Ajuan M. Mance is a Professor of English at Mills College in Oakland, CA. She holds a B.A. from Brown University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor. She is the author of two books, Inventing Black Women: African American Women Writers and Self-Representation, 1877-2000 (University of Tennessee Press, 2007) and Proud Legacy: The Colored Schools of Malvern, Arkansas and the Community that Made Them (Henson-Benson Foundation, 2013). Her third book, Before There Was Harlem: An Anthology of African American Literature from the Long Nineteenth Century, will be published by the University of Tennessee Press.