In 2015, Dr. Yaba Blay became the second faculty member to hold the Dan Blue Endowed Chair. Dr. Blay is an accomplished scholar on global black identities and uses personal and social narratives to disrupt fundamental assumptions about culture and identity. Her specific research interests lie within the politics of embodiment, with particular attention given to hair and skin color politics.
Dr. Blay is one of today’s leading voices on colorism, and her commentary has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, NPR, Ebony Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Huffington Post Live, Al Jazeera America and elsewhere. Her book, (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race, explores the interconnected nuances of skin color politics and black racial identity, and challenges narrow perceptions of blackness as both an identity and lived reality. Dr. Yaba Blay teaches courses on Black Body Politics, the Politics of Hip Hop and courses on Women’s and Gender Politics.