AFRICAN & AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES
Academic Program at Centre College
Andrea Abrams came to Centre in 2007 as Centre’s first Consortium for Faculty Diversity at Liberal Arts Colleges Postdoctoral Fellow, and became assistant professor of anthropology in 2009. She was promoted to associate professor in 2014. In 2018, she was named interim associate vice president for diversity initiatives
She is the author of God and Blackness: Race, Gender and Identity in a Middle Class Afrocentric Church (NYU Press, 2014). She led a study-abroad trip to Ghana during CentreTerm 2013, and will co-teach Spring Term in London, England in 2015. Before coming to Centre, Abrams taught at the University of Southern Mississippi, Emory University, Agnes Scott College, and Spelman College. Her research focuses on racial and gender issues in the South.
Abrams has a B.A. in sociology and anthropology from Agnes Scott College. She earned a M.A. in anthropology, a graduate certificate in women’s studies, and a Ph.D. in anthropology from Emory University.
File last updated: 6/27/18
Kiyona Brewster joined the Centre College faculty as assistant professor of sociology in 2017.
Her teaching and research interests are in the areas of race and ethnicity, gender, qualitative methods, family studies, and religion. Brewster’s ongoing research agenda involves understanding how gender and familial roles are defined and produced within predominantly African American Protestant and Evangelical communities of faith. She previously held teaching appointments at Northwestern University, DePaul University, and Triton College in Illinois. She is originally from Pennsylvania and when she is not reading social theory, she enjoys cooking and spending time outdoors.
Brewster received a B.S. degree from Bennett College for Women, an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology and a certificate in gender & sexuality studies from Northwestern University in September of 2016, as well as a teaching certificate from the Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching. She also has an M.A. in psychology from the University of Connecticut.
File last updated: 8/21/17
Jonathon Earle is assistant professor of history and current chair of the African and African American Studies Program. He joined Centre’s faculty in 2012 as visiting assistant professor of history. After earning undergraduate and graduate degrees in religion and theology, respectively, he completed his doctoral studies in history at the University of Cambridge.
At Cambridge, he facilitated tutorials, lectures and seminars at the undergraduate and graduate level, teaching on the history of modern Africa and historical methodology. At Centre, Earle has worked to develop a creative pedagogy, which often leads him to incorporate community-based learning into the heart of his courses. In his course on precolonial African kingdoms, for example, he uses a nearby burial ground for enslaved western Africans to think about continuities and ruptures across the Black Atlantic. His upper-level seminar on Idi Amin’s Uganda includes video discussions with authors and collaborative research at the National Archives at College Park and the Smithsonian Institute of African Art. Professor Earle has directed two studies abroad in Uganda and Rwanda. The course’s chronology is far-reaching, ranging from precolonial state formation to the postcolonial period. Its scope is equally comprehensive, exploring two forms of political organization: clan-based republics and monarchical states. Through cultural immersion and modular learning, students critically engage with local cultures, communities and histories, developing the necessary research skills to critically explore Africa’s sophisticated social and moral landscapes. Earle also co-directed the Centre-in-London Program in 2017, during which he incorporated contested spaces throughout London and Northern Ireland to study the history of anticolonial politics following the Second World War.
At Centre, Earle has maintained an aggressive research agenda. He has presented material at thirteen sessions at conferences and workshops since Fall 2012. Most recently, he has presented his work at the Universities of Cambridge, Makerere (in partnership with SOAS) and Yale. He is also an active collaborator, having recently co-organized a workshop on Terrorism in Africa at the University of Oxford (2017), and a workshop on Emerging Approaches in Uganda Studies at University College London (2017). His most recent book, Colonial Buganda and the End of Empire: Political Thought and Historical Imagination in Africa (Cambridge University Press 2017), has been hailed as offering a “thrilling new stand in Ganda historiography”, where another scholar notes: “With this book Earle becomes a leader in re-thinking the history of African nationalisms. His scrutiny of private papers undiscovered by previous historians allows us to eavesdrop on the political thought of late-colonial activists as never before.” His research has also been published in the Dictionary of African Biography (Oxford University Press), Journal of Eastern African Studies (Routledge) and Journal of African History (Cambridge University Press). He has two chapters under review with Ohio University Press and one article under review with History in Africa (Cambridge University Press). Earle has also taken an active role in the preservation and digitization of archives in Uganda, including the private papers of E.M.K Mulira, Uganda’s foremost constitutional thinker, which are now available through Cambridge, and the Soroti District Archives.
Earle is currently working on two projects. First, with the support of a Stodghill Research Professorship, he is co-authoring a biography of Uganda’s first prime minister, Benedicto Kiwanuka, with Jay J. Carney (Creighton University), which is under review with the Religion in Transforming African Series (Boydell & Brewer/James Currey). Second, he is using the railway in colonial Kenya and Uganda to explore the history of the concept of time in eastern Africa.
Earle is the recipient of numerous awards. For outstanding teaching, scholarship and service, he was appointed a Centre Scholar in 2016, and he was awarded a Stodghill Research Professorship in 2017. He was named the Delta Delta Delta Professor of the Year in 2016.
File last updated: 7/5/17
Satty Flaherty-Echeverría joined the faculty of Centre College in 2016 as assistant professor of Spanish.
Her research and teaching interests include Afro-descendants’ literature and cultural production in the Caribbean and Latin America, African literatures written in Spanish and Portuguese, Colonial/Postcolonial literatures, Race and Black intellectualism in the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking worlds. She will be co-directing the 2018 Centre Term in Brazil.
Flaherty-Echeverría earned a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in Spanish and Portuguese studies from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
File last updated: 8/30/2017
Lori Hartmann joined the Centre College faculty in 1999. She was awarded the “Rookie of the Year” teaching award in 2000, and a Kirk Teaching Award in 2003. Since 2009 she has held the Frank B. and Virginia B. Hower endowed chair in international studies. During the CentreTerms of 2004, 2009, 2011, and 2015 she took groups of students to Cameroon to study politics and civil society in that Central African country. And In 2006-07 and 2012, she was the director of Centre College’s program in Strasbourg, France.
Hartmann’s scholarly interests have focused on African politics, women and development in West Africa, and the political economy of development. In 2013, she co-published an article with former Centre student Brian Klosterboer in African Conflict and Peacebuilding Review on the prospects for peace in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. She has published several articles on the topic of women and development, including: “Pounding Millet during School Hours: obstacles to girls’ formal education in Niger” in the European Journal of Development Research (2011); “The Rural-Urban dynamic and implications for development: perspectives from Nigerien Women” in Journal of Contemporary African Studies (spring 2004) and “A Language of their own: Development Discourse in Niger” in Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society (Winter 2004). Hartmann-Mahmud has also published works on pedagogical issues, for example, “Neoliberalism: a useful tool for teaching critical topics in political science” appeared in PS: Political Science and Politics (Oct 2009). In 2002 her article “War as Metaphor” appeared in Peace Review: Journal of Social Justice.
In 2015-16, Hartmann spent a year in Ethiopia as a Fulbright Fellow at Wollo University conducting a comparative study of Nigerian and Ethiopian literature, with an aim of understanding how that literature reflects a sense of nationalism or national identity. Read more about her research here. Upon her return in the fall of 2016, she took over a three-year term as faculty president.
Hartmann has written op-ed pieces for the Lexington Herald-Leader on issues such as Operation Iraqi Freedom and the African refugee crisis in Europe.
She holds a B.A. from Denison University, and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Denver. She was an Ambassadorial Graduate Rotary Scholar at the Université Cheikh Anta Diop in Senegal, West Africa; and a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Niger, West Africa.
Hartmann is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and has served as the Treasurer and President of Centre’s Phi Beta Kappa chapter.
File last updated: 04/11/2016
African politics — Women and development in West Africa — Democratic transitions in Africa — Peace Corps
Former Peace Corps volunteer in Tahoua, Niger, West Africa. An Ambassadorial Graduate Rotary Scholar in Senegal, West Africa. Articles published in journals including Africa Today.
Chantell Smith Limerick joined the Centre College faculty in 2016 and is assistant professor of Spanish.
Limerick’s research interests include Contemporary Latin American Narrative, Afro-Hispanic Studies and African Diaspora Studies. Her most recent presentations and publications investigate African diasporic writers from as early as the 16th century to contemporary times. Her dissertation project, entitled “(Re)writing the Nation in the American African Diaspora,” compares and contrasts works of historical fiction written by women of color in the U.S. and Latin America.
Limerick earned a B.S. in secondary education language arts and secondary education Spanish at The University of Alabama, an M.A. in Hispanic studies at Auburn University, and a Ph.D. in romance languages at the University of Georgia.
File last updated: 6/26/17
Ian Wilson joined the Centre College faculty in the fall of 2003 as a visiting instructor of German and Humanities. He was awarded Centre’s “Rookie of the Year” in 2004 and in 2005 received the Kirk Award for excellence in teaching. He was named a Centre Scholar in 2009, and again in 2015, a two-year appointment recognizing teaching excellence, scholarship, and contributions to the Centre community.
He teaches courses in German language, literature, and culture, African American literature, and the first-year Humanities sequence. He has taken groups of students abroad during three CentreTerms and one summer and directed the Centre-in-Strasbourg program twice: in 2008-09 and in 2015-16.
His current research project focuses on evolving notions of space and place in contemporary German-language literature. He is also developing a book on approaches to teaching W. G. Sebald’s novel Austerlitz with his Centre colleague Christina Svendsen. He is co-editor of the volume, Cosmopolitanism Reconsidered: Jürgen Habermas, Germany, and the European Union (Routledge, 2016). He has published articles on Samuel Beckett, Elfriede Jelinek, W. G. Sebald, and John Edgar Wideman; he was also a contributor to a German Studies Review forum on Germany and the Euro Crisis (2013) and An Encyclopedia of African American Literature (2005, Greenwood Press). Other scholarly interests include the Holocaust, monuments and memorialization, critical theory, and intersections between literature and other arts, especially photography and film. He has given papers at conferences of the Modern Language Association, the German Studies Association, the Austrian Studies Association, the American Comparative Literature Association, and the Southern Comparative Literature Association, and at the Kentucky Foreign Language Conference.
He was previously a teaching fellow at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he taught courses in German, comparative literature, and German-language sections of courses in history and international studies. He was also a graduate teaching consultant at UNC-CH’s Center for Teaching and Learning.
Wilson is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Delta Phi Alpha German national honor society. In 2000-01, he conducted research at the Internationales Forschungszentrum Kulturwissenschaften in Vienna, Austria as a Fulbright Scholar. He received another Fulbright for the summer of 2012. He holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a B.A. in comparative literature and German from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
To read about his CentreTerm course “Introduction to the Cultural History of Central Europe,” click here.
File last updated: 8/3/17