New AAAS Department to Focus on Black Feminisms, Black Genders, and Black Sexualities

Being built to blaze a trail in higher education with its focus on Black Feminisms, Black Genders Studies, and Black Sexualities Studies, the architects of the Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS), the newest department within MSU’s College of Arts & Letters, are unapologetic in this focus as they build the unit they have long dreamed about.  Dr.…

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The Trailblazing Life of MSU’s First African American Faculty Member

David W.D. Dickson’s trailblazing career, spanning more than 40 years and five academic institutions, began at Michigan State University in the Department of English in 1948 when he became the university’s first African American faculty member and, a few years later, the first to be awarded MSU’s Distinguished Faculty Award. He also went on to become the first African American…

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Working Toward a Philosophy for All of Us

“Why philosophy?” That’s a question MSU Philosophy Professor Kristie Dotson, formal advisor to the new Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS), has fielded many times before. Perhaps it is because she had never taken a philosophy course until she began graduate studies in philosophy.  It could also be the centrality of Black feminisms in Dotson’s life and the…

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Conversations with CAL – Sounds of Religion Project

What does religion in the United States sound like? We begin by exploring the question that animates the American Religious Sounds Project (ARSP), a collaborative research initiative co-directed by Michigan State University Religious Studies Professor Amy DeRogatis and Ohio State University Comparative Studies Professor Isaac Weiner.

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Art Education Alumna Creates and Exhibits Black Art Library

Last year, at the start of Black History Month, College of Arts & Letters alumna Asmaa Walton began posting covers of art monographs, exhibition catalogues, and art biographies of African American visual artists to Instagram. An Art Education graduate, Walton was in the middle of her appointment as the Romare Bearden Graduate Museum Fellow at the Saint Louis Art Museum…

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Ruth Nicole Brown Named MSU Foundation Professor

In recognition of her innovative community-engaged scholarship and outstanding record of visionary leadership, research, and pedagogy, Ruth Nicole Brown was awarded an MSU Foundation Professorship, making her the first faculty member from the College of Arts & Letters to receive this honor since it was first introduced in 2014. Dr. Ruth Nicole Brown The title of MSU Foundation Professor is…

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MSU Researchers Study Conversation Platforms for Second Language Students

Shawn Loewen knows what it’s like to learn a second language through “blood, sweat, and tears.” He started taking private Spanish lessons when he was 13 and studied Spanish and French all through high school. Passionate about language learning, he majored in Language and Linguistics in college and decided to become a teacher and research scholar.  Today, Loewen is a…

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Digitizing Discoveries: Classical Studies Professor to Lead Legacy Dig in Ancient Greece

Jon Frey first encountered archaeology at the site of Isthmia in Greece in 1993 as a study abroad student. He has since returned almost every year to the same ancient excavation. Now a classical archaeologist and Associate Professor of Classical Studies in the Department of Art, Art History, and Design at MSU, Frey will oversee the dig near Corinth, Greece,…

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