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Nishani Frazier




Director of Public History

Department of History

Withers Hall NA

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Nishani Frazier is Professor of History and Director of Public History at North Carolina State University. Prior to North Carolina State University, she was a faculty member at Miami University of Ohio and University of Kansas. Professor Frazier has also held professional public history positions as Associate Curator of African American History and Archives at Western Reserve Historical Society (WRHS), Assistant to the Director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Archives at the Martin Luther King Center for Nonviolent Social Change, and personal assistant for Dr. John Hope Franklin, before and during his tenure as chair of President Bill Clinton’s advisory board on “One America”.

Her research interests include 1960s freedom movements, oral history, museum studies, archives, and public history, black nationalist philosophy, digital humanities, and black economic development. Nishani’s publication, Harambee City: The Congress of Racial Equality in Cleveland and the Rise of Black Power Populism was released with an accompanying website also titled Harambee CityHarambee City website is a digital project that creates a second layer of book “reading” via online access to maps, archival documents, teacher lesson plans, and oral history interviews.

Frazier’s writings also include: co-editor for Freedom on My Mind: The Columbia Documentary History of the African American Experience (Columbia University Press, 2003); a policy paper for Democracy Collaborative “A ‘New Direction’: Community Wealth Building Black Community, Then and Now” Next System; co-authored essay, “Blackness is Not the Absence of Light: Restoring Black Visibility and Liberation of Digital Humanities in Debates in Digital Humanities; and multiple publications in Black Perspectives, AMSJ Blog, TruthOut, and more. Currently, she also serves as editor for the American Studies Journal. Upcoming publications include: “Sounds of Blackness” in Bloomberg’s Oral History Reader, ed. by Alistair Thomson, et al.

Professor Frazier is currently working on a tasty new book titled Cooking With Black Nationalism.

You can read short public history-based commentaries here:

Breonna Taylor and Gentrification: It’s No Mere Claim

Black Blockchain: The Future of Black Studies and Blockchain

How State Surveillance Undermines Black Freedom Movements

The Return of Black Political Power: How 1970s History Can Guide New Black Mayors Toward a Radical City

David Garrow, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Politics of History

You can follow her on Twitter at @SpelmanDiva.

Area(s) of Expertise

1960s freedom movements
oral history, museum studies, archives, and public history
black nationalist philosophy
digital humanities
black economic development