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Products for grant HB-263332-19

The End of Exceptionalism: African Americans Theorizing Race and Imperialism in South Africa and Beyond
Krista Johnson, Howard University

Grant details:

Pioneering the Social Sciences at the Periphery (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Pioneering the Social Sciences at the Periphery
Author: Krista Johnson
Abstract: This paper discusses the contributions of Howard University scholars to debates on the race problem, and their own efforts to address the geopolitics of knowledge during the 1930s-1940s. By the 1930s, Howard had assembled a critical mass of stellar black intellectuals, part of what DuBois termed the Talented Tenth. In the midst of turbulent years in American race relations, Howard scholars not only sought to practice socially relevant social science and advance a public intellectual model by linking their scholarship and teaching with intellectual activism, they aimed to put in place an institutional architecture that embodied the commitment to using interdisciplinary social science, global perspectives, and transcultural forms of knowledge to inform social action. The Howard scholars initiated a series of annual conferences, lectures and forums intended to institutionalize an approach to American race relations that was situated in the politics of global anti-colonialism, and that presented race and class as inextricably intertwined. It was through these institutional spaces that this cohort of radical black scholar-activists engaged the national and global public around the salient issues of the day, and forged meaningful personal and professional networks cemented in a world-spanning, transcultural community.
Date: 08/10/2020
Conference Name: American Sociological Assocation

Ralph Bunche, Binationalism and the Partition of Palestine (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Ralph Bunche, Binationalism and the Partition of Palestine
Author: Sara Swetzoff
Author: Krista Johnson
Abstract: Ralph Bunche’s enduring fame arises from his brilliant diplomatic service in the United Nations and the leadership role he played in brokering the armistice agreements between Israel and the Arab States, for which he became the first person of color to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Now memorialized as the negotiator of the United Nations partition of Palestine, it will come as a surprise to most that Bunche initially advanced a binational solution to the Jewish question and the question of Palestine, over that of partition. As Alex Lubin has argued, Bunche’s thinking/position, in the 1930s and early 1940s, aligned with a group of Afro-Arab and Jewish intellectuals and activists who embraced a politics of binationalism (or anti nationalism) that recognized the multinational possibilities of the land of Palestine and pushed back against the rise of new ethnic-nationalisms during the global upheavals of the interwar era. (Lubin, 2014). However, the potent counter-discourse of binationalism was quickly muted by anti colonial nationalisms and a formidable discourse of national sovereignty. Partition, an idea originally conceived after WWI as part of a new type of imperial governance in the guise of internationalism, after 1945, seemed to offer a quick and efficient exit strategy while maintaining the possibility of continued post colonial influence for Britain.
Date: 11/19/2020