LaNitra Walker

LaNitra Walker is a doctoral candidate in art history at Duke University.

Recent Articles

The Art of Social Justice

A new exhibition of the art of Harlem Renaissance-era painter Aaron Douglas shows his commitment to using his work to promote economic and racial equality.

In a 1925 letter to his future wife, Alta Sawyer, Aaron Douglas writes, "At my present rate of progress, I'll be a giant in two years. A veritable black terror. They (White America) believe that a black artist is impossible."

The exhibition, Aaron Douglas: African American Modernist, (on display at the Smithsonian American Art Museum through Aug. 3 and from Aug. 30 to Nov. 30 at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture), proves that black art is not only possible but that understanding it is crucial to understanding American history.

Remembering Katrina

Hurricane Katrina was one of the most devastating and costly natural disasters ever in the United States. It left 80 percent of New Orleans under water. In his new book, historian Douglas Brinkley uses oral histories from Katrina survivors and rescuers and Gulf Coast residents to record the dramatic events that occurred during the eight days after the hurricane made landfall in Louisiana on August 29, 2005.

Your book is written as an oral history of Katrina. What do you hope that future historians will gain from your research?

Black and White

New York Times reporter Lynette Clemetson has added a new dimension to the “mommy wars” by describing the differences between black and white women's views on balancing work and family. Her recent Times article demonstrates how historical grievances between black and white women persist and continue to poison women's perceptions of each other.

“We don't generally have the time or luxury for the guilt and competition that some white mothers engage in,” said one black woman.

Pushed Into a Corner

In 1998, Dr. Barnett Slepian was shot by a sniper's bullet while standing in his kitchen in Amherst, New York, a quiet suburb of Buffalo. Dr. Slepian was one of only a few doctors who performed abortions in Buffalo. The man who killed him, James Kopp, was an anti-abortion activist known for his religious fundamentalism and his radical views. Journalist Eyal Press, whose Israeli-born father is also an abortion provider in Buffalo, decided to return to his hometown to find out how the city landed in the center of the emotional and violent national debate about abortion.

Pushed Into a Corner

In 1998, Dr. Barnett Slepian was shot by a sniper's bullet while standing in his kitchen in Amherst, New York, a quiet suburb of Buffalo. Dr. Slepian was one of only a few doctors who performed abortions in Buffalo. The man who killed him, James Kopp, was an anti-abortion activist known for his religious fundamentalism and his radical views. Journalist Eyal Press, whose Israeli-born father is also an abortion provider in Buffalo, decided to return to his hometown to find out how the city landed in the center of the emotional and violent national debate about abortion.

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