The title of this year’s lecture was “Close Reading Society: How the Ethos of Close Reading Translates into Theorizing Higher Education and Culture”. Tressie McMillan Cottom was the honorary speaker today at NCCU. She is also an alumna of the university and spoke quite candidly on her experiences there. Not only was she entertaining and down-to-earth, but the main topic was extremely engaging. When she began with facts and statistics, that instantly piqued my interest. Cottom started to explain some of the stigmas that are perpetuated in our society and ways that we can approach them. She recently gained major recognition for her article that disclosed Miley Cyrus’ underlying message of white supremacy in her MTV Video Music Awards performance. I reblogged the article below to support the relevance of this subject.
I learned quite a few things from the event because it offered an opportunity for open dialogue with a Q & A session at the close of her speech. Afterwards during the reception, I waited patiently to attempt to obtain her business card. After all the traveling she has recently done, she didn’t think she would have one on hand. But in the midst of her wallet she managed to find one. I would have gladly written her information down. I admired her style and most importantly I respected her voice. Unlike most people, she believes that “Higher education is a human right.” We have much in common, so I will be contacting her in the near future. Currently, Tressie McMillan Cottom is an active sociologist who conducts research and a revolutionary writer! Her tone is unapologetic and firm yet enlightening all at once; no one wanted the lecture to end.