In the Fall 2021 semester, history professor Roger Horowitz lead a class of 14 students to create an oral history project on African Americans and the University of Delaware. With essential support from Denise Hayman and her sisters in the Mu Pi chapter of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority, the class conducted 27 hours of interviews with 26 people, 9 men and 16 women. They include alumni of the university and longtime residents of Newark’s African American community known as New London Road.
The recorded memories of the interviewees convey a mixed message about their experiences at the university and in Newark. Interviewees shared many stories of personal experiences with racism and discrimination, as well as narratives of power and achievement in the community and at the university. The audio recordings are accompanied by a detailed summary indexed by time code, allowing a quick review of an interview’s contents and easy access to actual conversation.
Dr. Christopher-Byrd’s research focuses on the socio-political position of Black women in the United States. Through an examination of Black women’s representation in popular culture, Christopher-Byrd’s research explores the translation of social and cultural representations of Black women into political institutions, policies, and practices. Her current research focuses on gender-based violence, specifically as it impacts Black women. Her work explores the ways in which gendered dynamics of racial injustice and racial dynamics of gender injustice transform to create a unique form of gender based violence experienced by Black women. Christopher-Byrd received her Ph.D. in Language, Literacy, and Culture from the University of Maryland Baltimore County. She holds Master of Arts degrees in Education and Human Development and Women’s Studies from The George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts in English and Women’s Studies from the University of Delaware.