Natalie Diaz was born and raised in the Fort Mojave Indian Village in Needles, California, on the banks of the Colorado River. She is Mojave and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Tribe. Her first poetry collection, When My Brother Was an Aztec, won an American Book Award. She is a 2018 MacArthur Fellow, as well as a Lannan Literary Fellow and a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Artist Fellow. She was awarded the Holmes National Poetry Prize and a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the United States Artists, where she is an alumna of the Ford Fellowship. Diaz is the Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry at Arizona State University.
Readings: Postcolonial Love Poem
Stefano Harney is Professor of Strategic Management at the Lee Kong Chian School of Business at Singapore Management University. An interdisciplinary scholar, his research spans social sciences, arts, and humanities, as well as the fields of business and management. Harney has authored three monographs: A-Z of Business: a convivial guide (Durham: Duke University Press; to be delivered in December 2019); State Work: Public Administration and Mass Intellectuality (Durham: Duke University Press, 2002); and Nationalism and Identity: Culture and the Imagination in a Caribbean Diaspora (London and Mona, Jamaica: Zed Books and the University of the West Indies Press, 1996). Harney and Fred Moten have co-authored the following publications: All Incomplete (New York and Wivenhor: Minor Compositions/ Autonomedia; in preparation), Black Study (with Robin Kelly et al; Living Commons Press, in preparation), and The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study (New York and Wivenhoe: Autonomedia/Minor Compositions, 2013).
Readings: Total Education, The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study
Canisia Lubrin is a writer, editor, teacher, and critic, with work published widely in North America, as well as in the U.K. Translations of her work include Spanish and Italian. She is the author of the awards-nominated poetry collection Voodoo Hypothesis (Wolsak & Wynn) and augur (Gap Riot Press) finalist for the 2018 bpNichol Chapbook Award. Lubrin’s fiction is anthologized in The Unpublished City: Volume I, a finalist for the 2018 Toronto Book Award. She teaches English at Humber College and Creative Writing at Sheridan College and in the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies.
Readings: The Dyzgraphxst
Natania Meeker is an associate professor of French and comparative literature at the University of Southern California. She published Voluptuous Philosophy: Literary Materialism in the French Enlightenment with Fordham University Press in 2006. Her research and teaching interests include animated and animating plants, vegetal ontologies, plant art and media, materialisms old and new, feminist theory and thought, and the Enlightenment, broadly conceived. She was named Chevalier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques in 2017.
Readings: The End of the World by Other Means
Fred Moten is an American cultural theorist, poet, and scholar whose work explores critical theory, black studies, and performance studies. Moten is Professor of Performance Studies at New York University and Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of California, Riverside; he previously taught at Duke University, Brown University, and the University of Iowa. His scholarly texts include The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study which was co-authored with Stefano Harney, In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition, and The Universal Machine (Duke University Press, 2018). He has published numerous poetry collections, including The Little Edges, The Feel Trio, B Jenkins, and Hughson’s Tavern. In 2020, Moten was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship.
Readings: Total Education, The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study
GVGK Tang is a public historian and community organizer with a background in transnational queer politics. They hold a BA in History and Sociology, with a minor in LGBT Studies, and an MA in Public History, with a concentration in Digital Humanities and Media Studies, from Temple University. Tang has served as a researcher at the Smithsonian and National Endowment for the Humanities, and co-organizer for the API Transmasculine Anthology. They have been published by Oxford University Press, Society of American Archivists, and Transnational Queer Underground. They co-chair the Society for Queer Asian Studies, and serve on the Diversity & Inclusion Task Force of the National Council on Public History.
Readings: Sex in the Archives: The Politics of Processing and Preserving Pornography in the Digital Age
Christina Sharpe is a writer, Professor, and Canada Research Chair in Black Studies in the Humanities at York University. She is the author of: In the Wake: On Blackness and Being (Duke University Press, 2016)—named by the Guardian and The Walrus as one of the best books of 2016 and a nonfiction finalist for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award—and Monstrous Intimacies: Making Post-Slavery Subjects (Duke University Press, 2010). Her third book, Ordinary Notes, will be published in 2022 (Knopf/FSG/Daunt). She is also working on a monograph called Black. Still. Life. She has recently published essays in Art in America, Dorothea Lange: Words & Pictures, Alison Saar Of Aether and Earthe, Grief and Grievance: Art and Mourning in America, Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America, and in Jennifer Packer: The Eye Is Not Satisfied With Seeing.
Readings: In The Wake: On Blackness and Being
Antónia Szabari is an associate professor of French and comparative literature at the University of Southern California. Her scholarly interests include early modern literature and political thought, plant studies, history of botany, and speculative fiction. She is the author of Less Rightly Said: Scandals and Readers in Sixteenth-Century France (Stanford University Press, 2009).
Readings: The End of the World by Other Means
MANDY HARRIS WILLIAMS
Mandy Harris Williams is a theorist, multimedia conceptual artist, writer, educator, radio host, and internet/community academic. She is from New York City and currently lives in Los Angeles. Raised between the Upper West Side and Harlem, Mandy’s work focuses on the tensions that unfold between 96th Street and 125th. Mandy’s work seeks to get everybody the love that they deserve. She focuses on desirability privilege as a real and mythological market and political force. She graduated from Harvard, having studied the History of the African Diaspora, as well as the mass incarceration crisis, and other contemporary Black issues. She received her MA in Urban Education and worked as a classroom teacher for seven years in low-income communities. She integrates a holistic and didactic style into her current creative practice. Her creative work has been presented at Paula Cooper Gallery, Institute of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, Art + Practice, Navel, Knockdown Center, and Women’s Center for Creative Work to name a few. She has a monthly radio show, the #BrownUpYourFeed Radio Hour, on NTS. She has contributed writing work to Dazed Magazine, MEL magazine, For Harriet, and The Grio and is a frequent radio and podcast guest.
Readings: Ain’t I a Bottom?
Vincent Woodard (1971–2008) was Assistant Professor of English at the University of Colorado–Boulder. He received his PhD in American Studies and English from the University of Texas, Austin.
Readings: “Sex, Honor, and Human Consumption” from The Delectable Negro: Human Consumption and Homoeroticism within U.S. Slave Culture
Sylvia Wynter, O.J is a Jamaican novelist, playwrite, critic, philosopher, and essayist. Her work combines insights from the natural sciences, the humanities, art, and anti-colonial struggles in order to unsettle what she refers to as the “overrepresentation of Man.” Black studies, economics, history, neuroscience, psychoanalysis, literary analysis, film analysis, and philosophy are some of the fields she draws on in her scholarly work. In 1977 she became Professor of African and Afro-American Studies at Stanford University. Her highly regarded novel The Hills of Hebron (1962) forms a disquieting treatment of the crisis in a West Indian community produced by tensions between Christian revivalism and the persistence of the older African modes of spirituality. Wynter is among the most noted contemporary women playwrights of the Caribbean, rooting much of her work in the folk idioms of the region; her plays, which remain largely unpublished, include Shh…It’s a Wedding (produced 1961) Ballad of a Rebellion (produced 1965), and Maskarade (produced 1979).
Readings: Novel and History, Plot and Plantation
CLYDE ADRIAN WOODS
Clyde Adrian Woods (1957 – 2011) was an Associate Professor of Black Studies and Acting Director of the Center for Black Studies Research at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). Woods wrote and edited the following publications: Development Arrested: The Blues and Plantation Power in the Mississippi Delta (London/New York: Verso, 1998); Black Geographies and the Politics of Place (Toronto, Ontario: Between the Lines Press, 2007); Development Drowned and Reborn: The Blues and Bourbon Restorations in Post-Katrina New Orleans (Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 2017); In the Wake of Hurricane Katrina: New Paradigms and Social Visions (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010).
Readings: “The Enclosure Movement” from Development Arrested: The Blues and Plantation Power in the Mississippi Delta
K. WAYNE YANG
K. Wayne Yang is Provost of John Muir College and Professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, San Diego. His work transgresses the line between scholarship and community, as evidenced by his involvement in urban education and community organizing. He was the co-founder of the Avenues Project, a non-profit youth development organization, as well as East Oakland Community High School, which were inspired by the Survival Programs of the Black Panther Party. Dr. Yang writes about decolonization and everyday epic organizing, often with his frequent collaborator, Eve Tuck. Currently, they are convening The Land Relationships Super Collective with several Indigenous and non-Indigenous community organizations engaged in land-based projects. Dr. Yang is a recipient of the Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award.
Readings: Sustainability as Plantation Logic, Or, Who Plots an Architecture of Freedom?
MIREILLE MILLER YOUNG
Mireille Miller-Young is Associate Professor of Feminist Studies at University of California, Santa Barbara. The former UC President’s Postdoctoral Fellow researches and teaches about race, gender, and sexuality in US history, popular and film cultures, and the sex industries. Her book, A Taste for Brown Sugar: Black Women in Pornography (Duke University Press, 2014), was awarded the Sara A. Whaley Prize for Best Book on Women and Labor by the National Women’s Studies Association and the John Hope Franklin Prize for Best Book by the American Studies Association. Dr. Miller-Young is co-convener of the New Sexualities Research Initiative as well as the Black Sexuality Studies Collective at UC Santa Barbara, and she is a former convener of the Black Sexual Economies Project at Washington University School of Law. Serving on the editorial boards of journals like Porn Studies and Signs, as well as book series like Screening Sex (Edinburgh University Press) and Feminist Media Studies (University of Illinois Press), Miller-Young has won prizes for her research and teaching, including UCSB’s Distinguished Teaching Award. Dr. Miller-Young has published in numerous anthologies, academic journals, and news outlets including Porn Archives, Queer Sex Work, Ethnopornography, Sexualities, Meridians, GLQ, Colorlines, Ms., The Washington Post, The New York Times, and $pread, a sex worker magazine. A sought-after speaker and expert for news, radio, podcasts, and documentaries, Miller-Young has been featured in NPR’s Marketplace, The Kitchen Table Podcast, HuffPost Live, For Harriet, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Netflix’s Explained, and the recent hit, Netflix’s History of Swear Words starring Nicolas Cage. Dr. Miller-Young is an editor of The Feminist Porn Book: The Politics of Producing Pleasure (2013), which has been translated into German and Spanish and was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Best LGBT Anthology, and she is an editor of the recently published volume Black Sexual Economies: Race and Sex in a Culture of Capital (2019). Formerly the Advancing Equity Through Research Fellow at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Studies at Harvard University in 2019-2020, Dr. Miller-Young is currently a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Cultural Inquiry Berlin where she is working on her next book, entitled Hoe Theory. Additionally, Dr. Miller-Young’s innovative research agenda includes current projects such as The Black Erotic Archive and The Sex Worker Oral History Project.
Readings: Cumming to Power