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Dr. Tameka Ellington & Dr. Afiya Mbilishaka – “Black Hair in a White World”

February 10 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Join us for an author event with Dr. Tameka Ellington & Dr. Afiya Mbilishaka presenting “Black Hair in a White World.”

Join us for an author event with Dr. Tameka Ellington & Dr. Afiya Mbilishaka presenting Black Hair in a White World.

Learn more about Black Hair in a White World:

Black Hair in a White World is an in-depth study of the cultural history, perceptions, and increasing acceptance of Black hair in the broader American society. The essays in this anthology discuss representations and responses to Black hair, including analysis of research findings about marketing messages and depictions of Black hair in popular culture, discussions of workplace discrimination, and stories about the origins of the natural hair movement and how many Black people have learned to embrace and celebrate their natural hair.

Beginning with a close analysis of historical and contemporary books, media, and ads, Black Hair in a White World illustrates both positive and negative responses to Black hair. In the second section, Ellington features contributions from diverse scholars and activists who argue that natural Black hair has often explicitly been––and still is––criticized by non-Blacks and Blacks who believe that the natural texture of Black hair is a problem that must be solved and believe that natural Black hair is unacceptable, unprofessional, and unattractive. Authors of the volume’s final essays conclude by pushing against this narrative and describing the emergence of the natural hair movement, which has pushed for increased mainstream acceptance of Black hair.

Black Hair in a White World is a groundbreaking, serious examination of perceptions of Black hair and makes an important contribution to ongoing discussions about gender, sociology, and self-expression.

Learn more about Dr. Tameka Ellington:

Dr. Tameka is CEO and Founder of Dr. Tameka Ellington Enterprises, a personal and professional development company. She is a speaker, internationally acclaimed and awarded fashion scholar, and confidence coach. She’s the author of four books, including the award-winning book, TEXTURES: the history and art of Black hair written for its namesake exhibition co-curated by Dr. Tameka, featuring artifacts and contemporary artworks musing on Black hair and Black culture. Her fifth book, Black Hair in a White World was released summer 2023 with Kent State University (KSU) Press. Dr. Tameka is also the host of the Black Beauty Activist Podcast where she has critical conversations with her guests to disrupt Westernize beauty standards and raise the consciousness and confidence of Black women.

Dr. Tameka obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Fashion from KSU, a Master of Arts in Apparel and Textile Design from Michigan State University, and a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from KSU. Dr. Tameka started her career as a Fashion Designer working for large corporations such as Abercrombie & Fitch. After several years of working in the fashion industry, she had a call in to teach in 2005. She became an adjunct instructor at the KSU Fashion School while obtaining her PhD. In 2012 she became the first African American professor at the KSU Fashion School and served as a fashion design professor/scholar for 15 years. The last two years of her academic career Dr. Tameka served as Assistant Dean for the College of the Arts and Director for Diversity Initiatives for a team of over 3,000 people (faculty, staff, and students).

Learn more about Dr. Afiya Mbilishaka:

Being in love with hair her whole life, Dr. Afiya grew up as her family’s hairstylist, graduating from lawn chairs at cookouts to eventually holding space in her college dorm room for a mini-salon. Her trait of being a skillful active listener translated smoothly to the field of psychology, earning her degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and Howard University. At the age of 26, Dr. Afiya earned a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and was a full time therapist at Columbia University and then she was a professor at the University of the District of Columbia. Dr. Afiya is a natural hairstylist and partners with N Natural Hair Studio in Silver Spring, Maryland where she loves creating art with locs, twists, and afros. (www.psychohairapy.org/team)


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