Interviews & Public Speaking Engagements
Reconnecting Black Internationalism: New Directions in Historical Radicalism, April 9, 2021.
In 2021, I participated in the Ghana Studies Association's panel that explored how scholarship was reframing black internationalism. I argued that African intellectuals played an important role in the development of Black Studies in the Americas. Their work and lived experiences help illuminate the unexplored intellectual impact of African scholars in the 1970s and 1980s outside of Africa on Black internationalism. Their stories, furthermore, enable us to trace the circuit of Black internationalism as it moves from the diaspora to Kwame Nkrumah’s Black Star and back to the diaspora.
I began to hate my blackness | Identity Interviews | Bright Gyamfi, July 8, 2020
In 2017, I participated in an Identity Interview Series at St. Antony’s College, University of Oxford. In the interview, I discuss the interplay between history, identity, and blackness. I argue that the demonization of Africa and blackness can affect the self-esteem of Africans and peoples of African descent. To address these issues, I posit that the teaching of Black history is vital in challenging this framework and exposing the uncontested hegemony of the colonial-racial order, one which seeks to entomb and erase the colonial nature that produced blackness.
Kwame Nkrumah and the fight for African Liberation, February 2020
In my talk, I used the life of Kwame Nkrumah to connect Ghana’s independence to the global struggle for Black liberation. The colonial racial order had established and maintained a hierarchy based on notions of whiteness and Black inferiority which demonized Africa and its peoples. As one of the first sovereign countries in sub-Saharan Africa, Ghana’s independence marked a significant milestone for Africa and the peoples of African descent throughout the world.
The Sound of Liberation: A Reflection of 400 Years after the Arrival of the First African Slaves, February 2019
In my speech, I linked Black liberation theology to the long history of the struggle for Black emancipation. Capturing the fears and hopes of enslaved Africans, I emphasized the importance of their agency to challenge the notion of enslaved people as passive historical actors.
“We did it all”: Africana Recognition Prayer Service, May 2016
In 2016, I served as the keynote speaker for the Africana Recognition Prayer Service at the University of Notre Dame. Drawing inspiration from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and President Barack Obama, I spoke about the ways in which the hopes and sacrifices of our families carried us throughout our four-year journey throughout Notre Dame. I talked about how our diverse backgrounds and our shared hopes and uncertainties sustained us. These experiences provided avenues to connect our lived experiences to the history of the Black student movements in the 1960s and their fears, hopes, and demands, as they navigated the predominately white institutions.