Join us at the Center as we launch our Fall 2017 art exhibit, featuring story quilts based on the deployed experiences of Native American military veterans. Inspired by oral history interviews with veterans from each of North Carolina’s eight state- and federally-recognized tribes, these quilts are artifacts of lived experience and material culture from the American South. Their stories from World War II through ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan reflect the strength and complications of patriotism, as well as the struggles that sometimes continue after leaving the combat zone.
In addition to comments by Project Director Karen Harley, a member of the Haliwa-Saponi Indian tribe, the opening reception will include performances by Native musicians and excerpts from oral history interviews. This exhibit is made possible with funding from the North Carolina Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The reception is co-sponsored by UNC’s American Indian Center and Department of American Studies.
In her lecture, “Beyond the Slave Narrative,” Sophie White showcases the judicial testimony of enslaved Africans in criminal trials in French colonial Louisiana. Drawing on her current research project, White locates the verbal and non-verbal stories which enslaved individuals, forced into a global African diaspora, sought somehow to narrate. Reading past the details of the criminal cases, and interspersing her analysis with excerpts from their testimonies, she focuses on individual slaves’s subjectivity as conveyed through their inflections and uses of imagery, their choice of words and their silences. This lecture will be held in the Kresge Foundation Room (039 Graham Memorial Hall).
Sophie White is Associate Professor of American Studies, Africana Studies, and History at the University of Notre Dame. She describes herself as an “historian of early America with an interdisciplinary focus on cultural encounters between Europeans, Africans, and Native Americans, and a commitment to Atlantic and global research perspectives.” Professor White is the author of Wild Frenchmen and Frenchified Indians: Material Culture and Race in Colonial Louisiana (University of Pennsylvania Press, McNeil Center for Early American Studies series, 2012), which demonstrates that material culture–especially dress–was central to the elaboration of discourses about race in French colonial Louisiana. Her current book project, “Voices of the African Diaspora Within and Beyond the Atlantic World,” is centered on the analysis of an extraordinary body of testimony by enslaved Africans in colonial Louisiana and beyond. Both book projects have been supported by fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
This event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.