"Ekphrasis and the Black Female Gaze"


  • Reykyavik Iceland

NonfictionNOW 2017

Presenting with Tisa Bryant, Aishah Sabbatini Sloan, and special guests!
"Ekphrasis and the Black Female Gaze"
At a time when nonfiction readers and editors are passionately invested in the politics of the black body, the ephemeral ambiguities of black interiority can get lost in the clamor of debate. But at the same time that a black body absorbs violence, she may be using Antonioni, Bearden, Mendieta and Weems to make sense of her politics, or to catalyze her grief. Are we embracing the full complexity of the black experience when we focus primarily on the black body as an object in the social sphere without consideration of the dreamscape? What might the black girl at the museum have to say about our disasters? In this panel, Aisha Sabatini Sloan will moderate a conversation between Samiya Bashir and Tisa Bryant about the ways that they engage in ekphrasis with a fluid approach to genre classification, radical use of performance and unorthodox analysis of art and race.

The NonfictioNOW Conference is a regular gathering of over 500 nonfiction writers, teachers, readers and students from around the world in an effort to explore the past, present, and future of nonfiction. NonfictioNOW is unique in being neither a conventional academic conference nor a writers’ festival, but rather, a conversation among peers, from well-established writers and artists to those just starting out.
 
NonfictioNOW gathers leading writers from around the world to share notes with emerging peers and audiences on the intricate challenges and intriguing delights of writing and reading nonfiction NOW.  The growing success of NonfictioNOW highlights the great energy and interest in the art of nonfiction storytelling in all its forms, from literary and political essays and memoir to reality TV. 

Panels and readings highlight the myriad forms of nonfiction, from the video essay and graphic essays, to the memoir, lyric essay, and literary journalism. Past keynote speakers have included Maggie Nelson, Alison Bechdel, Rebecca Solnit, David Shields, Patricia Hampl, Pico Iyer, Lauren Slater, and Richard Rodriguez, among others.