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RACE.ED podcast - Undersong

RACE.ED’s podcast Undersong – Race and Conversations Other-wise. Hosted by Katucha Bento and Shaira Vadasaria, with guests from across and beyond the RACE.ED network. In listening to the uncomfortable legacies of empire and coloniality that shape the present, this podcast serves as a local and global platform to exchange critical thought around race and the making of worlds otherwise.

To listen to all our latest recordings, visit our SoundCloud, Spotify and Apple Podcasts channels.

Episode 13 (Part 2) -

On Reparations at the University of Edinburgh

In this episode, Shaira Vadasaria is in conversation with three members of Research and Engagement Working Group (REWG)on their work engaging with the University of Edinburgh’s historical links to African enslavement and colonialism as well as their racial legacies today. Together with Dr. Nicki Frith, Zaki El-Salahi, and Dr Tommy Curry, this first of two parts introduces the project, its scope and community engagement efforts. The REWG emerged out of a collaboration between the International Network of Scholars and Activists for Afrikan Reparations (INOSAAR) and the Pan-Afrikan Reparations Coalition in Europe (PARCOE).

Episode 13 (Part 1) -

On Reparations at the University of Edinburgh

In this episode, Shaira Vadasaria is in conversation with three members of Research and Engagement Working Group (REWG)on their work engaging with the University of Edinburgh’s historical links to African enslavement and colonialism as well as their racial legacies today. Together with Dr. Nicki Frith, Zaki El-Salahi, and Dr Tommy Curry, this first of two parts introduces the project, its scope and community engagement efforts. The REWG emerged out of a collaboration between the International Network of Scholars and Activists for Afrikan Reparations (INOSAAR) and the Pan-Afrikan Reparations Coalition in Europe (PARCOE).

Episode 12 - Black Feminism(s)

This episode of Undersong brings you an intimate conversation about the different projects, visions, and rhythms that shape Black Feminism(s). Over tea, Dr Katucha Bento, layla-roxanne hill, and Dr Francesca Sobande share experiences from their activism and art, and the ways in which care and presence inform their relations to Black feminism(s).

Episode 11 (Part 2) - Building A Sudan Collection - Reflections on Sudan in the Archives

In this follow-up episode with the Sudanese Community in Edinburgh, Zaki El-Salahi speaks to Rachel Husker, University of Edinburgh Archivist and Collections Manager, about their visit to the Edinburgh archives, the history of Sudan within the archives, and the colonial politics of cultural heritage ownership.

Episode 11 (Part 1) - Building Community in the Diaspora: The Sudanese Community in Edinburgh

In this first of two parts, Undersong enters into conversation with two members of the Sudanese Community in Edinburgh: Zaki El-Salahi and Ahmed Musa. Together, they reflect on what it takes and what it means to build community in the diaspora and offer insights into their political and artistic interventions in the spaces and events (such as two Sudanese revolutions) that connect Scotland and Sudan.

Episode 10 - The 'D'-Word: Dialogues on Decolonization

This episode of Undersong emerges from a recorded roundtable discussion on the trajectory of the term ‘decolonisation’, as a political and historical term. The four speakers are in conversation about what forms the term takes on today, as they trace its passing through different people, languages, locations, and institutions.

Episode 9 - On Transnational Blackness with Jean Beaman and Adam Elliott-Cooper

In the latest Undersong conversation, Katucha Bento speaks to Adam Elliot-Cooper and Jean Beaman about how Blackness travels and takes on different iterations, in different geopolitical contexts. Together, they consider the histories and contingencies of colonialism, and their effects on racialised violence and Blackness in the present.

Episode 8 - No Police in Schools with Remi Joseph-Salisbury

For the last Undersong episode of 2021, Remi Joseph-Salisbury and Katucha Bento discuss the presence and history of the police and practices of policing in schools. During their conversation, Katucha and Remi touch on how this presence targets children and students of colour disproportionally, the way in which policing ties in with practices of surveillance and the longer history of the prison industrial complex. Together, they think about the potential role of an engaged academic and activist practice in countering such forms of systemic violence.

Episode 7 - Anti-Asian Racism during Covid-19 and Beyond

Recorded in May 2021, when racist attacks against Asian, South- and East Asian minoritised groups spiked in the U.S., U.K, and elsewhere were exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, this conversation brings together Dr. Katucha Bento, Can Tao, Dr. Sarah Liu and Dr. Nini Fang.

Against the background of a violent, racist attack in front of the University of Edinburgh library against a student, this conversation highlights the necessity to recognise the intersecting systems of oppression at work in racism and reflects on political solidarities and action necessary for anti-racist struggles.

Episode 6 - Archival Encounters: A Critical Dialogue with UncoverED's Tanatsei Gambura, Hannah McGurk, Natasha Ruwona, and Lea Gagliardi Ventre

In this episode, Dr. Shaira Vadasaria hosts a conversation with UncoverED, a collaborative student-led and decolonising archival project at the University of Edinburgh. They speak on their history and collective work of placing the University, as an institution and a body of students and staff, within its imperial and colonial legacy, using the University’s own archives. Reflecting on race, positionality and the politics of archival interpretation, they discuss what is at stake for them in opening up the university’s imperial past and racial present?

Episode 5 - A Seat at the Table? Interrogating EDI work with Dr. rashné limki and Dr. Salima Bhimani

In this episode of Undersong – Race and Conversations Other-wise, Dr. Shaira Vadasaria speaks to Dr. rashné limki and Dr. Salima Bhimani about the politics of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion work. What work goes into defining and implementing ‘equality’ on an institutional level? Who is doing the work and what kinds of effects does it have?

Episode 4 - On Antisemitism and Islamophobia - Processes & Histories of Racialisation

In this episode, Nasar Meer speaks to Anya Topolski and Ben Gidley about their efforts to think through antisemitism and islamophobia together. Their work engages with the history of racialisation in Europe, that has shaped current framings of ‘the Jew’ and ‘the Muslim’, and in turn, contemporary forms of antisemitism and islamophobia. All references, authors, and thinkers mentioned in this episode can be found in the podcast notes.

Episode 3 - Dominant Speech: the Category of 'Race' in Sociolinguistics

What does speech, intonation, and accent invoke? How are “culture” and “race” understood and analysed through speech in the world and the field of Sociolinguistics?

In this episode, Shaira Vadasaria speaks to Dr. Lauren Hall-Lew, a sociophonetician at the University of Edinburgh, about her ongoing work on phonetic variation and the differences in speech amongst speakers of different social backgrounds.

Episode 2 - Art, Race, and Black-Scottish History

In the second episode of ‘Undersong – Race and Conversations Other-wise’, Nasar Meer speaks to creative producer Wezi Mhura and arts curator and educator Lisa Williams.

Together, they talk about Lisa and Wezi’s different artistic and historic interventions into the cityscape of Edinburgh, as well as the history and presence of Black-Scottish life.

Episode 1 - Intersectionality across & between the Global South and North

This inaugural episode was created in collaboration with genderED, a cross-University hub for gender and sexualities studies at the University of Edinburgh.

In the first episode of ‘Undersong’, our host Shaira Vadasaria introduces the podcast and speaks to Katucha Bento, Tommy Curry, and Radhika Govinda about the role of intersectionality in their work. Reflecting on what intersectionality’s purchase is within and beyond its point of origin, leads the discussants to critically (re)assess the concept’s legacy and traction.

An Introduction to 'Undersong: Race and Conversations Other-wise'

The introductory episode of ‘Undersong: Race and Conversations Other-wise’ features Shaira Vadasaria (University of Edinburgh) and Katucha Bento (University of Edinburgh), who introduce the podcast and talk about the origin and legacy of the title ‘Undersong’.

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