Feeding a Black Nation: Decolonial Vegan Politics and Queen Afua’s Kitchen

Part I

Part II

Above are the two videos from my most recent talk that I gave on November 1, 2012 at Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts. The topic I was to address was “Intersectionality of Oppressions: A Look at How Race and Gender Shape the Vegan Experience in the USA.” The title of the talk that I gave to examine this topic was called “Feeding a Black Nation: Decolonial Vegan Politics and Queen Afua’s Kitchen.” It was hosted by the Boston University Vegetarian Society and Center for Gender, Sexuality, and Activism.

I had a really great time. I also let everyone know that this talk is from a dissertation chapter that is still in its draft stages, “So bare with me as I try to work out a lot of the theoretical stuff I talk about at the very beginning.” I’m also functioning off of 2.5 hours of sleep and flew across country and basically went directly to the talk. Whew, crazy day getting there but it was well worth it. I think the Q&A session was the best because the questions were very critical and engaging.

The next day, I had brunch with a bunch of friends and my twin brother, Talmadge, who I had not seen in person in over 2 years. We video Skype several times a week, but this was a gazillion times better. We ate at Central Sq. in Cambridge at a place called Veggie Galaxy, owned by the same people who run Veggie Planet. It’s vegan and vegetarian diner style.

Talmadge Harper and Breeze Harper at Veggie Galaxy. Cambridge, MA. November 2, 2012.

Lastly, I mentioned a few titles at the end of the video. Here they are with a few more that may be of use. I think Barthes is really excellent as a semiologist because he can help folk understand how food ‘signifies’ and communicates an entire society’s “attitude” about life in general.

Afua, Queen. Sacred Woman: A Guide to Healing the Feminine Body, Mind, and Spirit. New York: Ballantine Publishing Group, 2000.

Barthes, Roland. Mythologies. New York,: Hill and Wang, 1972.

Barthes, Roland. Elements of Semiology. 1st American ed. New York: Hill and Wang, 1968.

Grosfoguel, Ramón, and Ana Margarita Cervantes-Rodríguez. The Modern/Colonial/Capitalist World-System in the Twentieth Century : Global Processes, Antisystemic Movements, and the Geopolitics of Knowledge, Contributions in Economics and Economic History, No. 227. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002.

Lewis, Tania, and Emily Potter. Ethical Consumption: A Critical Introduction. New York: Routledge, 2010.

Sandlin, Jennifer A., and Peter McLaren. Critical Pedagogies of Consumption: Living and Learning in the Shadow of The “Shopocalypse”. Edited by Joel Spring, Sociocultural, Political, and Historical Studies in Education. New York: Routledge, 2010.

Sullivan, Shannon, and Nancy Tuana. Race and Epistemologies of Ignorance, Suny Series, Philosophy and Race. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2007.

Warren, John T. Performing Purity : Whiteness, Pedagogy, and the Reconstitution of Power. New York: Peter Lang, 2003

Zuberi, Tukufu, and Eduardo Bonilla-Silva. White Logic, White Methods : Racism and Methodology. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2008.