Talk: Fumi Okiji

Image courtesy of Fumi Okiji.
Image courtesy of Fumi Okiji.


“The whole face of the globe is community.” — John Coltrane

Join us for a live, online talk by scholar and vocalist Fumi Okiji where she discusses the aesthetic sociality of music.

In this talk, Okiji explores Black musical sociality as 'gathering-work.' Reflecting on Don Cherry’s use of the West African harp, she discusses musical arrangement as a disruption of authorial sovereignty, and by way of Yoruba’s aesthetics, Okiji gestures toward alternative ways with time and earth that characterise black/African music.

Chaired by Dhanveer Singh Brar.

About the event

Online. Free. Live Stream.
You can access this event through this webpage and on the Nottingham Contemporary YouTube channel.
There will be automated live captioning for this event.
A transcription will be available for download on this webpage afterwards.
We are unable to provide British Sign Language interpretation for this event.
A recording of the event will be available afterwards.
The duration of the event is two hours. A rest break is not included.

Fumi Okiji is a London-born, California-based scholar and performing jazz vocalist. She is Assistant Professor of Rhetoric at the University of California, Berkley where she works across black study, critical theory, and sound and music studies. Her research and teaching looks to black expression for ways to understand modern and contemporary life. Her book Jazz as Critique: Adorno and Black Expression Revisited (2018) is a sustained engagement with Theodor Adorno’s idea concerning the critical potential of art. She is currently working on a forthcoming book, Billie’s Bent Elbow: The Standard as Revolutionary Intoxication. Okiji is a member of Le Mardi Gras Listening Collective.

Dhanveer Singh Brar is a Lecturer in Visual Cultures in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London. His teaching and research addresses the relationship between sonic culture, critical theory and political radicalism in black and postcolonial diasporas from the late twentieth century to the present. His first monograph Beefy’s Tune (Dean Blunt Edit) is out with The 87 Press and Teklife, Ghettoville, Eski: The Sonic Ecologies of Black Music in the Early Twenty-First Century is forthcoming in April 2021 with Goldsmiths Press / MIT Press. Dhanveer is also a member of Le Mardi Gras Listening Collective and Lovers Discourse.

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