Skip to Content

Search: {{$root.lsaSearchQuery.q}}, Page {{$}}

Comparative Literature Colloquium Series: Lindsey Green-Simms

“If This Story Were a Stack of Photographs:” Scenes of Queer African Aliveness
Friday, March 29, 2024
2:00-3:30 PM
3512 Haven Hall Map
This talk looks at photographs and documentary practices of and by queer African artists who use images, primarily in domestic spaces, to tell stories about the imperfect forms of adaptation, life-building, and queer belonging on the African continent. The primary texts examined will be the novel The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi, in which a series of fictional photographs of the trans protagonist punctuate the story, and a photography collection by the queer South African photographer Sabelo Mlangeni. The talk will ask the following questions: How do photographs and documentary images – both real and imagined – constitute what Kevin Quashie would call “scenes of aliveness” for queer African subjects?’ How can these images of home life, safe houses, and safe spaces catalogue both the quotidian and the utopian, the fear and joy of being queer and African at this present moment? How do they stage an encounter with the queer self or the trans self that is not defined solely by insecurity or objectification? In short, this talk is an exploration of the ways that queer African creative documentation practices can be understood as acts of resistance that open up possibilities for intimacy, pleasure, and survival in unlikely spaces and at unlikely moments.

Lindsey Green-Simms is a Professor of Literature at American University, Washington, DC. Her first book "Postcolonial Automobility: Car Culture in West Africa" (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) was awarded the African Literature Association First Book Prize as well as the American Comparative Literature Association Helen Tartar Book Subvention Award. Her most recent book, "Queer African Cinemas" (Duke University Press, 2022), discusses LGBT African art films and popular melodramas in the first decades of the twenty-first century. It was granted a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships Open Book award.
Building: Haven Hall
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: Africa, african diaspora, Author, Book, book discussion, Books, colloquium, Comparative, comparative literature, Complit, Contemporary Literature, Culture, Discussion, Diversity, Diversity Equity and Inclusion, film, Free, In Person, Inclusion, Lecture, LGBT
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Comparative Literature