Critical race and feminism books to be launched in October

Critical Race and Feminist writing on activism, subjectivities, governance and nation: Shirley Tate, Shona Hunter and Suryia Nayak and audience in conversation around their new books. Books by each of these authors will be launched at an event on 12th October 2015 in Leeds city centre.  All welcome, free, but you must register by 23rd September. Contact S.D.J.Hunter@LEEDS.AC.UK to register.  More information here:UK Northern Launch invitaion

Black History Month: The politics of ‘race’ and gender (16th October)

Taking Soundings is pleased to be working again with the Centre for Culture and the Arts at Leeds Beckett (formerly Metropolitan) University on an event in Black History Month. Dr Emily Marshall has invited Dr Shirley Tate and Dr Robin Bunce to lead discussions on black politics and feminism.

The event will take place on Thursday 16th October 2014.

The talks will start at 6pm in Room CC RB444 Lecture Theatre C, Rose Bowl, Leeds Met/Beckett University, Portland Crescent, Woodhouse Lane, LS1 3HB.

Dr Shirley Anne Tate will speak on ‘Michelle Obama’s arms: ‘race’, respectability, class privilege’.


Dr Tate is an Associate Professor in Race and Culture and PGRT. She is Director of the Centre for Ethnicity and Racism Studies in the School of Sociology and Social Policy at The University of Leeds. She is particularly interested in exploring the intersections of ‘raced and gendered bodies,  ‘race’ performativity, ‘mixed race’ and decoloniality within the Black Atlantic diasporic context.
 Her first book Black Skins, Black Masks: Hybridity, Dialogism, Performativity was focused on ‘race’ performativity, ‘mixed race’ and on going beyond hybridity theorising.

 Her second book Black Beauty: Aesthetics, Stylization, Politics looks at beauty within the Black Atlantic diaspora as affect-laden, performative ‘race’ work that continues to impact on identities and communal politics but which is continuously being deconstructed and reshaped through stylization.

Dr Robine Bunce will speak on ‘Darcus Howe and Black Power in  Britain, 1967-1975.’


Dr Robin Bunce is a historian of political thought based at Cambridge University. He is currently Director of Studies for Politics at Homerton College, and a Fellow in History at St Edmund’s College. His most recent work focuses on Black Power as an ideology and a movement in Britain. His recent book, co written with Paul Field, Darcus Howe: a Political Biography, examines the life of one of Britain’s most prominent black intellectuals and radicals. He is currently working on a history of the British Black Panther Movement.


Demonstrators supporting the Mangrove Nine, including Darcus Howe, who were on trial at the Old Bailey in 1971. Howe successfully defended himself in what became the prototype for black self-defence legal struggles.


Lynne Segal revisits ‘Beyond the Fragments’ on 18.9.2013

Taking Soundings event on Wednesday 18th September at 6pm (venue details below)

Lynne Segal, one of the writers of  Beyond the Fragments – Feminism and the Making of Socialism, will be speaking at the September 2013 meeting of Taking Soundings in Leeds. First published in 1979 with contributions from Lynne, Hilary Wainwright and Sheila Rowbotham, a second edition was recently published, containing the original essays, plus three new ones from the same authors. Lynne’s talk in Leeds will take up the themes of her new essay, as she outlines here:

Even as times change, most of us remain stamped by the first moments we consciously enter politics – the moments of our greatest activism or fiercest dreams of different futures. For me, returning to Beyond the Fragments, that means asking what lessons, if any, can be drawn from the spirit of Seventies feminism. It was a politics premised upon equality and democratized resources, which kept most of us firmly part of the Left, attentive to class and anti-colonial struggles, alongside our more distinctive feminist concern with questions of care, culture, the sharing of skills, imagination and more – noting our interdependence, while cherishing autonomy and personal life, knowing we are never outside the social. Given our formidable defeats in worsening economic times for the majority, all the old questions return, but with even greater force. Is it still possible to create modes of resistance that can reach out, beyond the heat of action, to build movements and coalitions that survive and, somehow, impact upon those determining or trying to influence government policies? Can ‘democracy in action’ be preserved to form a coherent and forceful opposition to corporate capital, with its hollowing out of democracy, and the wars, inequalities and oppression it produces or tolerates? These questions are familiar, but the answers get harder to envisage, given that it is now easier, some say, to imagine the end to the world than the end of capitalism.

Lynne’s talk will take place at 6pm on Wednesday 18th September 2013 at Leeds Metropolitan University’s city centre campus: Broadcasting Place, A building, Room GO2, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9EN (opposite the Fenton Pub).

Copies of the book, at a discounted price, will be on sale at the meeting.

Brief comment on the book – and how to get a free copy by subscribing to Red Pepper –  here

Cynthia Cockburn’s interesting critique of the ‘Beyond the Fragments’ version of feminism was published  in openDemocracy in May 2013