Skip to content

Humanities Center to host Laurent Dubois Speaking on the History of the Banjo


The Humanities Center’s Distinguished Lecture Series brings Laurent Dubois to our campus on Wed., Sept. 20, at 4:00 pm in Hodges Library’s Lindsay Young Auditorium. Dubois is Professor of History at Duke University and the author of multiple books, including A Colony of Citizens: Revolution and Slave Emancipation in the French Caribbean (2004), Avengers of the New World: The Story of the Haitian Revolution (2005), Soccer Empire: The World Cup and the Future of France (2010), and Haiti: The Aftershocks of History (2012).

Dubois’ lecture at UTK will be titled “On the Trail of the Banjo: America’s African Instrument,” and will draw from his most recent book The Banjo: America’s African Instrument, which was published by Harvard University Press in 2016. Drawing from Dubois’ decades of scholarship on slavery and the African Diaspora in the Atlantic World, the lecture will examine one musical instrument – the banjo – and its travels from West Africa to the Caribbean, the U.S. Deep South, and ultimately Appalachia. Accompanying the lecture will be a live banjo performance from a special guest!

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.