From Seed to Table[t]: Foodie+Tech Culture in an Era of Systemic Racism and Neoliberal Capitalism (Challenges and Possibilities)

 

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In May of 2015 I wrote an article that interrogated the role of Foodie+Tech culture within an era of neoliberal capitalism and a racist food system. A surprisingly high number of you privately emailed me to express enthusiasm and appreciation for me having written this article. In addition, having attended quite a few food+tech (or similar) events in the SF Bay area over the last few years, the assumption during most of these events is that we live in a ‘post-racial’ USAmerican [food] system.

For 2017, the theme for the next interactive web conference will be:

From Seed to Table[t]: Foodie+Tech Culture in an Era of Systemic Racism and Neoliberal Capitalism (Challenges and Possibilities)

Originally, this event was supposed to take place Fall of 2016; I had written a blog post about it about one year ago. However, the Sistah Vegan Project delayed the event in order to do more work and research about this topic. We wanted to make the event as fruitful and innovative as possible.  The new date for the event will be in the Fall of 2017.

Our last conference was the groundbreaking Vegan Praxis of Black Lives Matter in 2015. If you missed it, you can download the conference recordings and powerpoint slides by clicking on the image below:

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There will be more details to come about this upcoming conference. For now, you can get an idea about what the conference will be about by reading my 2015 article: “FROM SEED TO TABLE[T]: CAN FOODIE-TECH STARTUPS CHANGE A NEOLIBERAL, RACIST, AND CAPITALIST [FOOD] SYSTEM?

After reading this article, do you have ideas for topics we should discuss or speakers to invite? Post your thoughts  and questions in the comments section!


Dr. A.Breeze Harper (Credit: Pax Ahimsa Gethen 2016)

Dr. A. Breeze Harper is a senior diversity and inclusion strategist for Critical Diversity Solutions, a seasoned speaker, and author of books and articles related to critical race feminism, intersectional anti-racism, and ethical consumption. As a writer, she is best known as the creator and editor of the groundbreaking anthology Sistah Vegan: Black Female Vegans Speak on Food, Identity, Health and Society (Lantern Books 2010). Dr. Harper has been invited to deliver many keynote addresses and lectures at universities and conferences throughout North America. In 2015, her lecture circuit focused on the analysis of food and whiteness in her book Scars and on “Gs Up Hoes Down:” Black Masculinity, Veganism, and Ethical Consumption (The Remix)which explored how key Black vegan men use hip-hop methods to create “race-conscious” and decolonizing approaches to vegan philosophies. In 2016, she collaborated with Oakland’s FoodFirst’s Executive Director Dr. Eric Holt-Gimenez to write the backgrounder Dismantling Racism in the Food System, which kicked off FoodFirst’s series on systemic racism within the food system

Dr. Harper is the founder of the Sistah Vegan Project which has put on several ground-breaking conferences with emphasis on intersection of racialized consciousness, anti-racism, and ethical consumption (i.e., veganism, animal rights, Fair Trade). Last year she organized the highly successful conference The Vegan Praxis of Black Lives Matter which can be downloaded.

Dr. Harper’s most recently published book, Scars: A Black Lesbian Experience in Rural White New England (Sense Publishers 2014) interrogates how systems of oppression and power impact the life of the only Black teenager living in an all white and working class rural New England town. Her current 2016 lecture circuit focuses on excerpts from her latest book in progress, Recipes for Racial Tension Headaches: A Critical Race Feminist’s Journey Through ‘Post-Racial’ Ethical Foodscape which will be released in 2017, along with the second Sistah Vegan project anthology The Praxis of Justice in an Era of Black Lives MatterIn tandem with these book projects, she is well-known for her talks and workshops about “Uprooting White Fragility in the Ethical Foodscape” and “Intersectional Anti-Racism Activism.”

In the spring of 2016, Dr. Harper was nominated as the Vice Presidential candidate for the Humane Party— the only vegan political party in the USA with focus on human and non-human animals.

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Vegan Community: Have you ever participated in a dismantling racism in the food system workshop?

Vegan Community: Have you ever participated in a dismantling racism in the food system workshop?
Have you encountered one specifically geared towards vegan activism? If not, this web conference is the perfect venue for you.

Intersectional Critical Food, Health, and Race Studies Web Conference: “Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”

Date: September 14, 2013

Click on Book to purchase a signed copy

Wow, registration for the Sistah Vegan Web Conference has TAKEN OFF in the last three days. It looks like it is filling up faster than I predicted; I guess most people wait about a week before registering for these events, which answers my question from the other week about why registration seemed rather low. Make sure you register soon, as spaces are limited! I wanted share a couple of emails with you that some registrants sent me:

Dr. Harper, thank you for creating a critical space to talk about topics that I usually can’t bring up in mostly white vegan spaces without sounding like I’m playing some race card. Also, as someone who finds afrocentric health books helpful for understanding how to treat my diabetes, and as a Black lesbian in her mid 50s, I also find their ‘well, aren’t all true Black people straight?’ assumptions a huge turn-off… I’m glad the Sistah Vegan conference will let me feel safe in both hearing about, and discussing issues of race and homophobia across vegan communities in the USA. -Tina

I just registered for your conference. Thank you so much . I’ve never been interested in this stuff that much. But you know what? I have been following your blog for the past few months and was inspired to learn that there are people out there who know that food and health really are a different thing for us people of color, and that furthermore we need an inviting space to talk about it.  – Rita

This conference is the next needed step in addressing  intersections of food, health, and animal liberation that always seems to be lacking in the USA mainstream alternative health, veggie, and animal liberation events.  It’s about time that we acknowledge that people of color do not need to be ‘reached out’ to by us white vegans… It is us who need to accept that our own  views of justice, morality, and health are often very narrow and Eurocentric. I’ve just begun to study critical race studies and I hope this conference will help me see this more clearly and apply it to my undergraduate food justice work. – J.T.

 Please help spread the word about this Sistah Vegan Project hosted web conference. And you can click here to get the one page pdf flyer to post it somewhere! Thanks.

Critical Food & Health Studies Web Conference:

“Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”

Date: September 14, 2013

Time: 10:00am-6:00pm PST (USA)

Location: Online Web Conference Through Anymeeting.com

SPEAKER LINE-UP AND SCHEDULE

10:00 AM: “Introduction: How Veganism is a Critical Entry Point to Discuss Social, Animal, and Environmental Justice Issues for Black Women and Allies.” Dr. A. Breeze Harper, University of California-Davis.

10:15 AM: “How Whiteness and Patriarchy Hurt Animals.” Anastasia Yarbrough, Inner Activism Services.

10:50 AM: “PETA and the Trope of ‘Activism’: Naturalizing Postfeminism and Postrace Attitudes through Sexualized Bodied Protests.” Aphrodite Kocięda, University of South Florida

11:25 AM: “An Embodied Perspective on Redefining Healthy in a Cultural Context and Examining the Role of Sizeism in the Black Vegan Woman Paradigm.” Nicola Norman.

12:25 PM: “Cosmetic Marginalization: Status, Access and Vegan Beauty Lessons from our Foremothers.” Pilar Harris, Pilar in Motion.

1:00 PM: Open Discussion: “‘Why I Relinquished the Gospel Bird and Became a Vegan’: Girls and Women of African Descent Share Their Reasons for Choosing Veganism.”

1:50 PM: “Midwifery, Medicine and Baby Food Politics: Underground Feminisms and Indigenous Plant-based Foodways and Nutrition.” Claudia Serrato, University of Washington.

2:30 PM: “Constructing a Resource Beyond Parenting as a Black Vegan: Discussing Geography and Theology and Their Contradictions Within.” Candace M. Laughinghouse, Regent University.

3:05 PM: Panel Discussion: “Yoga for the Stress Free Soul Sista And Radical Self-Care Teaching: Exploring Privilege in Yoga & Veganism for Girls of Color” w/ Sari Leigh & Kayla Bitten

4:20 PM: Open Discussion: Reflections on the Sistah Vegan Anthology.

5:00 PM: “Is Black Decolonization Possible in a Moral Economy of Neoliberal Whiteness? How USA Black Vegan Liberation Rhetoric Often Perpetuates Tenets of Colonial Whiteness.” Dr. A. Breeze Harper, University of California Davis.

Conference Information, Registration Details, and Complete Speaker Abstracts: http://www.sistahveganconference.com

 

Contact Organizer Information:

Dr. A. Breeze Harper

breezeharper@gmail.com

510-564-7870

Critical Food & Health Studies Web Conference: “Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”

Please help spread the word about this Sistah Vegan Project hosted web conference. And you can click here to get the one page pdf flyer to post it somewhere! Thanks.

Critical Food & Health Studies Web Conference:

“Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”

 

Date: September 14, 2013

Time: 10:00am-6:00pm PST (USA)

Location: Online Web Conference Through Anymeeting.com

SPEAKER LINE-UP AND SCHEDULE

 

10:00 AM: “Introduction: How Veganism is a Critical Entry Point to Discuss Social, Animal, and Environmental Justice Issues for Black Women and Allies.” Dr. A. Breeze Harper, University of California-Davis.

10:15 AM: “How Whiteness and Patriarchy Hurt Animals.” Anastasia Yarbrough, Inner Activism Services.

10:50 AM: “PETA and the Trope of ‘Activism’: Naturalizing Postfeminism and Postrace Attitudes through Sexualized Bodied Protests.” Aphrodite Kocięda, University of South Florida

11:25 AM: “An Embodied Perspective on Redefining Healthy in a Cultural Context and Examining the Role of Sizeism in the Black Vegan Woman Paradigm.” Nicola Norman.

12:25 PM: “Cosmetic Marginalization: Status, Access and Vegan Beauty Lessons from our Foremothers.” Pilar Harris, Pilar in Motion.

1:00 PM: Open Discussion: “‘Why I Relinquished the Gospel Bird and Became a Vegan’: Girls and Women of African Descent Share Their Reasons for Choosing Veganism.”

1:50 PM: “Midwifery, Medicine and Baby Food Politics: Underground Feminisms and Indigenous Plant-based Foodways and Nutrition.” Claudia Serrato, University of Washington.

2:30 PM: “Constructing a Resource Beyond Parenting as a Black Vegan: Discussing Geography and Theology and Their Contradictions Within.” Candace M. Laughinghouse, Regent University.

3:05 PM: Panel Discussion: “Yoga for the Stress Free Soul Sista And Radical Self-Care Teaching: Exploring Privilege in Yoga & Veganism for Girls of Color” w/ Sari Leigh & Kayla Bitten

4:20 PM: Open Discussion: Reflections on the Sistah Vegan Anthology.

5:00 PM: “Is Black Decolonization Possible in a Moral Economy of Neoliberal Whiteness? How USA Black Vegan Liberation Rhetoric Often Perpetuates Tenets of Colonial Whiteness.” Dr. A. Breeze Harper, University of California Davis.

 

Conference Information, Registration Details, and Complete Speaker Abstracts: http://www.sistahveganconference.com

 

Contact Organizer Information:

Dr. A. Breeze Harper

breezeharper@gmail.com

510-564-7870

Critical Whiteness Studies Does Not Mean Being Anti-white against individual white people

The other day, someone shared my post about the upcoming Sistah Vegan Conference. The post made it to a Facebook group page that promoted intersections of feminism and vegan philosophy.

After viewing my video about the upcoming Sistah Vegan conference, a ‘white’ immigrant identified woman had an interesting response to my use of the word “Critical whiteness” for the Sistah Vegan conference. She shared that she won’t be supporting a vegan conference that singles out a particular race of people.

Interesting interpretation. Especially since the whole conference is critical race, critical whiteness, critical animal studies, critical feminist oriented, with my keynote at the end talking about a Black feminist critique of Afrocentric veganism, such as its [un]conscious promotion of heterosexism and transphobia.

So, I decided to create this video to once again try to clarify my work as a social science researcher. Please watch the video BEFORE commenting.

The Sistah Vegan web conference is called “Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies.” It is Sept 14, 2013. 10am-6pm PST. You can go here for more information: http://www.sistahveganconference.com


Like what the Sistah Vegan Project Does? Donate and/or Find out about our upcoming projects and books.
Also, download the Vegan Praxis of Black Lives Matters spring 2015 conference recordings and learn about our 2016 conference, ” The Role of Foodie+Tech Culture in an Era of Systemic Racism and Neoliberal Capitalism (Challenges and Possibilities).

gofundme

What could make these babies so happy?

What could make my 2 and this 4 year olds so happy!?

Ice cream. Vegan ice cream from Curbside Creamery in Oakland, California. They had a little stand up in Temescal this summer. I became excited to see that they offered non-soy based vegan ice cream. It is based on nuts and it was fantastic! They open up this fall in Oakland. Check it out here: Curbside Creamery

In other news, Sistah Vegan is gearing up for our first annual critical race feminist oriented web conference, “Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”. It is September 14, 2013. Go here for more details and registration information. 

Web Conference: “Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies.”

 

 Click on Book to purchase a signed copy

1st Annual Sistah Vegan Web Conference

“Embodied and Critical Perspectives on Veganism by Black Women and Allies”

Date: September 14, 2013

Time: 10:00am-6:00pm PST (USA)

Location: Web Conference Using Anymeeting.com. This means the location is on the Internet, accessible by computer or telephone. 

Please go here to the official Sistah Vegan Conference Page to See Speaker Line-up and to Register