Deborah A. Thomas and John L. Jackson, Jr. | Lunch with the Laureates | 1 December | 11:15-13:00 | Pieter de la Court 0B.13, Leiden University (RSVP required)

ReCNTR invites students and staff for lunch with Deborah A. Thomas and John L. Jackson, Jr., this year’s Gerbrands Laureates to discuss how multimodal research practices help universities engage the public.

Come have lunch with the laureates! ReCNTR hosts this lunch with Thomas and Jackson to share their insights from directing The Center for Experimental Ethnography at the University of Pennsylvania. In the last five years, Thomas and Jackson have built a robust program that supports students, staff, and visiting scholars across eight of Penn’s twelve faculties. Central to CEE’s mission are renewed ways for the university to face its public. By advancing an expansive understanding of experimental and multimodal research, CEE offers an exemplary model for building multimodal infrastructures that can lead civic engagement through pedagogical initiatives.

Deborah A. Thomas is the R. Jean Brownlee Professor of Anthropology, and the Director of the Center for Experimental Ethnography at the University of Pennsylvania. She is also a Research Associate with the Visual Identities in Art and Design Research Centre at the University of Johannesburg. She is the author of Political Life in the Wake of the Plantation, Exceptional Violence, and Modern Blackness. Thomas co-directed the documentary films Bad Friday and Four Days in May, and she is the co-curator of a multi-media installation titled Bearing Witness: Four Days in West Kingston. Prior to her life in the academy, she was a professional dancer with the New York-based Urban Bush Women. 

John L. Jackson, Jr. is a filmmaker and urban anthropologist who works at the intersection of visual culture, critical race theory, media studies, and the ethnography of diasporic religions. John L. Jackson, Jr., is the Penn Provost and served as the fifth dean of the Annenberg School from 2019 until June 2023. He is also the Richard Perry University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania and was previously Dean of the School of Social Policy & Practice and Special Adviser to the Provost on Diversity at Penn. Jackson earned his B.A. in Communication (Radio/TV/Film) from Howard University, completed his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Columbia University, and served as a junior fellow at the Harvard University Society of Fellows before becoming Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Duke University. 


1 December | 11:15-13:00 | Arrive 11:15 for greetings, coffee & a sack lunch, event begins 11:30.

Pieter de la Court room 0B.13, Leiden University

Registration: Please register before 24 November to order your complimentary lunch.

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