“My Blackness is an invitation to the sensuousness of the pothole, to the hospitality of the crack in the wall.”
Above are the words of Bayo Akomolafe, executive director and chief curator of the Emergence Network and my latest guest on Race Beyond Borders.
Bayo is a philosopher, psychologist and poet known for his unconventional views on global crises, activism and social change.
"My work is about looking again, situating ourselves in a world that is a lot more complicated [than we may assume], and then making just a little bit more space available—spaces of power with the world," he says.
He brings this sensibility to our investigation of the futures of Blackness. Quickly, he troubles any stability one might associate with Blackness by distinguishing between a big "B" Blackness, an "identitarian formulation" that unwittingly reinforces whiteness when it seeks to assert itself, and a small "b" blackness, that deconstructs identity and coloniality, and invites expansiveness.
In his reflections, Bayo invites us in to the cracks in our time, spaces that expose the failures of modern individualism, decenter the human, and hold new possibilities for Blackness.