Postdoctoral Scholar for the “Unarchiving Blackness” Mellon Sawyer Seminar
The Center for Ideas and Society at the University of California, Riverside
The University of California, Riverside, invites applications for a one-year Postdoctoral Scholar to support an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar entitled “Unarchiving Blackness: Why the Primacy of African and African Diaspora Studies Necessitates a Creative Reconsideration of Archives” scheduled for the 2022-23 academic year.
The Center for Ideas and Society is an interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary center for academic research, dedicated to advancing humanistic studies, intellectual exchange, and creativity at UC Riverside. The Seminar working group for Unarchiving Blackness will be led by Professors Jody Benjamin (History), Ademide Adelusi-Adeluyi (History), Ayana Omilade Flewellen (Anthropology), Jade S. Sasser (Gender & Sexuality Studies), and andré carrington (English). In collaboration with the Postdoctoral Scholar, the seminar conveners will facilitate research workshops, public lectures, artist talks, a symposium, and other events exploring how archives of Black life—including documents, drawings, maps, material culture, photographs, and digital content —shape historical narratives of the past, impact the material conditions of African and African Diasporic people in the present, and create imaginative possibilities of vibrant Black life for the future. Thinking across disciplinary, geographic, and temporal boundaries, the Unarchiving Blackness Mellon Sawyer Seminar will explore alternative methodological engagements with archival materials that push against the silenced, erased, and inhuman contortions of Black life in the past by conceiving of archival futurity that illuminates the expansiveness of Blackness on the continent of Africa, in North America, and in the Caribbean. Three major themes structure the Seminar: The Afterlives of Slavery and Colonialism (Fall 2022), Black Ecologies and Placemaking (Winter 2023), and Technology, Afrofuturism, and Black Speculative Practices (Spring 2023). Over the course of the year, the Seminar will engage participants to expand our shared conception of which objects, datasets, institutions, and systems might be considered as archives for Black peoples and scholarship.
The Mellon Sawyer Postdoctoral Scholar is a 12-month appointment from September 1, 2022 to August 31, 2023 and includes stipend, health benefits, and logistical assistance with relocation. The fellow is expected to be in residence at UC Riverside and will be hosted, with office space and administrative support, by the Center for Ideas & Society. A faculty mentor from the Seminar leadership team will advise the Postdoctoral Scholar during their appointment. The range of duties for the successful candidate will include:
- conducting research whose questions or methods relate to the seminar’s overall theme, “Creative Reconsideration of Archives in African and African Diaspora Studies
- engaging, as an active discussion participant and interlocutor, in seminar workshops, public-facing events, and related activities during the 2022-23 academic year
- communicating with invited speakers and guests
- participating in research paper workshops with graduate students and seminar faculty throughout the academic year
- delivering a public lecture/presentation based on written, visual, or performance work in progress.
- Candidates will have a recent* Ph.D. in History, Anthropology, Archeology, Women and Gender Studies, English, Comparative Literature, or a comparable field with specialization in African and African Diaspora Studies. (*awarded within the previous 5 years)
- UCR is a world-class research university with an exceptionally diverse undergraduate student body. Its mission is explicitly linked to providing routes to educational success for underrepresented and first-generation college students. A commitment to this mission is a preferred qualification.
- Demonstrated scholarly expertise in the study of peoples of African descent, the African continent, the Caribbean, the Americas, or the Black Diaspora
Applicants will be required to submit a cover letter, CV, sample of research work, a statement of research interests, Statement of Past and/or Planned Future Contributions to Advancing Diversity and Inclusive Excellence, and contact information for three professional references.
Applications and materials will be submitted using UCR’s online application system located at https://aprecruit.ucr.edu/JPF01530
Applicants who use Interfolio may utilize a feature provided by the Interfolio Service to allow Interfolio to upload their letters directly into AP Recruit. Applicants can input an Interfoliogenerated email address in place of their letter writer’s email address. Interfolio refers to this as Online Application Deliveries. The following link on the Interfolio website shows how to set this up (http://help.interfolio.com/entries/24062742-Uploading-Letters-to-an-Online-ApplicationSystem).
To ensure full consideration, applications and supporting material should be received by Tuesday, April 5, 2022.
Post-doc salary will be $54,540-$65,292 depending on experience upon start.
UCR is a world-class research university with an exceptionally diverse undergraduate student body. Its mission is explicitly linked to providing routes to educational success for underrepresented and first-generation college students. A commitment to this mission is a preferred qualification.
The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
University of California COVID-19 Vaccination Program Policy
As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Policy. All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of Full Vaccination or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, and/or Religious Objection) or Deferral (based on pregnancy) no later than the applicable deadline. New University of California employees must (a) provide proof of receiving at least one dose of a COVID-19 Vaccine no later than 14 calendar days after their first date of employment and provide proof of Full Vaccination no later than eight weeks after their first date of employment; or (b) if applicable, submit a request for Exception or Deferral no later than 14 calendar days after their first date of employment. Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.