Jamila Moore Pewu, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Digital Humanities and New Media in History
Jamila Moore Pewu is a public and digital historian whose work explores how and why groups and individuals reimagine the spaces around them to create new urban futures. She is particularly interested in examining the concept of reimagining through the unique historical, geographic and methodological perspectives posed by African Diasporic and or Black Atlantic communities both past and present. As Assistant Professor of Digital Humanities and New Media in History at California State University, Fullerton, Dr. Moore Pewu leads the History department’s digital humanities initiatives which include organizing a regular DH colloquium series, hosting a DH student Symposium, facilitating a six-week DH professional development workshop for master’s students, and teaching introductory and advanced practicum courses in Digital History. In addition, she teaches survey and upper division courses in U.S. History, African History, and Historical Research and Writing.
Before pursuing a career in academia Dr. Moore Pewu worked at the Museum of African American History in Boston (2003-2004) where she first developed a passion for public history. As such, she strives to increase public access to vital historical data, while also creating opportunities for first generation college students within the digital humanities. Moore Pewu currently serves as project director for Mapping Arts OC , a public digital humanities project that maps public art and underrepresented artists in Orange County. She also serves as co-curator and head digital curator of the Restoration and Reunion exhibit currently on display at the Housatonic Museum of Art , Bridgeport CT. This groundbreaking exhibit brings scholars and artist together for the first time to interpret the history of a forgotten nineteenth century African diasporic historic site.
Dr. Moore Pewu’s work has received generous support from the National Science Foundation’s Geography and Spatial Sciences Program, The California Humanities, The Graham Foundation for Advanced Study in Fine Art, The Social Science Research Council and several internal awards from California State University Fullerton.
Ph.D. Cultural Studies, June 2014, University of California, Davis
B.A., American Studies and English, May 2003, Tufts University, Medford, MA
Black Atlantic Studies, Black Spatial Humanities/Black Geographies, Digital Public Humanities, Cities, Urbanism, Urban Design, Africa and African Diasporic Studies, and U.S. History of Ethnic Minorities
Courses Regularly Taught
HIST 190 Survey of American History with Emphasis on Ethnic Minorities
HIST 386A U.S. Social History (Emphasis on African Diasporic Placemaking)
HIST 403A Intro to Digital History
HIST 403B Practicum in Digital History
HIST 458C African History Since 1936
Coming Soon! HIST 458A West Africa and the African Diaspora
Grants & Special Projects
Current Research Projects:
My current research employs critical place-making and comparative urbanism to explore how contemporary urban environments in the Black Atlantic can become historically sustainable. In particular I investigate how the forgotten footprints of urban neighborhoods can be harnessed to reimagine post-colonial and or post-industrial landscapes, and empower underserved residents to build more sustainable urban futures. I am also invested in working collaboratively and across disciplinary specialties to develop new methods of creating and supporting historically sustainable urban communities.
I also direct the Mapping Arts OC project. Mapping Arts OC is an ongoing high impact public digital humanities project produced in collaboration with undergraduate students at CSUF, artists and community partners throughout Orange County, California. This project is built around an interactive, digital map that invites new spatial and cultural interpretations into existing conversations and historical narratives regarding public art and spatial practice in Santa Ana and the greater Orange County region. This project also includes a mobile walking tour of Santa Ana’s Downtown murals available through the pocketsights app and a k-5 coloring book. Mapping Arts OC was produced with generous support from the California Humanities. If you are interested in internship opportunities with this project or want to learn more please send me an email.