Monday, July 24, 2006

graffiti stories

Here are some stories about Graffiti by the members of the Hip Hop writing class at Duke Young Writer's Camp!

by Alex

It was a dusty day in New Orleans. The exciting time of year had arrived, Mardi Gras. A crazy pary was taking place downtown at a teenager's club. Everyone was invited and it was a great time.

Later that night aound midnight all of the party members who had volunteered crept down to an annoying neighbor's house and began to graffiti his wall. Of course he caught them but not early enough. There he found a rude self-portrait of himself.

"Sticker Sign"
by Raul

I was driving my car listening to the radio when I realized I left my wallet back at the mall. I quickly turned left into a lot to make a u-turn and go back when BAM! I crashed. THe officer came and said, "ma'am you can't see that the sign says no left turn!" Then I looked at the sign, you could barely see anything because it was covered in stickers, random stickers that didn't make any sense. The stickers said "sleep" "stealth" "rucker" "mike ILL" "exit 8" "HSJ" "Sound Bombing II 1999" "Mystic" "Transmission" and many more! I couldn't believe it.

"Please Do Not Urinate Here (By Order)"

by Joe
Behind the wall there might be a construction sight.

Slaves Makin' Slaves?: A ?uestlove Mixtape

Das Kapital, Karl Marx, 1867
"Governmentality", Michel Foucault, 1978
"Do you want more?" The Roots 1995
The Repeating Island: The Caribbean and the Postmodern Perspective,
Antonio Benitez-Rojo, 1996
Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction and the Meaning of Liberty,
Dorothy Roberts, 1997
Making Men: Gender, Literary Authority and Women's Writing in
Caribbean Narrative, Belinda Edmonds, 1999
"Diaspora and the Passable Word", in The Practice of Diaspora, Brent
Edwards, 2003
"The Resistance of the Object: Aunt Hester's Scream" in In the Break,
Fred Moten, 2003
Oxford English Dictionary Entries: "diaspora", "disperse",
"immigrate", "produce", "production", "reproduce", "reproduction",
"terror", "trauma".

(read the archives of or see,,1689791,00.html?src=search&artist=%3Fuestlove
if by the end of the post the title still perplexes you)

I've been wanting to explain diaspora through an impossible sonic
planetary art installation. Here's how it goes. The next person who
tries to compare diasporas (like Jewish, Black, Caribbean,
Argentinian, Laotian) or equates diaspora with privileged migration or
(god-forbid) vacation becomes the sculpture. This person immediately
leaves whatever building we are in and stands in a public place
screaming. This person continues screaming until they drop dead
(while being fed through an IV to prolong this process). Just keeps
screaming. Can never stop screaming. And even then 1% of the rage,
pain and loss that characterizes what I mean when I say diaspora has
not been expressed. I assign this to the next contestant to save
myself from having live that scream myself.

Let's see if it works.

So last time (always) I was talking about the relationship between reproduction, oppression and the appropriation of the means of reproduction (like the photocopier.) Which makes sense...since I am obsessed with paper and ink, BUT even then I was compelled to refer to Meshell's "Cookie: The Anthropological Mixtape" so...given the presence of Moten and the advent of CD's called mixtapes at around the median publication date of the texts above...let's talk about this in terms of sound.

A remark: There are black people all over the world. If I don't hear them screaming it is only because I am blinded with the brilliance of their skin as it resists the marking of capitalism.

What is the relationship between reproduction, capital, race, diaspora and freedom? According to Marx capital reproduces itself through labor power, reproduces the capitalist character of the relations by reproducing the worker as a wage-earner. I think there is a silenced black woman somewhere in that statement saying what about what I make (enslaved, at home, on welfare NOT EARNING WAGES)? What about what I make? Babies marked and crossed out because with my race it's said I pass on its natural and like I own it somewhere. What about what I make? The scream I take with stolen air naming this world that spins itself around the truth that I can be all can be raped...again and again and again.

The Roots always always include a hidden track on their records. In 1995 it was a sonic performance piece featuring Philadelphia spoken word poet Ursula Rucker called the "Unlocking". Some hip hop heads decide to gang-rape some girl. Some girl decides that this is not happening again. Some girl kills everyone with the stregnth of her words and the sound of her gun. There is a silenced black woman somewhere in here.

So why is it that Fred Moten, brilliantly explicating and riffing on the invaginated, screaming, gendered, impossible maternal moment that is the source of black radical performance that sceams value before/against exchange, does not ever say RAPE? Why is it that Antonio Benitez-Rojo claims that his is a non-sexist argument and then feminizes the Caribbean as a womb, inseminated by blood that gives and gives and gives and repeats and repeats and repeats into somesweet/nasty/gushy stuff that he finds "between the gnarled legs" of some old black women in Cuba and does not say...RAPE? Why is it that
even Belinda Edmonds, intent on not reproducing the feminized Caribbean landscape (but calling African-Americana, the Anglophone Caribbean and Africa "nations" quite easily) can talk about a "willing white woman" who is gang-raped, and a non-speaking black servant who can only be raped without pausing to tell us what do you mean by RAPE?
Belinda why when you introduce an original (and usually quite brilliant) idea do you say "I submit ________". What can your
submission mean here? Even Brent Edwatds cannot save us now. This is not a failure of translation. None of these are passable words for what is going on and on. The gulf that I am speaking across is shaped by repression, is the censored public secret that my body can be owned and used by someone else at any time. There is a silenced black woman
somewhere in here.

Listen. Diaspora is the STATE of RAPE. What is it about this violent, recurring, theft of livelihood, expropriation of land, walking on black women's bodies, over the possibility that we will create, that is silent even when present? Stand there. Keep screaming. Keep screaming. The character of capitalism witnessed and ignored again and again is rape. The experience of diaspora is the violent dispersal that scatters subjectivity, that disappears the subject; it is the trauma of rape. So how is the terror that is this global state contained?

Foucault says that governmentality is the mentality that has us think that the only thing to debate is how the government governs, deflecting any impulse to question the state (of things) itself. Therefore we are reproducing the state of rape by refusing to acknowledge it as such, as unnacceptable as a human relation. Can anyone hear this? Our dominant mode of relation on this planet is rape! Why should we be trying to understand this? As Edmonds points out even Lamming has accepted this violence (rape as such) as some precondition for decolonization. So what about what I make?

Talk to me. What can I say, what can I make that destroys the logic of the machine...that does not reproduce a relation that I cannot afford...a relation that we all silently survive?

How you sound? Will there ever be a sound structure on which this girl can stand? Let me know that you are listening...

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Always: the Queerness of a Reproductive Frame

The Combahee River Collective Statement, Kitchen Table Press (1977)
Need: A Chorale for Black Women's Voices, Audre Lorde, Kitchen Table Press (1979, 1991)
I am Your Sister: Black Women Organizing Across Sexualities , Audre Lorde, Kitchen Table Press(1984)
Cultural Identity and Diaspora, Stuart Hall (1990)
Piece of My Heart: A Lesbian of Colour Anthology (Introduction), Makeda Silvera, SisterVision Press (1991)
Punishing Drug Addicts who Have Babies: Women of Color, Equality and the Right to Privacy, Dorothy Roberts, Harvard Law Review, (1991)
Big Boots Zine (2001-2003)

Always. Like the word between love and your name in a love letter. Always. Like the pastel plastic promise that your period can become cute. Always. Like an ahistorical historicization. Like the production of eternity without witnesses. Like a recurring nightmare of hoping you exist.

This essay, informed by the works above is the place where "always" splits. Always become all ways and family, heritage and reproduction become an appropraited means for photocopying the zine quality black print of the new world in the basement of the university at 3 o'clock in the morning.

Seriously. I have been tripped up by the meaning of "reproduction" and the persistance of models of family and heritage that show up in works that I find to be foundational to my queer reading practice. What to make of this? Well...why not make what I usually illegally printed freely distrubuted copyright defiant interactive publication. (click on the brokenbeautiful press link to your right). That is to say what if the central metaphor for reproduction was not the heteronormative biology of predictable birth into property and was not mechanism through which capital generated blindness and a surplus...but was rather (in a very Benjaminian "Author as Producer" type of way) a photocopy machine, illegally used for a purpose against capital. A performative mechanism, making multiplicity that called into question the unity and coherence of the status quo and that had the lovely biproduct of making words and images defer/difffer (yes. in the Derridian sense as Hall mentions) from themselves...becoming ever darker, ever grainer, ever less able to refer back to something true...because of their relationship to darkness and light and the means of production.

Can that machine that is used to make the status quo again and again be used to make something else? And that machine is the photocopier and that machine is also the idea of ancestry (hear Etheridge Knight...on ancestry...on Me'shell Ndgeocello's Cookie the Anthropological Mixtape...and while you're at it think of the burned CD as reproductive theft...and while you're there remember that the references in this essay are a glass bottle family tree) and family and the possibility of producing a future, and the idea of being connected to a past.

In other words, what does it mean that Big Boots, my favorite women/transfolk of color post-punk zine starts with an issue (that I love) on mother's and daughters called (so that I cannot avoid this) "ancestry"? What does it mean that in Audre Lorde's "I am Your Sister" the lesbian warrior poet frames her entire analysis in the structue of family? What does it mean for the Combahee River Collective, foundational black lesbian activists, warn against biological determinism in terms of gender while being able to claim what "Black women have ALWAYS embodied...resisted"? And what does it mean for Makeda Silvera, founder of SisterVision Press to come along about 15 years later and agree "We have always existed" and "our children will know who we are"? Race, motherhood, generations and the production of the future are central to each of these queer are they...not queer?

And what about Alexis? Radical queer girl to the core who is avowedly obsessed with her mother and grandmothers and who even dreams about bald pregnancy and waterimmersed childbirth at least tri-weekly. Is she not...queer? What to make of the way she claims the very texts she is writing about now as legacy, roots....even inheritance. (I saw her buy some out of print original copies of the Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press Feminist Organizing Pamphlets Series just this week!)

Well. Since unqueering my whole world is absolutely out of the question let's try this. Remember the photocopier. What if always split into all ways makes a way out. In I am Your Sister, I would argue, Lorde frames herself as reproductive not only through her status as a biological mother of black children, but also through her mentoring of poets, her publication of books, her illegal "public art" vandalist fieldtrips with other black lesbian mothers. So what if this approach to producing art out of opposition towards a liveable future by embattled and indeed often illegal means is also reproduction. Stolen. That is to say, since reproduction is a means of theft to begin with (a means of making property, a means of owning the bodies of women, a means of reinforcing an existing labour hierarchy) does the stealing of reproduction (a context from which queers are excluded from and by) reveal something fundamental, a switch on which flip the script of power? Think of this especially in the contexts of Roberts essay which argues that for black women's reproduction...their actual choice to ever give criminalized under the law in this coundtry. Reproduction in this sense is not something other than reproduction but rather the repetitive performative act based on a long lost, repressed, supressed past and looking towards a future of unlikely liberation, the proof of the lie of an eternal status quo in which we are oppressed and owned.

If so what does this have to say about the function of reproduction in the narratives of nation and diaspora? What does it mean for Audre Lorde to write "Need", strongest statement I can find against the consequences of the way that women are used and owned and raped and beaten and killed towards the building of a masculinist black subjectivity (that i would call nationalist) and frame the statement as one that enables black women to build nation. What would nation have to mean for that to make sense? (asha bandele spoke about nationalism in similar terms at the Urban Tea Party during the 2005 National Black Arts Festival in ATL GA) Ferguson might be interested in this idea of nation that refuses the heteropatriarchal.

But do you see what I mean about this pressure on words...this distance from originality? So when Stuart Hall defines diaspora as that which produces and reproduces itself again and again while at the same time insisting on Derridain differance and arguing that diaspora cannot be an attachment to a unitary past, what can he mean. Aside from his schematic constructions (scarily close to that of the creolistes) of the Americas as the child of/land of the procreative meeting of Africa and Europe I think he means diaspora can be a process of zine production and distrubution...through which the violence of dispersal becomes a relationship to the means of production that suggests an alternative.

Friday, July 14, 2006

bodyrock collage poems

Check out these profound and beautiful poems by the students in my "Bodyrock" program at the Potentialis Centre:

by Queen VIctoria, Age 14

hate love discuss pleasure
pain ugly cute sexy
nerves fight makeup breakup
abuse use wild mean
nice mistake perfect black white

About Life and Dreams
by Mayra, age 17

arts opportunities dreams future
friends music dance graffitti
gangs family love cry
kill sad live health
culture language color hate

by Johnson age 9

lava smoke clouds cars
fire me explosion streets
sparks people
flames grass animals screaming
trees mountains houses dirt

Monday, July 10, 2006

Searching for Our Mother's Spike Heels: Inheritance, Subjectivity and the Peril of Walking

Searching for Our Mother's Gardens, Alice Walker, 1982
The Location of Culture, Homi Bhabha, 1994
On the Postcolony, Achille Mbembe, 2001

To keep it real, I read Alice Walker's text because I felt like it and Bhabha and Mbembe because someone recalled those books to the library and I have to return them today. To keep it really real though
1. Mbembe and Bhabha teach me how to spell each other's names. Three letters, and then repeat.
2. Keeping it real is a lost cause.

Alice Walker is crazy. And thank god(dess?). How else could I justify myself? When I introduced Alice Walker to what looked like a crowed of a zillion screaming literates, I feel back on the rhythm of black matrilineal coherence. Verbatim:
"Okay. When Professor Miller offered me the opportunity to introduce Alice Walker, I screamed. (audience laughter) And then I said, 'Wait...until I tell my mother." (audience applause) When I told my mother she screamed. And then she said "Wait (long meaningful pause here) until we tell your grandmother." (the crowd is screaming and losing it in the ecstatic farce of recognition). I think this anecdote is appropriate because...."
But why did I find that anecdote so appropriate? Why did I (instinctually) know that that would be the best thing to say. (And I did know immediately that I would tell that story.) Not only because it is true, I can claim a matrilineal heritage of screaming (though maybe not of waiting...). And not only for the reason that I claimed...that Alice Walker in her work and in her determination to reclaim lost black women writers "makes me and other young black women who write believe we are possible". This is all true...but is this process of creating a legacy necessarily an act of birthing? Could she be the midwife, could we birth ourselves? Does writing, believing you can write really have anything to do with birth. At the time (and to this day in fact) I identified myself as a woman to the extent that I identified myself as a creator of possibility, of worlds, and yes...of words. But that is a personal gender identification and I would be fooling myself if I didn't acknowledge that the crowd there was invested in something far deeper than me and my personal gendered reverse engendering possibility drunk self. The always exceeds its exemplarity.
The crowd loved the story because they want to believe that black women writing is natural, despite the fact that we risk insanity even as we attempt it. The crowd loved the story because they have been taught to believe that inheritance is the way that one gets a property (confused with a possibility) like the ability to write, the privilege of introducing a famous person, the propensity to scream and to wait. And even if we didn't all want to believe it (and we do) Alice Walker certainly believes that the ability to make art depends on a genealogical process crucially related to land.
Why else would one search for our mother's gardens (collective because we are interchangeable or because we need each other so much despite the fact that we have never owned our mothers...or our mother's land or our motherlands...)? In this text the mother's garden is in Africa (where Phillis Wheatley's mother had a garden an not a pen), is in the South (where MLK countered hundreds of years of black southern dispossession and made "home" possible---made inheritance-of struggle? of consciousness? possible...somehow) , is in a quilt in the Smithsonian by an "anonymous women", is in the appropriated text of Virginia Woolf's a room one's own, is in Cuba, is in Conditions Five (which inspires Walker to proclaim "We are all lesbians"--see the Ferguson essay for more buy-in to lesbian as a radical positionality as the seventies turned eighty), is Sarah Lawrence College, is June Jordan's giggle, is definitely Zora's Eatonville, is everywhere that Walker claims by writing an essay and republishing it here under this title. Maybe this isn't inheritance. Maybe this is sharing. Our mother's are ours (are our mothers all African?) Our legacy is something that grows, that has died, that we never owned, that we have to lie and risk snakebites (and worse) to mark with a tombstone. Our children are a menace to artistic productivity, a poor substitute for character development...though maybe they can coexist...if we don't kill them.
(Rough transition I know) Bhabha uses Toni Morisson's Beloved to theorize something that haunts and doubles and splits modernity while refusing to reproduce it: the repressed time-lag of enlightenment domination through colonization and enslavement. Whereas I have been thinking about diasporic subjectivity as the experience of being haunted (even hunted...see Rita Dove) by a traumatic past (of slavery and colonialism and gendered economic violence more generally) that keeps on coming, Bhabha emphasizes the way that this diasporic subjectivity haunts a western enlightenment idea of nation that keeps trying (and failing it seems) to repress it (us). He emphasizes this haunting as a "finding the join...i want to join" (in the words of the character beloved--but also through Handsworth Songs, Sonia Sanchez etc.) as an impetus for solidarity or a new way of thinking the international through the minoritarian haunting within the socalled nation in the postcolonial moment.
Is there a new way of thinking the region in this postcolonial moment. I missed it if Mbembe offered such a possibility in his articulation of the Afro-Continental temporal category "the post-colony". I think Mbembe succeeds in writing a social theory of contemporary Africa for contemporary Africa (if this means insisting on Africa as it's own complicated context and not as the empty imaginary required by the west...though I don't know who he really wants to buy and read and respect this book), to the extent that Africa holds as a category inherently. I am interested in the way that male domination, vulgarity, virility, emasculation and attention to orifice come up in this text...because it seems incomplete. What are the actual gender dynamics in an"emasculated" postcolonial economy run by indirect private control? What is the relationship between rape of Africa and rape in Africa? I won't do this, but it would have been interesting to write about this text next to Wynter's because it makes me want to know more about the relationship between Africa and the "new world" in the development of a violent western imaginary in her framework. I am so thoroughly impressed and convinced by this text as a useful explication of the economics of colonialism and the present that I almost forget to ask why it is that it is violence and vulgarity that make this text's eloquence. Why is Africa complicated and compelling because of terror and death and nothingness and martyrdom? Professor Spivak would ask Mbembe what his privilege and or position is. What does he get from this presentation..who does he become? What does he enable or foreclose? What does he inherit or pass on?
What (in)deed.

Sunday, July 09, 2006


hooray! our anthology is a best seller!

check it out:

buy it!


Thursday, July 06, 2006

"and yes, i'm bragging"

These are some of the poems that my students at the Potentialis Center Summer Camp wrote today! Today we wrote about our clothes and our bodies.

I have boney teeth
my eyeballs are bloody!
My cheeks are fat
my lips are chubby
my nose is also bloody
and my ears are wacky.

-Lydia, age 7

Dear Victoria,
I'm your Boston jersey dress. I love the way your smooth skin hairs rub against me like a massage. Your skin is very beautiful and silky like. You wear me out like you're the boss. It makes the cute boys holla and girls hate even more because of your taste in style. I really admire you because I'm not so tight on you so I can't breath like everyone else, which you are not. I love you and I'm proud to be your own dress. Thanks for giving me a chance to show you what I can do for you.
Your Boston Jersey Dress
-Queen Victoria, age 14

A note from Mayra's earrings:
We love it when Mayra goes to parties because she makes other earrings jealous. We love her because she always tries to look good with us and she always brings us different places.

-Mayra, age 17

A note from Garrett's hat:

I love to sit on Garrett's head, on his nice fluffy curly black hair. If I were him I would be the happiest human on earth, and yes I'm bragging.

My hair and my hat are royal, royal enemies. And don't ask why.

-Garrett (lil G), age 8


or a poem (mostly) made out of the letters of my name
(from a workshop that I led at the Potentialis Center)

lean as a pen
in the lie of exile
alexis's skin is a lax prison guard
six signs towards up
a line that sails
an axe that slips
a spin that lisps
a lai, a lapa, a lap, a sip, a pal, a lip
that is not for sale

a better poem
by Garrett Franklin Wilkins age 7
(made from his name @ Potentialis)

get a rat an' slap it tar.
an' take it far in a star.
lie it in the star an' skin it neat.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

spelling "blight"

(or verbalizing gentrification)

"blight: v. (Perhaps from the same roots as bleak; the meaning of blight in that case comes from to be, to grow, or make white or pale, bleach.) To affect with blight; to blast; to prevent the growth and fertility of; hence to ruin; frustrate; as to blight one's prospects."
-Webster's New International Dictionary of the English Language
G and C Merriam Company, 1933

b land
b lock
b lot
b lank
b lond ( i said lawned)
b lithe
b lame
b lin(e)d
b leach

b light
b laze
b lush
b link
b lur
b lare
b lue
b loom
b lood (or lewd)
b lade (you heard me)
b leed (so lead)
b liss
b less
b low
b lack
b last

Monday, July 03, 2006

An OTHER Way to Be:EthnoAberrations in Wynter and Ferguson

"Ethno or Socio Poetics" Sylvia Wynter (in Alcheringa), 1976
Aberrations in Black: Towards a Queer of Color Critique Roderick A Ferguson, 2004

Walking on a sunny afternoon in downtown Oakland some summers ago, a woman jumped out of nowhere and proceeded to ambush me with an unsolicited reading of my "blue-green" aura, insisting that she had an important warning for me, if I could pay for her services. In response, the friend that i was walking with (a third generation American communist) concluded, "Capitalism. Makes people do the wildest shit."

Indeed. Wynter and Ferguson are both concerned with the relationship between the capitalist production of certain racialized groups as "surplus", the dependence of this relations on the construction AND production of wildness, heresy, and deviance. Wynter and Ferguson, in different ways are interested in reclaiming that wildness, heresy and deviance as revolutionary potential.

Wynter's essay, from a talk at a conference on Ethnopoetics (featuring Glissant's formulation of natural/forced poetics on which I have been/will be writing about for months---and a talk by Fred Jameson which admits to stealing Wynter's title and doesn't do much besides emphasize the penultimate paragraph of Wynter's talk as a warning for us all) came out almost 30 years before Aberrations in ladies first.
(excuse me while i meditate on the experience of watching Sylvia Wynter speak via video at the Assoc of Caribbean Women Writer's Conf)

To be Sylvia Wynter for even one Jamaican have two y's in my name and to question the foundations of Western Civilization through a razor sharp economic analysis as an a master thief who immediately owns all of the knowledge that she will speak in whole clear sentence that incorporate obscure quotes by let Stanford pay me for the use of my name alone...and at the same time to deny them my presence until it suits my sit in sunlit offices with open windows (in Jamaica, in California, in Florida) and to point out the single lie that gives us this unsatisfactory world. Sigh.

So... in this earlier talk, at the Ethnopoetics conference 30 years ago Wynter does what she does and puts socio next to ethnos, demanding as usual that this concept around which her fellows (literally she's usually the only woman wherever she is) have gathered emerge in its historical specificity, tracing the term ethnos back to them moment when it stopped meaning "we" and began to mean a dehumanized heretical "they" upon which the new "we" depended on. Wynter describes the 16th century development of a global economy through european colonization as a mutation in the human narrative through which "we" became a violent category dependent on and enforced through the abuse of a dehumanized "other". The discovery of the "new world" populated with "others" is for Wynter the X-factor that caused a former "we" among other "we"'s to become THE "we" against which all others would be measured and punished. For Wynter this is the birth of the mutation that she called Western capitalism (and which she now calls global capitalism) the discovery of the new world is the catalyst for such a mutation. Racism then is not an aberration, but is rather the mechanism through which a surplus is the mechanism through which some labour (and life-value) becomes undervalued and some becomes overvalued.
This is achieved through the creation of cultural norm through which deviance can be ascribed to others. In her more recent talk she was explicit about pointing out that the function of "blackness" in creating an overvalued white norm is one tendency among others that include the delination of queerness as the mechanism through which straight privilege is bolstered and rewarded and criminality as the mechanism through which "respectable" consumption is validated (thus her current empahsis on prisons).

Ferguson would agree...but with more attention to the transgressive relationship to space that the relationship between the nation and surplus labor requires. While Wynter would emphazise that the racist secular construction of humanism depends on the labelling of racialized people as deviant, Ferguson is interested in the way that this surplus relationship requires (for example in the context of the great migration) racialized people to move (and be displaced)in ways that create fundamentally queer positionalities, subjectivities and performances. For Ferguson the relationship between capitalism and the nation as narrative and economic entities (if looked at deconstructively) produces an important queerness. However, according to Ferguson everyone...including Marx is in denial about this. Ferguson focuses on the figure of the prostitute as the exemplary figure of capitalist alienation and points out the way in which this figuration frames Marxist critique in a way that validates heteropatriarchal concert with the racist narrative of the reproductive nation-state as such.

SO Ferguson wants an economic critique of capitalism and the nation that does not reproduce a heteropatriarchal logic. In fact he wants to emphasize the queerness that this relation is already requiring from the subjects involved. In other words Capitalism(and the nation-state). MAKES people do the wildest shit. For Ferguson the question is how to acknowledge this relationship in a way that amplifies these queer subjectivities into something that articulates an OTHER way to be.

Similarly, Wynter wants to emphasize the way in which black cultural production has created a mode of being human which does not require the negation of another in order to create community. She wants to argue that whereas western capitalism offers a model through which objects (technologies of war and production) name and create another object "labelled human" and produce a relationship in which one human being is master and another human being is servant based on their relationship to the means of production, poetics (and by this she means art generally) offers a mode in which human beings name the world and are human because their active relation to the world is one of creation.

So what do I learn from this? What do I make from this in my current work to somehow use poetry to create non-violent community structures here in my neighborhood? Well conveniently (providing a concrete continuity between the blog that comes before this) Ferguson talks about the third world women's movement (sparked in order to mobilize in response to brutality against women of color just like this work that we're doing) as a fundamental site because of the way that "lesbian" was used as a label that referred to a critique...not a relation to a state, a race, the means of production or the means of heteropatriarchal reproduction. And conveniently this exact movement is a major focus of my work and a model through which i act as a community artist. SO all this talk of other and critique not only helps to clarify the function of the word "queer" in my self-description and analytic intervention, but also means that as we activartists avatars "we", ethno and poetic in this socio, speak we create our community relations and we do that not as identification but as critique and therefore as constantly co-produced recreation (in the sense of making a world again and in the sense of having fun outside of the context of alienated labor.)