PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Tricia Rose, professor of Africana studies at Brown, has been appointed director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA). Rose begins her position on July 1, 2013, succeeding Evelyn Hu-DeHart, who has led CSREA since 2002.
“We are truly delighted that Tricia will be taking over this highly important leadership position at Brown,” said Kevin McLaughlin, dean of the faculty. “Her influential, widely discussed scholarship and her commitment to intellectually responsible critical discourse on the role of race and ethnicity in the arts, the media, and in public life generally in America make her an ideal choice to take over the leadership of this important center.”
The Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America was established in 1986 as one of the nation’s earliest academic centers dedicated to research, scholarship, and academic exchanges on issues of race and ethnicity. In 1996 it became the home of the newly established concentration in ethnic studies. That concentration, now well-established, will be administered by the Department of American Studies beginning this fall. American studies has recently added new faculty and developed in directions that are well-suited to teaching, research, and student interest in ethnic studies.
CSREA will focus primarily on fostering scholarly working groups and serving as a hub for multidepartmental, interdisciplinary campuswide student and faculty research. It will also host high-profile visitors and public events that will speak to the pressing issues of race and ethnicity in America today and throughout its history. As director, Rose will provide intellectual leadership and strategic direction to CSREA’s activities and public programs.
“My goal is to make the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America a vibrant, historically grounded, yet forward-looking campuswide, nationally recognized site for critical analysis and public engagement on the ways that race and ethnicity shape American culture, society, and policy,” Rose said.
Under Rose’s direction, CSREA will tackle evolving ideas about definitions of race and ethnicity and will focus on culture, theory, social issues, policies, the arts, and expressive cultures as they relate to key racial, ethnic, and indigenous groups in the United States, in particular, Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans and Native Americans. CSREA’s programming will address four main areas of inquiry: culture and structural inequalities; ideologies of race and ethnicity; expressive cultures and marginalized knowledges; and mass media and new cultural technologies.
Rose’s vision for CSREA’s programming includes faculty and graduate student workshops, art and media exhibits and performances, faculty seminars, postdoctoral fellowships, and center-sponsored faculty and student events. In her first year, Rose plans to establish a faculty and graduate student seminar, various workshops, events and exhibits. She will also organize an annual lecture series called “The Third Rail,” which is designed to bring distinguished and innovative scholars to Brown to speak on difficult and socially pivotal topics such as affirmative action, colorblind ideology, welfare, immigration policy, incarceration, post-race, whiteness, and the politics of multiracial identities.
Coinciding with Rose’s July 1 start date, CSREA will move to a temporary location at Brown-RISD Hillel, 80 Brown St., while a new, permanent location is identified. Moving CSREA to a more central location will help to establish it as a hub for interdisciplinary collaboration across campus.
Tricia Rose, professor of Africana studies, is an internationally respected scholar of post-civil rights era black U.S. culture, popular music, social issues, gender, and sexuality. She is best known for her ground-breaking book on the emergence of hip-hop culture. Black Noise: Rap Music and Black Culture in Contemporary America is considered the foundational text for the study of hip hop, one that has defined what is now an entire field of study. Black Noise won an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation in 1995, was voted among the top 25 books of 1995 by the Village Voice and, in 1999, was listed by Black Issues in Higher Education as one of its Top Books of the Twentieth Century.
In 2003, Rose published a rare oral narrative history of black women’s sexual life stories, called Longing To Tell: Black Women Talk About Sexuality and Intimacy. In 2008, Rose published The Hip Hop Wars: What We Talk About When We Talk About Hip Hop — And Why It Matters
Rose was born and raised in New York City. She spent her childhood in Harlem and the Bronx. She graduated from Yale University where she received a B.A. in sociology, and earned her Ph.D. from Brown University in American studies. She has taught at New York University, the University of California–Santa Cruz, and Bremen University in Germany.
Rose lectures, engages in conversation, and presents seminars and workshops to scholarly and general audiences on a wide range of issues relating to race in America, mass media, structural inequality, popular culture, gender and sexuality, and art and social justice. she is a regular expert commentator on WNYC, MSNBC, CNN, NPR, and other national and local media outlets, has been a regular CurrentTV contributor, and her work has been published by several national outlets, including Time, Essence, The New York Times and The Village Voice.