UNCG Campus Weekly

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Tara Green: Hurricane Katrina in reality and as metaphor

Photo of Dr. Tara T. GreenThis month marks the tenth anniversary of one of the most devastating storms in U.S. history: Hurricane Katrina.

Dr. Tara T. Green will attend the Katrina 10 Commemorative Conference of the Urban League at the end of this month in New Orleans. The conference will look at the city’s re-emergence and the issues it and other cities hit by Katrina face.

Green, professor & director of the UNCG African American & African Diaspora Studies program, is from the New Orleans area. She attended Dillard University in New Orleans. Most of her family evacuated before the storm hit.

A lot has changed in the city as a result of the storm and the aftermath, and the conference will take a close look at the housing changes, education-related changes, etc., she explained.

Her current research and writing centers around water, both in reality and in metaphor, and African descendents.

The Middle Passage, a term for the slave transport ships’ journey from Africa to the Americas, is one subject of her upcoming book.

New Orleans was a major slave port, she notes.

Hurricane Katrina is another subject of the book.

She speaks of the imagery from Katrina. You have to unpack the imagery, she explains. “It’s a part of the history.”

In the book she ponders the role that the history of racial discrimination had on the response to and treatment of people displaced by the hurricane.

“Katrina is symbolic for our country, a metaphor,” she explains.

By Mike Harris