On October 23-24, 2014, Columbia University's Institute for Research in African-American Studies hosted a major conference, Are the Gods Afraid of Black Sexuality? Religion and the Burdens of Black Sexual Politics. In terms of the richness of the presentations, the level of attendance and engagement from attendees, Are the Gods Afraid of Black Sexuality? was by all counts a great success!!!
We continue to receive positive feedback from colleagues, new and old, about how the panel’s were able to make meaningful contributions both to public conversations and academic debates. The conference effectively placed in conversation scholars, activists, and leaders from across the nation (and beyond) — working on a variety of issues, within a variety of fields, and in multiple contexts — in ways that panelists and attendees experienced as intellectually invigorating, politically engaging, and existentially rewarding.
In this regard, Are the Gods Afraid of Black Sexuality? carried on IRAAS’ tradition of scholarship in service to social change. It also helped to set the course for the research, education and public engagement that will be continue to be carried out through the Center on African-American Religion, Sexual Politics and Social Justice (CARSS).
A long list of hearty THANK YOUs are again to due to the following parties:
- All of the amazing presenters and participants who travelled from near and far to make such a dynamic dialogue possible
- Our conference host, Columbia University's Institute for Research in African-American Studies and its faculty and staff (especially Shawn Mendoza and Sharon Harris)
- All of our co-sponsors and funders
- CARSS’ community and faculty advisory groups
- The conference planning team, Jennifer Leath and Derrick McQueen, and especially
- The conference’s graduate student coordinator, Laura McTighe, whose energy and insights were essential to both the intellectual vision and practical execution of the conference.
For those of you who were unable to attend the conference in person, or view it livestream at the time, all of the conference proceedings are now available for public viewing on IRAAS' youtube channel via the Are the Gods Afraid of Black Sexuality? playlist.