Cera Smith is a second year PhD student in African American Studies and English. Prior to graduate school, Cera earned degrees in English Literature and Creative Writing at California State University Long Beach where they focused on radical protest literatures of the U.S., especially those by writers of color from the 20th and 21st centuries. Now, their work focuses on the ways that Black literatures expose processes of race-making as well as how racialization is chronicled, interpreted, upheld, and/or resisted through the racialized body. Ultimately, they are most interested in whether or not representations of the racialized body create successful access points for readers to find solidarity with characters and whether or not these representations result in reader engagement in political struggle against oppression.
Outside of school, Cera spends their time getting to know their neighbors and assisting local organizations such as CT CORE Organize Now! (Connecticut Community Organizing for Racial Equity) and PREST (People for Race and Ethnic Studies Today).