Dunbar, Jessie

Jessie LaFrance Dunbar (Ph.D., Emory University, 2012) specializes in African American and African Diasporic literatures; she has secondary interests in Russian and AfroCuban history, literature and cultures. She has published in Biography.  Her current book project, Democracy, Diaspora, and Disillusionment: Black Itinerancy and the Propaganda Wars suggests that scholars recalibrate the earliest notable era of Russian influence on African American politics from the 20th century to the 19th century.  She reads the travel narratives of Nancy Prince and Nicholas Said within the context of Russian civil unrest to better comprehend both authors’ metamorphoses into revolutionaries in their own right. Her second project will extend the work in the first by foregrounding the contributions of nineteenth century Russian writers such as Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, and Pushkin to the spirit of the impending Russian Revolution as well as the inspiration they provide to African American authors with communist sympathies and revolutionary agendas. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in composition and nineteenth and twentieth century African American literatures.