A new book by Andrea Davis, associate professor in York University’s Department of Humanities, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, will launch at a celebratory event on April 21 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Artscape Wychwood Barns in Toronto.
In Horizon, Sea, Sound: Caribbean and African Women’s Cultural Critiques of Nation, Davis imagines new reciprocal relationships beyond the competitive forms of belonging suggested by the nation-state. The book employs the tropes of horizon, sea and sound as a critique of nation-state discourses and formations, including multicultural citizenship, racial capitalism, settler colonialism, and the hierarchical nuclear family.
Drawing on Tina Campt’s discussion of Black feminist futurity, Davis offers the concept future now, which is both central to Black freedom and a joint social justice project that rejects existing structures of white supremacy. Calling for new affiliations of community among Black, Indigenous, and other racialized women, and offering new reflections on the relationship between the Caribbean and Canada, she articulates a diaspora poetics that privileges our shared humanity.
In advancing these claims, Davis turns to the expressive cultures (novels, poetry, theatre, and music) of Caribbean and African women artists in Canada, including work by Dionne Brand, M. NourbeSe Philip, Esi Edugyan, Ramabai Espinet, Nalo Hopkinson, Amai Kuda and Djanet Sears. Davis considers the ways in which the diasporic characters these artists create redraw the boundaries of their horizons, invoke the fluid histories of the Caribbean Sea to overcome the brutalization of plantation histories, use sound to enter and reenter archives, and shapeshift to survive in the face of conquest.
The book will interest readers of literary and cultural studies, critical race theories, and Black diasporic studies.
The event will feature Davis in conversation with Christina Sharpe, professor and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Black Studies in the Humanities at York University, as well as reflections by Eve Tuck (associate professor of critical race and Indigenous studies at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto), Rinaldo Walcott (director of Women and Gender Studies Institute and an associate professor at OISE), and Ola Mohammed (lecturer in the Department of Humanities, York University). Music will be provided by Mark Campbell/DJ Grumps.
Doors open at 6 p.m. and the event begins at 7 p.m. For those who can’t attend in person, a livestream will be available from Another Story Bookshop’s YouTube page.
Books will be for sale and Davis will be signing books. To purchase a copy in advance visit Another Story Bookshop online.
The event is presented by the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, York University and Another Story Bookshop with support from CRC in Black Studies, Department of Humanities, York University, and Toronto Artscape Inc.
Davis is co-editor of The Journal of Canadian Studies. A former director of the Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean, she is also the editor of Jamaica in the Canadian Experience: A Multiculturalizing Presence.
For full event details, or to register, visit the Eventbrite page.