About the Center
The United States Naval Academy’s Center for Regional Studies serves to enhance the educational opportunities of midshipmen through support for the study of different regions of the world, curricular innovation, and community outreach. Currently, the Center is comprised of six regional fora: Africa Forum, Asia Forum, Eurasia Forum, Latin America Forum, the Middle East Forum and the newly created Forum of Emerging Frontiers covering the Artic, cyber, space, deep sea, and other gray zones. The Center helps constituent Academy faculty members expose future Navy and Marine Corps officers to the array of disciplines that pursue a comprehensive understanding of regional and international dynamics across the globe.
Place: Sampson G14
Nadia Nurhussein is Professor in English and Africana Studies, specializing in African American literature and culture. She is the author of Black Land: Imperial Ethiopianism and African America (Princeton University Press, forthcoming 2019) and Rhetorics of Literacy: The Cultivation of American Dialect Poetry (The Ohio State University Press, 2013).
Prior to arriving at Johns Hopkins, Prof. Nurhussein taught in the English departments at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, from 2005 to 2016 and at Mount Holyoke College from 2004 to 2005. In 2004, she earned her PhD in English at the University of California, Berkeley. She has received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, the Beinecke Library at Yale University, and the American Council of Learned Societies.
This talk will consider Captain Harry Foster Dean’s thrilling 1929 memoir, The Pedro Gorino: The Adventures of a Negro Sea-Captain in Africa and on the Seven Seas in His Attempts to Found an Ethiopian Empire, as a critical text of maritime Pan-Africanism—a narrative complement to Marcus Garvey’s Black Star Line. Without proving itself as a maritime power, according to Dean, a transnational Black empire could not succeed. From his Cape Colony headquarters during the Second Boer War, Dean attempted to raise funds for his ideal empire but failed to interest any of the major leaders of African descent in the United States. His memoir ends with his ejection from Africa by European imperialists, one of whom called him “the most dangerous ‘Negro’ in the world.”