archives matter conference features cultural anthropologist gloria wekker

Archives Matter: Queer, Feminist and Decolonial Encounters 

When: June 2 and 3, 2016
Who: Centre for Feminist Research
Where: Goldsmiths, University of London, Lewisham Way, New Cross, London SE14 6NW

Archives matter. Archives are bound up with the question of whose history is worth preserving. Scholars in postcolonial and decolonial studies have broadened our understanding of archives by thinking of ‘imperial archives’ (Ann Stoler/ Thomas Richards) and colonialism as a ‘cultural archive’ (Edward Said/ Gloria Wekker): ways of understanding how the documents left behind by empire were made, distributed as well as stored, and ways of opening up what is meant by a document: to document is an action that is performed in relation to bodies. This conference will focus on the ways in which we encounter the archive and consider how we might engage the archive differently within feminist, queer and decolonial studies.

We hope in this conference to think toward different uses of archive, from a range of disciplines and perspectives. We hope to explore, how the institutional archive can be made feminist, queered or decolonized, and in which ways we can build on transnational archives as well as establish our own archives. We wish to invite postgraduate students, early career researchers as well as activists, artists and anyone else to contribute.


Archives Matter will feature cultural anthropologist Gloria Wekker of Utrecht University as keynote speaker. Gloria Wekker is Professor Emeritus of Gender Studies at Utrecht University (NL) and the author of several books, including The Politics of Passion: Women’s Sexual Culture in the Afro-Surinamese Diasgloria wekkerpora. Her specializations are in the field of Gender Studies, Sexuality Studies, African American Studies, and Caribbean Studies. Since 2001 she occupied the Aletta (IIAV)-chair Gender and Ethnicity at the Faculty of Humanities of Utrecht University (NL). She has been the coordinator of the one-year Master “Comparative Women’s Studies in Culture and Politics” at Utrecht University. Wekker published on a wide range of areas including the sexual subjectivity of women in the black Diaspora, knowledge systems in Dutch academia and Dutch multicultural society, diversity in the curriculum on literature and the history of black, migrant and refugee – women movement in the Netherlands. She also writes short stories and poetry.

You can sign up to attend the conference here: http://www.eventbrite.com/o/centre-for-feminist-research-goldsmiths-university-9871931156

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