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RESCHEDULED:Performance, Prison, and the Criminalization of Black Freedom: The Case of William Freeman

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Thursday, January 18, 2018
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11:00 am - 12:00 pm
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Robin Bernstein, PhD

RESCHEDULED TO THURSDAY, JAN. 18, 11AM - EAST DUKE PARLORS - reception to follow. Please join us for the research presentation of Robin Bernstein, Dillon Professor of American History and Professor of African and African American Studies and of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard University. Bernstein is a cultural historian who writes about theater/performance and childhood. Her stated goal is to think through performance and childhood to produce new knowledge about US cultural history, and particularly American formations of race, from the nineteenth century to the present.

Professor Bernstein currently chairs the Program of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard. She is also a faculty member in Harvard's doctoral program in American Studies and undergraduate program in Theater, Dance, and Media. She co-edits the book series Performance and American Cultures for New York University Press. Her most recent book, Racial Innocence: Performing American Childhood from Slavery to Civil Rights, won five awards, including the Outstanding Book Award from the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.

Abstract: Bernstein's lecture will show how theatre transformed an 1846 mass murder from one unique crime into an inaugural moment in the myth of the African American "predator"--and ultimately worked to criminalize black freedom itself.