Georgetown Humanities Partners with University of Maryland’s Antiracism: Communities + Collaborations for Booksellers & Community Activism Event

On December 1, in partnership with the Center for Literary and Comparative Studies at the University of Maryland, Georgetown Humanities hosted a panel featuring Ramunda Lark Young  and Angela Maria Spring and moderated by two graduate students–Chanel Williams from our own Master in Engaged and Public Humanities and Diana Proenza from the Department of English at University of Maryland.

A recording of the event is available here.

Ramunda Lark Young is an entrepreneur, speaker, and community advocate. She and her husband are the owners and co-founders of the nationally-recognized Mahogany Books, a bookstore focused on books for, by, and about people of the African Diaspora in Washington, DC. Young has successfully worked with celebrity authors like ballet icon Misty Copeland, R&B legend Charlie Wilson, Civil Rights leader Congressman John Lewis, award-winning actor Omar Epps.

Angela Maria Spring is a poet, journalist, and editor. She has worked in bookstores in New Mexico, New York City, and D.C. for almost two decades. In 2017 she decided to create a flexible, financially viable bookstore model that empowered and embraced diversity in bookselling, writing/art, and in our communities. She hence launched Duende District Bookstore, a unique pop-up boutique bookstore run by people of color for people of color.

Chanel Williams studies in our Master’s Program in the Engaged and Public Humanities. She has used her career as a public relations professional to center her passion for making arts and culture institutions more accessible and inclusive through storytelling. Having supported the mission, vision, and values at both the Smithsonian Institution and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, she often embraces the themes of empathy and equity in her PR practice. As a native of the DMV, she knows the impact that D.C. memorials, museums, performing arts venues, and cultural institutions have on enriching the lives of native Washingtonians and the nation more broadly.

Diana Proenza is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Department of English at the University of Maryland, College Park and a graduate of the New College of Florida with a B.A. in English Literature and Art History. Her research pertains to the intersections between literature and visual/material culture, particularly in relation to 20th and 21st century women/gender studies and print history. Her recent undergraduate thesis explored feminist reconfigurations of subjectivity amidst post-WWI industry, fashion, and machinery in the little magazines of New York Dada. Her other areas of interest include multiethnic and global modernisms, archival/textual studies, indigenous and postcolonial theory, and trauma/memory studies.