2017-2018 Events


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CFR meet n greet, September 27!

Date: Sept 27, 2017
Time: 2:30 PM-4:30 PM
Location: 626 Kaneff Tower
Event Summary:

Come and meet members of our Executive, as well as our Visiting Scholars, graduate assistants, and Associates. This is also an opportunity to hear about upcoming events, projects and activities, and to meet feminist faculty, students and community members across York University. We are also excited to hear about your own initiatives, and suggestions for projects or events you'd like to host at CFR.

Light refreshments will be provided. Everyone is welcome! Please RSVP to Julia at juliapyr@yorku.ca by Thursday, September 21. Please advise if you have dietary or accessibility needs.

The Graduate Program in Gender, Feminist and Women's Studies and the Centre for Feminist Research present:

The Graduate Program in Gender, Feminist and Women's Studies Annual Lecture

From Resistance to “Reconciliation”: Ruminations on Decolonization from a Feminist Metis Academic

With Dr. Emma LaRocque

TALK: 2.30-4.30PM
WHEN: October 5, 2017
WHERE: 519 Kaneff Tower, York University

Welcoming and opening remarks by Dr. Ruth Koleszar-Green, the Chair of the Indigenous Council at York University

The current trend to conflate “reconciliation” as decolonization threatens to obscure and obstruct Indigenous decolonization efforts. In particular, race and gender power imbalances continue to figure large in our society. The question arises: how can we resist colonizing forces under the pressure of reconciliation?  And can feminist analysis (and allies) assist in shattering colonial lenses and in the rebuilding of Indigenous cultures and presence?

About the Speaker

Dr. Emma LaRocque is a scholar, author, poet and professor in the Department of Native Studies, University of Manitoba, and one of the most recognized and respected Native Studies scholars today.

Dr. LaRocque has been a significant figure in the growth and development of Native Studies as a teaching discipline and an intellectual field of study. She has developed most of the core undergraduate courses and contributed to the development of graduate studies in the Native Studies Department at the University of Manitoba, where she has been teaching since 1977.

Dr. LaRocque’s work has focussed on the deconstruction of colonial misrepresentation and on the advancement of an Indigenous-based critical resistance theory in scholarship. Her prolific career includes numerous publications in areas of colonization/decolonization, racism, violence against women, and First Nation and Metis literatures and identities. Her poems are widely anthologized in prestigious collections and journals.  She is frequently cited in a wide variety of venues and has lectured locally, nationally and internationally on Indigenous/Re-settler, or colonizer/colonized relations.

In 2005, Dr. LaRocque received the National Aboriginal Achievement Award. She is author of Defeathering The Indian (1975) and of When the Other Is Me: Native Resistance Discourse 1850 - 1990 (2010), which won the Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction.

LaRocque is originally from a Cree-speaking and land-based Metis family and community from northeastern Alberta.

Co-sponsored by: Centre for Aboriginal Student Services, Faculty of Education, Department of Equity Studies, School of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies, Institute for Feminist Legal Studies at Osgoode, Department of Politics, Social and Political Thought, Department of Social Science, and Office of the Vice President Research and Innovation (VPRI) at York University; the Department of Social Justice Education at OISE and the Chair for Indigenous Governance at Ryerson University.

Click here for Directions to York University: http://maps.info.yorku.ca/keele-campus/keele-transit-directions/

RSVP via email to juliapyr@yorku.ca

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CFR co-sponsored: Radical Black Political Thought in the 20th and 21st Centuries

Public Forum

Guest keynote speaker: Professor Anthony Bogues
Date: Oct 19, 2017
Time: 4:00 PM-8:00 PM
Location: OISE Library, 252 Bloor St. West (at St George)
Event Summary:

Working with and through a black radical/critical intellectual and political tradition, this talk will map another genealogy of critical theory which posits that the central issues of our time are our modes of production of the human and freedom. It will argue that contemporary black radical political thought (including the contributions of WEB DuBois, Sylvia Wynter, Frantz Fanon and Aimé Césaire) opens up spaces for the reframing of current critical theory.

Professor Anthony Bogues is an Asa Messer Professor of Humanities and Critical Theory; Professor of Africana Studies and Director of the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice (CSSJ), Brown University. He is an associate director of the Center for Caribbean Thought, University of the West Indies, Mona; a member of the editorial collective for the journal boundary 2 and honorary professor at the Center for African Studies, the University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Professor Bogues's major research and writing address intellectual, literary and cultural history, radical political thought, political theory, critical theory, Caribbean and African politics as well as Haitian, Caribbean, and African Art.

Organized By: the Department Of Social Justice Education (SJE)

Supported By: OISE Associate Dean, Research International and Innovation; Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity Office; Centre For Diaspora and Transnational Studies; Centre For Ethics; Centre For Feminist Research (CFR), York University;

INFO: ea.sje@utoronto.ca, www.oise.utoronto.ca/sje/

Women, Men, and Plants in 19th-Century Canada: New Resources, New Perspectives


Date: October 19-20, 2017
Thursday 1 PM - 6:15 PM, Friday 9 AM - 5:30 PM
Location: Archives of Ontario, 134 Ian MacDonald Blvd
Event Note: This event is organized by Dr. Ann Shteir in conjunction with the Centre for Feminist Research
Event Summary:

Who shaped access to knowledge of plants in 19th-century Canada? A two-day workshop "Women, Men, and Plants in 19th-Century Canada: New Resources, New Perspectives" will be held at the Centre for Feminist Research at York University, Toronto, October 19-20, 2017, to address this question.

At a time of urgent concerns about nature, climate, and the environment, it is important to encourage historical perspectives on our relationships to plants. It is likewise important to cultivate understanding about how and why individuals and institutions were involved with plants in 19th-century Canada.

Emphasis in this workshop will be on the women and the men who involved themselves in the world of plants in 19th-century Canada. Colonial, imperial, and comparative dimensions of this history will be apparent, as will the intersecting social formations of gender and class that brought plant-related activities into the lives of women and men at that time. The workshop's focus on new resources signals scholarly commitment to searching out materials about the role of plants in 19th-century Canada.

Speakers: Ann Shteir (York University), David Galbraith (Head of the Science Department), Deborah Reid (University of Edinburgh), Dawn Bazely (York University), Jacques Cayouette (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada), James Pringle (Royal Botanical Gardens), Juanita Rossiter (Archives of Ontario), Karen Stanworth (York University), Kristina Huneault (Concordia University), Michael Peterman (Trent University), Ruby Heap (University of Ottawa), Sarah Maroske (Royal Botanical Gardens Victoria, Melbourne, Australia), Suzanne Zeller (Wilfred Laurier University)

The event is supported by a generous Connection grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC),  the Centre for Canadian Historical Horticultural Studies at Royal Botanical Gardens, and York's Faculty of Graduate Studies, the Office of the Vice-President Research & Innovation, the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, School of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies, and the Centre for Feminist Research.

CFR Co-Sponsored: Against Islamophobia

Panel Discussion

Date: Monday, October 23rd, 2017
Time: 2-4pm
Location: 280N York Lanes, York University

Decolonial Strategies for Anti-Islamophobia Education

Dr. Jasmin Zine is a Professor at Wilfrid Laurier University. She has developed international guidelines for educators and policy-makers on combating Islamophobia and discrimination against Muslims. Dr. Zine is affiliated with the Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project at U.C Berkeley and serves on the editorial board of the critical Muslim Studies journal Re-Orient.

Islamophobia and (Lack Of) Intersectionality: Some Theoretical Reflections (With Political Consequences)

Dr. Sirma Bilge is a Professor at the Department of Sociology at Université de Montréal. She has co-published a book on Intersectionality in the Polity Press, Key Concepts series. Her current research deals with the incorporation of minority knowledge fields within the neoliberal academic industrial complex and the emergence of academic entrepreneurial, as well as resistant subjectivities.

Islamophobia in French Public Schools: Faith, Fashion and Strategies of Subversion

Roshan Arah Jahangeer is a Ph.D. candidate in the department of Political Science at York University, and a research fellow at the Tessellate Institute, a Toronto-based research institute that explores and documents the lived experiences of Muslims in Canada.

Not My Islamophobia: Beyond the Brown Oriental Subject

Nadiya Nur Ali is a PhD Candidate in Sociology at York University, specializing in Critical Race, Critical Muslim Studies and Social Theory. Nadiya has been part of a range of community-based research initiatives in the GTA - Including The Black Experience Project and currently part of a multi-city Migrant Resilience research initiative.

Co-sponsored by: Canada150@York, York University Faculty Association (YUFA), School of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies, Department of Humanities, Department of Social Science, Social and Political Thought & the Centre for Feminist Research at York; Women & Gender Studies Institute, University of Toronto.

Click here for Directions to York University: http://maps.info.yorku.ca/keele-campus/keele-transit-directions/

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CFR Co-Sponsored: Life on the line: Women Strike at Eaton’s 1984-85

Date: Friday, October 27
Time: 2-3PM
Location: Fred Thury Studio Theatre, Vanier College, York University
Event Description:

Life on the Line, a play by Patricia McDermott with Vrenia Ivonoffski, follows the course of a six month strike by Eaton’s workers in 1984-85. The play engages wider themes of precarity, class exploitation, gendered work, and racialization in the retail sector.

The strike highlighted the need to reform first contract legislation and was an integral episode in the struggle to form unions in the service sector, themes which have continuing relevance today.

All are welcome. Admission is free. Seating is limited.
Please RSVP via EventBrite https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/life-on-the-line-women-strike-at-eatons-1984-85-tickets-38812416984

This performance of Life on the Line is presented as part of the GLRC’s 3rd Annual Graduate Symposium. The symposium is made possible through financial support from the following York University bodies: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, Faculty of Graduate Studies, Vice President Research & Innovation, Vice President Academic & Provost, Canada Research Chair in the Political Economy of Gender and Work, Centre for Feminist Research, Osgoode Hall Law School, Graduate Program in Geography, Graduate Program in Public Policy and Administration, the Spaces of Labour in Moments of Urban Populism Project, as well as the Canadian Association for Work and Labour Studies and the LIUNA Enrico Henry Mancinelli Professor in Global Labour Issues at McMaster University.

For more information about the symposium and the program of activities, please visit: http://glrc.apps01.yorku.ca/2017symposium/

CANCELLED - CFR and YCAR present: Dr. Vanaja Dhruvarajan’s “Crossing the Laxman Rekha: One Woman 's Struggles Against Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Bias”

Book Launch

Date: Wednesday, November 8th
Time: 2:30-4:30pm
Location: Victor Phillip Dahdaleh Building (DB) 0010, York University
Event Description:

The “Laxman Rekha,” from the ancient Indian epic Ramayana, was a line drawn to protect Prince Rama’s wife, Sita, from the dangers of the outside world. In Hindu culture today, the notion of the Laxman Rekha has shifted from protecting women to actually circumscribing their conduct; it has become a metaphor for the proper behavior of Hindu women.

Women have always struggled to stretch these boundaries so as to enjoy more autonomy. This book is about one woman’s struggle to transcend the multiple constraints placed on her due to gender, racial, and ethnic biases—from her 1940s childhood in India, to her working and mothering years in the US, Canada, and India from the 1970s to today. Dr. Dhruvarajan’s story also draws parallels between the pains and pleasures experienced by other women of that era, when gender roles were in flux around the world. It was an exciting time, but it was also rife with disappointment. It seemed that for every successful attempt to push past the metaphorical Laxman Rekha, there was a price to pay—and women paid it.

But human nature is resilient. Author Vanaja Dhruvarajan’s story of upheaval and hope—of courage in the face of continual censure and discrimination—opens a window on what it means to survive crossing the Laxman Rekha.

Vanaja Dhruvarajan is an Adjunct Professor at Carleton University. A native of Bangalore, India, she completed her BA in India and her Master’s and PhD at the University of Chicago. She has done research in India and Canada and has published several books and articles, including Hindu Women and the Power of Ideology, and Gender, Race and Nation: A Global Perspective, coauthored with Jill Vickers. Besides serving as the president of the Canadian Sociology and Anthropology Association, and the Canadian Women’s Studies Association, she held the Ruth Wynn Woodward Chair of Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia.

Co-Sponsored by: Department of Equity Studies, School of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies.

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CFR Co-Sponsored: Moving Images: Visual Storytelling and Transnational Filipino Family Reunification

Speaker: Denise Spitzer (University of Ottawa)
Date: Monday, 13 November, 2017
Time: 12:00 to 2:00pm
Location: Room 280N, Second Floor, York Lanes
Event Description:

Thousands of Filipinos have come to Canada under auspices of the Live-In Caregiver Program (LCP) to undertake care work in private homes. After fulfilling their obligations under the Program, former LCP workers were able to apply for permanent residency status in Canada and be joined by their family members from whom they have been separated for many years. To learn more about the reunification experiences of former live-in caregivers and their family members, I invited a group of Filipino youth and a former LCP worker to tell their stories using photography and text. In this presentation, I will share their stories and discuss the process of participatory visual methods. I argue that visual storytelling opens up conversational space beyond national, generational, and professional boundaries providing a substrate for enhancing family relations, community activism, and policy change.
Dr. Denise L. Spitzer is a Full Professor and Acting Associate Director and Graduate Studies Coordinator with the Institute of Feminist and Gender Studies at the University of Ottawa. She was the Canada Research Chair in Gender, Migration, and Health and a Principal Scientist with the Institute of Population Health from 2005-2015. Dr. Spitzer has more than twenty years of experience in community-based research with immigrant, migrant, and refugee women and men in Canada and internationally, exploring the impact of marginalization on health and well-being. Her work focuses on factors that mitigate the relationship between social exclusion and health, including social support, identity, and human agency.

This event is part of the Gender, Migration and Contemporary (Im)mobilities in Asia Lecture series at the York Centre for Asian Research.

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CFR Co-Sponsored: Alula for Posterity: Autobiography of Translation

A Talk by Nathanaël

Date: Monday, 14 November, 2017
Time: 6:30 to 8:30pm
Location: York Hall A301, Glendon College

Translation is a name by which a work falls into competition with itself.

Such is one of the claims of this talk which proposes itself as a (disobedient) taxonomy of screaming, in which the cinema is summoned to its mute appeal.

This event was made possible by the generous contributions of The Mark Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies (University of Toronto), The Centre for Feminist Research (York University) and the Centre for Research in Language and Culture Contact (Glendon College)

Poster by Amanda Jose

Click here for Directions to York University: http://maps.info.yorku.ca/keele-campus/keele-transit-directions/

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CFR Co-Sponsored: Indo-Caribbean Feminist Thought. Genealogies, Theories, Enactments


Date: November 15, 2017
Time: 12:30pm - 2:30pm
Location: 280N York Lanes
Event Description:
Bringing together three generations of scholars, thinkers and activists, this book is the first to trace a genealogy of the specific contributions Indo-Caribbean women have made to Caribbean feminist epistemology and knowledge production. Challenging the centrality of India in considerations of the forms that Indo-Caribbean feminist thought and praxis have taken, the authors turn instead to the terrain of gender negotiations among Caribbean men and women within and across racial, class, religious, and political affiliations.  Addressing the specific conditions which emerged within the region and highlighting the cross-racial solidarities and the challenges to narratives of purity that have been constitutive of Indo-Caribbean feminist thought, this collection connects to the broader indentureship diaspora and what can be considered post-indentureship feminist thought. Through examinations of literature, activism, art, biography, scholarship and public sphere practices, the collection highlights the complexity and richness of Indo-Caribbean engagements with feminism and social justice.

Dr. Gabrielle Jamela Hosein is Head of the Institute for Gender and Development Studies at The University of West Indies (IGDS), St. Augustine Campus and Associate Editor of the Caribbean Review of Gender Studies. Her M.Phil., from the IGDS, explored Indo-Trinidadian girlhood and her Ph.D., in Anthropology from University College London, was an ethnography of Trinidadian conceptions of authority. Her current research areas are politics and governance, Caribbean feminisms and Indo-Caribbean feminist theorizing. She is co-editor of the collection, Negotiating Gender, Policy and Politics in the Caribbean: Feminist Strategies, Masculinist Resistance and Transformational Possibilities (Rowman and Littlefield 2016). Part of Caribbean feminist movement building for two decades, she writes a weekly column, Diary of a Mothering Worker, for the Trinidad Guardian.

Dr. Lisa Outar is an independent scholar who researches Anglophone and Francophone Caribbean literature. From Port Mourant, Guyana, she has a B.A. from Princeton University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Literature from The University of Chicago. She publishes in the areas of Indo-Caribbean literature, feminist writing and the connections between the Caribbean and other sites of the indentureship diaspora. Her work has appeared in the journals Small Axe, South Asian Review, Caribbean Journal of Education, South Asian History and Culture, Caribbean Review of Gender Studies, South Asian Diaspora, Cultural Dynamics, in Stabroek News and in the edited book collections South Asian Transnationalisms (Routledge 2012) and Beyond Windrush: Rethinking Postwar Anglophone Caribbean Literature (University Press of Mississippi, 2015). She serves as a Senior Editor of the Journal of West Indian Literature.

Co-sponsored by the Department of Humanities, The Centre for Feminist Research and the York Centre for Asian Research.

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Date: November 20, 2017
Time: 12pm
Location: Student Centre, ACE013

Event Description:

In remembrance of those who have died due to violence towards trans, Two-Spirit and gender non-conforming people. All people have a right to inclusion, safety, respect and belonging at York University, regardless of their gender, gender identity or gender expression.

Student Centre
12:00pm - 1:00pm

2:00pm – 4:30pm

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 CFR and CRS Present: Challenging Trafficking in Canada

Policy Brief Launch

Date: Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Time: 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Location: 519 Kaneff Tower
Event Description: 

Challenging Trafficking in Canada presents information about human trafficking interventions as they impact sex workers, Indigenous women, migrants, youth, and other marginalized groups. Drawing from established research and consultations with organizations around the country, the policy brief analyses how anti-trafficking policies, laws and practices often cause violence and harm to those they are intended to help, especially Indigenous, racialized and migrant sex workers. It offers an alternative to misinformation, exaggerations and unfounded claims that often circulate through the media and public discussion.

Join us for a conversation with community organizers about the Brief and how issues of labour exploitation, criminalization, and precarious migration status impact local and migrant workers across multiple industries.

You can access the policy Brief at the following link.

Lead editors of the policy brief:
Dr. Kamala Kempadoo & Nicole D. McFadyen (PhD Candidate), York University

Elene Lam, Director, Butterfly: Asian and Migrant Sex Workers Support Network
Syed Hussan, Coordinator, Migrant Workers Alliance for Change
Evelyn Encalada Grez, Organizer and co-Founder, Justicia for Migrant Workers
Andrea Sterling, Board Chair Maggie's Toronto Sex Workers Action Project (*pending confirmation on description)

About the panelists:
Elene Lam (LLM, LLB, MSW. BSW) Master of Law is the founder and executive director of Butterfly (Asian and migrant sex workers support network) and Migrant Sex Workers Project (MSWP). She has been involved in the sex work, gender, migrant and labour movement and activism for more than 17 years.

Evelyn Encalada Grez is co-founder of the award-winning collective Justicia for Migrant Workers. She was part of the films "Migrant Dreams" and "El Contrato" directed by Min Sook Lee that features the injustices lived by migrant workers in Canada. She is contract faculty at York University and a PhD candidate in Social Justice Education at OISE of the University of Toronto.

Andrea Sterling is a PhD candidate in the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies at the University of Toronto. She is currently the Chair of the Board of Maggie’s: Toronto Sex Workers’ Action Project, and has been involved with sex working communities in Montréal and Toronto since 2006. Andrea was involved in the development of the policy brief as a contributing member of the editorial and research teams representing Maggie's Toronto. Her research examines sex work and modes of regulation and is guided by the lived realities of sex workers in her community.

Supported by Maggie's Toronto

Co-sponsored by Centre for Refugee Studies, Department of Anthropology, Department of Social Science & International Development Studies at York University

Please RSVP to juliapyr@yorku.ca. Light refreshments provided.

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CFR Presents: The Equity Myth:
Racialization and Indigeneity at Canadian Universities


By Frances Henry, Enakshi Dua, Carl E. James, Audrey Kobayashi, Peter Li, Howard Ramos and Malinda S. Smith

UBC Press, 2017

Date: Friday, January 12, 2018
Time: 2-4pm, 519 Kaneff Tower
Location: 519 Kaneff Tower
Event Description: 

The university is often regarded as a bastion of liberal democracy where equity and diversity are promoted and racism doesn’t exist. In reality, the university still excludes many people and is a site of racialization that is subtle, complex, and sophisticated. While some studies do point to the persistence of systemic barriers to equity and diversity in higher education, in-depth analyses of racism, racialization, and Indigeneity in the academy are more notable for their absence. The Equity Myth is the first comprehensive, data-based study of racialized and Indigenous faculty members’ experiences in Canadian universities.

A landmark study on racism in Canadian universities, The Equity Myth shows how the goal of achieving equity in higher education has been consistently promised, but never realized for racialized and Indigenous faculty members. It further reveals that the policies and diversity initiatives undertaken so far have only served to deflect criticism of a system that is doing little to change itself.

Copies of the book will be available at the event. To purchase the book online, please click here

Frances Henry is a professor emerita of anthropology at York University.
Enakshi Dua is the director of the Graduate Program in Gender, Feminist and Women’s Studies at York University.
Carl E. James teaches in the Faculty of Education and is the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community & Diaspora at York University.
Audrey Kobayashi is a professor of geography at Queen’s University, Kingston.
Peter Li is a professor emeritus of sociology at the University of Saskatchewan.
Howard Ramos is the associate dean of research in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and a professor of sociology at Dalhousie University.
Malinda S. Smith is a professor of political science at the University of Alberta.

Celia Haig-Brown is the Associate Vice-President Research at York University.
Alissa Trotz is a Professor of Caribbean Studies/Women and Gender Studies, University of Toronto.

Co-Sponsored by the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community & Diaspora, the Dean’s Office of the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, and the Tubman Institute.

Click here for directions to York University - Keele Campus

Questions? Email juliapyr@yorku.ca.

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CFR Co-Sponsored: Feminist Times, Feminist Futures, January 16, 2018

A series of events celebrating the School of Gender, Sexuality and Women's Studies' 20th Anniversary

Date: January 16th, 2018
Time: 2:30 pm
Location: Founders College Room 305

with Dr. Sirma Bilge (University of Montreal) and two spoken word artists, Andrea Thomson and Kanwal Rahim, curated by Ilene Sova

This experimental academic-cultural performance will focus on Dr. Bilge’s new book, Intersectionality, co-authored with Patricia Hill-Collins (Polity Press)

Book copies available at the event (20% student discount)

Sirma Bilge is a Professor of Sociology whose work engages with the intersections of social formations of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class and examines how notions of of national/ethnic sameness and otherness articulate themselves through gender and sexual regulation.

A daughter of the Indus River and the Sindhu people, Kanwal Rahim weaves dance, storytelling and humour into her artistic expressions and performances. She explores new body wisdom practices and healing traditions to deepen awareness and connection, while honouring the integrity of the body.

Andrea Thompson is a writer and educator who has performed her poetry across the country for over twenty years. She is the author of the novel 'Over Our Heads' and co-editor of 'Other Tongues: Mixed Race Women Speak Out.'

Co-Sponsored by: the Office of the Vice-President Academic and Provost, LA&PS Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, the Office of the Principal of Glendon, the Department of Humanities and the Centre for Feminist Research.

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