Bryan Wagner is Associate Professor in the English Department at UC Berkeley. He received a PhD from the University of Virginia before coming to Berkeley in 2002. His research focuses on African American expression in the context of slavery and its aftermath, and he has secondary interests in legal history and critical theory. He is the author of Disturbing the Peace: Black Culture and the Police Power after Slavery (Harvard University Press, 2009) and The Tar Baby: A Global History (Princeton University Press, 2017). Current projects include a digital archive of the 1795 Louisiana Slave Conspiracy and an edition dedicated to the fugitive slave, Bras-Coupé. A book in progress, The Sorrow Songs, considers the theology of the African American spirituals.