Synatra Smith, PhD
Hi I’m Synatra (like Frank). I’m originally from Maryland where I’ve been working in museums for the past 4 years in a variety of capacities. My background is in black history and culture and my dissertation was entitled On and Off the Stage at Atlanta Greek Picnic: Performances of Collective Black Middle-Class Identities and the Politics of Belonging. I analyzed the situationality of black middle-class collective identification processes through an examination of performances by members of the nine black fraternities and sororities at an annual festival called Atlanta Greek Picnic. Currently, I am the 2020-2022 CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow at the Philadelphia Museum of Art working on a digital curation project to develop a database of black Philadelphia-based artists that explores not only their work but also their reflections on the city, contextualized with an historical analysis of black community-building. Additionally, I am the Consultant Historian for the Hyattsville Community Development Corporation in Hyattsville, MD working on a project entitled “Mapping Racism” to document the history of residential segregation through racially restrictive deed covenants in Hyattsville, MD. I also manage content creation and social media for Trivia Black, a head-to-head trivia game focused on black popular culture and history.