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Event Description

"Dark Agoras: Insurgent Black Social Life and the Politics of Place."At this event, IHR Black Ecologies Initiative Program Lead J.T. Roane will examine the geography of the 1964 "riot" in North Philadelphia. The geography of the riot serves as a snapshot of ways that Black communities composed of migrants from the South living in North Philadelphia remixed the geography of the plot — the historical counterpoint to the enclosure and extractive violence of racial slavery and plantations — in the context of the twentieth century city. Particularly, the presentation of maps and narrative will underscore the ways that "looting," resistance to arrest and pelting police and cars from rooftops and alleys with rocks and glass, bring into view — a flicker rather than a sustained seeing — the ways that Black migrants cultivated spatial features in the landscape unmapped from the vantages of the flattening birds eye view of planners and other dominant urbanists or from the lines of site of the beat patrolmen. These spatial features evidence the enduring spatial episteme of the plot as an alternative geographic-social arrangement underwriting Black rebellion — the abolition of the violent trifecta of policing, poverty and spatial sequestering along with the articulation of a horizon defined by the reimagination of property, collectivity and belonging.This presentation will be moderated by Digital Humanities Initiative Program Lead and IHR Assistant Director Liz Grumbach and will be followed by a Q&A.Speaker BioJ.T. Roane is assistant professor of African and African American Studies in the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University. He received his PhD in history from Columbia University and he is a 2008 graduate of the Carter G. Woodson Institute at the University of Virginia. Roane's scholarly essays have appeared in Souls Journal, The Review of Black Political Economy and Current Research in Digital History. His work has also appeared in venues such as The Brooklyn Rail, Pacific Standard, The Immanent Frame and Martyr's Shuffle. Roane is a 2020-2021 National Endowment for the Humanities/Mellon Foundation Research Fellow at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York Public Library. He is at work on a manuscript, "Dark Agoras: Insurgent Black Social Life and the Politics of Place in Philadelphia." Follow him on Twitter @JTRoane.Virtual Hour Fall SeriesThe Digital Humanities Initiative's Virtual Hour Fall Series is an opportunity for community members to come together to discuss relevant digital humanities topics. Learn more about speakers and topics for other events in the series below:Spencer D.C. Keralis | Ephemeral Bodies: A Media Archaeology of Queer ZinesZoom details for this event will be emailed to you by 8 AM Arizona Time the morning of the event. If you register after this time, details will be included in the "Additional Information" section of your confirmation email. Please check your junk/spam folder for an email from Eventbrite. For any issues or concerns with receiving the Zoom link, contact Lauren Whitby at

Event Dates
  • December 1, 2020 1:00 PM - 7:00 PM Ended
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