Events Calendar

13 Feb
De Ting About Blackness (A Meditation)
Event Type

Lectures, Symposia, Etc.



Target Audience

Faculty, Graduate Students


humanities, Humanities Center, humanities colloquium


University Unit
Humanities Center
Google Calendar iCal Outlook

De Ting About Blackness (A Meditation)

The Humanities Center welcomes Lou Maraj (English) for a colloquium. His respondents will be RA Judy (English) and Shalini Puri (English).

Louis M. Maraj is an Assistant Professor of English, with specialties in Black rhetoric and public writing.

His scholarship spans rhetorical theory, digital media studies, Black studies, and critical pedagogies. Specifically, it engages with anti/racism, anti/Blackness, and biopolitics. His current book project, Black or Right: Anti/Racist Campus Rhetorics, explores notions of Blackness in white institutional spaces


De Ting About Blackness (A Meditation)” thinks through Blackness in relation to ‘new’ materialisms in concluding the forthcoming monograph Black or Right: Anti/Racist Campus Rhetorics (2021). It spends some time with rhetorical reclamation—acts of turning stigmatizing racialized attention mapped onto Black identities back onto gaze of historically white institutions to publicly critique their power dynamics. Rhetorical reclamations demonstrate how rhetorics of Blackness—in Black autoethnography, hashtagging, inter-contextual reading, and re-conceptualizing Black disruption—offer potentials for Black antiracist agency in historically white spaces to resist white institutional defensiveness. In unpacking rhetorical reclamations, this talk shows how the object-being of para/ontological Blackness allows for possibilities of mobilizing objectness that speak across a spectrum of Black rhetorics (and Black theoretical frameworks) from rhetorical silence to technologies of cancelling. It rhetorically asks of Blackness: How do we write its story if we become objects acting in it while being acted upon? How do we write its story if we claim humanity? How do we write its story if we don’t want to write its story? 

For the pre-circulated reading, please click here for access to the Google Drive. 


Thursday, February 13 at 12:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Humanities Center, 602
Fifth Avenue at Bigelow, Pittsburgh, PA 15260