Performing Black Womanhood

Black Womanhood Flyer

Performing Black Womanhood

Saturday March 2nd, 10am

Hispanic Reading Room (LJ-240), Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St., S.E., Washington, D.C.

‘Performing Black Womanhood’ celebrates the intellectual and artistic lives of women across the African diaspora.

The event includes a pop-up exhibit of materials from the Special and General collections curated by Hispanic Division staff and Arts and Humanities Research Council Fellow, Adjoa Osei, as well as a Research Orientation focusing on women in the arts from Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Iberian Peninsula.  The morning concludes with a Symposium featuring a panel of speakers who will deliver presentations that will explore and celebrate women of color in the arts.

Pop-up exhibit: 10am – 2pm

Research orientation: 10:30am – 11:15 am

Symposium: 11:30am-1pm

Adjoa Osei, University of Liverpool

Lá vem a baiana – Performing an Afro-Brazilian Archetype’

Dr. Camara Dia Holloway, independent scholar:

‘Dark Beauty, Bright Ambition: Navigating Black Stardom in Jazz Age NY/LON’

Sala Elise Patterson, independent scholar

‘Finding Ady: Recovering the Story of a Black Surrealist Muse’

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Feminisms Roundtable: Women of Color in Solidarity 01/29 7 pm EST

Feminisms Roundtable: Women of Color in Solidarity 01/29 by At the Edge An Afrofuturist Salon | Women Podcasts.

In this virtual roundtable organized by me, Kathryn Buford, and Suey Park, we invited Kathryn-Headshot-Small-2-221x300Park_Suey_Crop2women of color to discuss coming together to consider #solidarity and feminisms across communities of color, as well as recent issues and challenges we face as women of color dealing with racism, colorism, classism, sexism, heterosexism/homophobia, and transphobia.  What does solidarity mean to us, and what does feminism mean to us? How do we build a united front ready and able to support each other across cultural communities?

Kathryn is a writer, and sociology PhD student at University of Maryland, College Park. Her current research explores social entrepreneurship, women’s art and emancipatory knowledge across the African diaspora.

Suey Park is a free-lance writer from Chicago who now lives in Colorado. She is the organizer behind the Twitter hashtag #NotYourAsianSidekick.

Cherie Ann Turpin is a writer and an Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of the District of Columbia.smiling

REVIEW: Movie-Shuffering and Shimiling: Race,Degradation,Apathy in Netherlands [racism/sexism triggers]

REVIEW: Movie—Shuffering and Shimiling: Race, Degradation and Apathy in the Netherlands « SHANTOLOGY – NEO•GRIOT.

Reading this review reminds me of the recent Spanish magazine cover featuring a depiction of Michelle Obama as a topless, head-wrapped slave.  I am also reminded of the ways in which Black women living in the so-called Western world have been and continue to be exploited, objectified, humiliated, and dehumanized in the name of “free speech,” “artistic license/freedom,” “being hip.”

I am also reminded of conversations I’ve had with some European men and women who proclaim the United States as less sophisticated than continental European countries with regard to race relations and acceptance of cultural differences.  Given my own experiences traveling through parts of Western Europe, I propose that what some people label as “sophisticated” may be in fact just more spin on a very visible and ugly legacy of hatred/fear of the Other.  Think of it as a reheating of a long brewing stew of racism with its base being the bones and marrow of European colonialism and enslavement of Africans and Asians.  In other words, to borrow from bell hooks, our bodies and our cultures continue to be (mis)categorized, commodified and consumed by those motivated by hegemonic forces who wish and need to see a perpetuation of Eurocentric, phallocentric ideologies that dehumanize, silence, and ultimately disappear those excluded through racist and misogynist discourse.

Is it any wonder I don’t go to movies anymore?  But we know that the movie industry is but a small part of a much larger problem when it comes to media, race, and gender.  I am not surprised at the persistence of racism and sexism/misogyny in 2012 in Europe or the United States.  Simply put, I am tired of it.  I am tired of being subjected to the lasting impact of isms on the quality of my life.  I am tired of explaining to folk why having a Black president does not make the Western world free of its own racist poison, why having a Ph.D and a career as a professor does not give me immunity to the sexism and racism casually thrown at women of color–daily.

This is but one more example of how far the West has not traveled away from its legacy of slavery and colonialism, and in fact, seems unable to wrest itself from a dependency on othering and exclusion in order to define and distinguish itself.  It is a shallow and useless relationship based on lies and delusion, one that has no basis on reality, but continues to seek ways of feeding the addiction through the perpetuation of racist myths and stereotypes.  As the population of the planet continues to grow in Latin America, Asia, and Africa, and as the West continues to “brown” and “blacken” such practices continue to reveal the stupidity using racist scripts and images in mass media and entertainment.  We do have power, after all: our wallets and our voices make a wonderful pair to reinforce how we feel about racism and sexism in pop culture.  It is time to start using our power.