Dexter Gordon

Dexter GordonProfessor, Communication Studies and African American Studies
Director of African American Studies Program

BA, Jamaica Theological Seminary, 1984
MA, Wheaton College, 1991
Ph.D., Indiana University, 1998



Dexter Gordon holds the title of Distinguished Professor, teaches rhetoric, media, culture, and African American studies. He is director of the African American Studies Program as well as the Race and Pedagogy Institute at the University of Puget Sound. The Institute exemplifies Professor Gordon’s critical and innovative educational commitments. This Institute’s mission is to educate students and teachers at all levels to think critically about race, to cultivate terms and practices for societal transformation, and to act to eliminate racism. This mission is in pursuit of a vision of realizing a society where the systemic causes of racism have been uprooted and in which we are energized to reimagine a world oriented toward a shared experience of liberation. To work effectively, the Race and Pedagogy Institute connects campus and community as reciprocal partners committed to programs and organizations working to eliminate inequities in education.

Dexter Gordon holds a BA in Theology, (Jamaica Theological Seminary) and MA in Communication Ethics, (Wheaton College), and a Ph. D in Rhetoric and Culture (Indiana University). His scholarly work explores the themes of public discourse, social theory, and social, intellectual, and political history through his research and writing. In his book, Black Identity: Rhetoric, Ideology, and Nineteenth-Century Black Nationalism (2003), Gordon advocated for a critical reconstruction of historical memory that would provide an understanding of black identity and help initiate a movement toward redemption and repair. His work has also included a range of community organizations, educational institutions, including the Washington State Superior Court and the Washington Correctional Center for Women, Blacks in Government, Weyerhaeuser, University of Washington, Seattle and Tacoma, Lewis and Clark, Evergreen State College, Tacoma, Urban League.

Courses taught

AFAM 101 Introduction to African American Studies (Syllabus)
AFAM 110 Imaging Blackness: Black Film and Black Identity (Syllabus)
AFAM 401 Narratives of Race
COMM 344 Rhetorical Theory
COMM 370 Communication & Diversity
COMM 422 Advanced Media Studies
COMM 484 Communication and Diversity