Check out our latest author interview video! John P. Bowles, author of Adrian Piper: Race, Gender, and Embodiment (2011), explains why he chose to study Adrian Piper's work and shares insight into some of her most powerful pieces.
Adrian Piper is an in-depth analysis of Adrian Piper’s work, illustrated with more than ninety images, including twenty-one in color.
On Wednesday, April 6, jazz pianist Randy Weston celebrated his 85th birthday with a concert at Baltimore's Walters Art Gallery. Baltimore Magazine reviewer John Lewis said, it "was one of the most life-affirming, musically dazzling shows I’ve ever seen." Weston continues the celebration with a gala performance at the Kennedy Center on Saturday, April 9. Geoffrey Himes profiles Weston in today's Washington Post. DC area fans have plenty of chances today and tomorrow to catch Weston talking about his recent autobiography, African Rhythms, which he wrote with jazz journalist Willard Jenkins. Before the concert, he'll appear at UDC tonight at 7 p.m., at the Rockville, Maryland public library tomorrow at noon, and at DC's Sankofa bookstore at 5:30 tomorrow afternoon. Check out our events page for full info. And join us in wishing Randy a very happy birthday!
Last week President Obama issued a memo calling for calling for the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues to "conduct, beginning in January 2011, a thorough review of human subjects protection to determine if Federal regulations and international standards adequately guard the health and well-being of participants in scientific studies supported by the Federal Government." The call was prompted by revelations earlier this fall that the U.S. Public Health Service conducted STD research on unsuspecting Guatemalans in the 1940s. But, as work by Duke authors attests, that was not an isolated incident.
In his recent book The Professional Guinea Pig, Roberto Abadie details how the pharmaceutical research industry uses human test subjects in sometimes ethically suspect ways. Abadie sees the commission as a positive development. He says, "The Presidential commission on ethics is an important step in understanding the role of the US government in this scandal but also in devising ways to protect current research subjects domestically and also abroad where most research will be conducted in the following years. It is important that the commission moves beyond abstract ethical principles and invocations and towards effective policy recommendations that recognize the changing landscape of human research protection. One important deficit the commission should address, for example, is the lack of a registry of research subjects' participation in clinical trials research covering all phases in clinical trials research both domestically and internationally. Without this instrument we are not able to tell how many trials a research subject has volunteered for, or if he or she is doing more than one trial at the same time, compromising thus, not only their well being but also the validity of the whole trial."
Karla FC Holloway is also working on issues of ethics in medical research. Her book Private Bodies, Public Texts will be out next March. She is also hopeful about the commission, saying "It's both appropriate and just that the president will convene a particular panel for this discussion. Bioethicists have identified certain subjects as 'vulnerable' for scores of years. But we have been less willing to acknowledge that that vulnerability is directly tied to social judgments about the quality of personhood, the value of certain lives, and the competition of scientific and research objectives—especially when it is centered on bodies that have less social capital. It's important to tie vulnerability to its source in order to make sure we don't allow our stereotypes to follow us into clinical research paradigms."
Grant Farred, editor of the South
Atlantic Quarterly, will step down this
summer; he will be replaced by Michael Hardt. In the video below, Farred
and Hardtdiscuss the journal’s
Over the course of his eight-year
tenure, Farred has widened the journal’s theoretical and geographic scope while
keeping it rooted in its long history of political engagement. (When it was
founded in 1901, the journal was at the center of the Bassett Affair, a
milestone for academic freedom in the United States.)
Farred describes his work on SAQ as “the most important political thing I have done
in this country in the twenty-one years I’ve been here.”With the publication of such
groundbreaking issues as “Palestine America,” “Racial Americana,”
and "Ambushed: A Critique of Machtpolitik,” during his tenure Farred
worked to expand SAQ’s reputation
as a space for timely, political thought.
Check out this wonderful video previewing jazz great Randy Weston's forthcoming autobiography, African Rhythms. It features some of Randy's music and an interview with collaborator Willard Jenkins, a jazz journalist who proposed the book to Randy and wrote it with him. The video was produced by Bret Primack.
This spring Los Angeles residents may have noticed a number of beautiful and mysterious billboards appearing all around their city. The MAK Center for Art and Architecture sponsored the public art exhibit, called How Many Billboards, which features 21 newly commissioned works by leading contemporary artists. Last month the catalog of the exhbiti was published in book
form. Artists featured in the installation include Yvonne
Rainer, Allan Sekula, and Kenneth Anger and a Duke Press author, Ken Gonzales-Day, who wrote Lynching in the West: 1850–1935 (2006). Gonzales-Day's billboard, featuring the busts of a black man and a white man gazing at each other, is located on Olympic Boulevard, west of Gramercy Place. The MAK Center's website features a video of Gonzales-Day talking about his photography, some of which is included in his first book. Gonzales-Day hopes that his art will help us look at the physical legacies of difficult histories or racism. He sees his billboard as an advertisement for racial equality.
Miriam Jiménez Román and Juan Flores, co-editors of the new book, The Afro-Latin@
Reader: History and Culture in the United States, were interviewed on WBAI 99.5 FM's "The Jordan Journal" last Friday. The show aired at 5pm on Friday, July 2nd, and a clip from the show can be found here. According to the announcement on The Jordan Journal website, the book "is a must-read for those seeking to understand the dynamics of race and culture in the Americas."