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Words Behind Bars

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Uploaded on May 23, 2008

Colin Dayan is the Robert Penn Warren Professor in the Humanities at Vanderbilt University. Few scholars today bring together varied fields as intricately and firmly as Dayan. Her research encompasses Caribbean literature, religion and history, American literature, anthropology, and the law. The recipient of numerous awards, including Danforth, NEH, and Guggenheim fellowships, her major fields include Caribbean social history and literature (especially Haiti and Jamaica); early American religious and legal history; nineteenth century American, French, and English literary history; African-American studies and American studies. Her latest book, The Story of Cruel and Unusual, is a searing indictment of the American penal system. Her talk was part of Vanderbilt Commencement: Study Breaks.

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