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(Colloquium) Filling in the Blanks: South to South Exchanges of Blackness, (Re)Shifting Research as Resistance, and (Re)Negotiations of Difference in the Diaspora by Masonya J. Bennett

This is a past event.

Thursday, April 4 at 3:30pm to 5:00pm

MANGO - MANGO Building, 222
11200 SW 8th ST, MANGO Building, Miami, Florida 33199

As a Black woman and scholar-activist from the rural US South, who conducts research among other Black subjects from or within the larger Global South, it is necessary to critically reflect upon the complex negotiations required of myself, my research/participants, my community, and my role in academia. These negotiations and reconciliations are constantly (re)shaped by our Southern subaltern geographies. In reflecting upon the ethnographic encounters documented in my forthcoming book manuscript tentatively titled, “The New Black in the New South: Negotiating Race and Space in North Carolina’s Immigrant Communities,” I address the ways in which my positionality is delineated through the varied conceptualizations and performances of difference among Black American and Black Immigrant subjects in the US South. My current research project, “Transnational Exchanges of Blackness: Contemporary Intercommunalism and Economic Sustainability between Afro-Colombians and Black America,” reifies a situational global Blackness defined by shared sociopolitical resistance, collective identity, and kinship via transnational and informal exchanges of material culture. Yet, as a Black subject from the Global North living and conducting research in Colombia, difference posits my identity amidst the increasing presence of Black tourists and expatriates from the Global North in the Global South. Within this context, performances and perceptions of Global North Black identity may parallel those associated with white neoliberal capitalist patriarchy and exploitation—despite our shared southern subjectivities. Confronted with my scholarly-activist endeavors and shifting positionality/subjectivity as I traverse local and global Souths, I am continually compelled to ask, “how is my work making a difference in either South?” This lecture journeys through these periled southern landscapes.


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