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An Urban Theory in the Flesh: Latinx Struggles for Social Justice in the City

Event Type
Department of Geography & GIS
wifi event
Feb 4, 2022   3:00 - 4:00 pm  
Dr. Madelaine Cahuas, University of Minnesota Twin Cities
This event is free and open to public
Department of Geography & GIS
Originating Calendar
Geography and Geographic Information Science

In Geography, there continues to be significant debate around how we conceptualize the urban. In this presentation, I seek to deepen analyses of the urban by engaging with women of color feminisms and the everyday lived politics of Black/Afro-Latinx, Indigenous and Brown Latinx community workers involved in various social justice struggles in Toronto, Canada. By taking this approach, I explore the urban from what Cherrie Moraga calls – “a theory in the flesh” – a way of knowing and creating knowledge that emanates from the embodied struggles of women of color and that is rooted in a liberatory politic. Drawing on community workers’ testimonios, I demonstrate how they navigate and contest a white, neoliberal and heteropatriarchal non-profit sector and city, while also creating alternatives grounded in an intersectional feminist praxis that weaves family and community histories, personal experiences and women of color feminisms. In this way, Latinx community workers form and enact urban theories in the flesh that go beyond recognizing difference, to emerging from difference and demanding a something else. I conclude by considering how an urban theory in the flesh can radically rethink geographical studies of the urban by foregrounding women and people of color as knowledgeable political actors that are actively reimagining and transforming urban spaces and places.  

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