Sunday, November 24, 2013
Launched on Nov. 17th 2013 on the 21st anniversary of Audre Lorde's transition from an embodied warrior healer to an ancestral force, this is a weekly series of videos documenting and sharing my process of clarifying survival through a re-immersion in the words of Audre Lorde. To see the whole series so far check out this link: http://summerofourlorde.wordpress.com/resurrection-sundays/
This week's poem is Prologue, the last poem in Audre Lorde's 1973 collection From a Land Where Other People Live. I love the vampire imagery in this poem, and I see it as a poem that makes space for all of the amazing black feminist vampire fiction that comes after it. For example Jewelle Gomez found the epigraph for her classic vampire novel The Gilda Stories in this poem.
Our assignment this week is to speak the truth that we are afraid to speak in our chosen communities. Sometimes we feel that we would rather die than speak a difficult truth. Audre Lorde invokes the vampire undead to speak the truth she needs to speak about internalized racism in the Black Arts Movement, what creativity, what characters will we invent to speak the truth that our presence demands?
Every week as part of my practice of resurrecting Audre Lorde in my life and in our communities I will be making an alphabetical oracle from the weekly survival poem which will consist of up to 26 new poems based on the sacred source text. If you would like to receive a custom poem as a blessing for your journey you can with a donation of your choice to Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind’s School of Our Lorde!
(Just include the intention you want blessed and a letter of the alphabet so I can distill your poem!)
Friday, November 01, 2013
Reminding All Souls: Sign up for the Guardian Dead Retreat: Ancestor Accountable Intellectual Practice (Durham, NC Dec 5-8)
"You, then, are charged by the possibility of your good health, by the broadness of your vision, to remember us."
"I write not only for my peers but for those who will come after me, to say I was there, I passed on, and you will pass on too. But you're here now so do it... My words will be there, something...to bounce off of, something to incite thought, activity."
-Audre Lorde "My Words Will Be There"
Join Brilliance Remastered in Durham, NC on Dec 5-8, 2013 for a 4-day gathering for community accountable intellectuals looking for ways to deepen the ancestral accountability and presence of their scholarly and community-based creative practices!
Co-facilitated by Alexis Pauline Gumbs and Eric D. Pritchard, this once in a lifetime gathering will be filled with transformative conversation, poetic exercises and community building as we each take a journey to deepen and strengthen the connections between our intellectual and creative practices and the chosen and given ancestors that make us possible.
This gathering is open to everyone who identifies as an under-represented community accountable intellectual/scholar/thinker/artist and who is whole-heartedly affirming to Queer People of Color. The curriculum is black feminist and womanist centered and you should only be a part of this gathering if that fact makes your heart jump up and sing!
Check out the inspiring facilitator bios below to get more of a sense of who will be in the space!
We will be gathering from Thursday evening Dec 5th to Sunday morning Dec 8th, please do what you can do to be present for the entire gathering. Meals are included!
Smack-dab in the middle of Durham, NC the retreat will take place in a beautiful, art-filled community space that is wheel-chair accessible and convenient to all local public transportation. The gathering space is one block away from the downtown Durham Marriott. With advance notice we can coordinate room-sharing and/or home hosting for out of town attendees. Housing and transportation is not included in the cost of registration, but we can find low-cost to free housing for participants who register in advance.
Guardian Dead has space for 21 visionaries and the registration fee is sliding scale $200-400. Our request is that folks affiliated with academic institutions get their departments to fund or subsidize their participation and offer at the higher end of the scale. Please let us know if your department or organization would like to be listed as a co-sponsor or a scholarship provider because of your participation.
Please let us know your dreams, intentions and needs via this registration form:
(if for some reason the registration form doesn't show up there here is the link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1-oKqZuC32d5C9KClB5fR25XlJZHfD487b6UgncADJZU/viewform
Reserve your spot by dedicating your presence to someone you cherish and your deposit of $75 here:
Alexis Pauline Gumbs is a queer black troublemaker, a black feminist love evangelist, a prayer poet priestess and has a PhD in English, African and African-American Studies, and Women and Gender Studies from Duke University. Alexis was the first scholar to research the Audre Lorde Papers at Spelman College, the June Jordan Papers at Harvard University, and the Lucille Clifton Papers at Emory University, and she is currently on tour with her interactive oracle project “The Lorde Concordance,” a series of ritual mobilizing the life and work of Audre Lorde as a dynamic sacred text. Alexis has also published widely on Caribbean Women’s Literature with a special interest in Dionne Brand. Her scholarly work is published in Obsidian, Symbiosis, Macomere, The Routledge Companion to Anglophone Literature, SIGNS, Feminist Collections, The Black Imagination, Mothering and Hip Hop Culture, The Business of Black Power and more. Alexis is the author of an acclaimed collection of poems 101 Things That Are Not True About the Most Famous Black Women Alive and poetic work published in Kweli, Vinyl, Backbone, Everyday Genius, Turning Wheel, UNFold, Makeshift and more. She has several books in progress including a book of poems, Good Hair Gone Forever, a scholarly monograph on diaspora and the maternal, and an educational resource called the School of Our Lorde. She is also the co-editor of a forthcoming edited collection on legacies of radical mothering called This Bridge Called My Baby.
Alexis is the founder of Brilliance Remastered, a service to help visionary underrepresented graduate students stay connected to purpose, passion, and community, co-founder of the Mobile Homecoming Project, a national experiential archive amplifying generations of Black LGBTQ Brilliance, and the community school Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind. Alexis was named one of UTNE Reader’s 50 Visionaries Transforming the World in 2009, was awarded a Too Sexy for 501-C3 trophy in 2011, and is one of the Advocate’s top 40 under 40 features in 2012. Alexis is dedicating her participation in this retreat to her grandfather, Jeremiah Gumbs, spirit guide and memorizer of every poem he loved.
Eric Darnell Pritchard is an assistant professor of African and African Diaspora Studiesat The University of Texas at Austin. He earned his PhD in English and MA in Afro-American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and is also a very proud alum of The Lincoln University of Pennsylvania, the nation’s oldest historically Black college and university (HBCU), where he earned a B.A. in English-Liberal Arts. He is also a past NEH Scholar-in-Residence at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (2009/10), and Visiting Scholar at Emory University’s James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference (2012/13). Pritchard has created and facilitated several community based-writing projects including Sankofa: Hip Hop Gender and Youth Empowerment Project at the Lussier Teen Center’s Girl Neighborhood Power Program in Madison, WI, and co-facilitated workshops on “Hip Hop Theater and Rap Lyricism” with the Cypha Youth Program in Austin, Texas. His most recent publications include “For Colored Kids Who Committed Suicide, Our Outrage Isn’t Enough: Queer Youth of Color, Bullying, and the Discursive Limits of Identity and Safety” in Harvard Educational Review and “Yearning to Be What We Might Have Been: Queer Black Male Feminism” in Palimpsest: A Journal of Women, Gender, and the Black International. He has also published numerous articles in newspapers, magazines, and digital venues including The New York Amsterdam News, Savoy Magazine, and Diverse: Issues in Higher Education. He has completed a book-length manuscript titled Fashioning Lives: Black Queers and the Politics of Literacy, and is now at work on a new research that explores the role of literacy and public address in Black queer activist organizations and collectives between 1974-1990. With his presence at “Guardian Dead” he will honor his mother Anntrette “Kitty” Pritchard.
For more info email us at firstname.lastname@example.org