Sheila Smith McKoy Keynote Speaker

  • Anti-Hazing Activist
  • Professor of Literature and Africana Studies
  • Author, "When Whites Riot: Writing, Race and Violence in American and South African Cultures" (2001)


Sheila Smith McKoy is a literary critic, documentary filmmaker, poet and fiction writer. As a scholar, her work focuses on African and African Diaspora cultures, race and racial violence. Smith McKoy is an anti-hazing activist whose son, Raymond, is a survivor of a particularly violent and life-altering experience with fraternity hazing.

Smith McKoy is an associate professor of English and Africana Studies at North Carolina State University where she directs the university’s Africana Studies Program. An alumna of North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, and Duke University, where she was the first person of African descent to receive a PhD in English in 1994.

Sheila’s book, “When Whites Riot: Writing Race and Violence in American and South African Cultures” (U of Wisconsin Press, 2001), reflects her interest in the relationships among African and African Diaspora cultures. Smith McKoy’s critical work, poetry and fiction has appeared in numerous journals and collections. She is writer, director and producer of the two documentary films, “Saint Agnes: The Untold Story and Opening Doors: The Lives and Legacies of Dr. Lawrence M. Clark and Dr. Augustus M. Witherspoon”. Dr. Smith McKoy also has a special interest in healing and healing traditions, especially those grounded in African traditional knowledge. An active and avid anti-hazing activist, Dr. Smith McKoy’s anti-hazing work is documented in the 2012 TEDx lecture entitled “Hazing, Connection and the Violence of Belonging.”

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Videos of Sheila Smith McKoy

Hazing, Connection And The Violence Of Belonging: Dr. Sheila Smith-McKoy at TEDxNCSU (2012)
Hazing, Connection And The Violence Of Belonging: Dr. Sheila Smith-McKoy at TEDxNCSU (2012)

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