National journal features papers from IUPUI Frederick Douglass conference and IUPUI professor as guest editor

thCAHJ0V6YINDIANAPOLIS — The latest issue of a leading scholarly journal about African American history includes the publication of several papers presented during an Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis conference on the life and work of Frederick Douglass.

IUPUI professor John R. Kaufman-McKivigan served as guest editor for “Rediscovering the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass,” a special edition of the Journal of African American History.

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History recently announced the publication of “Rediscovering the Life and Times of Frederick Douglass” as the Winter/Spring 2014 volume of the association’s Journal of African American History.

Started in 1916 as the Journal of Negro History by Carter G. Woodson — who founded the Association for the Study of African American Life and History and the observance of what is now known as Black History Month — the Journal of African American History is a peer-reviewed quarterly. The journal is considered the “jewel” of the association and the premier publication in its field.

“I am very pleased that the Journal of African American History has printed the papers delivered at a stimulating symposium held on our campus in October 2012,” Kaufman-McKivigan said. “It is my hope that these highly insightful essays will draw attention to this often overlooked gem of an autobiography by Douglass.”

Kaufman-McKivigan, the Mary O’Brien Gibson Professor of United States History in the Indiana University School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, is project director and editor of the Frederick Douglass Papers Edition, one of four scholarly publications housed in the Institute for American Thought, also part of the School of Liberal Arts. He specializes in antebellum America, Civil War studies, American ethnic history and American working-class history.

According to an Association for the Study of African American Life and History press release, the journal contributors are leading historians of 19th-century U.S. and African American history who offer insightful and well-documented analyses of “Life and Times of Frederick Douglass,” one of three autobiographical works.

A runaway slave turned abolitionist in antebellum America, Douglass became an influential writer and thinker of the Civil War and Reconstruction periods. The 2012 IUPUI conference celebrated the publication of the Frederick Douglass Papers’ first scholarly edition of Douglass’ final autobiography.

The special journal issue includes one article written by Kaufman-McKivigan, “Stalwart Douglass: ‘Life and Times’ as Political Manifesto.” He also wrote the journal’s introduction.

In addition to chapters on the Douglass autobiography, the special issue includes about 20 book reviews, as well as three essay reviews such as “12 Years a Slave: Narrative, History and Film.”

The Winter-Spring 2014 issue is available for purchase in hard copy and for course use through association publications director Karen May at kmay@asalh.net. A digital version soon will be available through ISTOR Current Journals.

Inaugural symposium, “The Life and Times of Madame C.J. Walker: The Historical Development of a Business Empire”

The Africana Studies Program at IUPUI and the Frederick Douglass Papers invites the public to attend the upcoming inaugural symposium that is part of the Madame C.J. Walker/Frederick Douglass Annual Lecture Series. This lecture series is designed to celebrate the brilliance, accomplishments and ingenuity of two African American global icons, namely Madame C.J. Walker who was the first African American female millionaire entrepreneur in America and Fredrick Douglass, a great orator, abolitionist, and political statesman. Our first public symposium will take place on Friday, December 6, 2013 at the Jewel Center from 8:00 AM until 4:30 PM. Please see the event flyer.

The theme of this year’s symposium is “The Life and Times of Madame C.J. Walker: The Historical Development of a Business Empire.” The events of the day are as follows:

  • Registration and continental breakfast is at 8:00 AM-9:00 AM
  • Welcome Remarks: 9:15 AM by Dr. Karen Dace, Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Welcome Remarks: 9:20 AM by Dr. Jack Kaufmann-McKivigan, Editor and Founder, The Frederick Douglass Papers, IUPUI
  • The first panel discussion starts around 9:30 AM on the theme of “The Life and Times of Madame C.J. Walker”
  • Our keynote speaker for noon is Dr. Juliet E.K. Walker, the foremost scholar and expert on Black business history in America and distinguished Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin, who will discuss “African American Businesses in the Arc of History: Culture, Innovation and Black Business Success.”
  • Introduction of the Keynote Speaker: Dr. William Blomquist, Dean of the School of Liberal Arts, IUPUI
  • At 2:00 PM, Professor Bessie House-Soremekun will make a research presentation on “Lessons Learned from History: The 10 Personality Characteristics of African American Entrepreneurs and How to Achieve Them.”

The event is free and open to the public. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to Dr. Bessie House Soremekun at beshouse@iupui.edu or cmorlan@iupui.edu.