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Deborah Willis is University Professor and Chair of Photography and Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. She is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an NCAA Image Award and numerous other artistic and scholarly honors. She has published more than 20 books, including The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship and Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present. Her curated exhibitions include: "Let Your Motto Be Resistance: African American Portraits” at the International Center of Photography; “Out of Fashion Photography: Framing Beauty” at the Henry Art Gallery, and "Reframing Beauty: Intimate Moments" at Indiana University.

The 2021-2022 Altman Program invites the Miami University community to explore the persistence of racism in its cultural, political, and institutional forms. What is the history of race as an idea and a social category? How did it transform systems of law, administration, and representation into vehicles for subjugating entire groups of people? How does racism work today? What is its relation to systems of caste and meritocracy? To citizenship and mobility? How can emerging humanities scholarship help us interrogate its evolution and frustrating persistence? And what measures can we take to create a more inclusive and equitable society?

  • Mecca Amina Abdul-Aziz
  • Dr. Ann Elizabeth Armstrong
  • Darek Javier Sanabria Valderrama

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