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'Who do you talk to, when a body's in trouble?: M. Nourbese Philip's (un)silencing of black bodies in the diaspora

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Abstract:

This paper examines Marlene Nourbese Philip's 'Dis Place—The Space Between' to argue that black women's bodies are troubled by Philip in order to reconceptualize and reinvent location, corporeality, subjectivities, and dominant historical narratives. In situating blackness and black femininity within a displaced, or 'anywhere' framework, Philip scrutinizes and redraws the places of black women's bodies in the New World so that we might reconsider the geographical and historical importance of blackness. This paper therefore analyses how Philip takes up the chaotic in between-ness of black womanhood in order to embrace discourses and spaces of 'elsewhere' and possibility, while also acknowledging sites of racism, sexism, memory and struggle.

Keywords: BLACK; BLACKNESS; CANADA; DIASPORA; DISPLACED; DISPLACEMENT; FEMININITY; MODERNITY

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649360020010220

Affiliations: Graduate Programme in Women's Studies, York University, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario, M3J 1P3, Canada

Publication date: December 1, 2000

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