Wooden post fence in a field with mist in the air

Elihu Katz Colloquium: Nicole Maurantonio, Richmond University

January 28, 2022 12:00pm-1:00pm
  • Virtual Event
Audience Open to the Public

"What can a taxidermied horse teach us about the politics of race and memory?”

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About the Event 

The summer 2020 protests sparked by the murder of George Floyd reignited demands for the removal of public symbols of white supremacy across the United States. Monuments commemorating Confederate leaders were focal points of protests, with demonstrators taking to the streets spraying graffiti, and, in some cases, toppling statues. This talk considers a lesser-known, though no less significant, contributor to the pervasiveness of white supremacy culture: Little Sorrel, the taxidermied horse of Confederate General Stonewall Jackson. Analyzing Little Sorrel as a material artifact alongside circulating stories of the horse’s life and death, this talk explores how taxidermy serves as an apt metaphor for the workings of memory.

Boxed lunches and books will be available for the Annenberg community prior to the event on a first come, first served basis (suite 200).

About the Speaker 

Nicole Maurantonio Head Shot

Nicole Maurantonio is Associate Professor of Rhetoric & Communication Studies and American Studies at the University of Richmond, where she serves as Director of Advising, First-Year Seminar, and First- and Second-Year Programming. Maurantonio’s research, which explores narrative and material traces of memory, reflects her interdisciplinary interests and training in the fields of communication and history. She is the co-editor with David W. Park of Communicating Memory & History (Peter Lang, 2019) and author of Confederate Exceptionalism: Civil War Myth and Memory in the Twenty-First Century (University Press of Kansas, 2019).
Committed to excavating the relationships between memory and place, Maurantonio regularly teaches community-engaged courses that center inquiries into difficult and often contested histories. She is the recipient of the University of Richmond’s Distinguished Educator Award (2019), the Bonner Center for Civic Engagement’s Engage for Change! Award for Contribution to the Institution (2019), and co-founder of the University of Richmond’s Race & Racism Project. 
Maurantonio is currently at work on two book projects. The first, under contract with University Press of Kansas, examines the meaning of the 1978 Philadelphia Daily News photograph of the police beating of MOVE member Delbert Africa. She uses this case to interrogate why certain photographs of police brutality have been forgotten in public memory. The second project, building on her research for Confederate Exceptionalism, explores the phenomenon of so-called “plantation weddings” and their persistence in the 21st century.

Photo credit (top photo): Erda Estremera / Unsplash

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