"Immobile Transnationalism: Making a Space for African American Women in Transnational Studies,” Dr. Simone Drake

April 1, 2015
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 - 4:00pm
Multicultural Center, Alonso Family Room
Headshot of Simone Drake

Simone Drake is an assistant professor in the department of African American and African Studies.  Her book, Critical Appropriations: African American Women and the Construction of Transnational Identity (LSU Press; Southern Literary Studies Series 2014), analyzes the ways particular black women’s cultural productions demonstrate an investment in constructing a transnational identity for African American women who do not travel, women who “stay put” within the United States. De-centering the U.S. nation and analyzing African American women’s cultural productions through a transnational lens creates a local home space for both the artists and for the African American subjects they create. A close examination of Toni Morrison’s novel Paradise, Danzy Senna’s novel Caucasia, Gayl Jones’s novel Corregidora, Erna Brodber’s novel Louisiana, Kasi Lemmons’s film Eve’s Bayou, and Beyoncé Knowles’s B-Day CD and music-video collaboration with Shakira, “Beautiful Liar,” reveals how concepts of créolité, Candomblé, négritude, Latinidad, Brasilidade, and hybridity are appropriated in the work of these artists as a way of replacing the race-based oppositional paradigm of black cultural studies with a flexible, transnational framework, which allows for more nuanced considerations of community, mobility, and gender. Her second book, When We Imagine Grace: Black Men and Subject Making is forthcoming from University of Chicago Press, Spring 2016. 

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