Dr Layla D. Brown

Senior Research Fellow

Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research
Schifferstraße 44
47059 Duisburg

Phone: +49 (0)203 379-5267
Fax: +49 (0)203 379-5276
E-Mail: brown@gcr21.uni-due.de


since 08/2021

Northeastern University

Department of Sociology & Anthroplogy; Africana Studies; Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies

Assistant Professor

09/2018 - 08/2021

University of Massachusetts Boston

Africana Studies Department

Assistant Professor

08/2017 - 05/2018

Bucknell University

Critical Black Studies (Formerly Africana Studies)

Postdoctoral Fellow

08/2016 - 07/2017

North Carolina State University

Africana Studies (Department of Interdisciplinary Studies)


Current Projects

  • Building the Cumbe: Anti-Imperialism, Pan-Africanism and the Bolivarian Revolution,” preparing for submission to Transforming Anthropology

  • “Pan-African Feminism in the Lives of Afro-Venezuelan Women,” preparing for submission to the International Feminist Journal of Politics

  • “Presidential Promise: A Comparative Retrospective Ethnography of Hugo Chavez and Barack  Obama’s Political Legacies,” preparing for submission to International Political Anthropology


  • African American Intellectual Historical Society (AAIHS)
  • American Anthropological Association (AAA)
  • Association of Black Anthropologists (ABA)
  • Association for the Worldwide Study of the African Diaspora (ASWAD)
  • National Council for Black Studies (NCBS)
  • National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA)
  • Society for Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology (SLACA)


  • Johannesburg Institute for Advanced Study, 2020 - 2021 Visiting Research Fellow
  • Johannesburg Institute for Advanced Study, 2020 Writing Fellow


Dr Layla D. Brown joined the research group 'Global cooperation and diverse conceptions of world order' in September 2021 and will be a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre until August 2022.

Research Project at the Centre

Return to the Source: The Dialectics of 21st Century Pan-African Liberation

This project is a comparative (auto)ethnographic analysis of Pan-African ideology and praxis in 21st century global struggles for Black liberation manifested through the Movement for Black Lives in the US and the so-called Pink Tide in Latin America. Primarily concerned with understanding the socio-economic conditions that generate the most robust possibilities for Black liberation, Return to the Source also examines the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic has forced a number of contradictions to the surface where conceptions of world order are concerned, particularly what communities are deemed expendable and who “the state” believes needs to be regulated and controlled. Additionally, this project seeks to connect the intellectual work and political activism of Black/African descended women activists in the US and Venezuela in order to put forth a working theory of Pan-African Feminism as a visionary transnational ideological framework that defies imperial patriarchal culture, actively works to dismantle racial capitalism with the ultimate aim of the liberation and unification of Africa and African peoples. Taking as a point of comparison, the neoliberal technologies of the disposability of life at play in the handling of COVID-19 in the US alongside the socialist logic of the preservation of life at play in the cases of Venezuela and Cuba offers a more robust understanding of the multiple worlds the globally oppressed traverse. More importantly, this work explores how the aforementioned begins to allow us to see the ways in which an entirely different conception of global order is possible.

Research Interests

  • Pan-Africanism
  • Black & Third World Feminisms
  • Pink Tide
  • Racial Capitalism
  • Afro-Latin America
  • Social Movements
  • African Diaspora


Brown, Layla D. (2020). ‘The Pandemic of Racial Capitalism: Another World is Possible’, in From the European South: A Transdisciplinary Journal of Postcolonial Humanities, Special Issue Surviving the Pandemic: Reflections on Intimacy, Care, Inequalities, Resistance and Transnational Solidarity, 7: 61-74

Brown, Layla D. (2019). ‘Seeing It for Wearing It: Autoethnography as Black Feminist Methodology’, in Taboo: The Journal of Culture and Education, 18(1). 108-125.

Brown, Layla D. (2018). ‘This Ain’t Nothing New: Contextualizing Black Struggle in Trump’s America’, in The Fire Now: Anti-Racist Scholarship in Times of Explicit Racial Violence.

Brown, Layla D. (2017). ‘This Ain’t Yo Daddy’s Civil Rights Movement? A Generational Analysis of the Movement for Black Lives’, in Black Lives Have Always Mattered: A Collection of Essays, Poems, and Personal Narratives. 2 Leaf Press: 287-304.

Seminars and Conferences

Racism and Colonialism Roundtable (GCR21 Workshop on Heinrich Barth, Science and Diplomacy in Africa Before the Advent of Imperialism)

Panafricanism: A Way Forward (An Incite Seminar)