LAWRENCE — Ibram X. Kendi will be the Self Graduate Fellowship’s featured symposium speaker this fall in an event rescheduled from March 2020. Kendi is a New York Times bestselling author, professor of history and international relations, and the founding director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research.
Kendi, one of America’s foremost historians and leading antiracist voices, will present “How to Be an Antiracist: A Conversation with Ibram X. Kendi” at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 7 at the Lied Center of Kansas. His talk is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. They will be made available in September.
Kendi is the author of “Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America,” which won the 2016 National Book Award for Nonfiction. At 34 years old, he was the youngest-ever winner of the National Book Award for Nonfiction. He is also the author of “The Black Campus Movement,” which won the W.E.B. Du Bois Book Prize. Joining Kendi on stage will be Kevin Willmott. In addition to being a professor of film & media studies for the University of Kansas, Willmott is an Academy Award-winning film director and screenwriter. He is known for work focusing on Black issues including writing and directing “Ninth Street,” “C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America” and “Bunker Hill.” Willmott collaborated with Spike Lee on “BlacKkKlansman,” for which they won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.
Kendi has published numerous essays in academic journals and periodicals, including The New York Times, The Guardian, Time and The Washington Post. He has received research fellowships, grants and visiting appointments from a variety of universities, foundations, professional associations and libraries, including the American Historical Association, Library of Congress, National Academy of Education, Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis, Brown University, Princeton University, UCLA and Duke University. Kendi was awarded the prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship, and he was honored on The Root 100 in 2019, which listed him as the 15th most influential African American between the ages of 25 and 45 and the most influential college professor. In August 2019, Kendi’s third book, “How to Be an Antiracist,” debuted at No. 2 on the New York Times bestseller list and was hailed by the New York Times as “the most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind.” It has been named to several Best Books of 2019 lists, including in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Time and NPR.
The Self Graduate Fellowship Symposium Lecture is sponsored by the Madison and Lila Self Graduate Fellowship. The mission of the Self Graduate Fellowship is to identify, recruit, and provide development opportunities for exceptional doctoral students in business, economics, engineering, mathematics, biological, biomedical, pharmaceutical, and physical sciences who demonstrate the promise to make significant contributions to their fields of study and society as a whole.
The late Madison “Al” and Lila Self launched and permanently endowed the Self Graduate Fellowship in 1989. The creation of the Self Graduate Fellowship was motivated by Madison and Lila’s belief in the vital importance of developing leadership for tomorrow. They are the University of Kansas’ most generous private donors to date.
This is held in partnership with the following units: Self Graduate Programs; Graduate Studies; Academic Success; Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging; and the Office of Multicultural Affairs.