April 30: Lessons of Survival from Marine Mammals

As the world enters the second year of the Covid-19 pandemic and faces the ongoing pandemics of racism, misogyny and queer-phobia, the 2021 Gensler Symposium on Feminism in the Global Arena is focusing on breath. For this purpose, the organizers invited independent poet, scholar, and activist Alexis Pauline Gumbs to speak about her work, Undrowned: Black Feminist Lessons from Marine Mammals on Friday, April 30 from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. 

Alexis Pauline Gumbs is a Queer Black Troublemaker and Black Feminist Love Evangelist and an aspirational cousin to all sentient beings. Her work in this lifetime is to facilitate infinite, unstoppable ancestral love in practice. Her poetic work in response to the needs of her cherished communities has held space for multitudes in mourning and movement. Gumbs’ co-edited volume Revolutionary Mothering: Love on the Front Lines (PM Press, 2016) has shifted the conversation on mothering, parenting and queer transformation. She has transformed the scope of intellectual, creative, and oracular writing with her triptych of experimental works published by Duke University Press (Spill: Scenes of Black Feminist Fugitivity in 2016, M Archive: After the End of the World in 2018 and Dub: Finding Ceremony, 2020.) 

Unlike most academic texts, Gumbs’ work has inspired artists across forms to create dance works, installation work, paintings, processionals, divination practices, operas, and quilts. Alexis Gumbs is currently in residence as a National Humanities Center Fellow, funded by the Founders Award. During her residency, she is writing The Eternal Life of Audre Lorde: Biography as Ceremony (forthcoming from Farrar, Straus and Giroux). Her book Undrowned: Black Feminist Lessons from Marine Mammals isa series of meditations based on the increasingly relevant lessons of marine mammals in a world with a rising ocean levels and part of adrienne maree brown’s Emergent Strategy Series at AK Press. This year’s Gensler Symposium is inspiring audiences not just to breathe, but to survive and imagine the world anew through the lens of Black and queer feminist thought.

To register, go to: https://middlebury.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ixY7oJGPRfSk17WYoQ4JKQ