that’s pretty personal.
I have, until recently, worked in disability studies as an accomplice, understanding myself as able-bodied and as someone who does not have physical impairments that impact my daily movement through the world.
Black feminist health science studies (BFHSS) is a product of Hamer’s clarion call to attend to Black peoples’ health and wellness as an integral part of social justice labor. As such, BFHSS critically intervenes in a number of intersecting arenas of scholarship and activism, including feminist health studies, contemporary medical curriculum reform conversations, disability studies, environmental justice, and feminist technoscience studies (Bailey, 2016). We argue for a theory of BFHSS that builds on social justice science, which has as its focus the health and well-being of marginalized groups. We would like to move towards a social justice science that understands the health and well-being of people to be its central purpose. This formulation of BFHSS provides evidence of the co-constitutive nature of medical science and popular perception, underscoring the need to engage them simultaneously. Health is both a desired state of being and a social construct necessary of interrogation because race, gender, ablebodiedness, and other aspects of cultural production profoundly shape our notions of what is healthy (Metzl & Kirkland, 2010).
Excited this piece is out!
In this research, we examine the advocacy and community building of transgender women on Twitter through methods of network and discourse analysis and the theory of networked counterpublics. By highlighting the network structure and discursive meaning making of the #GirlsLikeUs network, we argue that the digital labor of trans women, especially trans women of color, represents the vanguard of struggles over self-definition. We find that trans women on Twitter, led by Janet Mock and Laverne Cox, and in response to histories of misrepresentation and ongoing marginalization and violence, deliberately curate an intersectional networked counterpublic that works to legitimize and support trans identities and advocate for trans autonomy in larger publics and counterpublics.
Read it here!
It has been an incredibly long time again.
I am happy to report that I have accepted the position of assistant professor in the Department of Cultures, Societies, and Global Studies and the program in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Northeastern University. My work focuses on Black women’s use of digital media to promote social justice as acts of self-affirmation and health promotion.
My co-authored piece with my colleague Shannon Nasah-Miller, When Margins Become Centered: Black Queer Women in Front and Outside of the Classroom is live in the Special Issue Institutional Feelings: Practicing Women’s Studies in the Corporate University of Feminist Formations.
Heres our abstract
This article revisits the authors’ experiences as Black queer women teaching undergraduates and receiving graduate education, ultimately reflecting on these from their current professorial positions. It explores how graduate teachers and junior faculty who are Black queer women navigate the process of creating and maintaining feminist pedagogy in the college classroom while simultaneously negotiating universities that have very little space for queer women, Black women, and those at these intersections. The article asserts that feminist classrooms are arenas for discovery, liberation, and resistance of hegemonic structures, and attempts to construct these spaces both in- and outside of women’s studies departments. This task is particularly challenging when the instructor holds the very marginalized identities that exist in the content of the class and their education. Ultimately, the article argues that their unique experience has been under-theorized, even by them, and necessitates specific strategies that would not be addressed by a focus on Black women who are assumed to be straight or queer women who are assumed to be white.
Read the full article here!
I have the privilege of being in a really wonderful collaborative relationship with scholars I have long admired. It is this community of #transformDH led by the fabulous Alexis Lothian that convened and successfully executed the #transformDH Conference and THATCamp October 2-3, in Maryland.
We were able to talk about our experiences that led to the creation of the hashtag.
We were also able to show the power of digital videos as important interventions into the archive. My favorite was 13 Lunas but they were all so powerful. In less than ten minutes each of these digital videos offered important interventions into business as usual, much like #transformDH. Whether it is the embedded assumption about what a family tree should look like or the white-washing of the future, these digital story tellers and hackers offered new ways of looking at old unexamined beliefs.
We spent a lot of time unpacking ableism in storytelling and ableism in DH.
We also got to hear a fascinating Keynote from Lisa Nakamura about the ways that the labor of women of color in digital spaces is often overlooked.
Its been a long time since Ive posted but I am reinvigorated by my participation in the #transformDH Conference at the University of Maryland this past weekend.
I mentioned the following article in my remarks this weekend.
My research highlights the networks contemporary Black trans women create through the production of digital media and in this article I make the emotional and uncompensated labor of this community visible. I provide an added level of insight into my research process as a way to mirror the access I was granted by these collaborators. I use Digital Humanist Mark Sample’s concept of collaborative connections to demonstrate my own efforts to enact a transformative feminist process of writing and researching in the Digital Humanities (DH) while highlighting the ways in which the communities I follow are doing the same in their spheres of influence.
What may seem like a long hiatus, has actually been filled with more productivity than can quite be captured in a blog post. Ive settled into my new(ish) position as a postdoctoral Fellow in Womens, Gender & Sexuality Studies and the NU Lab for Digital Humanities at Northeastern. I am having a fantastic time.
Ill be documenting my goings on via blog post to the NU Lab Website. Heres a link to my first entry. Enjoy!
This panel examines the technolabor of women in the US across multiple mediums. By technolabor we mean, women’s work with digital and material technologies such as the electric guitar, web-based platforms such as Twitter and Tumblr, and online health forums and websites like WebMD and Our Bodies, Our Blog. These three papers emerge at the crossroads of technology, identity, agency, and representation. They analyze real-time transgressive tools, actions, and effects that are generating new, incisive and inclusive capacities for producing knowledge. At the core of our research are issues of identity, self-definition and just representation. This panel uses interdisciplinary and intersectional frameworks as seen in the work of Jayna Brown and the late Jose Munoz, to contextualize these diverse groups within the category women. Presenters also engage feminist scholars of epistemology and the politics and labor of knowledge-production such as Patricia Hill-Collins. Each paper considers how women actively work to transform the social barriers that contribute to distorted views of themselves within popular culture and public discourse. The women we highlight in our work challenge hegemonic representations through alternative knowledge production as a form of self advocacy. Our work is a reflection of ongoing debates around the limits and possibilities of gendered knowledge, particularly women’s knowledge in the service of building a more equitable world.