Healing Community: Black Women on The Arts and Liberation Pedagogy

Healing Community: Black Women on The Arts and Liberation Pedagogy

In her timeless Black feminist novel The Salt Eaters (1980), author, educator, and organizer Toni Cade Bambara wrote, “Are you sure, sweetheart, that you want to be well?” For Bambara and other activist-writers, the ideas of wellness and freedom are taken up as dynamic issues for both are interrelated—individual health and the health of one’s community. Over forty years later, the question of wellness remains a significant yet inconspicuous conversation among Black women. Drawn together by their extensive and impactful experiences as creatives and educators, this panel offers a public discussion about the wellness and humanity of Black women engaging in Black arts and liberation pedagogy.


Shauna Morgan, Associate Professor of Creative Writing, English, and Africana Literature and Director of Equity and Inclusion Initiatives in Teaching and Learning, University of Kentucky

Author of the chapbook Fear of Dogs & Other Animals, Professor Morgan’s poetry is rooted in the ecosystems of Black life, and her scholarship examines the continuum of decoloniality and possibility in global Black art and culture. Her critical work has been published in Journal of Postcolonial Writing, South Atlantic Review, Ariel: A Review of International English Literature, and other venues. Her poetry has appeared in A Gathering Together, Interviewing the Caribbean, and a Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia, among other periodicals and anthologies. She currently serves as editor of the CLA Journal, the official publication of the College Language Association.


DaMaris B. Hill, Professor of Creative Writing, English, and African American Studies, University of Kentucky

DaMaris B. Hill is a poet and creative scholar. She is the author of Breath Better Spent: Living Black Girlhood, A Bound Woman Is a Dangerous Thing, The Fluid Boundaries of Suffrage and Jim Crow: Staking Claims in the American Heartland, Vi-zə-bəl   Teks-chərs (Visible Textures), and other books. Her digital work includes “Shut Up In My Bones,” a twenty-first century poem.


Grace Hampton, Professor Emerita of Art, Art Education, Integrative Arts, and African Studies, Penn State

Professor Hampton has served as director of the School of Visual Arts, vice provost, executive assistant to the Provost for the Development of the Arts, head of African and African American Studies, and University-wide Senior Faculty Mentor. She has received two Senior Fulbright Awards for the development of a research collaborative between Penn State, Kwame Nkrumah University in Ghana and Ilorin University in Nigeria, and a lecture series has been named in her honor by the National Art Education Association. Hampton continues to supervise independent study courses and currently serves as a fellow in the Intergenerational Leadership Institute, where she develops intergenerational arts and cultural programs.


Carmin Wong, Graduate Student, Department of English and the Program in African American and Diaspora Studies, Penn State

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Virtual Event