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Thursday, March 12 • 9:00am - 10:50am
The Articulation of Disenfranchized Grief

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What happens when you articulate disenfranchised grief? What is lost and born? How do you perform an exorcism on yourself through writing? Movement, shake medicine: "I want to dance the shame from my body." How do you write an origin story when there isn't one? What if the origin has been erased? There is no path back, yet you search anyway and end up discovering ancestral roots, the drumming heard deep in the rainforest: "In the jungle there is a foreboding that surrounds a sentence." The ancestral line loops back not to the beginning of one's life nor just before, but rather to the primordial. Orality. But what if you have been stripped from language? What happens when language fails to encapsulate lived experience? What happens when all you have left is "the body to articulate loss" (Sarita Echavez See)? Subversive assimilation? Interested in cross cultural (re)connections, what begins as a suturing of bodies, as an exploration of liminal identities, language and citizenship, becomes something performative. Whether on the page or through movement and multimedia, all the participants work at the intersections of writing and performance art.

Recently, at Naropa University, Claudia Rankine said that “shame is a condition of dignity.” I think that quote speaks to microaggressions, which lead to disenfranchised grief. That idea that we can’t speak or that if we do, we’ll be harassed. We feel ashamed for not speaking, but also for speaking. We also feel ashamed when we have the chance to speak and find we have no words. So how do we as writers and artists create the space to explore it?


Moderators
avatar for Amanda Ngoho Reavey

Amanda Ngoho Reavey

Director of Marketing & Development, Woodland Pattern
Amanda [Ngoho] Reavey received an MFA in Writing & Poetics from the Jack Kerouac School at Naropa University and is currently the Marketing Director at Woodland Pattern. Her first book, Marilyn, is forthcoming from OS Press in Fall 2015.

Speakers
avatar for April Joseph

April Joseph

Writer/ Writing Instructor
April is a poet from East L.A., California, who is currently exploring the PNW. After studying The Beat Generation and Buddhism in American Popular Culture at the University of California, San Diego, s)he received a MFA in Writing and Poetics from the Jack Kerouac School at Naropa University, Boulder, CO. april has taught writing at Naropa and in Las Vegas, NV, and performs paths to heal ancestral trauma, most recently at the Literary Death Match... Read More →
avatar for Aja Mujinga Sherrard

Aja Mujinga Sherrard

University of Montana
Incorporating my continuing research into contemporary cultural studies, my practice is conceptually driven and media-flexible. Through the use of installations, interventions, photography, film, paintings, and performance, I seek to articulate stories of migration, self-translation, liminal identities, and conflicted narratives. These are utterings, deconstructions, hypothetical manifestations, and experiments within the realms of identity... Read More →


Thursday March 12, 2015 9:00am - 10:50am
UC 332

Attendees (19)