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Fall 2021

"To Make a Poet Black: Navigating a Blues Sensibility"

Through the Tack Faculty Lecture Series, a William & Mary professor will address the community at least once a semester.

  • Hermine PinsonFrances L. & Edwin L. Cummings Professor of English and Africana Studies
  • Thursday, October 28, 7:00 p.m.
  • Sadler Center Commonwealth Auditorium
Watch the Lecture


Click to view largerHermine Pinson has been influenced by the work of many poets, authors, musicians and artists throughout her lifetime, starting with her childhood in the segregated Deep South to her almost three decades as a professor at William & Mary. Pinson explored some of these pieces of work, and some of her own, in the fall 2021 Tack Faculty Lecture, “To Make a Poet Black: Navigating a Blues Sensibility,” on October 28 at 7 p.m. at the Sadler Center’s Commonwealth Auditorium.

As an admirer of the works of many artists, Pinson developed her own “blues sensibility,” which helped her navigate, among other things, widespread racism growing up and a health scare in 2004, when she had a tumor surgically removed from her brain. She also became a highly regarded writer and artist in her own right, producing poetry and music inspired by her experiences and her many creative influences.

Pinson intertwined stories from her own life into her lecture, including her health scare 16 years ago. She was excited to share some of her favorite works and some of her own creations with the audience during the hour-long presentation. She was the first out of 17 Tack Faculty lecturers to include performance-based pieces.