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Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women's Digital Resistance--Moya Bailey in conversation with Catherine Knight Steele

Event date: 
Friday, May 28, 2021 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm

Charis welcomes Moya Bailey in conversation with Catherine Knight Steele for a celebration of Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women's Digital Resistance. This event is co-hosted by ZAMI NOBLA: The National Organization of Black Lesbians on Aging. This event takes place on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. Register here.

When Moya Bailey first coined the term misogynoir, she defined it as the ways anti-Black and misogynistic representation shape broader ideas about Black women, particularly in visual culture and digital spaces. She had no idea that the term would go viral, touching a cultural nerve and quickly entering into the lexicon. Misogynoir now has its own Wikipedia page and hashtag, and has been featured on Comedy Central's The Daily Show and CNN's Cuomo Prime Time. In Misogynoir Transformed, Bailey delves into her groundbreaking concept, highlighting Black women's digital resistance to anti-Black misogyny on YouTube, Facebook, Tumblr, and other platforms. 

At a time when Black women are depicted as more ugly, deficient, hypersexual, and unhealthy than their non-Black counterparts, Bailey explores how Black women have bravely used social-media platforms to confront misogynoir in a number of courageous--and, most importantly, effective--ways. Focusing on queer and trans Black women, she shows us the importance of carving out digital spaces, where communities are built around queer Black webshows and hashtags like #GirlsLikeUs. 

Bailey shows how Black women actively reimagine the world by engaging in powerful forms of digital resistance at a time when anti-Black misogyny is thriving on social media. A groundbreaking work, Misogynoir Transformed highlights Black women's remarkable efforts to disrupt mainstream narratives, subvert negative stereotypes, and reclaim their lives.

Moya Bailey is Assistant Professor of Africana Studies and the program in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Northeastern University. Her work focuses on marginalized groups’ use of digital media to promote social justice as acts of self-affirmation and health promotion, and she is interested in how race, gender, and sexuality are represented in media and medicine. Bailey currently curates the #transformDH Tumblr initiative in Digital Humanities. She is also the digital alchemist for the Octavia E. Butler Legacy Network. She is an MLK Visiting Scholar at MIT for the 2020–2021 academic year. Her books include her co-edited work #HashtagActivism: Networks of Race and Gender Justice and her single-authored work Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women's Digital Resistance

Catherine Knight Steele is an Assistant Professor of Communication at the University of Maryland - College Park and was the Founding Director of the Andrew W. Mellon funded African American Digital Humanities Initiative (AADHum). She earned her Ph.D. in Communication from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her research focuses on race, gender, and media with a specific focus on African American culture and discourse in traditional and new media. She examines representations of marginalized communities in the media and how groups resist oppression and utilize online technology to create spaces of community. Dr. Steele's research on the Black blogosphere, digital discourses of resistance, and digital Black feminism has been published in such journals as Social Media + Society, Information, Communication and Society, and Television and New Media. Dr. Steele argues that online practices of joy, gossip, signifying, and play are integral to understanding Black discursive practices online. Her forthcoming book with NYU Press, Digital Black Feminism examines the relationship between Black feminism and technology as a centuries-long gendered and racial project in the U.S. with implications on the future of both Black feminist rhetoric and as potentially the most generative way to understand the possibilities and constraints of digital technology.

This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices.

We will be archiving this event and adding closed captioning as soon as possible after airing so that it will be accessible to deaf and HOH people. If you have other accessibility needs or if you are someone who has skills in making digital events more accessible please don't hesitate to reach out to We are actively learning the best practices for this technology and we welcome your feedback as we begin this new way of connecting across distances.

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Event address: 
Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women's Digital Resistance (Intersections #18) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781479865109
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: New York University Press - May 25th, 2021

Where racism and sexism meet--an understanding of anti-Black misogyny

#HashtagActivism: Networks of Race and Gender Justice Cover Image
ISBN: 9780262043373
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: The MIT Press - March 10th, 2020

How marginalized groups use Twitter to advance counter-narratives, preempt political spin, and build diverse networks of dissent.

The power of hashtag activism became clear in 2011, when #IranElection served as an organizing tool for Iranians protesting a disputed election and offered a global audience a front-row seat to a nascent revolution.

Event Summary: 
Charis welcomes Moya Bailey in conversation with Catherine Knight Steele for a celebration of Misogynoir Transformed: Black Women's Digital Resistance. This event is co-hosted by ZAMI NOBLA: The National Organization of Black Lesbians on Aging.