The Ethyle R. Wolfe Institute for the Humanities will be hosting several events for its annual Hess Week to be held April 1–4.

University of Florida professor of history Paul Ortiz is serving as the 2023–24 Hess Scholar-in-Residence and will lead the annual Robert L. Hess Memorial Lecture for 2024, “A Social Movement History of the United States,” on Thursday, April 4, in the Woody Tanger Auditorium, Brooklyn College Library, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

You can find the entire Hess Week schedule here, and all the public events will be livestreamed here: Free versions of Ortiz’s writings and other relevant readings are available online to the Brooklyn College community here.

“I am incredibly excited about talking with Brooklyn College students, faculty, and staff about the big issues raised during Hess Week, especially the crisis of democracy and intellectual freedom and the role of solidarity and higher education in sustaining a free society,” Ortiz said.

Paul Ortiz

University of Florida professor of history Paul Ortiz autographs his book for Brooklyn College students at a college event in November 2023 as part of the Robert L. Hess Scholar-in-Residence Program.

Ortiz is the author of several books, including An African American and Latinx History of the United States (2018) and Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida From Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920 (2005); co-editor of People Power: History, Organizing, and Larry Goodwyn’s Democratic Vision in the Twenty-First Century (2021) and Remembering Jim Crow: African Americans Tell About Life in the Segregated South (2014).

An African American and Latinx History of the United States was identified by Bustle as one of the “Ten Books About Race to Read Instead of Asking a Person of Color to Explain Things to You.” Fortune listed it as one of the “10 books on American history that actually reflect the United States.”

About the Hess Scholar-in-Residence Program

The Robert L. Hess Scholar-in-Residence Program, established by Brooklyn College, is supported by the Robert L. Hess Fund. The program serves as a permanent tribute to the scholarly commitment of Robert L. Hess, exemplified during his tenure as president of Brooklyn College. It represents the ideal of the educated individual—knowledgeable, thoughtful, inquiring, alive to the shared purposes and concerns lining all intellectual pursuits. More particularly, it evokes the academic virtues embodied in the curriculum at Brooklyn College.