Seeds at the Table: Centering the Black Legacy in Academic Creativity

Julien Joelle
Anthropology
UC Los Angeles

Zacahry Mondesire
Anthropology
UC Los Angeles


This project builds on the momentum of the UC Los Angeles working group, C-BLAC. Both an acronym and verb, to “C-BLAC” is to Center the Black Legacy in Academic Creativity. The C-BLAC project is necessary as historic and contemporary Black scholars have traditionally been left out of the academic cannon within our home departments. Building on the work of past graduate student working groups, participants create narratives that permeate the methodological borders of the humanities and identify the common threads that weave together the hopes and aspirations of black scholars across a variety of disciplines and time periods. As ten graduate students from Anthropology, Archaeology, Geography, Performance Studies, Sociology, and Visual Studies, this interdisciplinary working group collaborates to create reading lists, a syllabus laboratory, and a multi-media platform that includes a website and podcast that captures its findings and contributions to build on existing work of Black scholars in the humanities and social sciences. The resources developed draw from various research methodologies including ethnography, film, historiography, and dance while always centering the Black legacy, and with the goal of engaging undergraduates and other scholars in Black scholarship.