General Information

Expanding the Boundaries of Black Intellectual History

The African American Intellectual History Society (AAIHS) invites you to attend our second annual conference to take place on March 24-25, 2017 at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Through a series of papers, panel sessions, roundtable discussions, films, and talks, this two-day conference will assess what it means and what it has meant to “do” black intellectual history, define what is a black intellectual, and clarify who have been the producers of black intellectual history. In doing so and in accordance with the conference theme, the event will explore the boundaries of black intellectual history. With a diverse set of presentations on a wide-range of topics including religion, internationalism, slavery, sexuality, popular culture, and political thought in addition to a keynote address by American studies professor and historian Davarian L. Baldwin, the conference promises to draw in a diverse array of burgeoning scholars, established academics, and activists committed to pushing the field of black intellectual history in new and exciting directions.

Final Conference Schedule

*Click here to download the final conference program.

Conference Guide

*Click here to download the conference guide, which includes details on coffee shops, restaurants, and historical sites to visit in Nashville, Tennessee.


All participants must be registered for the conference by March 15, 2017. Early bird registration extends from January 1, 2017 to February 14, 2017 and is $20 for AAIHS members; $60 for non-members. Regular registration begins on February 15, 2017 and is $40 for AAIHS members and $120 for non-members. Click here to access the registration form. REGISTRATION FEES ARE NON-REFUNDABLE.

Keynote Speaker–Davarian L. Baldwin

“Ideas in Unexpected Places: Making Sense of a Marketplace Intellectual Life”

Davarian Baldwin (Courtesy of Trinity College)

Davarian L. Baldwin is the Paul E. Raether Distinguished Professor of American Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. He is the author of Chicago’s New Negroes: Modernity, the Great Migration, and Black Urban Life (2007), as well as numerous essays and scholarly articles. He is also a coeditor, with Minkah Makalani, of the essay collection Escape From New York: The New Negro Renaissance beyond Harlem (2013). Baldwin served as a consultant for the 2014–2015 international art retrospective Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist. He is currently at work on two new book projects, “Land of Darkness: Chicago and the Making of Race in Modern America” and “UniverCities: How Higher Education is Transforming Urban America,” and is also editing the “Greenwood Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance.” Click here for more details on Prof. Baldwin’s keynote address.


Conference Hotel

The conference committee is pleased to announce our partnership with the Hampton Inn & Suites for the 2017 AAIHS Conference in Nashville. Conference attendees can take advantage of the discounted conference rate at either the West End location or the Elliston Place location. Information about both can be found below. To place your reservation, call either hotel directly and mention the group name (African American Intellectual History Society).

Hampton Inn Vanderbilt West End
1919 West End Avenue
Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 329-1144
Rate: $179 for King Standard (Rate subject to applicable state and local taxes, 15.25% and $2.50, in effect at time of check-in).
Dates applicable: 3/23/2017-3/25/2017
Cutoff for reservations: 2/24/2017 (ALL ROOMS HAVE BEEN BOOKED)

Hampton Inn Vanderbilt Elliston Place
2330 Elliston Place
Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 320-6060
Rate: $179 for King Standard (Rate subject to applicable state and local taxes, 15.25% and $2.50, in effect at time of check-in).
Dates applicable: 3/23/2017-3/25/2017
Cutoff for reservations: 2/21/2017 (ALL ROOMS HAVE BEEN BOOKED)

Parking Details and Campus Maps
Interactive campus map:
Advertising and Book Exhibit

The conference committee is happy to offer advertising space in the conference program. We also have limited room available at a book exhibit to be held on both days of the conference.

**If your journal, press, organization, or department is interested in taking out an advertisement in our conference program or showcasing their catalog at our book exhibit, please email for more details.

2017 Conference Planning Committee
  • Brandon Byrd, chair
  • Christopher Cameron
  • Kami Fletcher
  • Christopher Bonner
  • Nathan Dize

Previous Conference Program

AAIHS 2016 (Chapel Hill, North Carolina)