Application Process


DEADLINE: This application, and 3 letters of reference, must be received by December 1, 2013.

INSTRUCTIONS: Please complete the online application form. You must complete this in one sitting.  In the course of applying you will be asked to upload a project description, a curriculum vitae, a writing sample, and - if you would like to teach a course at Harvard - a proposed syllabus.  Please have these files ready before you begin the application process.

Applicants require three (3) letters of recommendation, which may be emailed to, or sent via postal mail to the following address:

Hutchins Center
Fellowship Program
104 Mount Auburn Street, 3R
Cambridge, MA 02138
Please contact with any questions.

Decisions will be announced by mid-March, 2014. 

The Du Bois Institute community is rich in programming and opportunities to network with scholars engaged in African and African American research. We ask Fellows to reside in the Cambridge-Boston area during the term of their appointments and to take maximum advantage of their office spaces in the Institute. Additionally, we expect them to participate fully in the following:

We also encourage Fellows to make frequent appearances at major Du Bois Institute events which are centered on lecture series or panel discussions and sometimes supplemented with social functions. These occasions provide scope to interact with other fellows, faculty, and scholars at Harvard University and other institutions.

The Fellows Program, the oldest of the Institute’s activities, invites up to twenty scholars to be in residence each year, reflecting the interdisciplinary breadth of African and African American Studies. The Institute has appointed Fellows since its founding in 1975 and supports research at both the predoctoral and postdoctoral levels.

Du Bois Fellows are truly international, including scholars from Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.

The fellowship program has supported more than 300 alumni, many of whom are now major figures in the field, and include Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham (Harvard University), Nobel Prize winner Wole Soyinka, Deborah Willis (NYU), Carla Kaplan (Northeastern), David Blight (Yale), Darlene Clark-Hine (Northwestern), Louis Wilson (Smith College), Stephen Tuck (Oxford), Omar Wasow (Princeton,) Thomas Cripps (Morgan State), the late Nellie McKay, Arnold Rampersad (Stanford), and Cornel West (Princeton). Numerous scholars who came to the Institute as junior faculty members are now tenured members of African American Studies and other departments in the United States, Europe, Latin America, and several African countries.

Our fellows also enjoy the company of other fellows and scholars from the Harvard community, including the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism. Many of our fellows build strong bonds with faculty and graduate students in the Department of African and African American Studies. The aim of the fellowship program is to provide a vibrant environment in which to write, study, collaborate, and thrive.

Questions? Please email

An appointment as a Resident Fellow of the Du Bois Institute includes the following privileges:

  • A Harvard University ID card which provides access to all University libraries and other University facilities.
  • A Harvard University email account and use of a computer with access to Internet resources, including the Harvard On-Line Library Information System.

  • An office space with full support and supplies.

  • The opening orientation events.

  • The weekly colloquia series, at which each fellow presents their work-in-progress to a public audience.

  • Fellows-only workshops, at which fellows discuss their own pre-circulated papers, articles on a single topic, or a combination of the two; workshops are designed to foster scholarly exchange across the vast terrain of African and African American studies.

  • The occasional “sherry or tea” social hour in conjunction with a presentation or reading.

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