Author Alaina E. Roberts will give the annual Stubbendieck Great Plains Distinguished Book Prize Lecture at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 7 at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Center for Great Plains Studies.
Roberts won the 2022 book prize for “I’ve Been Here All the While: Black Freedom on Native Land” (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2021). She is an assistant professor of history at the University of Pittsburgh who studies the intersection of Black and Native American life from the Civil War to the modern day. She holds a doctorate in history from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She writes, teaches and gives public talks about Black and Native history in the West, family history, slavery in the Five Tribes (the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Cherokee, Creek and Seminole Indian Nations), Native American enrollment politics and Indigeneity in North America and across the globe.
The Stubbendieck Book Prize celebrates the most outstanding work about the Great Plains during the past year, chosen by an independent group of scholars. At the event, Roberts will receive the book prize medallion and the $10,000 award. The award is supported annually by former center Director Jim Stubbendieck and his wife, Cheryl.
The Center for Great Plains Studies is located at 1155 Q St. in Lincoln. The talk is open to the public and will be livestreamed. The speaker requests that attendees wear masks during the event. Books will be available for purchase in the lobby.
“‘I’ve Been Here All the While’ tells the stories of the Black, Native and white people who made Indian Territory, now known as the state of Oklahoma, their home,” Roberts said.
The book prize committee said they chose the book because it transforms the way people think about the Plains by articulating complex and difficult issues in history in a “thoughtfully researched, balanced and accessible fashion.”
The event is part of the Paul A. Olson Great Plains lecture series. For more information on the award or the Center for Great Plains Studies, visit the website.