1. University of Virginia
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"Pursuing Happiness as a Political Project: Black Women, Travel, and the Promise of Diaspora"

In recent years, the Movement for Black Lives has elevated Audre Lorde’s notion that self-care is a political act, pushing us to have a national conversation about effective strategies for maintaining emotional wellness in the context of white supremacy and patriarchy. The discussion is one Black feminists have been engaging in for generations, attempting to find ways to be well, and remain well, despite the disproportionate amount of emotional labor Black women are expected to provide in organizing spaces, their households, neighborhoods, and on their jobs. This talk focuses on a group of African American tourist women who repeatedly travel to Jamaica in order to pursue happiness and diasporic belonging, while seeking to escape U.S.-based racism. Using data from ethnographic research in the U.S., Jamaica, and an online community, I ask, “What insights do we gain about race, gender, and power within African diasporic relationships if we center Black women’s affective lives? What do we learn about race and gender if we consider Black women’s pursuit of happiness as a political project?”

Friday September 28, 2018
1:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M.
Brooks Hall Commons
Reception to follow in Brooks Hall Foyer 

Co-Sponored by: Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies 

Event Date: 
Friday, 28 September 2018 - 1:00pm
Speaker: 
Bianca Williams
Speaker Title: 
Associate Professor, Anthropology Program, CUNY Graduate Center