Dr Maisha Wester

For the duration of her Global Professorship Maisha Wester is hosted by the University of Sheffield.
Project status

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This project examines how the rise of the Gothic genre provided an invaluable vocabulary for remaking black subjects – transforming them from citizens to enslaved people to inhuman beasts and worse. In tracking this dynamic, Dr Maisha Wester hopes to understand why and how this vocabulary extends into 20th and 21st century anti-black discourses. Dr Wester particularly hopes to counter the white nationalist rhetoric rising in various nations by revealing the process of racial construction, thereby refuting the notion that our ideas of race have been historically stable and challenging the fiction of white supremacy. The ultimate goal of this project is a single-authored monograph and, more significantly, an innovative virtual reality environment that allows users to experience the disorientating process of racial construction. In creating a first-person, embodied virtual experience, Dr Wester hopes to help users comprehend the disorientating and disempowering effects of racial discourses.

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