Shirley Anne Tate

Shirley Anne Tate

University of Alberta, Canada
Shirley Anne Tate A5

Shirley Anne Tate is Professor and Canada Research Chair (CRC) Tier 1 in Feminism and Intersectionality in the Sociology Department, University of Alberta, Canada, Honorary Professor in CriSHET, Nelson Mandela University, South Africa and Visiting Professor in CRED, Leeds Beckett University, UK.

Her area of research is Black diaspora studies broadly and her research interests are institutional racism, the body, affect, beauty, hybridity, 'race' performativity and Caribbean decolonial studies. Her CRC research project is on antiracism and decolonization in universities.

Talk Information:

White Feminist Supremacy: The Impossibility of Black Feminist Allyship
February 24, 2023 | 9:00 AM

A white feminist colleague who proclaimed herself to be an antiracist ally when she heard that I was leaving a past job to take up another post said, ‘Sorry you are leaving but it opens up opportunities for me’. After thinking about this for the past few years I am still left with unease so I want to unpick what these words mean for me now in terms of the (im)possibility of white feminist allyship.

Sorry you are leaving but it opens up opportunities for me.

These words begin my thinking about white feminist allyship and racist contempt, when we have to keep going no matter how exhausted we feel from the continual assaults, no matter that we think that there is nothing we can say or do. #Black Lives Matter 2020 taught us the necessity to continue, bringing us face to face with the visceral horror of Black death- on- a- virtual- loop, the continuing discovery of the unmarked graves of Indigenous children in Canada, unbridled extractivism, rampant white supremacy, Indigenous Black and People of Colour (IBPOC) un-freedom. The question of anti-Black racism within the contempt of white feminist allyship, of course, leads to larger questions of what could the necessary political formations and relationalities in antiracist decolonial struggle be in academic life as antidotes to performative white allyship and solidarities.