See video of Tiya Miles explaining why history matters, and why she pushes it past its normal boundaries.
For Black History Month: a MacArthur "genius" who's unearthing an especially painful chapter of the American experience — the intersecting history of African-Americans and Native Americans, and the little-known narratives that Cherokee landowners held black slaves. Even with history this difficult, Tiya Miles shows us the possibility of stretching the canvas of the past wide enough to hold both hard truths and healing.
is Elsa Barkley Brown Collegiate Professor of African American Women's History and Chair of the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She is also a 2011 MacArthur Fellow and author of The Ties That Bind.