Black Atlantic Affordances. Contested Memory Cultures

Dr. Deborah Nyangulu and Dr. Jana Weiss convened the ‚Black Atlantic Affordances. Contested Memory Cultures` conference at the University of Texas at Austin from Feb 23 – 25. The event featured a range of speakers who engaged with, among others, questions of Black freedom, memory cultures, , the Black radical tradition, African diaspora, and digital humanities. Prof. Dr. Ashley D. Farmer (UT Austin) and independent researcher, writer, and political analyst Nanjala Nyabola gave the keynote addresses. The conference also featured a roundtable on the topic of ‚Black Atlantic Affordance and Digital Humanities‘ with speakers Kelly Baker Josephs, Justin Dunnavant,  Amani Morrison, and moderated by Deborah Nyangulu.

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“According to Niklas Luhmann, space is a ‘special facility to negate contradictions’”.

Julia Lossau
Afterlife of colonialism

“Contradiction comes in many different forms. None is so debilitating than when the coloniser transitions, textually not politically, to decoloniality without taking the responsibility for the afterlife of colonialism, which they continue to benefit from. Self-examination and self-interrogation of the relations of coloniality, a necessity, seem nearly impossible for the coloniser who continues to act as beneficiary, masked in the new-found language of White fragility, devoid of an ethical responsibility of the very system of White domination they claim to be against.” (Black Consciousness and the Politics of the Flesh)

Rozena Maart
prison of difference

“‘Contradiction is the prison of difference‘ writes the French philosopher Gilles Deleuze. Worlds of Contradiction asks: how can we explain and describe the world without making it more coherent and systematic than it is?”

Michi Knecht

“Geography as a discipline stands for a certain worlding, if not earthing, of contradiction, in both theoretical and pracitcal respect.”

Julia Lossau
Bhabha on enlightenment and coloniality

“Homi Bhabha says about the contradiction between the ideals of the enlightenment, claims to democracy and solidarity and simultaneous colonization and ongoing coloniality: ‘That ideological tension, visible in the history of the West as a despotic power, at the very moment of the birth of democracy and modernity, has not been adequately written in a contradictory and contrapuntal discourse of tradition.’”

Kerstin Knopf