Video  Public Humanities Initiative

Sahar Ishtiaque Ullah is a Ph.D. candidate in Arabic and Comparative Literature at Columbia University where she teaches and is completing her dissertation on the role of the erotic prelude in medieval Arabic-Islamic poetics. Her research interests also include the classical in contemporary Arabic literature and representations of Muslims in late medieval and early modern European literature. As a Public Humanities Fellow, Sahar will curate an interactive public arts project that includes the works of Muslim storytellers, poets, and visual artists with a special attention to North American minorities and immigrants with roots from regions largely portrayed as conflict zones in U.S. media outlets. 

Natacha Nsabimana is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in anthropology at Columbia University. Her dissertation is concerned with the everyday aftermath of violence in post-genocide Rwanda. It examines the ways in which the violence of the genocide against Tutsi occupies the spatial memory of Rwanda's landscape and the kinds of individual and national narratives such memory allows and disavows. Her project will engage young women at the Rose M Singer Center for Women on Rikers Island to produce a literary journal discussing social justice issues such as racism, slavery, incarceration and sexual violence through the prism of art. This project expands on existing programs developed by the Justice in Education Initiative at Columbia University, a collaboration between the Center for Justice and the Heyman Center for the Humanities.

Reading and discussion of Flores Forbes' new book Invisible Men: A Contemporary Slave Narrative in the Era of Mass Incarceration with author Flores A. Forbes, Kendall Thomas, Nash Professor of Law Columbia University, and Glenn E. Martin, Criminal Justice Reform Advocate. October 10, 2016. Sponsored by the Columbia Center for Justice, Center for the Study of Law and Culture, Heyman Center for the Humanities, and Columbia Center for Contemporary Critical Thought.

An evening of justice poetry featuring Claudia Rankine, Dawn Lundy Martin, and Messiah Ramkissoon. Poets read from their new and published works related to issues of justice and discuss the events and experiences that inspired them. Monica Miller, Associate Professor of English at Barnard College, will introduce the poets, and a moderated discussion, led by Columbia School of the Arts professor and poet Timothy Donnelly, and questions from the audience follow the readings.