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(Hybrid) The International Library: Brown Diaspora with Moon Charania

Wed April 3 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30


Join us for an evening of conversation about diasporic storytelling, domestic memory, and maternal experience.

Moon Charania is a writer and cultural scholar whose work stands at the intersectionality of race, gender, and diasporic studies. In her new book, Archive of Tongues (2023), Charania weaves together the personal and the theoretical, using her own mother’s life as a prism to refract upon the broader experiences of brown women around the world. Her work examines histories of migration, dispossession, violence, and sexuality, offering a fresh perspective on rhythms of everyday life for marginalized women. At its heart, Archive of Tongues not only uncovers the hidden archives of brown mothers’ lives, but also invites us to reconsider the foundational assumptions of feminist, queer, and postcolonial studies.

Charania will appear in conversation with Sandeep Bakshi, Associate Professor of Decolonial, Postcolonial and Queer Studies at University Paris Cité.

About the speakers:

Moon Charania is an Associate Professor of International Studies and Comparative Women’s Studies at Spelman College. Dr. Charania is a feminist theorist whose research explores the psychosocial dimensions of the lives of women of color – she investigates social, political, and intimate issues in relation to violence and care, gender and sexuality, racism, and the diasporic experience. She is the author of two books, Archive of Tongues: An Intimate History of Brownness (Duke University Press, 2023) and Will the Real Pakistani Woman Please Stand Up: Empire, Visual Culture, and the Brown Female Body (McFarland 2015). Charania is also the recipient of a number of awards and fellowships, including the Anschutz Distinguished Fellow in American Studies at Princeton University (2024), a Fulbright Specialist Appointee (2023), Emory University Psychoanalytic Society (2023), a Fellow at Emory University James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference (2018). She is beginning a new book project on brownness and femicide.

Sandeep Bakshi researches on transnational queer and decolonial enunciation of knowledges. He received his PhD from the School of English, University of Leicester, UK, and is currently employed as an Associate Professor of Decolonial, Postcolonial and Queer Studies at University Paris Cité. He coordinates two research seminars, “Peripheral Knowledges” and “Empires, Souths, Sexualities,” and leads the Pôle Société Civile of the Cité du Genre Institute, Université Paris Cité. Co-editor of Decolonizing Sexualities: Transnational Perspectives, Critical Interventions (Oxford: Counterpress, 2016), ‘Decolonial Trajectories’, special issue of Interventions(2020), and Qu’est-ce que l’Intersectionnalité? Dominations plurielles : sexe, classe et race (2021), he has published on queer and race problematics in postcolonial literatures and cultures. He is the co-founder and serves on the board of the Decolonizing Sexualities Network (https://decolonizingsexualities.org).

About the International Library series: 

This conversation is part of the International Library, a new series launched in collaboration with the Center for Fiction in Brooklyn and the Center for the Art of Translation in San Francisco which will offer conversations across time, place, and language. 

The International Library celebrates the live diffusion of in-person conversations in the hope of connecting new audiences across land and sea for a collective, intercultural experience. These conversations will broach deeper questions about writing and translation as we learn to think critically about how stories are told, investigating the points of view, the timing of the translations, and the intended or assumed audiences as well as inspiration, philosophy, and craft.

Learn more:

While she was completing the research and writing of her own book on brown maternal diaspora, Moon Charania wrote a review José Esteban Muñoz’s book The Sense of Brown. The review introduces some of the key themes and concepts of Charania’s work (including diasporic experience, brownness, and maternity). Read the review here.

Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (the speakers will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

This conversation will be livestreamed at the Center for the Art of Translation and the Center for Fiction as part of the International Library series.

Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used by the American Library in Paris for marketing, promotional, pedagogical, or other purposes.

Evenings with an Author are free and open to the public (with a 10€ suggested donation)
thanks to the generous support of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten of GRoW @ Annenberg.


Wed April 3
19 h 30 min - 20 h 30 min
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(Hybrid) The International Library: Brown Diaspora with Moon Charania
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