Spectra

In partnership with Women, Action, and the Media (WAM!), I'm hosting a virtual panel that features the perspectives of LGBTQ African Diaspora on African culture, queer identity, and the media. The focus of the panel will in part be driven by pre-submitted questions from listeners, but will also aim to highlight the panelists' experiences with various kinds of activism, including the use of new media to promote awareness and social justice issues surrounding Queer Africa. I couldn't be more excited (and nervous!) about collaborating with WAM! (to whom I owe much of my passion and enthusiasm for advocating for the increased role and influence of women in the media), and for the opportunity to share stories and reflections with my fellow queer African friends and colleagues. 

I've called the event "Kitchen Table Conversations" because I've found that I've experience the most thought-provoking, enlightening, and inspiring conversations, literally, at my kitchen table... or in my living room, on the train, at the back seat of a cab. Too often, right after a juicy pow wow with friends who are also African, queer, women of color etc., during which each of us weigh in on whatever issue it is -- dating, family, politics, white people, westerners, "political correctness" and the like -- by making a podium of the stove, delivering truths with the nonchalance of throwing salt into stew, and thickening our accents for dramatic emphasis, I've slammed my fist on my wooden kitchen table in frustration, shocking everyone with an American, "Dang! I should've recorded this."

The Kitchen Table Conversations happen so frequently, that now my friends and I actually joke about doing just that --- recording ourselves over dinner -- before we begin; it's become somewhat of an adventure to see what political insights we may discover before our eventual end-of-dinner gamble with wine (which we've found can either fuel or extinguish the uncensored passion we all carry underneath; the burden of having to feign resilience or resolve is washed away). I live for these moments, when our eagerness to speak and be affirmed causes us to interrupt each other, constantly, so that we share the experience of telling and shaping one story, our feet planted comfortably into soil. I wish I could share this with the world.

I doubt that a facilitated e-panel without food, wine, or in-person comraderie will serve to recreate the Kitchen Table Conversations that I've come to look forward to during almost every half-potluck (some cooking must take place before hearts bleed). But I do wonder what would happen if people could actually listen in to us at our most vulnerable, most desperate. I wonder what people would do if we dared say what we say over jollof rice, fried plantains, pepper soup, and egwusi... if we let loose the rawness we've been trained to sugar coat as tokenized peoples at podiums in western conferences.

“I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of havinIn any case, it's Women's History Month, which makes this panel featuring Queer African voices -- and this on-going series (yes, I intend to keep hosting conversations like this) -- even more important. Despite a variety of forums and media honoring women this month, queer African women (past and present) aren't being celebrated for their work and their bravery. But whose fault is that? Mainstream media's? Psssh. I gave up on that a long time ago. In fact, I'm grateful for the lack of coverage I see, and thus, the motivation to continue encouraging queer African women and trans people everywhere to continue making waves, making media, and making trouble.

So mark your calendars for Wednesday March 23rd (12PM-1PM EST), and stay tuned for more from the Kitchen Table Conversations series. It's going to be fun!

#VivaAfrika

---------------

Kitchen Table Conversations: LGBT African Diaspora Speak on Culture, Queerness, and New Media Spectra, the sassy host and moderator of this panel, is an award-winning queer Nigerian writer and women's activist. She is the founding director of Queer Women of Color and Friends (QWOC+ Boston), a nationally recognized grassroots  organization serving the needs of LGBTQ people of African descent and allies in New England, and the director of QWOC Week, New England's first pride festival exclusively intended to raise awareness of health and social justice issues impacting queer/trans communities of color. She is the owner of Spectra Events, a socially-conscious event planning and production company that brings together her eclectic interests in Art and Music, Social Entrepreneurship, Technology, and Philanthropy, and routinely blogs about all things women, leadership, politics, and Africa.

Kagendo Murungi is a Kenyan filmmaker, activist and writer with a background in international sexual and gender rights advocacy and organizing for social and economic justice with working class and poor LGBT communities in New York. She was a founding member of Uhuru-Wazobia, an educational, advocacy and social membership organization for LGBT Africans founded in 1995, and co-director of Liberation for All Africans, an ad hoc committee of African gender non-conforming people, organized in response to a spate of anti-lesbian rapes in South Africa in 2007. She helped institute the Africa Program at the International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and served on the international grants panel of the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice.
 
Akwaeke Z Emezi was born and bred in the south of Nigeria, and is an Igbo and Tamil free love advocate, genderqueer Nutri-C addict, and natural hair aficionado. In the space where parathas and palm oil meet, she dances reverence to dope beats and follows the Christ. As a queer bard, blogger and drag performer, Z infects a message of self-awareness laced thoroughly with love and bravery, believing that only in knowing and accepting oneself utterly can we truly be free. A current Brooklynite, they adore traveling and beautiful people, and are constantly pushing for a life free of fear and full of marvelous.
 
Bukky Kolawole is the queer Nigerian founder of First Generation group, an organization based in Brooklyn New York that seeks to empower the diaspora to postively influence their communities by raising their voices collectively. She is also a licensed clinical psychologist (you can call her Dr. Bukky) who is interested in utilizing her expertise with behavioral change for the benefit of social change and building community. Her private practice caters to adolescents and adults in NYC, and is particularly passionate about meeting the needs of the LGBTQ community.
 
Iyayi-Osazeme ‘Lobuhle’ Odigie-Oyegun is a British-Nigerian, South-African-bred food interlocutor, who thinks in the language and poetry of food. She is the head chef and owner of Khandja Kalabash a Harlem based boutique culinary firm, specialising in afro-fusion cooking and the preservation, appreciation and proliferation of African culinary practices & cuisines. She hopes to queer the African Culinary Experience by combining traditional and contemporary methods and ingredients to introduce new dimensions of flavour to African cuisine. She believes that food is connected to every essential part of the human experience, and is a candid way of expressing LOVE. In the battle against homophobia, bigotry and racism, cuisine is her tool of choice! Several more panelists to be announced soon.
 
Submit Questions to the Panelists! You are invited to submit questions to the panelists ahead of time commenting in the box to the right. A handful of questions will be selected for the panel and will be presented anonymously (unless requested otherwise). Questions may be edited for brevity.
 
Listening Details
Date: Wednesdsay March 23rd
Time: 12PM-1PM
Bookmark this link to listen to the show here.

  1. Today's Best
  2. Top Shows
  3. Best of BTR
    1. Loading

      The Do's and Dont's of Fantasy Trade

      Oh that lost art of the fantasy sports trade.. In this week show your Hero Dennis Farrell and his guest Ed Pevos work out the do's and don't of the fantasy trade. With tips,tricks and the tools to help and protect yourself vs any trade sharks in the water who smell blood.

    2. I Love Me, I Love Me Not

      In the season of love we find ourselves focused on what other people think - about us, our relationship status, our place in life, and many other things that don't truly matter. But, what about that all-important love that all too often get’s missed - self love?

    3. Tribute to golf legend Billy Casper

      Ann's classic interview, a tribute to golf legend the late Billy Casper who talks about his most important wins, why he feels he wasn't recognized on the same level as Arnie, Jack and Gary Player, despite his incredible record and lots of fascinating stories.

    4. Powerlifting and Positivity

      Donnie "Super D" Thompson knows a thing or two about lifting heavy weights. He earned himself the nickname "Mr. 3000" by being the first human to total 3000lbs in powerlifting back in 2011.

    5. Gleneagles Falconry Instructor

      Steve Burdett, Falconry Instructor at The Gleneagles Hotel, talks about the history of falconry. He explains the different types of birds used in falconry and how they each have different purposes.

    6. Value of Human Interaction

      Derek wants to talk with you about the value of human interaction.

    7. Matt Sitkoff from NHL.com

      NHL On the Ice welcome Matt Sitkoff from NHL.com to talk fantasy hockey and the NHL season with us.

    8. Kristin Naragon, Director at Adobe

      Two-thirds of marketing directors say they are unhappy with their current email solution providers. Kristin Naragon with Adobe says the time is ripe for change.

    9. Defensive Back Keith Lewis

      This episode features discussions surrounding the New York Jets options in free agency and the NFL draft. Also an exclusive interview with defensive back Keith Lewis.

    10. The Demise of the American Mafia

      Interviewed George Anastasia, Author, "Gotti's Rules The Story of John Alite, Junior Gotti, and the Demise of the American Mafia"

    11. Newsweek's Matthew Cooper

      From LBJ to Hillary Rodham Clinton, politics is this week's subject on The Halli Casser-Jayne Show with LBJ's top advisor Joseph Califano, Jr. and Newsweek's political editor Matthew Cooper.

    12. Sacred Success

      Barbara Stanny hits it out of the park with her 8th book, Sacred Success.She speaks to where we're at in women once and for all not assuming men in our lives are more savvy, educated or equipped to create financial safety and freedom.

    13. The IQ of ADHD

      Host Jeff Copper interviews Dr. Thomas E. Brown on the impact of ADHD on intelligence and whether those with ADHD can have a high IQ. Dr. Brown was inducted into the CHADD Hall of Fame and received an Award of Honor from ADDA for his excellent work in ADHD.

    14. Critical Impact of Hiring Management

      How important is the recruiter or hiring manage when it comes to the hiring process and experience of a job seeker? Rayanne will chat with a seasoned hiring professional about the critical impact.

    15. SNL Writer Sylvia Traymore Morrison

      On the heels of Saturday Night Live's 40th Anniversary, "Somewhere in Vegas" throwback to an interview with SNL's first female African American writer Sylvia Traymore Morrsion.

    16. NHL On the Ice

      NHL On the Ice welcomes Dave Fischer, Senior Director of USA Hockey, to talk about Hockey weekend across America and the 1980 U.S. Olympic Ice Hockey on the 35th Anniversary of their historic win over the Soviet Union.

    1. Loading

      Small Business Unstuck

      Host Barry Moltz gets small businesses unstuck. He has founded and run small businesses with a great deal of success and failure for more than 15 years. This is a business radio show where he shares all the craziness of small business. It’s that craziness that actually makes it exciting, interesting and totally unpredictable.

    2. America's Most Haunted

      Official Internet radio show of forthcoming epic paranormal investigation book by Eric Olsen and "Haunted Housewife" Theresa Argie.