ACLS Fellowship Program, 2019


America in Africa: US Empire, Race, and the African Question, 1821-1919


History and Ethnic Studies


“America in Africa” examines US-African affairs from the colonization of Liberia to the end of World War I, demonstrating the shift from a US focus on the slavery question—the abolition of slavery and the suppression of transatlantic slave trade—to the African question: a set of political discourses about the place of Africa in the world from Western perspectives. The book argues that this transformation links inextricably to the histories of US empire, racial ideologies including the proverbial Negro question, which in its various permutations framed African Americans as a problem in US society and the body politic, and inter-imperial relations. Attending to the interplay between statecraft and racecraft, the book explores how the US’s desires to assert itself on the international stage diplomatically, economically, and culturally drove US interests in Africa.


New Storytellers: The Research Institute in Digital Ethnic Studies, a two-week immersive workshop, brings together scholars from Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), faculty and staff at the University of Nebraska, and guest presenters from other universities who collectively are deeply invested in using digital technologies to explore race, ethnicity, and social justice. New Storytellers intervenes in the field of digital humanities by broadening the participation and inclusion of underrepresented groups, bringing their voices into the conversation and engaging them with computational and new media tools to expand, recalibrate, and extend the impact of interdisciplinary work on race and ethnicity. The team’s experience gained through nearly fifteen years of hosting the Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities, nearly five decades of research and teaching in Nebraska's Institute for Ethnic Studies, and extensive engagement with faculty members at minority-serving institutions informs the approach.