Esther Terry

About Esther

Esther J. Terry is a Mellon Pre-Doctoral Fellow and Doctoral Candidate at the University of Pittsburgh. Her dissertation analyzes African Diasporic performance as embodied and historiographic practices in Mediterranean, trans-Saharan, and trans-Atlantic exchanges. She also researches Swahili-language performance in Africa and the United States, and Hip Hop as an African Diasporic dramaturgy. Her field work has been funded by the University of Richmond, the University of Pittsburgh, and Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad. Her article, “Land Rights and Womb Rights: Forging Difficult Diasporic Kinships in Ruined,” will appear in A Critical Companion to Lynn Nottage, edited by Jocelyn L. Buckner. In her spare time, Esther works as a dramaturg, generates content for and, watches PBS in Spanish, and reads children's books in Swahili.

Emerging as a 19th century entertainment genre grounded in racial caricature, blackface minstrelsy continues to linger in modern popular culture. Because of this, classroom discussions about minstrelsy may elicit uncomfortable, awkward, or silent refusals in reaction. Students may struggle with discussing historical blackface minstrelsy that often brings up racial issues and stereotypes in the present.… MORE