Birth Matters: Research Justice and Black Life

In the Interests of Justice: Bringing Theory into Practice

Lecture by Dr. Chinyere Oparah

African American women are 3 to 4 times as likely as white women to die of childbirth related causes, our infants are twice as likely not to survive their first year. "Birthing while black" is a site of struggle, which for too many leads to disabling, trauma or even death. Birth matters in conversations about black life and death, yet the reproductive autonomy of black women and trans/gender nonconforming pregnant and birthing individuals has only recently gained recognition with the #BlackLivesMatter and #SayHerName movements. Research justice in a strategic framework within which those directly affected by structural violence and discrimination use research tools in order to achieve self determinion and lasting social change. Using a research justice approach, Oparah worked alongside members of Oakland-based collective Black Women Birthing Justice to document black women's experiences of childbirth, and to publish an antholoy of critical essays and activist and personal testimonials on black bodies and birth justice. In this talk, she explores the role of activist scholars in the movement to #LiberateBlackBirth. 

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016 - 1:30pm to 3:30pm

YRL Presentation Room