RAS Lecture

From Topeka to Tashkent: Langston Hughes in Eurasia

Speaker: Aaliyah Bilal

This presentation offers an in-depth chronology of Langston Hughes’ travels through Soviet Central Asia, China and Japan in the early 1930’s. Though a perusal of autobiographical and epistolary sources, we imbibe a distinctly Black-American accounting of this time granted to us by one of the most important literary voices of the 20thcentury.

Aaliyah Bilal is a fiction/non-fiction writer and an Islamicist. Previously she was a recipient of the Shansi Memorial Fellowship at Yunnan University where for two years she conducted research among Hui Zu Muslims. A graduate of The School of Oriental and African Studies at The University of London, she is finishing a book on her experience living as a black woman in East Asia.

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