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CSWG Annual Lecture - Jennifer C. Nash and Samantha Pinto - "Rage, Guilt, Shame, Depression, Exhaustion: An Index of Intersectional Feeling"

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Location: Zoom, streamed live online to E0.23 (Social Sciences Building)

You are warmly invited to this year's CSWG Annual Lecture.

"Rage, Guilt, Shame, Depression, Exhaustion: An Index of Intersectional Feeling"


What are, what does it mean, and how does it feel to inhabit the affective scripts of feminism today? We will attempt to chart the routines of feeling that make meaning, purpose, and direction for feminism in uncomfortable, often thwarted ways. In this talk, we look at articulations of rage, guilt, shame, depression, and exhaustion in feminist studies, in order to examine what has become, we’ve argued, feminism’s good object and methodology of this era: intersectionality. In looking at the affectual and material dimensions of the dominant modes of critiquing and curing white feminism-- shame and its sisters, guilt and depression-- we hope to think through the limits and the possibilities of bad objecthood and bad feelings in feminist thought and institutional praxis around its seemingly “good” object of intersectionality and the rage it imagines necessary as a disciplining force for the field and practice of feminism. Paying careful attention to the uses, usefulness, and limits of these registers in the feminist political imagination, we trace intersectional feminist scholarly, art, and media discernments of these affects while also theorizing emergent affects like exhaustion that append to the political formation & futures of feminism. In doing so, we hope both to make transparent the critical desires of feminist politics predicated on the narration of affective lives and to argue for renewed attention to the complex emotional registers of institutional life & feminism’s vulnerable and yet sustaining labor around it. We ultimately hope to consider under-studied modes of political feeling and thinking that Black feminism has highlighted to explore what these seemingly negative or minor affects look like when applied to intersectionality and feminism as objects and methods of study.

Speaker Bios

  • Jennifer C. Nash is the Jean Fox O'Barr Professor and current Chair of Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies at Duke University. She earned her PhD in African American Studies at Harvard University and her JD at Harvard Law School. She is the author of three books: The Black Body in Ecstasy: Reading Race, Reading Pornography (awarded the Alan Bray Memorial Book Prize by the GL/Q Caucus of the Modern Language Association), Black Feminism Reimagined (awarded the Gloria Anzaldúa Book Prize by the National Women's Studies Association), and Birthing Black Mothers (Gloria Anzaldúa Book Prize by the National Women's Studies Association). She is the editor of Gender: Love (Macmillan, 2016), and a co-editor (along with Samantha Pinto) of The Routledge Companion to Intersectionalities (Routledge, 2022). Her research has been supported by the ACLS/Burkhardt Fellowship, Radcliffe Institute, and the Woodrow Wilson Junior Faculty Career Enhancement Fellowship. Her current book project is How We Write Now: Living with Black Feminist Theory (under contract, Duke University Press).
  • Samantha Pinto is Professor of English, Director of the Humanities Institute, core faculty of Women’s and Gender Studies and affiliated faculty of African & African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She is the author of Difficult Diasporas: The Transnational Feminist Aesthetic of the Black Atlantic(NYU Press, 2013) and Infamous Bodies: Early Black Women’s Celebrity and the Afterlives of Rights(Duke UP, 2020). She also co-edited Writing Beyond the State (Palgrave, 2020) with Alexandra S. Moore, and co-edits the Duke University Press book series “Black Feminism on the Edge” with Jennifer C. Nash. She is currently working on a third book on race, internal embodiment, and scientific discourse in African American and African Diaspora culture, as well as a books on feminist ambivalence and on divorce.

This lecture is free and open to all, but advance registration is required.

To register for a place, click HERE.

If you have any questions about the event, please email

In the registration form, you will be able to indicate access requirements and other needs. Do not hesitate to let us know if there are any adjustments we can make to support your full participation.  

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