February 12, 2018
This seminar focused on intersectionality and how the different forms of discrimination and exclusion combine, overlap, or intersect by examining intersectionality in and beyond feminist studies as well as in political practices.
Additionally, the seminar was interested in contributions that expand the concept and praxis of intersectionality in media studies as a tool to analyse the complexity of multiple identities and their relations to power in a mediated social world.
January 23, 2017
In this presentation, Dr. Yasmin Jiwani will focus on Intersectionality as Theory and Method, paying particular attention to how it brings into sharp relief the contingent and relational dynamics that are at play in a critical analysis of media representations. Her aim is to highlight the utility of a comparative approach, which is often rejected on the grounds of essentialism and historical specificity. Yet, adopting Patricia Hill Collins’s analysis of media representations as constitutive of one axis of the matrix of domination, she will discuss how an intersectional analysis highlights a hegemonic economy that undergirds media representations such that the construction of worthiness acts as a valence separating out those that are considered unworthy of social attention and concern.
To illustrate these points, Dr. Jiwani will draw on her research comparing media representations of Indigenous and Afghan women in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, and her recent work on media representations of Indigenous and Muslim youth.
This event was held in partnership with The Feminist Media Studio
November 14, 2017
This recent project is centered on cyber-memorials and virtual graveyards as reflections of the vernacular. Here, Dr. Jiwani's analysis attends to race, gender and belonging as expressed in the narratives posted on these sites.
Learn more about the Virtual Graveyards & Cyber-Memorials Project.
View the recorded video of Dr. Jiwani's lecture here: Virtual Graveyards and Cyber-Memorials: Charting the Terrain of Thanatechnologies
Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present
About Robyn Maynard
Robyn Maynard is a Black feminist writer, grassroots community organizer and intellectual based in Montréal. Her work has appeared in the Toronto Star, the Montréal Gazette, World Policy Journal and Canadian Women Studies Journal. She will be in conversation with Angela Davis on September 12 through an event coordinated by the Concordia Student Union.
Laying bare the violent realities behind Canada’s veneer of multiculturalism and tolerance, Policing Black Lives traces four hundred years of state-sanctioned surveillance, criminalization and punishment of Black life in Canada. Through an unapologetically intersectional, feminist and abolitionist lens, this talk looks at how slavery’s legacy has been carried forward by the state, exposing the social and historical forces behind carding/street checks, the war on drugs, the school-to-prison pipeline, welfare “fraud” and child welfare enforcement, deportation, and the disproportionate incarceration of Black folks in Canada’s jails, prisons, and immigration detention centres.
November 9, 2017
About Policing Black Lives
Delving behind Canada’s veneer of multiculturalism and tolerance, Policing Black Lives traces the violent realities of anti-blackness from the slave ships to prisons, classrooms and beyond. Robyn Maynard provides readers with the first comprehensive account of nearly four hundred years of state-sanctioned surveillance, criminalization and punishment of Black lives in Canada. While highlighting the ubiquity of Black resistance, Policing Black Lives traces the still-living legacy of slavery across multiple institutions, shedding light on the state’s role in perpetuating contemporary Black poverty and unemployment, racial profiling, law enforcement violence, incarceration, immigration detention, deportation, exploitative migrant labour practices, disproportionate child removal and low graduation rates. Emerging from a critical race feminist framework that insists that all Black lives matter, Maynard’s intersectional approach to anti-Black racism addresses the unique and understudied impacts of state violence as it is experienced by Black women, Black people with disabilities, as well as queer, trans, and undocumented Black communities. A call-to-action, Policing Black Lives urges readers to work toward dismantling structures of racial domination and re-imagining a more just society.
How does intersectionality help us to understand the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous Women?
About Dr. Sherene Razack
Sherene Razack is a Distinguished Professor and the Penny Kanner endowed chair, in the Department of Gender Studies, UCLA. Her recent books include Dying from Improvement: Inquests and Inquiries into Indigenous Deaths in Custody (2015); At the Limits of Justice: Women of Colour On Terror (2014, ed. With Suvendrini Perera); (2008) Casting Out: Race and the Eviction of Muslims From Western Law and Politics; (2004) Dark Threats and White Knights: The Somalia Affair, Peacekeeping and the New Imperialism. Her area of research is states and racial violence.
October 26, 2017
In July, 2017, a Toronto city councilor withdraw a motion asking the council to establish an “Intersectional Awareness week.” The councilor, Kristyn Wong-Tam, herself a racialized immigrant woman of the LGBTQ community explained that she wanted to “build allyship” and stress that we are not “one issue people.” Wong-Tam withdrew the motion after hearing complaints from Black scholars and activists who felt that the motion came at the expense of the city’s commitment to more substantive work on the urgent issues that affect Black communities. Wong-Tam noted that she understood the skepticism of those taking this position in light of police shootings of Black men. How does intersectionality help us to confront the issue of police violence against Black men? The answer: it does not.
In this respect, I imagine that critics of Wong-Tam’s motion heard it the way one hears the response some critics gave to Black Lives Matter: All Lives Matter. All lives do not matter in the same way to the police and that’s the rub. In this presentation, I ask the question ‘How does intersectionality help us to understand the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous Women?’ I argue that, as the Toronto incident highlighted, a common risk we take when we adopt the notion of intersectionality is that we are liable to condense complex social issues into a simpler analytic that is attractive to those seeking liberal solutions. Like the word diversity, intersectionality (through no fault of those who developed it) can be taken to mean that all we have to do is to bring other factors into play, and perhaps other people to the table, people formally left out, and all would be well. Because it is so amenable to such condensation, intersectionality functions in similar ways to the concept of diversity. Indeed, the two are sometimes used interchangeably. Each is compatible with a politics of inclusion and pre-empts a politics of accountability and anti-subordination.
Learn more about Dr. Sherene Razack and the work she does.
A special thank-you to the event sponsors:
Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture
The Office of the Dean in the Faculty of Arts and Science
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Simone de Beauvoir Institute
Feminist Media Studio
Struggling for Peace and Participation
About Nico Carpentier
Nico Carpentier is Professor at the Department of Informatics and Media of Uppsala University. In addition, he holds two part-time positions: Associate Professor at the Communication Studies Department of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Docent at Charles University in Prague. Moreover, he is a Research Fellow at Loughborough University and Cyprus University of Technology. He is also an executive board member of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR).
October 6, 2017
The alignment of conflict transformation and and participation -- a Cypriot community media case study.