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A painting by Yashua Klos called Diagram of How She Hold it All Together.


Genocide, Antiblackness, + the Pornographic: The Urgency of Black Autonomy and Abolitionist Activism

When: March 2nd, 2022

Time: 12:00pm – 1:30pm PST

The Black Studies Collaboratory (BSC, UC Berkeley) and the Center for Ideas and Society (CIS, UC Riverside) invite you to join us to discuss black communities’ experiences across public schools, professional pornography, and everyday spaces. These sites will be placed within the context of U.S. antiblack policing, captivity, and ultimate genocide to prompt an apt discussion about the libidinal, political, and pornographic economies of these disciplinary structures in slavery’s afterlife. This critical meditation will also explore the urgency of black autonomy and abolitionist activism as strategies aimed to rattle and raze these economies, structures, and settler/slaver/colonial/civil society in its totality. Tending to black pleasure, joy, and life as well as black pain, suffering, and death, this dynamic conversation sketches the im/possibilities of a post-apocalyptic social world revolving around the affirmation of blackness.

This event is co-sponsored by UC Riverside’s CIS and part of UC Berkeley’s BSC Abolition Democracy Spring Speaker Series. Joining us for conversation will be: Savannah Shange, author of Progressive Dystopia: Abolition, Antiblackness, and Schooling in San Francisco (2019); Connie Wun, author of “Against Captivity: Black Girls and School Discipline Policies in the Afterlife of Slavery” (2015); Damien M. Sojoyner, author of First Strike: Educational Enclosures of Black Los Angeles (2016); Dylan Rodríguez, author of most recently published book, White Reconstruction: Domestic Warfare and the Logics of Genocide (2020); and BSC Abolition Democracy Postdoctoral Fellow, Peace And Love El Henson, author of dissertation, “Race, Power, and the Pornographic: Naughty Black Femme Schoolgirls in Interracial Pornography, Publics Schools, and Policing Encounters” (2021).

Co-Host / Moderator: Peace And Love El Henson, Abolition Democracy Postdoctoral Fellow, The Black Studies Collaboratory, UC Berkeley

Peace And Love El Henson, Ph.D. is a black feminist urban ethnographer and critical porn studies analyst. She does research and teaching as a Black Studies Collaboratory Abolition Democracy Postdoctoral Fellow in the African American Studies Department at UC Berkeley. Broadly, Peace And Love primarily focuses on black queer femmes, genocide, abolition, autonomy, urban/ethnography, and pornography. Her in-progress book manuscript is tentatively titled, On Erotic Mastery: Black Femmes, Pornography, and U.S. State Encounters. Fun fact: Amidst all fray, Peace And Love finds joy in mastering herself as an intergalactic thinker, writer, and creative.

Co-Host / Moderator: Dylan Rodríguez, Co-Director of Center for Ideas and Society / Professor of Media & Cultural Studies, UC Riverside

Dylan Rodríguez is an abolitionist teacher, scholar, and collaborator. He was named a Freedom Scholar in 2020 and recently served as President of the American Studies Association (2020-2021). He has worked as a Professor at the University of California, Riverside since 2001. Prior to being elected by the faculty to two terms as Chair of the UCR Academic Senate (2016-2020), Dylan served as Chair of the Department of Ethnic Studies (2009-2016). Dylan is the author of three books, most recently White Reconstruction: Domestic Warfare and the Logic of Racial Genocide (Fordham University Press, 2021).

Savannah Shange, Assistant Professor of Anthropology / Principal Faculty in Critical Race & Ethnic Studies, UC Santa Cruz

Savannah Shange is assistant professor of Anthropology at UC Santa Cruz and also serves as principal faculty in Critical Race & Ethnic Studies. Her research interests include gentrification, multiracial coalition, ethnographic ethics, Black femme gender, and abolition. She earned a PhD in Africana Studies and Education from the University of Pennsylvania, a MAT from Tufts University, and a BFA from Tisch School of the Arts at NYU. Her first book, Progressive Dystopia: Abolition, Anti-Blackness and Schooling in San Francisco (Duke 2019) is an ethnography of the afterlife of slavery as lived in the Bay Area.

Connie Wun, Co-Founder and Executive Director of AAPI Women Lead

Connie Wun, PhD is a co-founder of AAPI Women Lead. She also leads national research projects on race, gender and violence. Connie is a 2020 Soros Justice Fellow and has received numerous awards including National Science Foundation fellowship. Her research has been published in academic journals, anthologies and online platforms. She is also a former high school teacher, college educator, and sexual assault counselor.

Damien M. Sojoyner, Associate Professor of Anthropology, UC Irvine

Damien M. Sojoyner is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. He researches the relationship among the public education system, prisons, and the construction of Black masculinity in Southern California. He teaches several courses including Black Political Theory in the United States, Prisons and Public Education, and Black Public Culture. His upcoming book, Joy and Pain: A Story of Black Life and Liberation in Five Albums will be published by the University of California Press in the Fall of 2022.


This event will be held online, via Zoom webinar. It will be free and open to the public.

Spanish interpretation will be available.

Live captioning will be available.

If you require any other accommodations for effective communication to fully participate in this event, please contact Barbara Montano at or 510-664-4324 with as much advance notice as possible and at least 7-10 days in advance of the event.