Black History Month

University of Alberta Press published two new books in time for Black History Month.

In An Autobiography of the Autobiography of Reading Dionne Brand reflects on her early reading of colonial literature and how it makes Black being inanimate. CBC named it one of the 40 works of Canadian nonfiction to watch for in Spring 2020.

An autobiography gestures to the world of a reading self. It signals the
complicated ways of reading and interpretation that are necessary under conditions of coloniality. It suggests that coloniality constructs outsides and insides—worlds to be chosen, disturbed, interpreted, and navigated—in order to live something like a real self.”

Spoken-word poet Valerie Mason-John unsettles readers with potent images of ongoing trauma from slavery and colonization in I Am Still Your Negro.

“I am Africa

Pillaged from my villages
Chipped from my ancestral line
Chained to my sisters and brothers
Cattled and sardined
As we journeyed the Middle Passage
Dead and alive
Refashioned to fit into the colonizers’ narcissistic mould”