Thursday, June 1, 2017
TRSM 1-067 – Auditorium
Black is deeper than a color or identity politic. It is a conceptual approach and perspective on engaging with the world. We live in the nuance beyond binary definitions. How do we expand our narratives versus simply sharing them? What is Black joy and radical love? How has it been used as tools of resistance and methods of those most oppressed? Storytelling is crucial to healing and imagination is necessary for change. Poetry, arts, and music have always been at the forefront of any shift in society so how do we tell stories and empower imaginations through the Black Radical tradition? In this Big Thinking event, join award-winning performance poet and human rights advocate Aja Monet for a performance and conversation with Toronto Star columnist and activist Desmond Cole.
Aja Monet is an internationally established poet, performance poet, singer, songwriter, educator, and human rights advocate whose work is an in-depth reflection of emotional wisdom, skill, and activism. She is the youngest individual to win the Nuyorican Poet’s Café Grand Slam title and in 2014 was awarded the YWCA of the City of New York’s “One to Watch Award” for her work in empowering women and eliminating racism. An American of Cuban-Jamaican heritage, Monet has performed at world-renowned venues including the Town Hall Theater, the Apollo Theater, the United Nations in New York City, and the NAACP’s Barack Obama Inaugural event in Washington DC.
Desmond Cole is an activist, author, and award-winning freelance journalist. He writes regularly for the Toronto Star, and his work can also be found in Toronto Life, Walrus, NOW, Ethnic Aisle, and other many publications. Desmond won the award for Best New Magazine Writer at the 2016 National Magazine Awards. He is currently working on his first book, a non-fiction exploration of the experiences of Black people in Canada.
Simultaneous interpretation available.