be published by Columbia University Press. The book series builds on Columbia University Press’ history of publications in Black studies and history, sociology, religion, philosophy, and literature, and recognizes the important voice in these fields and scholarly publishing that was lost with the closure of Howard’s university press over a decade ago.

This collaboration represents the first step in a larger planned partnership between the two universities to publish more robustly in Black studies and to recruit and support a cohort of editorial fellows to provide an entryway for recent HBCU graduates into the publishing industry.

The first book in the series, Vital and Valuable: The Relevance of HBCUs to American Life and Education by James V. Koch and Omari H. Swinton was recently published. The second book in the series is The Politics of Survival: Black Women Social Welfare Beneficiaries in Brazil and the United States by Gladys Mitchell-Walthour, which will be released in June. The third book is Turn the World Upside Down: Empire and Unruly Forms of Black Folk Culture in the U.S. and Caribbean by Imani Owens will be published in July.

Farah Jasmine Griffin, the William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature and African American Studies at Columbia University, stated that the book series will “showcase scholarship and the writing that enriches our understanding of Black experiences in the past, present, and future, with the goal of reaching beyond the academy to intervene in urgent national and international conversations about people and the experiences of people of African American descent.”

Dr. Griffin is the author or editor of several books including Harlem Nocturne: Women Artists and Progressive Politics During World War II ( Civitas Books, 2013). She is a graduate of Harvard University and holds a Ph.D. from Yale University.


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