The Department of Women, Gender and Sexuality invites you to join us for our Spring Colloquium Schedule

March 9, 2021

The Department of Women, Gender and Sexuality invites you to join us for our Spring Colloquium

All talks will be virtual.  Please contact for zoom links

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Wednesday, March 10

3:30-5 p.m.

Tiffany Lethabo King
Associate Professor
African-American Studies
Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Georgia State University

“Black and Red Alchemies of Flesh”

Abstract: In King's forthcoming book project, Black and Red Alchemies of Flesh, King narrows in on the connective threads and intimacies that bring Black feminist and Indigenous/Native feminist traditions into relation. Black and Red Alchemies of Flesh conceptualizes a Black and Indigenous ‘analytics of the flesh’ in order to think and feel with Black and Indigenous feminist and queer poetics, critique, dreams, ecologies, and praxes as sites of rupture that expose decolonial and abolitionist presents and futures.

Tiffany Lethabo King is author of The Black Shoals: Offshore Formations and Black and Native Studies (Duke University Press, 2019), recipient of the Lora Romero First Book Prize of the American Studies Association, and co-editor of Otherwise Worlds: Against Settler Colonialism and Anti-Blackness (Duke 2020). 

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Wednesday, March 17

3:30-5 p.m.

Darius Bost 
Associate Professor 
Ethnic Studies
University of Utah

“Diasporic Perversions: Black Queer Visual Cultures and the Politics of History”

Abstract:  This presentation focuses on the works of two contemporary black queer Atlantic visual artists--Rotimi Fani-Kayode and O'Neil Lawrence--who have centered perversion as an aesthetic practice and a politics of black queer Atlantic world-making. Advancing a theory of perversion as a mode of embodiment outside the parameters of modern sexual and political subjectivity, the presentation elucidates how perverse aesthetic practices might bring into view modes of human being that are subsumed by liberal humanism and its contemporary materialization through neoliberal ideologies. The talk ultimately demonstrates how black queer visual artists, in their inhabitation and exposure of perverse modes of embodiment, have exploited the radical potential of excess for seeing and sensing a black queer Atlantic, wherein alternative modes of black being, sociality, and temporality might be apprehended.

Darius Bost is author of Evidence of Being: The Black Gay Cultural Renaissance and the Politics of Violence (University of Chicago Press, 2018), winner of the Modern Language Association William Sanders Scarborough Prize.

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Wednesday, March 24

3:30-5 p.m.

Thelathia Nikki Young 
Associate Professor 
Women's and Gender Studies 
Interim Associate Provost for Equity and Inclusive Excellence
Bucknell University 

“How We BE Free: The Making of a Black Queer Ethic”

Abstract: In addition to the current global pandemic of COVID-19, the American moral framework is riddled with the pox of neoliberal ideals that fester through the connection between liberalism, white supremacy, and black soterial surrogacy. And so, we find ourselves in the midst of a neoliberal resurgence of moral depravity, out of which many of us are searching for new (or old) ways forward. To contribute to such a search, this lecture explores the connection between womanist theo-ethical moral frameworks, black feminist political perspectives, and a queer futurity underwritten by black queer imaginative work. The questions on which I base the quest is this: What moral possibilities emerge through critical processes of liberation? And, how do black queer folx construct and navigate them?

Thelathia Nikki Young is the author of Black Queer Ethics, Family, and Philosophical Imagination (Palgrave, 2016) and co-author of In Tongues of Mortals and Angels: A De-constructive Theology of God-Talk in Acts and Paul (Fortess Press, 2018) and Queer Soul and Queer Theology: Ethics and Redemption in Real Life (Routledge, in press). 

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Thursday, April 22

3:30-5 p.m.

Jordanna Matlon 
Assistant Professor 
School of International Service 
American University

Cosponsored with the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies

and the Department of Sociology

(Talk title and abstract TBD)

Jordanna Matlon is an urban sociologist who studies racial capitalism and the articulation of Black masculinity in Africa and the African diaspora. She is generally interested in the ways “Blackness” operates as a signifier, and as it intersects with gender norms, manifests in popular culture, and illuminates our understanding of political economy. Her book, A Man among Other Men: The Long Crisis of Black Masculinity in Racial Capitalism, is under contract with Cornell University Press.

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Wednesday. May 5

12-1:30 p.m.

Angela McRobbie 
Emeritus Professor 
Media, Communications and Cultural Studies 
Goldsmiths College 
University of London

“Feminism and Neoliberalism:

Young Women’s Lives in Times of Social Polarization”

Co-sponsored with the Department of Media Studies

“Feminism and  Neoliberalism: Young Women’s Lives in Times of Social Polarization.”

Abstract:  This lecture extends the arguments first presented in The Aftermath of Feminism (2008) and in German Top Girls (2010) by a) re-investigating the terrain of post-feminism through the lens of political and popular culture and interrogating its more substantially anti-feminist agenda as feminist (black and white) and anti-racist gains were systematically undone: b) considering the tropes of ‘neoliberal leadership feminism’ which has emerged as a modernizing thread within the resurgent patriarchalism of the current authoritarian polity. One trope for consideration is the consolidation of normative maternity, the mother as the new ‘angel in the house’: c) then, in response to new more radical forms of feminist activisms, attention is paid to the biopolitical managerial response mediated through consumer culture in the guise of a therapeutic discourse of ‘perfect-imperfect-resilience’: d) if ‘resilience’ is a toolkit for the gendered bodily pathologies of the logic of self-auditing competition, anti-welfarism remains the key instrument for the disciplining of socially disadvantaged women, and in this final part of the lecture we consider the racialized scripts of poverty shaming and the meaning of ‘contraceptive employment’.       

Angela McRobbie is a British cultural theorist, feminist and commentator whose work combines the study of popular culture, contemporary media practices and feminism.  She has written or edited 14 books, including, most recently Feminism and the Politics of 'Resilience': Essays on Gender, Media and the End of Welfare (Polity 2020). In 2017 she was elected a Fellow of the British Academy.

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