Memory work as “radical intervention” and “reparation”: interview with Marita Sturken

Memory work as “radical intervention” and “reparation”: interview with Marita Sturken Today, I think that the field is challenged more than ever by the increased volatility of debates about what nations remember and consequentially forget. Monuments and memorials are being vandalized, torn down, officially removed. They can no longer be seen as simply part of an historical landscape. Much of this can be understood as battles over the historical narratives of monuments and their power, but it is also about tensions around who the nation mourns and who it sees or does not see as having a “grievable life” in Judith Butler’s term. So I see memory activism as a key site for the production of memory scholarship.

25.10.2021 | by Inês Beleza Barreiros

No Breathing! Reflecting Achille Mbembe

No Breathing! Reflecting Achille Mbembe The article by Achille, I think, significantly points out the legitimacy of being limited from obtaining oxygen, by explicitly pointing out that for some parts of the world where healthcare is part of organized neglect, we are faced with more than just the need to physically breathe. There is a prohibition of breathing that is systemic in nature which is part of a larger need for the freedom to breathe (live). For example the violent killings of black civilians by the police in South Africa due to an unchecked implementation of COVID-19 laws and regulations left us questioning the relevance (need) for policing systems embedded in colonial rhetoric.

08.04.2021 | by Marcos Jinguba

Labor and Liberation: An Interview with Margaret Stevens

Labor and Liberation: An Interview with Margaret Stevens The significance of Mexico for this work is still emerging. Much more remains to be seen about just how deeply embedded the Mexican communists were in the radical networks across the Caribbean where black workers were predominant. Of what I have uncovered, the place of Mexico has two important functions in our historical understanding of the period. First, it was a place of refuge for not only radicals like the forced emigre from Republican Spain, but also for black revolutionaries like Jacques Roumain who spent some time there after being released from prison in Haiti and a short stint in Europe. Second, Mexico was the first people of color Communist nucleus in the western hemisphere, and the sense of anti-imperialism and sensitivity to chauvinism in the CPUSA was critical to strengthening the antiracist struggle across the region.

26.03.2021 | by The Public Archive

Markets and Margins: An interview with Etant Dupain

Markets and Margins: An interview with Etant Dupain During the colonial era, the French colonists did not want to share anything with the slaves, including food. As the population grew and grew, the colonizers decided to give the slaves pieces of land called portion de vive which were to be used as a way for them to feed their own families. The producers on this land were so successful that they began to trade what they were growing.

18.03.2021 | by The Public Archive

Breathing Prohibited

Breathing Prohibited Certainly, the virtual dimension will take a new importance, also in light of the massive use of digital tools that this new reality brought with itself, but also in relation to the fact that artists might end up not traveling a lot like before…who knows! The art that will change is only in relation to travel and distance. What could definitely change might be the distribution channels, moving more and more into streaming and digital platforms…but I really hope that this won’t happen. The emotion that live art arouses is incomparable.

12.03.2021 | by Marcos Jinguba

Women of Color in Film: An Interview with JT Takagi & Ada Gay Griffin

Women of Color in Film: An Interview with JT Takagi & Ada Gay Griffin The oppressive policies and structural inequities that underlie the conditions of poor and working class people’s lives here and abroad date from the first invasion of native territories, and the last few decades have exacerbated these conditions. What our older films reveal is the similarity of conditions now with what existed 50 years ago.

03.03.2021 | by Keelyn Bradley

Bisa Butler Summons Black History In Her Quilted Arts to Motivate the Fight for Black Lives

Bisa Butler Summons Black History In Her Quilted Arts to Motivate the Fight for Black Lives In Bisa's artwork , color is a language that speaks about African American evolution from enslavement in the United States to today's ongoing fight for Black liberation Bisa also draws on her Ghanaian heritage by illustrating the vibrancy of Africa's textile and fabric traditions. These artistic methods allow her to examine several themes including family, community, youth and power.

06.01.2021 | by Ugonna-Ora Owoh

Interview: Dr Natalia Kanem – Gender Equality is about fighting for the right things…

Interview: Dr Natalia Kanem – Gender Equality is about fighting for the right things… Today, tens of thousands of girls under the age of 18 were married off. Today, one in three women can expect to experience some form of physical or sexual violence in their lifetime. This needs to change, and it needs to change now. Each of these numbers tells a personal story and each one of these women or girls could have been my friend, my sister, my mother, my daughter, or me. That is what motivates me to create a better world for women and girls, no matter where they may be.

14.12.2020 | by Regina Jane Jere and Natalia Kanem

Hospitality Archaeologies | Interviewing Rachael Kiddey

Hospitality Archaeologies | Interviewing Rachael Kiddey Somewhere in between there is something more human that tries to understand these people, imagine if you had to flee your home and you could one carry one thing with you, how would you continue to be yourself? On top of fleeing and experiencing a traumatic conflict you turn up in a place that is supposed to be civilized and you get treated like an abomination. This project is about to try to humanize migrants and make them individuals and real people, our friends, our neighbors.

26.11.2020 | by Alícia Gaspar and Rachael Kiddey

Hospitality Archaeologies | Interviewing Yannis Hamilakis

Hospitality Archaeologies | Interviewing Yannis Hamilakis It has to do with the colonial history of Europe as a whole: I see this phenomenon of migration from the global south to the global north as the latest phase in the long history of racialized capitalism and colonialism. Many of these people who are trying to cross are coming from previously colonized countries by Europe. We know that, that long history of colonization has an impact in the present in terms of structural inequality, poverty, dispossession and war, and at the same time that we are seeing is the inability of Europe to come to terms with its own history. Which is a history of colonization, of course, instigated by proto-capitalism and capitalist developments as well as the hierarchy of racialization and the legacy of whiteness and white supremacy which fueled the whole colonial condition.

25.11.2020 | by Alícia Gaspar and Yannis Hamilakis

Revolutions and Revisions: An Interview with Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg - Part II

Revolutions and Revisions: An Interview with Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg - Part II Stuart Hall once wrote that James in The Black Jacobins was the first to centre Atlantic slavery in world history – so in this sense the importance of James’s work to these debates is self-evident. Certainly, James’s short discussion on the economic roots of British parliamentary abolitionism formed the essential outline of Eric Williams’s more famous and lengthy contribution in this field – as Williams himself acknowledged, though in my opinion James’s grasp of the modernity of colonial slavery and the slave ships and plantations thanks to his underlying theoretical grasp of the uneven and combined nature of capitalist development meant his analysis of the exact relationship between capitalism and slavery is more sophisticated than that of Williams in many respects.

18.11.2020 | by Christian Hogsbjerg, Charles Forsdick and The Public Archive

Revolutions and Revisions: An Interview with Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg - Part I

Revolutions and Revisions: An Interview with Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg - Part I In Toussaint Louverture: A Black Jacobin in the Age of Revolutions (Pluto) Charles Forsdick and Christian Høgsbjerg have produced what is arguably the most important biography of Louverture since CLR James’ magisterial Black Jacobins was first published in 1938. Kicking against the contemporary anti-Black and anti-radical revisionism that downplays the historical importance of the revolution while dismissing the significance of Louverture himself, Forsdick and Hogsbjerg’s short monograph is urgent, timely, and strikingly well-written. They have also created a sort of supplement to the book, editing The Black Jacobins Reader (Duke), an excellent collection of essays, commentaries, and primary source material that provides additional context and critique for the writing, production, and circulations of James’ classic history.

18.11.2020 | by Charles Forsdick, Christian Hogsbjerg and The Public Archive

The buala archive and other gestures of freedom with Marta Lança

The buala archive and other gestures of freedom with Marta Lança In 2010 Marta Lança set up the BUALA website, of which she is still the editor and the main driving force. To mark the 10th birthday of this unique platform dedicated to “exploring the synergies between art, theory, and activism in order to stimulate public debate about the lasting impact of racism and colonialism across Portuguese-speaking communities”, maat is hosting a special cycle of presentations, talks and screening entitled “and I am sparse in dense fluidity” – Gestures of Freedom”, curated by BUALA’s founder.

30.10.2020 | by Nuno Ferreira de Carvalho and Marta Lança


Synne “When I was little, I was mesmerized listening to the stories told by my grandparents. My grandfather was a sailor. He travelled to the poles for exploration and when he returned he would tell us a lot of stories. It is a very special thing for me to tell my family's stories. What about my grandmother! My grandmother had an incredible imagination. She made up stories. My favorite story was 'Kai Hai'. It was the name of a shark, Kai.

29.01.2020 | by Sinem Taş

Nonaligned modernisms: interview with Bojana Videkanic

Nonaligned modernisms: interview with Bojana Videkanic My research on the nonaligned comes from a cultural and art-historical position. It is an interdisciplinary approach to understanding how the non-aligned movement, apart from creating political, or social, or economic alliances was also attempting to create cultural alliances that would counter Western cultural hegemony, and what many in the movement, who were interested in culture, also called Western cultural imperialism.

03.01.2020 | by Iolanda Vasile


Gabriel Gabriel was born in 1988, in Colombia, and was adopted by a Norwegian family in 1989. Growing up in a small, pretty little town in east Norway, he was the only brunette among the blonde kids. "You can spot this darker kid in the middle of blue-eyed, blond kids in our class photo for kindergarten. I was aware of how different I was when I was a kid.

23.12.2019 | by Sinem Taş


Shannon "Mom had this incredible energy. You know science says 'energy cannot be created not destroyed'. The fact that her body has left us doesn't mean she isn't with us. She is everywhere. That's why I got this tattoo: It says 'Death cannot kill'. Though she has left this place, she still continues to teach me a lot".

14.11.2019 | by Sinem Taş

Steffen (Germany)

Steffen (Germany) 'Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional'' says Steffen, walking slowly in the forest of Fisterra, in Galicia, Spain. A peace activist who once served in the military at Operation Desert Storm, in 1990, he advocates for the human right to water and sanitation for everyone.

23.10.2019 | by Sinem Taş


Wallace A bridge in Paris... Some dance on it, some watch them, smiling. Some are recording it on their phones, some timidly step forward and leave a little change on the guitar case. Wallace and Youmi continue singing their songs in the best office in the world...

02.10.2019 | by Sinem Taş

Grandma Cane

Grandma Cane "This isn't the type of thing you want to talk about" she starts, not really interested in sharing the details, but everyone would point to her door whenever a traveler or a stranger showed up in town. "I'd take them in and feed them. Prepare their beds and listen to their sufferings. Then they would leave" says Grandma Cane.

14.08.2019 | by Sinem Taş