"Learn Your Sisters' Stories"

deadline for submissions: 
March 1, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
University of Maryland College Park
contact email: 

The "Learn Your Sisters' Stories" podcast series seeks to inform those inside and outside of academia of the challenges and rewards black women scholars face. It will also help create a community for black women students and professors currently in the academy as they find solidarity with one  another, and offer tools and support on how to navigate academic culture. Finally, it will help those who are considering going to graduate school know more about the process.

"Learn Your Sisters' Stories" takes its inspiration from Angela Davis’ Freedom is a Constant Struggle and Black feminist sociologist Jacqui Alexander’s “Learn your sisters’ stories.” Both note the importance of circulating stories as a way of keeping memory alive and how often, Davis states “those other stories are actually our own stories.” Research that goes against the main narrative galvanizes “Learn your Sisters’ Stories.” Often, we highlight the research that is being done on black bodies without heeding the care and trauma those black bodies encounter in the course of the research itself. This project seeks to fill that gap by following an affect of care within higher education and creating community for people often marginalized by the hierarchies within research institutions. 

This project is sponsored by the Center for Literary & Comparative Studies in the Department of English, the University of Maryland Libraries, the University of Maryland Graduate School's Office of Diversity and Inclusion, and the University of Maryland Division of Research.

We are inviting graduate students, post-docs, precarious or tenured faculty, staff in academia as well as independent scholars who are in the Humanities, Sciences, Business, Law, Behavioural Sciences, Engineering and Education. 


We welcome conversations around any and all topics on being in academia. We also welcome articles and creative writing. 

Here are some potential themes and topics: 


  • Dealing with imposter syndrome while in Higher Education 

  • Being a mother & having a family while in Higher Education 

  • Facing descrimination/racism in achieving learning opportunities while in academia

  • Tools that helped you succeed while in academia 

  • Suggestions to those on the fence about furthering their education 

  • Mental Health & Academia 

  • The future of academia

  • Receiving support while writing the dissertation 

We invite abstracts of around 500 words on any of the above topics. The deadline for submission of the abstract is March 1st, 2023. 

Please email your abstracts (together with a short bio, 250 words max) for consideration to fseck1@umd.edu