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‘First Fridays’ lecture series on race, ethnicity and social justice returns Oct. 7
Head shots of García Blizzard, Guidotti-Hernández and Babb

Emory College faculty members (from left) Mónica García Blizzard, Nicole Guidotti-Hernández and Valerie Babb will present the semester’s “First Fridays at 4 p.m.” lectures on topics related to race and social justice.

Emory College’s “First Fridays at 4 p.m.” series — designed to highlight groundbreaking faculty scholarship in a wide variety of topics related to race, ethnicity and social justice — returns Oct. 7 with a lecture examining racial masquerading through cinema.

Mónica García Blizzard, assistant professor of Spanish and Portuguese, will draw from “The White Indians of Mexican Cinema,” her book that charts the representation of whiteness as indigeneity during the Golden Age of Mexican cinema between the 1930s and 1950s, for the talk.

The lecture will be at 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7, in the Rose Library’s Woodruff Commons on the 10th floor. It and other lectures in the series are free, but registration is required.

The James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference (JWJI) at Emory and Emory College of Arts and Sciences launched the First Fridays series in early 2021 as a way to build community and conversation informed by new faculty research across disciplines. Carla Freeman, who now serves as interim dean of Emory College, helped lead the effort.

The series has since engaged faculty, staff and students in discussions as varied as neoliberal colonialism in Puerto Rico and the role of disgust in battling racism. 

“JWJI spends most of its time promoting the scholarship of visitors to Emory. The First Fridays series allows us to celebrate the excellent work of Emory faculty,” says Andra Gillespie, JWJI director and associate professor of political science. “It is an honor to assist Dean Freeman in highlighting the outstanding contributions our faculty make.”

The series continues Nov. 4 with English professor Nicole Guidotti-Hernández discussing “Latinx Feminist Approaches to Mexican Masculinities.” It will draw from her 2021 book, “Archiving Mexican Masculinities in the Diaspora,” which details how men’s vulnerabilities have challenged the trope of machismo, or exaggerated masculine pride.

The fall semester programming concludes on Dec. 1 with Valerie Babb, the Andrew Mellon Professor of the Humanities in the departments of African American studies and English, whose research explores African American literature and culture. 

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