Some would say Morehouse College consists of a homogeneous demographic though it regularly boasts of having an aura of diversity that is often ignored from the outside looking in. This realization of diversity has taken new form as the gay/straight alliance and student advocacy group, SafeSpace, through the hard work of Dr. Michael Hodge of the sociology department, has officially received the green light to launch a special topics course on Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history and culture to be offered for credit Spring 2013.
The idea came to fruition when SafeSpace’s Special Project and Events Coordinator Marcus Lee partnered with Yale University professor Dr. Jafari S. Allen to pitch the project. Allen focuses on the intersections of queer sexuality, gender and blackness.
“He’s very interested in gender non-conformity among people of color, and I’m interested in that as well,” Lee said. “I told him that I don’t have much direction here at Morehouse because many of the professors whose focus is on sexuality often focus on diseases and not really cultural critique. So he recommended that he teach a class via Skype.”
Both well versed and experienced in the field of sexuality and gender expression, Dr. Allen currently teaches courses on the cultural politics of race, sexuality and gender within Black Diasporas and has authored various publications, including “Crucial Palimpsest: Re-Reading Brother to Brother” and currently “Black Queer Here and There: The Social Poesis of Diaspora” (tentatively titled).
Fixed to extend his expertise to the students of Morehouse College, Allen is sure to make a mark and set quite a high standard of excellence through his course.