"They seem to connect with that," Doris admits.
Now forty-seven, Doris is still very comfortable with an audience. "Hello, everybody!" he calls out as he bounds into a lecture hall in the C.C. Little Building in December. It's the last day of class for his "Introduction to African Art and Visual Culture," and the wavy-haired teacher is dressed with flair in a brown jacket, black open-neck shirt, and dark pants. "Doing all right? Relieved you're not going to have to listen to this guy anymore?" he teases. Then, cheerleader style, he points to different sections of the hall and leads the students in a call and response: "Get on up! Get into it! Get involved!"
On cue, the James Brown song floods the room--and Doris launches into his lecture. After class, he explains that he opened with the Godfather of Soul because Brown had a big influence on post-colonial Africa. "A powerful black man! That was revolutionary."