CUNY commemorates its 50th anniversary.This special celebration for the Graduate Center community will consist of brief presentations, accompanied by a series of visual images, delivered by some of our newer faculty members. Each speaker has chosen a single-word subject and will elucidate how our view of that subject has transformed over time. Collectively, these presentations will showcase the remarkable minds and distinguished scholarship that make the Graduate Center unique, and that will continue to shape the institution’s future."
Herman Bennett is a renowned scholar on the history of the African diaspora, with a particular focus on Latin American history. Through his work, he has called for scholars to broaden the critical inquiry of race and ethnicity in the colonial world. He has written extensively on the presence of African slaves and freedmen in Mexican society during the colonial period and on the consequent interaction between Native Americans, Europeans, and Africans in colonial Mexico. His books include Colonial Blackness: A History of Afro-Mexico (Indiana University Press, 2009) and Africans in Colonial Mexico: Absolutism, Christianity and Afro-Creole Consciousness, 1570â€“1640 (Indiana University Press, 2003), in which he offers a social historical examination of free Afro-Mexican kinship practices in the mature and late-colonial periods. Bennett has received fellowships from the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, the Mellon Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the American Council of Learned Societies. He has lectured widely in Europe and the Americas, and comes to the Graduate Center from Rutgers University after starting his scholarly career at Johns Hopkins University. Bennett holds a Ph.D. in Latin American history from Duke University where he was a Mellon Scholar of the Humanities.
Ruth Wilson Gilmore
Prof. Ruth Wilson Gilmore is a writer, professor of geography and leading anti-prison activist. She is active in the Prison Moratorium Project, Critical Resistance and California Prison Focus. Her forthcoming book, Golden Gulag, analyzes the economic and political changes which led to California's prison-building boom. She also examines the emergence of movements working to dismantle the prison industrial complex, highlighting the ways community-based activism has been successful in bridging urban-rural, racial and other divides to achieve victories against the growing prison system.
Uday Mehta is the Clarence Francis Professor in the Social Sciences at Amherst College. A political theorist, he has taught at Amherst since 2000, has a BA from Swarthmore College, and an MA and PhD from Princeton University. He received a fellowship from the Carnegie Corporation of New York in 2002. On this fellowship, he conducted case studies of minorities in India, South Africa, and Israel as they struggle for political and social recognition. His publications include The Anxiety of Freedom: Imagination and Individuality in Locke's Political Thought, published in 1992, and Liberalism and Empire: A Study in Nineteenth Century British Liberal Thought, published in 1999.
Jesse J. Prinz is currently a Distinguished Professor of philosophy at the City University of New York, Graduate Center. He is also the director of the Committee for Interdisciplinary Science Studies there. He previously taught at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Washington University, St. Louis, with visiting positions at University College London, California Institute of Technology, and University of Maryland, College Park. He took his Ph.D. at the University of Chicago.
Prinz works primarily in the philosophy of psychology and has authored several books and over 100 articles, addressing such topics as emotion, moral psychology, aesthetics and consciousness. Much of his work in these areas has been a defense of empiricism against psychological nativism. He is an advocate of experimental philosophy.
David Sorkin is Distinguished Professor of History and Jack F. Skirball Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at the City University of New York Graduate Center. He previously taught at Brown, Oxford and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the author of The Transformation of German Jewry, 1780-1840 (1987); Moses Mendelssohn and the Religious Enlightenment (1996); The Berlin Haskalah and German Religious Thought (2000); and The Religious Enlightenment: Protestants, Jews and Catholics from London to Vienna (2008). He has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, and the British Academy. He is a Fellow of the American Academy for Jewish Research.
Anne Stone is a musicologist specializing in the music of fourteenth- and fifteenth-century Italy and France. Her research interests include medieval music manuscripts, the "ars subtilior," medieval and Renaissance notation, the cultural history of music writing, and the relationship of song to late-medieval poetic subjectivity and autobiography.
CUNY Distinguished Professor of Political Science Uday Mehta makes the case that the fears of mass, violent uprisings in the twentieth century never materialized; instead, it was the State, charged with protecting its citizens, that perpetrated violence against society.