W.E.B. Du Bois Lecture: Tiffany N. Florvil

Di02Mai18:30Di20:00W.E.B. Du Bois Lecture: Tiffany N. FlorvilMay Ayim's 'Wake Work'VeranstaltungsartVortrag


DOR 24, 1501

This paper argues that Black German activist-intellectual May Ayim pursued what cultural theorist Christina Sharpe calls “wake work” through her many creative endeavors. For Sharpe, wake work offers “a theory and a praxis of Black being in the diaspora” (Sharpe, In the Wake 19). In this way, wake work serves as an act resistance that recognizes the on-going valences of colonialism and enslavement in the present. With Ayim’s wake work, she carved out and created empowering spaces for the Black community, especially in a German context that labeled them as nonhuman and relegated them to the margins. Her work within and outside of the modern Black German movement represented her efforts to persist regardless of the imposed paradoxes of her diasporic identity, rights, and citizenship. Ayim’s wake work recognized the losses and silences while also celebrating new possibilities. Indeed, her practices of wake work shed light on Black life in the shadows of anti-Blackness in Germany.

BIO: Tiffany N. Florvil is currently the Anna-Maria Kellen Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin (AAB) for the spring semester 2023. She is also an Associate Professor of 20th-century European Women’s and Gender History at the University of New Mexico. Florvil specializes in the histories of post-1945 Europe, the African/Black diaspora, social movements, Black internationalism, as well as gender and sexuality. She has published pieces in the Journal of Civil and Human Rights, APuZ, and The German Quarterly. Florvil has also coedited the volume, Rethinking Black German Studies: Approaches, Interventions and Histories, as well as published chapters in Gendering Post-1945 German History and To Turn this Whole World Over. The German translation, Black Germany-Schwarz, deutsch, feministisch-die Geschichte einer Bewegung, was published with Ch. Links Verlag in April 2023, and Mobilizing Black Germany: Afro-German Women and the Making of a Transnational Movement, was published with the University of Illinois Press in 2020. The book received the Waterloo Centre for German Studies (WCGS) First Book Prize. She sits on the Advisory Board and Editorial Board for several organizations and journals, including the Journal of Women’s History and the Central European History journal. She is also an editor of the “Imagining Black Europe” book series at Peter Lang Press.

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2. Mai 2023 18:30 - 20:00(GMT+02:00)

HU Berlin

Unter den Linden 6

HU Berlin