Due to the interdisciplinary nature of Black studies, the Frederick Douglass Institute’s research is done in collaboration with faculty from the following departments. 


In anthropology, Kristin Doughty’s research focuses on understanding how the contemporary global preoccupation with law and human rights as universalizing frameworks for post-conflict reconciliation shape people’s own efforts to rebuild their lives in the post-genocide Rwanda.


English Professor Jeffrey Tucker works with the institute to study literature as a context for discussions about racial representation. The institute also does research with Professor John Michael.


In the Department of History, Larry Hudson works with the institute to study the work environment, family life, religious beliefs, and health practices of the slaves in America. The institute also collaborates with several other professors in the history department including:

Modern Languages and Cultures

We work with Professor Cilas Kemedjio, from the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, to explore the articulation of the shared destinies and misunderstandings that circulate in the realm of transnational black studies.


Jennifer Kyker, professor at the Eastman School of Music, collaborates with the institute to study the mbira dzavadzimu, an instrument played at various ritual events within Zimbabwe. She also explores how women navigate expectations of gender in mbira performance, as well as the evolution of neo-traditional musical styles, such as the contemporary Zimbabwean marimba.

Religion and Classics

In religion and classics, Margarita Guillory works with the institute to research African-American religions and American religious history.

Other Departments

In addition to the departments and programs listed above, the institute also collaborates on research with: