On January 3, 2013, Atticus Haygood Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies Emeritus, Richard A. Long passed away. The celebrated author, lecturer, and cultural historian was a Philadelphia native who penned numerous books, taught around the world, and was named a life member of the of the High Museum’s Board of Directors.
Dr. Long received his bachelor’s and his master’s degrees from Temple University. He received his doctorate from the Université de Poitiers in France.The Fulbright Scholar began his literary career in 1985 with Black Americana, and later published books such as The Black Tradition in American Dance (1989), African Americans: A Portrait (1993), Grown Deep: Essays on the Harlem Renaissance (1998), One More Time: Harlem Renaissance History and Historicism (2007). He also edited the works: “Negritude: Essays and Studies” and “Afro-American Writing: Prose and Poetry and Black Writers and the American Civil War.”
Dr. Long was the founder of the Triennial Symposium on African Art and of the New World Festival of the African Diaspora. He served on the Board of Directors of the Smithsonian Museum of African Art, and at the Society of Dance History Scholars. At the time of his death, Dr. Long was an Honorary Fellow of the History Scholars organization. He also served on the National Planner Committee of the Zora Neale Hurston Festival.
During his tenure, Dr. Long taught at the University of Pennsylvania, the Université de Poitiers, Clark-Atlanta University (formerly Atlanta University), Morgan State College, and West Virginia State College. He joined Emory University in 1973 as an adjunct professor. In 2001, Dr. Long retired from Emory. He was an active member and supporter of the Emeritus College whose colleagues referred to him as a “cherished mentor and friend.”
Among Emory students, Dr. Long is remembered as a “wonderful educator and raconteur,” who inspired others to have a great appreciation for Emory’s ILA. He is also remembered as a “brilliant scholar” whose demand for excellence was noted and adhered to. A 1965 portrait of Dr. Long, by Beauford Delaney, is on display at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. His papers may be found at the Auburn Avenue Research Library also in Atlanta.
Details on memorial/celebration of life services, tentatively scheduled to be held in Atlanta next month, are forthcoming.