Stirring the (Honey) Pot and Pouring the (Sweet) Tea

Looking for a way to engage with Black History Month? This is a great opportunity!

The invited speaker for the Hall Center for the Humanities, Oral History Seminar series will be E. Patrick Johnson. Johnson’s talk, “Stirring the (Honey) Pot: Performative Writing as Oral History Method”, will focus on his oral history project with black lesbian women in the South. The talk will be Tuesday, Feb. 20, at 3-4:30pm in the Hall Center Seminar Room. (Click here for more information.)

Later that evening at 7:30pm, E. Patrick Johnson will perform “Pouring Tea: Black Gay Men of the South Tell Their Tales” in Room 240 of Robinson Health & Physical Education Center (ROB). This production is a dramatic reading based on the oral histories in Johnson’s book, Sweet tea: Black gay men of the South – An oral history published in 2008. (Click here for more information.)

E. Patrick Johnson is the chair of African American Studies, Carlos Montezuma Professor of Performance Studies and African American Studies at Northwestern University (Johnson 2018). Johnson is both a scholar and an artist who focuses on the intersection between race, class, gender, sexuality and performance (Johnson 2018). In 2001, E. Patrick Johnson filled a significant gap in the literature by introducing “quare” studies. He defines “quare studies as a vernacular rearticulation and deployment of queer theory to accommodate racialized sexual knowledge” (Johnson 2001).

List of works by E. Patrick Johnson in the KU Libraries’ collections:
This is only a small sampling of Johnson’s work consisting almost entirely of books. I encourage you to search E. Patrick Johnson in the KU Libraries’ Quick Search to find more of his work.
Appropriating blackness: Performance and the politics of authenticity (print book)
Blacktino Queer Performance (e-book)
No Tea, No Shade: New writings in black queer studies (e-book)
Sweet Tea: Black gay men of the South (print book)
Sweet Tea: Black gay men of the South (e-book)
Black queer studies: A critical anthology (print book)
“Quare” studies, or (almost) everything I know about queer studies I learned from my grandmother (scholarly article)

Johnson, E. Patrick. (2018). Biography. Retrieved from
Johnson, E. Patrick. (2001). “Quare” studies, or (almost) everything I know about queer studies I learned from my grandmother. Text and Performance Quarterly, 21, 1-25. dio:10.1080/10462930128119


The Black Law Student Association ask all to join our voices to decry the use of symbols of hatred, intimidation tactics and violence by wearing all black February 6 in solidarity for #BlackOut!

KU Common Book Exhibit at Spencer Museum of Art

Lonely Chambers (T.O.) by Toyin Ojih Odutola
Lonely Chambers (T.O.), 2011, pen ink and marker drawing on paper drawing by Toyin Odutola

The Spencer Museum of Art has created an exhibit showcasing artworks that are in conversation with this year’s KU Common Book Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine. One of the key pieces on display is a lithograph by Nigerian-born artist Toyin Ojih Odutola entitled Birmingham (left, middle, right). Her piece entitled Uncertain, yet Reserved (Adeola. Abuja Airport, Nigeria.) featured in Rankine’s book in the context of a meditation on Hurricane Katrina.

Other artists featured in this exhibit include KU alumnus Joseph S. Lewis, Sophie Calle, Carl Fischer, Art Kane, Gordon Parks, Dan Wynn, Glenn Ligon, and Lesley Dill.

Find more information about visiting Spencer Museum of Art here.