African American Review

A publication of Johns Hopkins University Press

African American Review is a scholarly aggregation of insightful essays on African American literature, theatre, film, the visual arts, and culture; interviews; poetry; fiction; and book reviews. Published quarterly, AAR has featured renowned writers and cultural critics including Trudier Harris, Arnold Rampersad, Hortense Spillers, Amiri Baraka, Cyrus Cassells, Rita Dove, Charles Johnson, Cheryl Wall, and Toni Morrison. The official publication of LLC African American of the Modern Language Association, AAR fosters a vigorous conversation among writers and scholars in the arts, humanities, and social sciences.


Notice to Our Readers, Authors, and Subscribers:

African American Review has deleted its account on Twitter. We reach this decision having no doubt that Twitter's new chief of executive operations cherishes free speech. We do regret keenly, however, the wanton disregard he demonstrates for that which is also responsible speech. We also regret his decision to fire cavalierly many thousands of workers in what is, and will likely be for the foreseeable future, a critically unstable economy.

The site's now more bald contempt not only for workers, but also for the kind of thoughtful and generative discourse suitable for a broader marketplace of ideas, only fuels an already noxious political and social climate. We will not consent to be a party to such naked irresponsibility, either now or at any time to come.

Please check out our new page on Mastodon, a decentralized, nonprofit social network, at And continue to visit this page for further updates.

--The Editors

AAR Annual Awards

2022 Darwin T. Turner Award - best essay overall

Winner: Marina Magloire (University of Miami), "'Some Damn Body': Black Feminist Embodiment in the Spirit Writing of Lucille Clifton" (Vol 55.4)

Mention of Honor: Ben Fried (Cornell University), "James Baldwin's Readers: White Innocence and the Reception of 'Letter from a Region in My Mind'" (Vol 55.1)

2022 Joe Weixlmann Prize - best essay among this year's selection in twentieth- and twenty-first-century African American literature and culture

Winner: Kimberly Mack (University of Toledo), "Love Story Black and the Third Plane Novel" (Vol 55.2-3)

Mention of Honor: Emily Ruth Rutter (Ball State University), "Baseball and Beloved Community in the Memoirs and Poetry of E. Ethelbert Miller" (Vol 55.4)

Call for Papers & Other Announcements

Journal of Hip Hop Studies Seeks Associate Editors

The Journal of Hip Hop Studies (JHHS) invites you to consider serving as an associate editor. Founded in 2012, JHHS plays an integral role in Hip Hop studies, inside and outside of the academy. Moving forward, our aim is to lead the charge in academic innovation and challenging the academy’s role in propagating white supremacy. As a peer-reviewed, open-access journal hosted on Scholars Compass and published by Virginia Commonwealth University, JHHS provides a rigorous space for Hip Hop writing, thinking, and creativity. You are invited to make a vital contribution to this work.

As an associate editor, you will be a part of the decision-making team, contribute to the vision of the journal, and be involved in shaping the content of the issues we produce.

Main Responsibilities:

JHHS is working on securing grants to aid in travel and compensation, but at present, the position is monetarily uncompensated.

Potential specialty areas for associate editors:

Please respond to the editor-in-chief with a statement of interest: Travis Harris ( Feel free to circulate this posting among your networks. JHHS can be found at:

Job Postings

Assistant Professor of Contemporary African American Literature - University of Memphis

The Department of English at the University of Memphis invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track position in contemporary African American literature with a subspecialty in one or more of the following categories: children’s literature, Afrofuturism, digital humanities, music and literature, queer theory and literature. The position is at the Assistant Professor level beginning August 2024.

This position teaches courses on both the graduate and undergraduate level. The standard teaching load is 3/2 with one course release in the first year, a second pretenure course release, and the possibility of a pretenure professional development release. Other job duties include advising graduate students, keeping an active research agenda, and contributing to departmental and university service. Salary is competitive and based on experience.

The Department of English consists of six undergraduate concentrations (African American literature, applied linguistics, creative writing, literature, professional writing, and TESOL), a variety of MA and PhD programs, and several certificate programs. The department maintains close ties with a wide range of cultural organizations and nonprofits in the region. For this reason, the position is uniquely suited for a candidate interested in community engagement or public-facing scholarship.

Qualifications: Requirements include a PhD in English, Black studies, Africana studies, race and ethnic studies, or related discipline are encouraged to apply. PhD must be in hand or secured before August 2024.

To apply, candidates should visit to submit the following:

Review of applications will begin 15 November 2023.


Zafar Edits African American Review Special Issue

Rafia Zafar, professor of English, African and African American studies and American culture studies at Washington University in St. Louis, has coedited a special issue of African American Review dedicated to pioneering writer, historian and activist Arturo Alfonso Schomburg (1874-1938). Read more here.

Howard University Receives Transformative Gift from Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott

A former pupil of Howard alumna Toni Morrison, Scott's gift marks the largest gift from a single donor in school history. Read more here.

In Memoriam

Gerald Barrax

Camille Billops

James Coleman

James Hatch

John Lewis

Leith Mullings

Julius Scott

Melvin Van Peebles

Maurice Berger

Kamau Brathwaite

Stanley Crouch

bell hooks

Paule Marshall

Sidney Poitier

Greg Tate

Lauren Berlant

Ed Bullins

Ernest Gaines

Randall Kenan

Charles Mills

Gloria Richardson

Desmond Tutu

Cheryl Wall