Rhodes faculty are available for news media interviews by arrangement and when their class time and research demands permit. The schedules of individual professors vary widely. This list includes faculty experts in history of the civil rights movement, civil rights in Memphis, and the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. For further assistance, contact Matt Gerien, Executive Director of Communications.
Dr. McKinney specializes in African American history in the 20th century, particularly the Civil Rights and Black Power era. He has written extensively on the Black freedom struggle in Memphis and across the United States; his Spring 2018 courses include “Martin Luther King in Historical Context.”
Dr. Robinson studies race, gender and inequity in Memphis and other U.S. cities. She is the author of award-winning books and articles, and is the co-founder of the Memphis-based Center for Southern Literary Arts.
Dr. Bass is a historian of Memphis music. He has particular expertise in Memphis jazz and the historical relationship between the city’s music and its broader history.
Dr. Casey studies multicultural education, focusing specifically on the ways that racial identities and racism affect the educational experiences of students and teachers. Through his classes, Dr. Casey works with students and teachers in the Memphis area.
Dean Chaddock is a philosopher of race and critical race theory. Dean Chaddock’s expertise also includes confronting issues of diversity and inclusion in higher education.
Dr. Gibson is a scholar of African American literature and critical race theory. He has published numerous articles and is currently completing a book on James Baldwin.
Dr. Gibson studies urban politics and policy, and his research and teaching concerns intersections between civic participation and inequality.
Prof. Haynes writes and teaches on religion and theology, including issues of racial equality and Judeo-Christian relations. Among his many publications is a book on the “kneel-in” movement at Memphis churches in the 1960s.
- David Waters: Prisoners, professors discuss great books, life of the mind (Commercial Appeal)
- Kneel-Ins and the Last Segregated Hour (Huffington Post)
Dr. Huebner’s work concerns the political history of the U.S. South in the 19th century. He has worked extensively on Memphis-related projects, including teaching several courses in the Memphis community.
- Confronting the True History of Forrest The Slave Trader (Commercial Appeal)
Dr. Hossler studies the geography, politics and economics of cities in the United States. He writes and teaches specifically on questions of health care and health inequalities, and works with students and community partners in Memphis.
Dr. Hotz is a scholar of theology and ethics, whose research and teaching concerns intersections between race, class and health care in Memphis and the United States. Her Spring 2018 courses include “Malcolm, Martin, Baldwin and Religion,” co-taught with Prof. Duane T. Loynes, Jr.
- College looks at local health inequities (Memphis Business Journal)
- Health providers need greater empathy for disadvantaged (The Tennessean)
Dr. Hughes studies the history of race, politics and music in Memphis and the U.S. South. He has written and taught widely on the history of Memphis and the mid-South region.
- Country Soul: Making Music and Making Race in the American South (reviewed in Rolling Stone and Slate)
- The man who brought down racial barriers through music (Washington Post)
Dr. Ivory is a scholar of African American theology and ministry. His Rhodes classes have included acclaimed courses on liberation theology, civil rights and Martin Luther King.
Prof. LaRosa is a historian of Latin America and the Latinx experience in the United States. Researching political, cultural and social histories, his research and teaching has also included studies of Latinx experiences in Memphis and the South.
- Tale of Two Miracles: What the Virgin of Guadalupe and Roy Moore’s defeat have in common. (Memphis Flyer)
- Trump's Wilsonian Dilema (Huffington Post)
Dr. Loynes is a scholar of theology and philosophy among African Americans and throughout the African diaspora. His Spring 2018 courses include “Malcolm, Martin, Baldwin and Religion,” co-taught with Prof. Kendra Hotz.
Dr. McGowan is a sociologist whose interests range from community engagement to violence and peacemaking. His courses have included “The Sociology of Martin Luther King, Jr.,” which took students to St. Augustine, Florida, the site of a pivotal Civil Rights campaign.
Dr. Perry is a sociologist whose research and teaching concerns the dynamic experiences of cities and creation of urban communities. She considers interactions between race, ethnicity, gender, class, religion and other factors.
- Live and Let Live: Diversity, Conflict, and Community in an Integrated Neighborhood (reviewed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal)
- 'Live and Let Live' (interview on Lake Effect from MUWM Milwaukee Public Radio)
Dr. Pettinaroli is a scholar of the literatures and cultures of Latinx cultures. Her work has also included collaborations with Latinx communities in Memphis around several projects.
Dr. Wigginton is a historian of African American experiences in the United States. He is an acclaimed author, as well as an expert on Black experiences in the Memphis community.
Dr. Yu is an urban geographer who studies race, place and migration in cities across the world. Her recent work includes discussions of Chinese and Chinese-American identities in Memphis and the Mississippi Delta.