Miami Presents: Dr. Stefanie K. Dunning, Author of Black to Nature

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Virtual Winter College features alumni and faculty authors, as well as the return of our popular Winter College cooking class. All programs are free and can be enjoyed from the cozy comfort of your home.

Join us in conversation with Miami professor Dr. Stefanie K. Dunning as we explore the environment, identity and the many ways we engage ourselves and the natural world. 

About Black to Nature: Pastoral Return and African American Culture
Through examination of popular and literary texts that range from Beyoncé’s
Lemonade to Jesmyn Ward’s Salvage the Bones, Stefanie Dunning restages Black women in relation to nature and argues that depictions of protagonists who return to pastoral settings contest the violent and racist history that incentivized Black disavowal of the natural world. In a series of fascinating close readings of contemporary Black texts, she reveals how a range of artists evoke nature to suggest that interbeing with nature signals a call for what Jared Sexton calls “the dream of Black Studies”—abolition.

Dr. Stefanie K. Dunning is a Professor of English at Miami University, as well as an affiliate of the Black World Studies program and the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies program. She is author of Queer in Black and White: Interraciality, Same Sex Desire, and Contemporary African American Culture and her newest book is Black to Nature: Pastoral Return and African American Culture. Dr. Dunning hosts “Black to Nature,” a podcast about the environment and identity and the many ways we engage ourselves and the natural world. Her work has been published in African American Review, MELUS, Studies in the Fantastic, and several other journals and anthologies. Dr. Dunning received a B.A. from Spelman College, and a M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California, Riverside. 

Black to Nature at

Black to Nature at

The presentation is free to watch online, but registration is required. Please reach out to Emily LeFevers with any questions at

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