Acknowledgments

From: Sweet Tea

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acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A book such as Sweet Tea really does not happen without the help of others. While I had the vision to begin this project and see it through, many people rolled up their sleeves and asked, ‘‘How can I help?’’ And for that, I will be forever grateful. Especially, I want to thank friends and colleagues who put me in touch with men they thought would be great narrators for this book. My dear friend Ian Barrett, formerly of Atlanta, was the first to put me in touch with men in the Atlanta area and in towns around the South. His contacts account for about a third of those interviewed. I cannot imagine how Sweet Tea would have happened without his assistance. Duncan Teague also provided contacts in Atlanta, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Louisiana. He really is fierce! Trudier Harris, Ann McCarthy, and Marsha Houston were extraordinarily helpful in finding men in Alabama, and Ann and Marsha hosted me during my trips. I want to thank both of them for their southern hospitality, good humor, and good food! In North Carolina, my dear departed friend Curt Blackman found most of the narrators in the Research Triangle. He looms large in these pages. I want to thank Johari Jabir for telling me about, and Carlton Rutherford for introducing me to, Jeff Smith. I recorded his story just in the nick of time. Gregg Redmon also gave me names of folks in North Carolina. In Tennessee, I want to thank Dwayne Jenkins and Tony Horne for asking folks to talk to me. In Louisiana, Greg Osborne, Ed, and Roderick gave me names of people to speak with and provided a place to lay my head. In Virginia, thanks goes to Roosevelt Cain, Tom Cunningham, Marlon Ross, Ian Grandison, and Keith Clark for hosting my visits and providing contacts. In Texas, I want to thank Njoki McElroy for hosting me and helping me find narrators. Transcribing hours of interviews is not only time consuming, but also tedious . Without the assistance of younger and fresher ears and eyes, I would not have been able to get these interviews down on paper. I want to thank my two undergraduate assistants, Adrian Frandle and Megan Rosati, for their diligence. My graduate research assistants—Lori Baptista, Javon Johnson, Chloe Johnston, James Moreno, and Munjulika Rahman—put in overtime to make sure that each and every word of the narrators was accounted for and the index was thorough. Their work on this book will not be forgotten. This book also would not have been possible without the financial support of Northwestern University, which awarded me two faculty research grants. The School of Communication also gave me a research leave during xii : acknowledgments the 2004–5 academic year and a grant to complete the transcriptions of the interviews. The Martin Duberman Fellowship from the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies provided resources with which to conduct the final interviews. Various students and colleagues at Northwestern and at other universities in the Chicagoland area provided support—both emotional and professional —throughout the making of this book. They include Dwight McBride, Sandra Richards, Jennifer DeVere Brody, Sharon Holland, D. Soyini Madison , Ramon Rivera-Servera, Richard Iton, Darlene Clark Hine, Tracy Vaughn, Martha Biondi, Margaret Drewal, Carol Simpson Stern, Tracy Davis, John Keene, Lynn Spigel, Barbara O’Keefe, Jane Saks, Paul Edwards, Mario LaMothe , Javon Johnson, Tamara Roberts, Jeffrey McCune, Marlon Bailey, Molly Schneider, and Joanna Thapa. John Howard and several anonymous readers helped to fine-tune Sweet Tea and push it toward having an even greater impact. Colleagues around the country who invited me to give talks or performances based on my interviews include Joe Roach, George Chauncey , Daphne Brooks, Bill Leap, Marlon Bailey, Francesca Royster, John Jackson , Torin Moore, Kim Singletary, Vicki Ruiz, Vicki Patraka, Lisa Flores, Patrick Finnessy, Bruce Burgett, and Ernest Daily. I want to thank the participants at the 2006 Black Performance Studies symposium at Northwestern, where I first debuted the performance based on the stories in Sweet Tea. Their appreciation of the narrators’ stories encouraged me to keep performing them. The following institutions invited me to give performances: Northwestern , Princeton, Yale, Berkeley, the University of Pennsylvania, Lewis and Clark, Amherst, Mt. Holyoke, Stanford, Purdue, the University of Georgia, Hofstra, the University of Michigan, the University of Maryland, Bowling Green State, ucla, the University of Illinois at Chicago, Emerson, Colgate, the University of Utah, DePaul, and the University of Washington. Special thanks to my family back home...


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