Ingrid Banks is Associate Professor of Black Studies. She received her Ph.D. in Comparative Ethnic Studies from the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. Banks' main research and teaching areas are within African American Studies and include race, gender, beauty culture, and politics of the body. She is the author of Hair Matters: Beauty, Power, and Black Women's Consciousness (New York University Press, 2000). Dr, Banks' commentary has appeared in a number of media outlets, including The New York TImes, New York Newsday, Air America, the BBC, The Guardian (London), The Root.com, CNN.com, to name a few. She is currently completing a book manuscript based on a multi-city ethnographic study that examines contemporary black beauty salon culture.