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University of Iowa News Release

Jan. 31, 2006
'Cosmopolitan Geographies of Black Identity' Lecture Topic Feb. 1
Ifeoma C. K. Nwankwo, an associate professor in the Center for Afroamerican and African Studies and the Department of English at the University of Michigan, will speak on "The Cosmopolitan Geographies of Black Identity" at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1 in 704 Jefferson Building. The event is free and open to the public.

Nwankwo's research focuses on the (at times tense or problematic) encounters between the peoples of the African Diaspora in the Americas in the areas of language, identity, and ideology. Her book, "Black Cosmopolitanism: Racial Consciousness and Transnational Identity in the 19th-Century Americas," is a comparative and integrative study of the disparate approaches to self-definition and to the conceptualization of racial kin in other countries posited by people of African descent in Cuba, the United States and the British West Indies in the wake of the Haitian Revolution.

She is also the author of articles on the politics of intra-racial translation in Langston Hughes' translations of Nicolas Guillen's poetry (Langston Hughes Review, 2001), the mechanics of memory in Panamanian West Indian writing, and on the negotiations of American national identity and transnational racial identity in Zora Neale Hurston's ethnographic engagement with the Caribbean.

Nwankwo has been the recipient of fellowships from a number of foundations, including the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the DeWitt-Wallace Foundation, and the Jacob K. Javits Foundation.

Wednesday's talk is sponsored by the University of Iowa African American World Studies Program, The Division of Interdisciplinary Programs, the departments of English, Rhetoric and American Studies, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Perry A. & Helen Judy Bond Fund for Interdisciplinary Interaction.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Vershawn Young, assistant professor in the UI Department of Rhetoric, at, or 319-335-0186.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Media: Stephen Pradarelli, 319-384-0007,