Performance, Lecture Focus on the Stories of Gay Black Southerners

CANTON — Author and Northwestern University professor E. Patrick Johnson will perform and present his research on black Southern gay histories and contemporary issues at St. Lawrence University.

Johnson will perform “Pouring Tea: Black Gay Men of the South Tell Their Tales,” which is an interpretation of the oral histories collected in Johnson’s book, Sweet Tea: Black Gay Men of the South–An Oral History (University of North Carolina Press, 2008). The oral histories are from black gay men who were born, raised, and continue to live in the South and range in age from 19 to 93.

The performance will take place at 7 p.m. Sept. 30 in the Peterson-Kermani Performance Hall in the Griffiths Arts Center. There will be a question-and-answer period and book signing following the performance.

Johnson will also present “Gathering Honey: Oral History and Performance of Black Southern Women Who Love Women.” The lecture will address his current ethnographic work with Southern black lesbians.

The presentation will take place at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 1 in the Peterson-Kermani Performance Hall in the Griffiths Arts Center.

Johnson is the Carlos Montezuma Professor of Performance Studies and African American Studies at Northwestern and is also an Artistic Fellow at the Ellen Stone Belic Institute for the Study of Women and Gender in the Arts and Media at Columbia College in Chicago.

A scholar, artist, and activist, Johnson has performed nationally and internationally and has published widely in the area of ethnography, race, gender, sexuality and performance. His research and artistry has greatly impacted African-American studies, performance studies and sexuality studies. In addition to Sweet Tea, Johnson also has written Appropriating Blackness: Performance and the Politics of Authenticity (Duke University Press, 2003).

Johnson’s performance and presentation are being funded in part by the Alcoa Foundation Cultural Affairs Program Fund.

For more information, call Karin Blackburn at 315-229-5998 or visit