Did the American Media “Create” Dreadlocks? A Reading
Prof. Bertram Ashe
Bert Ashe, Professor of English and American Studies at the University of Richmond, is the author of Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles (Agate Publishing, 2015). His scholarly and teaching interests include jazz, basketball, a school of contemporary art called “post-blackness,” and, for more than twenty years, Ashe has explored the cultural impact of black hair in America, ranging from “’Why don’t he like my hair?’: Constructing African-American Standards of Beauty in Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon and Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God” in African American Review (1995) to “Renegades in the Kitchen” in The Hair Craft Project catalogue (2015). He is currently co-editing Slavery and the Post-Black Imagination, a collection of essays forthcoming from the University of Washington Press. He is also at work on both a book on jazz in Europe tentatively titled, “Blackness in Berlin: My Jazz Chronicles,” and “Hair Clippings” a book of brief pieces of writing about black hair “clipped” from various books, essays or articles.
Bert Ashe will read from his book Twisted, which is a witty, fascinating, and unprecedented account of black male identity through our culture’s perceptions of hair. It is a deeply personal story that weaves together the cultural and political history of dreadlocks with Ashe’s own mid-life journey to lock his hair.
For more information on Bert Ashe, please visit his website.
You can download the event’s poster from the left-hand side bar.