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GRC Annual Lecture: Prof Akwugo Emejulu on 'Towards a Fugitive Feminism?'

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2D3

Priory Rd Complex

University of Bristol

Bristol

BS8 1TU

United Kingdom

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The Gender Research Centre hosts Prof Akwugo Emejulu (University of Warwick) discussing 'Towards a Fugitive Feminism?'

Abstract:

In 1851, Sojourner Truth delivered her now iconic speech, 'Ain't I a Woman?', at the Women's Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio. Truth's speech is one of the earliest recorded instances of intersectionality. She demanded the recognition of Black women as women and demonstrated how being positioned at the intersection of race and gender constitutes a double jeopardy which undermines Black women's claims to justice and equality.

In 2017, Black women are still making remarkably similar claims for recognition and respect as women. In this talk, drawing on the work of Black radical theorists such as Saidiya Hartman (2008; 2007), Hortense Spillers (1987), Stefano Harney and Fred Moten (2013) and Tina Campt (2017), I want to explore the impossibility of Black women's claims to and inclusion in 'womanhood' and examine the implications this has for contemporary Black feminist politics. I argue that Black feminism is fundamentally destabilised by these analyses but can reconstructed through different ontological and affective relations of the self, which I name 'fugitive feminism'.

Akwugo Emejulu is Professor of Sociology at the University of Warwick. Her research interests include investigating racial and gender inequalities in Europe and the United States and exploring women of colour’s grassroots activism for social justice. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Ethnic and Racial Studies, Politics & Gender, Race & Class, Soundings and the European Journal of Women’s Studies. Her co-authored book, Minority Women and Austerity: Survival and Resistance in France and Britain, was published in July 2017 by Policy Press. Her new project, The Politics of Catastrophe, examines how women of colour activists in Britain, the Netherlands and the United States use an idea of ‘catastrophe’ as a political resource for their grassroots solidarity work.

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2D3

Priory Rd Complex

University of Bristol

Bristol

BS8 1TU

United Kingdom

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