Northwestern Events Calendar


"How Does It Fit? Black Girlhood in Independent Women’s Cinema" with Patricia White

When: Thursday, March 2, 2017
5:00 PM - 6:30 PM  

Where: University Hall, Hagstrum Room, 1897 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Jasmine E. Tucker   847.491.5871

Group: Gender & Sexuality Studies Program

Category: Lectures & Meetings


In neoliberal, post-feminist culture, Angela McRobbie asserts, “young women… are the privileged subjects of social change”--whether white girls in the Global North or girls as a target of development policy in the Global South. Meanwhile in US educational policy, Kimberlé Crenshaw reports, Black girls are “pushed out, overpoliced, and under-protected.” This lecture looks at the fit between current ideologies of girlhood and young black female embodiment primarily through a reading of the recent independent film The Fits (Anne Rose Holmer, 2016). Toni, an 11-year old tomboy, joins a Cleveland community dance team whose members soon become afflicted by mysterious seizures. Mass psychogenic illness overlaps with the onset of adolescence to shift disciplinary regimes of race and gender. Filmed on location in collaboration with the Q-Kidz dance team and its founder, The Fits tells its story through movement, gesture, and sound, building a cinematic space of “communicable” experience.

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