Director's Statement

If you’re looking at this page, you’re seeing the new look of our redesigned website. This website offers an opportunity to explore the vision and projects of the CBSR’s scholars, its publications, and its work in communities locally, nationally, and internationally.

The Center for Black Studies Research (CBSR), formerly named Center for Black Studies, began in Fall 1969 as a result of student struggles for Black Studies in Fall 1968. From the onset, the Center’s mission has been to support interdisciplinary research on the social, political, historical, cultural, and economic experiences of communities in the United States and the African Diaspora. The CBSR is recognized for its research and public programming focused on structural racism, especially connecting scholarly knowledge of history, race, and critical studies with social justice issues. Our small research unit organizes research, symposiums, guest lectures, workshops, mentoring and collaborative projects focused on the development and deliverance of research involving Black communities across the Diaspora.

The CBSR centers issues affecting Black communities through the lens of positive influence and justice. Black Studies in California and beyond is structured by specific histories that require a relational or comparative approach, framing racial studies in a broader context of systems of oppression impacting multiple groups and across multiple categories of difference. As we witness the growth of digital studies, social movements protesting state violence, unnatural environmental disasters, racial and gender oppression, the CBSR’s work of critical studies and community engagement takes on a particular urgency. I am very excited about the role that CBSR’s future projects will play in the development and support of new research projects and the impacts the projects will have on Black communities in the Diaspora.

A new initiative at the CBSR includes student development in research with a particular emphasis on STEM, Social Science and Data Science. We partnered with the UCSB Library, UCSB Housing, UCSB Admissions, The Neuroscience Institute, and multiple individuals from different departments at UCSB form a data science research initiative for our undergraduate research fellows. We are truly excited about our new partnerships. If you are currently a faculty, graduate or undergraduate student, please reach out to us at CBSR to learn more about our research fellowship opportunities and projects.

Sharon Tettegah

Associate Director's Statement

As of March 2022, The Center for Black Studies Research has gained a new Associate Director, Stephanie Batiste, Ph.D.! Join us in welcoming the newest addition to the CBSR team by learning more about Dr. Batiste's personal research and her plans to contribute to and expand our mission. 

I’m pleased to serve the Center for Black Studies Research as Associate Director. My primary goal in my first year has been to support the operations and dynamic research underway at the Center. As we move forward, I hope to bring scholars in the Humanities together around Black study, Black thought, and Black making. I’d like to see an interdisciplinary group of on-campus and invited scholars convene regularly to share our methodologies, archives, and repertoires of Black critical creativity. Such work expands our conception of Black life in ways that give attention to material detail and conceptual abstraction. Such conversation and collaboration intuits and exposes the genius of people too often only considered in the shadows of other philosophies and communities, but also unveils embedded assumptions about race and racial histories, injustice and annihilations. I’m interested in pursuing the new exciting potentialities of functionally interdisciplinary work through which Black Studies has always emerged. Bringing people together to think together will generate conversation and programs that recognize and support our realizing in the world the nature of our intersubjectivity in its richness, its possibilities, surprises and disappointments. By "realizing," I mean bring into being, as in to achieve, as much as describing and analyzing in the way scholarship of late unnaturally parses our critical projects. I look to address Black thought as foundational to the delineation of perspective and knowing in a way that incorporates the existential and the social, the interior and the expressive, social being and social justice. In my own work, identity, ways of living, and creative and quotidian making come together in daily, social, and crafted performance.