San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Dorothea Smartt was born and raised in London, of Barbadian heritage. She was Brixton market’s first Poet in Residence, a former Attached Live Artist at London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts and a guest writer at Florida International University and Oberlin College, USA. She is poetry editor of Sable LitMag, a magazine of new black writing. She publishes a new chapbook Reader I Married Him & Other Queer Goings On this July. Join us for readings and conversation.
"From the first poem to the last, Smartt’s new chapbook collection advocates a revolutionary decampment from the madhouse of desires “reigned in” to protect a precarious and often incoherent code of Caribbean respectability. This is Smartt at her sensual and lyrical best. These poems sing, and dance and love passionately ‘til morning cum. ..... Smartt’s cartography renders new the old directive that we love each other, that we build and sustain community, that we protect and care for each other’s needs, desires and dreams. Ultimately, Reader, I Married Him & Other Queer Goings On is about Black diasporic love at its most radical and life-affirming." Donna Aza Weir-Soley
When & Where
The Empire Cafe
The Empire Café is an exploration of Scotland’s relationship with the North Atlantic slave trade through coffee, sugar, tea, cotton, music, visual art, academic lectures, poetry, debate, workshops, historical walks, film and literature. The café will be based in the Briggait (home of the Merchant’s Steeple) in Glasgow’s Merchant City from 24th July - 1st August 2014
Contributors to the programme include poets Jackie Kay, Millicent Graham, Alan Riach and Fred D’Aguiar; authors Andrea Stuart, James Robertson and Chris Dolan, internationally acclaimed artist Graham Fagan, Hip Hop band Stanley Odd, The Big Big Sing and Dr Richard Benjamin of the Liverpool Slavery Museum, plus many more.
The Empire Café has commissioned poems from eminent Scottish and Caribbean poets on Scotland and the North Atlantic slave trade which will be published in a print anthology which will be available free of charge. Poets contributing to the anthology include Kei Miller, John Burnside, Vicki Fever,Dorothea Smartt, Aonghas MacNeacail and others
The Empire Café will serve dishes developed through a series of experimental origin outreach sessions using some of the empire’s most familiar products and ingredients as inspiration. Café operator McCune Smith, Bakery 47 andDear Green Coffee will all join this exploration.
The Empire Cafe is founded by co-directors Jude Barber of Collective Architecture and author Louise Welsh. ‘Merchant City Voices’, their collaborative series of sounds works exploring Glasgow’s relationship with the North Atlantic slave trade won a 2013 Scottish Design Award.