Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (Ph.D.Cambridge), is Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and American Research, Harvard University. He is the author of Life Upon These Shores: Looking at African American History, 1513–2008; Black in Latin America; Tradition and the Black Atlantic: Critical Theory in the African Diaspora; Faces of America; Figures in Black: Words, Signs, and the Racial Self; The Signifying Monkey: A Theory of Afro-American Criticism; Loose Canons: Notes on the Culture Wars; Colored People: A Memoir; The Future of Race with Cornel West; Wonders of the African World; Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Black Man; and The Trials of Phillis Wheatley. His is also the writer, producer, and narrator of PBS documentaries Finding Your Roots; Black in Latin America; Faces of America; African American Lives 1 and 2; Looking for Lincoln; America Beyond the Color Line; and Wonders of the African World. He is the editor of African American National Biography with Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, and The Dictionary of African Biography with Anthony Appiah; Encyclopedia Africana with Anthony Appiah; and The Bondwoman’s Narrative by Hannah Crafts, as well as editor-in-chief of TheRoot.com.
Jennifer Burton (Ph.D. Harvard) is currently a visiting scholar at the University of California, San Diego, where she has taught courses on the debates within African American studies. In addition to teaching at UCSD, she has taught at the University of San Diego and Harvard University. Along with Henry Louis Gates Jr., Burton edited the 31-volume series African-American Women Writers, 1910-1940, and was the volume editor for The Prize Plays and Other One-Acts: Zora Neale Hurston, Eulalie Spence, Marita Bonner, and Others. She also contributed to The Norton Anthology of African American Literature, The Oxford Companion to African American Literature, and Great American Women. Her essays, fiction, and plays have appeared in publications from the Buffalo News to the Southeast Review. She has been a DuBois Fellow, a Mellon Fellow, and a Henry Luce Scholar.