European Studies SMLC HKU School of Modern Languages and Cultures HKU

News & Events

23 March 2017

Rising Above - African American History and Culture Lecture Series:
Afro-Asian crossings: Langston Hughes and WEB Du Bois in China

Dr. Selina Lai-Henderson
Research Assistant Professor

Location: Fung Ping Shan Building, University Museum and Art Gallery, HKU
Date: 23 Mar 2017 (Thu)
Time: 6:30 pm

click to see poster

This talk interrogates the historic visits of Hughes (1933) and Du Bois (1936, 1959, and 1962) in China, and how the respective events opened rare and valuable platforms for historical and comparative dialogues on race, gender, and slavery in the U.S. and China. As the earliest African American writers to set foot on Chinese soil, Hughes and Du Bois helped rewrite the public image of African Americans in the Chinese cultural and intellectual imagination. Through considerations of their sojourns, my research examines the two black writers’ unique, albeit conflicting, articulations of a racial and gendered consciousness that defied national, geographical, and political boundaries of the color line.

Selina Lai-Henderson is Research Assistant Professor of American Studies at HKU. She is the author of Mark Twain in China (Stanford University Press, 2015), and is currently researching race, gender, and transnational black masculinities in the works of Langston Hughes and W.E.B. Du Bois in modern and Maoist China.

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