Watufani M. Poe
Assistant Professor

Dr. Watufani M. Poe (pronouns: he/him/his) is an Assistant Professor of Language, Literacy, and Culture in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Leading. He is an interdisciplinary social scientist whose work lies at the intersection of Africana Studies, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Anthropology, History, and Education focusing intently on questions such as the connections of the Black diaspora, Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Social Justice Movements. His manuscript project, "Resisting Fragmentation: The Embodied Politics of Black Queer Worldmaking" is an ethnohistoric analysis of Black LGBTQ+ social and political activism in Brazil and the United States to outline the ways Black LGBTQ people push for freedom across various social and political movement spaces.

Dr. Poe earned his PhD in Africana Studies from Brown University in May of 2021, his Masters in History and Africana Studies in 2018 from Brown, and his Bachelors of the Arts in Black Studies from Swarthmore College in 2013. Before joining the faculty at the University of Pittsburgh, he served as a Center for Humanistic Inquiry Postdoctoral Fellow at Amherst College from 2021-2022, placed in the Department of Black Studies and the Program in Latinx and Latin American Studies.

Instructional Interests

This coming Fall (2022) at the University of Pittsburgh, Dr. Poe will be teaching the following courses:

  • Special Topics: Black Queer Studies
  • Freedom Seminar: "For an Afro-Latin American Feminism"

Scholarly Interests

  • Black Queer Studies
  • Afro-Latin America
  • Africana Thought
  • Social Movements
  • Black Feminisms
  • Intersectionality

Featured Publications

  • Watufani M. Poe, “A Quare Eye to Slavery: Black Homoerotic Encounters in Brazil and Cuba,” Chapter in Appealing Because He Is Appalling: Black Masculinities, Colonialism, and Erotic Racism. Edited by: Tommy J. Curry. University of Alberta, 2021.

  • Watufani M. Poe (2017) “Review of Sex Tourism in Bahia: Ambiguous Entanglements, by Erica Lorraine Williams,” Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, 19:1, 111-113, DOI: 10.1080/10999949.2017.1268808

Awards and Honors

Faculty of Color Working Group Mentee, New England Humanities Council (2021)

Fulbright U.S. Student Program Awardee, Brazil (2018)

Mellon International Dissertation Research Fellow, Social Sciences Research Council (2018)

Tinker Field Research Grantee, Tinker Foundation (2016 and 2017)

Watufani M. Poe


University of Pittsburgh
5154 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
230 South Bouquet Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15260

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