For Our Present Moment:
James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time

Rich Blint & Ulrich Baer

Saturday, July 11, 11am EST. Online.


James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time has never seemed as relevant as today. At the time of its publication, in 1962, it galvanized the nation at the dawn of the civil rights movement. Rich Blint, professor at the New School in New York City and one of the foremost experts on Baldwin, discusses the book’s relevance for our present moment with Ulrich Baer, host of the Think About It podcast and university professor at NYU.


RichBlintRich Blint is a scholar, writer, and curator. He is assistant professor of Literature in the department of Literary Studies, director of the program in Race and Ethnicity, and affiliate faculty in Gender Studies at the Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School. He is co-editor of a special issue of  African American Review on James Baldwin (2014), and wrote the introduction and notes for the eBook  Baldwin For Our Times: Writings from James Baldwin for a Time of Sorrow and Struggle  (Beacon Press 2016). Upcoming books include  A Radical Interiority: James Baldwin and the Personified Self in Modern American Culture, and A Queer Spirit: Incidents in the Life of the Americas. He is also editor of the forthcoming  Cambridge African American Literature in Transition, 1980-1990, and  Approaches to Teaching the Works of James Baldwin, currently under preparation for the Modern Language Association. His writing has appeared in  Anthropology Now, African American Review, The James Baldwin Review, McSweeney’s, The Brooklyn Railsx visualities, and the A-Line: a journal of progressive thought where he serves as editor-at-large. Curatorial projects include Renee Cox: Revisiting The Queen Nanny of the Maroons Series, Columbia University (2016), The Devil Finds Work: James Baldwin on Film , The Film Society of Lincoln Center (2015), The First Sweet Music , The John and June Alcott Gallery, Hanes Art Center (2014), and Bigger Than Shadows, DODGEgallery, New York (2012; with Ian Cofre). He has received fellowships from the Andrew W. Mellon and Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship foundations.


UlrichBaerUlrich Baer received his B.A. from Harvard and his Ph.D. from Yale in Comparative Literature and has been awarded Guggenheim, DAAD, Getty, and Humboldt Fellowships. He is University Professor in Comparative and German Literature and Photography and Imaging at New York University and has published, among other books, Hannah Arendt: Between the Disciplines (with Amir Eshel), What Snowflakes Get Right: Free Speech, Truth and Equality on CampusRemnants of Song: The Experience of Modernity in Charles Baudelaire and Paul Celan; Spectral Evidence: The Photography of  Trauma; The Rilke  Alphabet; 110 Stories: New York Writes After September 11 (editor); Beggar’s Chicken: Stories from Shanghai; We Are But a Moment; The Claims of Literature: A Shoshana Felman Reader (co-editor), several books in German, and, as translator and editor, The Dark Interval: Rilke’s Letters on Loss, Grief and Transformation and Rainer Maria Rilke: Letters on Life. He has also published widely on photography, poetry and culture in museum catalogs, academic journals and leading newspapers. His podcast, Think About It, is devoted to in-depth conversations on powerful ideas and transformative books. He is also editorial director at Warbler Press, where he has published new editions of classic works and original titles. He lives in New York City.

James Baldwin, The Fire Next TimeIt is not expected that participants have necessarily read the book. This video conversation will be helpful preparation.


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