I’ve felt at times, that professors all must have some unspoken rule that they have to speak with arcane, esoteric language – I’ve seen some hide behind their ‘doctorate’, and use it as leverage above their students in any social or professional setting. Dr. Spence is in the ranks with his students. He uses our language – highly intellectual, highly precise- but he speaks in our time….

Johns Hopkins Alumna

Lester Spence is an Associate Professor of Political Science and Africana Studies, and is one of two co-directors of the Center for Africana Studies. An award winning scholar, author, and teacher, Dr. Spence has published two books (Stare in the Darkness: Hip-hop and the Limits of Black Politics winner of the 2012 W. E. B. Du Bois Distinguished Book Award, and Knocking the Hustle: Against the Neoliberal Turn in Black Politics, winner of both the Baltimore City Paper and Baltimore Magazine 2016 Best Nonfiction Book Awards and was named to The Atlantic’s 2016 “Best Books We Missed” list), one co-edited journal, over a dozen academic articles and several dozen essays and think pieces in a range of publications including The American Journal of Political Science, Political Research Quarterly, The New York Times, Jacobin, Salon, and The Boston Review. He is currently at work on two book length projects examining the contemporary AIDS crisis in black communities, and the growing role of police in major American cities.