2019 National Convening



The National Convening is the annual gathering of Du Boisian scholars and activists to build community with others committed to emancipatory and liberatory scholarship. It is an opportunity to not only discuss the intellectual legacy left by W.E.B. Du Bois and his contemporaries, but to imagine how the values and principles of such a legacy can be enacted today. We welcome scholars of all kinds, working within and outside of higher education institutional spaces, to join us for a weekend of lively discussion.

This year’s convening is generously sponsored by Brown University and will take place in Providence, RI on May 3-5, 2019. The convening will focus on three key areas:

  • Du Boisian Intellectual Agenda

  • Practices of Solidarity, Caring, and Accountability

  • Community Engagement

The program is available HERE.

Registration is now closed.

If you are still interested in participating, please contact duboisianscholarnetwork@gmail.com.

Black History Walking tour

On Friday afternoon, prior to the official start of the convening, we invite you to come on a walking tour that explores Brown’s and Providence’s histories of slavery and the slave trade. Marco McWilliams, a Providence-based activist scholar, will explain the deep legacies of these histories in our local environment and we hope many of you can attend. The tour will take place rain or shine; it is free and donations are welcome.

It will start at 4:30pm in front of the historic Olney Street Baptist church (100 Olney Street), about 15 minutes walk from Brown's campus. It will end at 5:30pm in front of Salomon Hall, where registration will take place. This 1-hour long walking tour involves one climb up Providence’s Eastside hills and we recommend wearing comfortable shoes!


Travel and Housing

arriving by Air

The closest airport is Providence T.F. Green Airport, located about 20 minutes away by car from downtown Providence.

You can also fly into Boston Logan Airport, which is about 1 hour away by car and train from downtown Providence. You may connect from the airport to downtown Providence by charter bus (Peter Pan) or public transit. If you opt to use public transit, take the Silver Line Bus from Logan Airport to Boston South Station and take Amtrak or MBTA Commuter Rail from Boston to Providence.

Arriving by Train or Bus

Providence is served by multiple train and bus services. If traveling within the northeast, Amtrak and the MBTA Commuter Rail both offer service to downtown Providence. Three private charter bus services (Peter Pan, Greyhound, and Go Bus) also have stops in Providence.

Hotel Accommodations

Brown University does not have an on-campus hotel accommodations, but downtown Providence has many affordable options about 1 mile from campus. We have secured group prices with two downtown hotels:


Due to the generous financial support provided by the Office of the Provost, the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, the Departments of Africana Studies and Sociology, and the Swearer Center at Brown University, we are able to provide some travel assistance for graduate students who wish to participate in the national convening.

Requests for travel assistance is now closed.

Graduate students who awarded travel assistance should have received an email from the Brown coordinating committee.

Travel Assistance



The public notes from these sessions (where available) are hyperlinked below.

Friday 5/3

4:30-5:30pm: Black History Walking Tour (Meeting point: 100 Olney Street)

5:30-6:00pm: Registration

6:00-8:00pm: Organizational Townhall and Convening Overview - Salomon 001

Moderators: Karida L. Brown (UCLA) and José Itzigsohn (Brown University)

Saturday 5/4

8:30-9:00: Breakfast - Salomon Lobby

9:00-9:30: Welcome  - Salomon 001
Moderators: Laura Garbes (Brown University) and prabhdeep singh kehal (Brown University)

9:30-10:45: Plenary: Building the Intellectual Agenda - Salomon 001


Fatma Müge Göçek (University of Michigan)
Saida Grundy (Boston University)
Zine Magubane (Boston College)
Tukufu Zuberi (University of Pennsylvania)

Moderator: Ricarda Hammer (Brown University)

10:45-11:00: Break - Salomon Lobby

11:00-12:30: Plenary: Community Engagement - Salomon 001


Aidea Downie (The Petey Greene Program)
Nicole Gonzalez van Cleve (University of Delaware)
Elizabeth Hinton (Harvard University)

Moderator: Anthony James Williams (UCLA)

12:30-2:15: Buffet Lunch - Salomon Lobby

2:15-4:00: Thematic Breakout Sessions I

4:00-4:15: Break - Salomon Lobby

4:15-6:00: Thematic Breakout Sessions II

6:15-9:00: Reception - Rites and Reason Theatre

Sunday 5/5

8:30-9:00: Breakfast - Salomon Lobby

9:00-10:30: Plenary: Building an Ethic of Solidarity and Accountability - Salomon 001


Karida L. Brown (UCLA)
Cedric de Leon (UMass - Amherst)
Pamela E. Oliver (University of Wisconsin - Madison)
Deirdre Royster (NYU)

    Moderator: Nabila Islam (Brown University)

10:30-10:45: Break - Salomon Lobby

10:45-11:45: Breakout Sessions: Enacting our Vision

11:45-12:00: Break and Brownbag Lunch - Salomon Lobby

12:00-2:00: Closing Townhall - Salomon 001

Moderators: Michael Rodriguez-Muñiz (Northwestern University) & Luna White (University of Illinois at Chicago)

Closing Remarks: Saida Grundy (Boston University)