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Report Index

Director's Statement 

Summary of Research Highlights 

Other Projects and Activities 


Statistical Summary 

Staff/Advisory Board 

Other Participants 




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(Statement explaining the publication agenda for the Center, more than the actual realizations as of June 30th, 1998) 


Through its publishing ventures the Center aims to: 

• serve as a source of intellectual stimulus for those connected with the Center at UCSB both now and in the future; 

• become a clearing house for ideas and provide a forum for both experienced and new authors from the Black community and other progressive groups; 

• convey a sense of intellectual urgency that questions existing assumptions and ideas; 

• demonstrate an aggressive approach towards the existing literature and promote works that deal not only with past historical and cultural matters but with the real issues of the day; 

• expose the gaps and limitations of the existing literature; 

• question the existing framework of discussion and encourage debate across discipline and across geographic regions; 

• discourage the use of academic jargon while insisting on clarity and precision; 

• create a climate wherein discussion is not simply about Black issues, but about American society and societies around the world as well; 

• offer ideas and recommendations that may positively impact public policies; 

• publish an intellectual forum that transcends the limitations of existing journals on Black issues by maintaining a high standard of discussion and debate. 

It is against this background that the Center for Black Studies is on the threshold of launching a number of publishing ventures: 

WORKING PAPER SERIES -- The Center hopes to publish a Working Paper Series to discuss new knowledge and research on specific questions of interest. The series will partially consist of presentations made at the Center's Colloquia, which have typically been held twice a month over the past years.  Research findings from faculty's and graduate students' on-going research projects, which may have received full or partial funding from the Center, are included in this category.  Essays which raise related questions may be grouped under a particular rubric and edited by a given faculty member.
The Working Paper Series will appear with minimum delay. Though we collected a number of papers in 1996-1997, we were not able to publish them last year due to the problems mentioned in the Director's statement.  Therefore, these will appear in next year's report. 

EDITED VOLUME ON THE WORK OF FORMER DISSERTATION FELLOWS -- The Center is putting together a collection of essays written by former dissertation fellows. This collection consists of work done by a selected number of the 50 fellows who have been associated with the Center over the past 25 years.  The goal is to document some of the best research that has emerged from the Center since its inception.  We have not yet approached a publisher for this project since we are still gathering material. Professor Cynthia Hudley is assisting with this project. 

The Center is in the process of editing a book on the work of former and current UCSB faculty whose scholarship focuses on various aspects of the African/African-American experience. This is also a way for us to document the interdisciplinary nature and breadth of Black Studies research. Professor Jacqueline Bobo is assisting with this project. 

Over the past few years, various scholars associated with the Center have engaged in a series of discussions and critical readings of the work of Disney, which fits into the Route of the Slaves Project.  The research project has been moved to the Center and the papers will appear as a collection of essays, published under the auspices of the Center as, "Culture of Illusion/Illusion of Culture: The Case of Disney.”  I am serving as editor for the book, and it was easy to encourage my colleagues to bring their research to the Center.  Findings will be presented in a round-table discussion for a large campus audience in 1999. 
 In April 1997, the Center organized an international conference on Haitian Vodou, making possible the first gathering in an academic forum in the United States of 13 Haitian scholars who offered their view on the Haitian national religion, and other social and political issues linked to those cultural/religious matters.  The papers presented, along with additional chapters commissioned from other Haitian scholars and practitioners, will come together in a volume "The Spirit and The Reality: Vodou and Haiti.”  The volume will be published in 1999, under the auspices of the Center, by The University Press of Florida, which is a leading publisher in the area of Caribbean Studies. 

Other such projects will be developed over time, especially in relation to conferences that will be organized by the Center. 

JOURNAL (S) -- It is anticipated that a journal will be launched. A number of us have been discussing the possibility of starting a new refereed journal, Black Insights.  Some preliminary contacts have been made with publishers, possible referees and contributors.  The Ethnic Studies Departments on campus have also discussed the possibility  of starting a UC Inter-Ethnic Journal. 
 Also, I have recently accepted the editorship of the Journal of Haitian Studies, the only refereed journal focusing on scholarship about Haiti.  The JHS will be published through the Center for Black Studies starting in 1999.  The Haitian Studies Association will offer some financial support for the publication of its journal.  The Center will assist with secretarial and editorial support and we will also seek additional support from other entities on campus to ensure the publication of a top-notch journal.