2018 - Reclaiming the Black Body: Women Writing Women


This year’s Black Literary Suite (BLS) brings together the work of group of black women writers in a themed exhibit “Women Writing Women: Reclaiming the Body.” Sponsored annually by The Project on the History of Black Writing, the exhibit is both a physical and digital interface that highlights known and little known writers who narrate culture and explore its contradictions. Acknowledging the primacy of physical violence against the female black body, “Reclaiming the Black Body” seeks to open up a new conversation through works that tells us a different story about agency and self-ownership, of making and remaking themselves, actively reclaiming their own bodies. “Reclamation” is defined as the process of claiming something back or reasserting a right. We use reclaiming here to refer to both the physical and ideological space that allows for innovative and powerful expressions of female sexuality and power. Our goal in this year’s Black Literary Suite is to engage in a conversation about the power that this legacy of black women’s writing has had. 


Exhibit and Podcast

On display at the Kansas Union Gallery through the end of November, we are featuring 10 foundational writer and activists of the period. Join us for our Kickoff Reception at the Kansas Union Gallery on Wednesday, November. 8th starting at 4pm.


Please listen to this year's accompanying podcast to the exhibit here:



Panel Discussions

On Friday, November. 17th and Friday, November. 28th we will be moderating panel discussions on different key issues pertaining to the Black body and women writing women:


11/17: Performing the Body: The Black Female Body in Pop Culture at the Spencer Museum of Art from 3-4pm


Rachel Atakpa

Simone Savannah

Michaela Warren

Morgan McComb, Chair


11/28: Freeing the Body: The Vision of a Liberated Future at the Sabatini Multicultural Resource Center (OMA) from 3-4pm


Micha Cox

Chris Omni

Marilyn Ortega

Imani Wadud

​Jameelah Jones, Chair




To compliment our panel discussions, we are hosting four Twitterchats starting at 8PM(est) / 7PM(cst) on the following dates. You can follow us @ProjectHBW and follow our hashtags #BlackLitSuite and #HBW.


11/13: Performing the Body: The Black Female Body in Pop Culture

11/27: Freeing the Body: The Vision of a Liberated Future 




Co-sponsors: Kansas Union GalleryOffice of Multicultural AffairsSpencer Museum of ArtEGARC, and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Press Release

Social Media

Facebook: @ProjectHBW

Twitter: @ProjectHBW

#HBW #BlackLitSuite


Upcoming Events
KU Today
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times

Watch: Video
Follow HBW: