Call for participants and contributors
The Archive Revisited: Black Feminist Internationalism and Eurasian Knowledge Production
May 23-24, 2023
The DEADLINE for submissions is extended until March 1. This online workshop focuses on the legacies of Black feminist internationalism in Soviet Eurasia, i.e., East Europe and Central Asia, and invites scholars, artists, and activists to reimagine the relationships of the past. The keynote speakers are Dr. Tiffany N. Florvil and Dr. Zohra Saed. The lectures are planned for March 24 and April 21, 10 am (EST)/ 7 pm (Tashkent time).
The workshop will explore these legacies and their role in spanning diverse regions and challenging multiple imperialisms. Black Internationalist intellectuals shared knowledge globally and formed alliances across nations and continents. For example, Louise Thompson Patterson, Claudia Jones, Eslanda Robeson, and Langston Hughes, among many others, tackled the problems of their times and imagined alternative futures that could secure survival for everybody. However, the existing archives often hold fragmented traces (if any) of Black women and queer people’s experiences in Soviet Eurasia. Even less is known about Eurasian communities’ perceptions of Black sojourners. Against these gaps and absences, workshop participants are invited to reflect on the meaning and value of past relationships, encounters, and exchanges. These reflections may address both the limitations and possibilities that past exchanges hold for the current and the future.
The workshop offers to interrogate the archive as a site of exploration but also as a location of creative invention and critical knowledge production. It invites participants to look at the archive beyond what happened or has not happened. Instead, participants are encouraged to read the archive for what it withholds or implies. This approach will foreground the values of past relationships and reveal/ imagine stories suppressed or discarded by traditional historiographies. Precisely, participants will reflect upon how the experiences of Black and Soviet Eurasian communities may constitute a joint archive of resistance. The workshop aims to forge a cross-border and cross-disciplinary exchange between scholars, artists, and activists from distant geographies.
Participants may engage with various narrative and visual forms (academic and artistic) to prepare their contributions in advance. These contributions will express participants’ perspectives on the past and what potential it has for solidarity practices today. During the workshop, participants will share and discuss their contributions that, afterward, will be assembled into a digital gazette. After the workshop, participants will have time to make necessary changes to their drafts before final submission to the gazette. Two keynote lectures will be held online in advance of the workshop (approx. one-two months in advance). This way, participants will have time to think through their ideas in preparation for the workshop.
The idea of a gazette draws inspiration from West Indian Gazette, founded by the Black organizer and journalist Claudia Jones in 1958 to strengthen Afro-Asian and Caribbean solidarity links. By relying on this historical reference, the digital gazette will document suchlike internationalist histories and revitalize the solidarity links.
To participate in this online workshop, please submit a short bio and a 200-word synopsis of your idea and its connection to the topic of Black-Eurasian internationalist relations. Participants can apply individually or as an artistic group or collective. Participants are welcome to make their final contributions in multiple languages if needed, but please note that the working language for the workshop is English. Use the following application form to submit your proposal by March 1, 2023,
Workshop participants will receive small honorariums thanks to the generous support of the Global Arts + Humanities Discovery Theme.
You can attend the workshop and participate in the discussions without preparing a contribution. To express your interest in attending the workshop, please use the following google form by March 1, https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeVotspW61orPCEr-_n4S_z8lNE_0gmXwKc_XiJVe941NY8hg/viewform?usp=sf_link.
This workshop is organized by Tatsiana Shchurko, Ph.D. She is a queer feminist scholar and activist from Belarus, currently a lecturer in the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at The Ohio State University. For any questions about the workshop, please contact Tatsiana Shchurko at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This workshop will be hosted by the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies with support from Society of Fellows Small Grants by the Global Arts + Humanities Discovery Theme at the Ohio State University.