Walter Rodney Speaker Series

Walter Rodney Speaker Series

The Walter Rodney Speaker Series (WRSS) is a lecture series based on the life and legacy of Dr. Walter Rodney.

Dr. Rodney (1942-1980) was a pan-Africanist historian and educator widely respected for his seminal text, “How Europe Underdeveloped Africa.”

In collaboration with Atlanta area colleges and universities, undergraduate and graduate students throughout Atlanta can register for the course component and receive credit towards their degrees.  The Speaker Series is also free and open to the public for the Lecture component, with the immediately following class closed for student participation only.

Dr. Jesse Benjamin of Kennesaw State University created and coordinates the lecture series, with a diversity of speakers discussing the life, work, and legacy of Dr. Rodney and Pan-African thought more generally, through interdisciplinary study and scholarship.

The inaugural Walter Rodney Speaker Series was held on Thursdays at the  Atlanta University Center Robert W. Woodruff Library throughout the Spring 2013 Semester. Students  at the BA, MA and PhD levels, at both KSU (AADS/MAST/INCM) and Clark Atlanta University registered for the course This interaction created a unique and valuable pedagogic opportunity. The second annual Walter Rodney Speaker Series is in the planning stages for Spring 2014.

A full schedule of the first annual Walter Rodney Speaker Series can be found at

Speakers included: Dr. Patricia Rodney (International Public Health Consultant); Dr. Anani Dzidzienyo (Brown University); Dr. Jesse Benjamin (Kennesaw State University); Roundtable (Kennesaw State University: J. Benjamin, N. Figuero, E. Silva, G. Soldatenko, S. Vaught); (BocaFloja (Afro-Mexican Hip Hop artist); Dr. Firoze Manji (Founder and editor of Daraja); Dr. Akinyele Umoja (Georgia State University); Kali Akuno (Independent Scholar); Dr. Beverly Guy Sheftall (Spelman College); Dr. Noble Maseru (Cincinnati Health Commissioner); Dr. Mark Armstrong (Naturopath, Ahimki Institute); Dr. Hashim Gibrill (Clark Atlanta University); and Babacar M’Bow (Multitudes, African Diaspora Center of Miami).

The series was made possible through a partnership of the Walter Rodney Foundation, Inc., the AUC Woodruff Library, Kennesaw State University’s African and African Diaspora Studies Department, the Georgia Humanities Council, and Clark Atlanta University Department of History and Political Science.