Scream my name like a protest”: R&B Music as BlackFem Technology of Humanity in the Age of #blacklivesmatter
by Dr. Alexander Ghedi Weheliye, Professor
Department of African American Studies, Northwestern University
Facilitated by: Dr. Ahmed Ilmi, Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellow
Social Justice Education,
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
About The Speaker
Alexander Ghedi Weheliye is professor of African American Studies at Northwestern University where he teaches black literature and culture, critical theory, social technologies, and popular culture. He is the author of Phonographies: Grooves in Sonic Afro-Modernity (2005) and Habeas Viscus: Racializing Assemblages, Biopolitics, and Black Feminist Theories of the Human (2014). Currently, he is working on two projects. The first, Feenin: R&B’s Technologies of Humanity, offers a critical history of the intimate relationship between R&B music and technology since the late 1970s. The second, Black Life/SchwarzSein, situates Blackness as an ungendered ontology of unbelonging.


Archivist, Curator and Founder Martha Diaz sits down to reflect on her role as founder of the Hip-Hop Education Centre, as a Visionary Hip-Hop Educator and Founder of the H20 International Hip-Hop Film Festival.

November 14-16, 2019

Hosted by Northside Hip-Hop, The Hip-Hop Education Centre, the Centre for Media, Culture and Education, OISE, University of Toronto Scarborough, Hart House.

Friday, November 15, 2019                                                    

Hart House, 7 Hart House Cir., Toronto, ON

Day two embodies the communal and collaborative spirit of what it means to build. As a gathering of scholars, students and artists we envision and invoke the kind of hip hop community and culture that interrogates pedagogy, education, global relations and builds sustainable communities.

This session will discuss emerging hip hop research inside and outside the academy, and the accompanying ethical, political and social implications. What does hip hop look like in an institution? What are our teaching goals, and how does hip hop inform our pedagogical approaches? How might teaching hip hop in the community influence the inner workings of the University system

Saturday, November 16, 2019

11:00AM Brunch

OISE, Nexus Lounge, 12th Floor, 252 Bloor Street West, (St. George Subway station) Toronto, ON

What does it take to build #hiphoped outside of the formal school system? How can teachers and community culture workers better align? Linking community members, scholars, educators and artists, we explore these important questions through lectures, panel discussions and activities.

Featuring an opening keynote address from Ramon San Vincente, Chelsea Takalo and Brandon Zoras from the team at Rhymes to Re-Education and the STEAMposium

VR experience of Northside Hip Hop’s For the Record—An Idea of the North by Mixit Media

Closing keynote address: The Godfather of Canadian Hip-Hop, Maestro speaks “On Being Built to Last”.

Past Events

Sexual, Racial & (Trans)Gender-based Violence Prevention in Higher Education: Possibilities and Limitations


Conference organized and hosted by the Centre for Media and Culture in Education, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto

November 1-3, 2019

City of Toronto, Ontario, CANADA

Sexual, Racial + (Trans)Gender-Based Violence Prevention in Higher Education Conference Program

 The following Call for Papers might be of interest to Canadian scholars and students exploring dominant narratives in and beyond Hollywood. 

We are pleased to announce professors Andrew Zolides, Basuli Deb, and Alex Symons as the keynote speakers for the 2019 Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies (CMCS) conference in New York City. Best-presented papers will be published in the Journal of Applied Journalism and Media Studies@IntellectBooks. Discounted subscription options are below. Personal stories are welcome.

Extended abstract deadlineMarch 18. 2019

NYC 2019 CMCS 8th International Conference
Bridging Gaps: Re-Fashioning Stories for Celebrity Counterpublics

Terrace Club at Club Quarters
New York City, USA
Friday, August 30 – Sunday, September 1


Keynote Speakers:

Dr Andrew Zolides
Communication and Media, Xavier University, USA

Dr Basuli Deb
English and Gender Studies, Rutgers University and CUNY, USA

Dr Alex Symons
Fashion Media, LIMS College, USA


Call for Papers: 
In the recent past, there has been an increased interest in exploring intersections of life writing and studies of celebrity culture. Storytelling is central to effective branding in fame. Furthermore, the use of biographical elements has been recognized as a rhetorical device in writing op-eds, personal essays, and public speaking that often raise awareness on critical issues in popular media. Biography, as Lola Romanucci-Ross points out, is mainly a useful symbolic tool for reflecting, rotating and reversing real-life situations. Like biography, autobiography, memoirs, and testimonials play crucial roles in mapping social facts.

The impacts of glamorous forms of storytelling in scandals, gossip, and rumor become so crucial that they are often studied as sociological data, regardless of whether they enable actual social change. For pop culture enthusiasts and social observers, celebrities may or may not be actual role models in telling meaningful stories and constructing subjectivity. Yet, fans and students often invest affective and intellectual labor when it comes to accepting, negotiating or contesting what appears to be significant in understandings of popular figures. Celebrity scholars are equally familiar with the complexities of engaging with and researching “glossy topics”. As Sean Redmond (2014) has shown, acknowledging one’s own celebrity attachments can produce innovative ways of (re)writing fame. Conversely, these first-person accounts may also contribute to the 

celebritisation of individual academics. What is the critical and pedagogical potential of personal takes on fame within the field of celebrity studies?

Celebrity narratives are perceived to have real power whether or not celebrities are “important” people in the academic or moral sense. Drawing on current affairs, celebrity politicians have used personal claims and outrageous stories to push political agendas in divisive ways. Many other famous personas use extravagant fashion as expressions of their luxurious lives and build persona brands at the cost of ethics. For Elizabeth Wissinger, the “glamour labor” involved in self-fashioning, surveillance, and branding is often an inevitable and unfortunate outcome in the production of consumer values and desirable bodies in fashion industries. Public personas still self-fashion themselves and promote their brand by extending text(ures) of language that sells to consumer tastes. However, the challenge remains to sell the values of social justice. Can public intellectuals learn narrative strategies from celebrity storytelling and fill this gap

What appears to be a shared reason behind the success of most popular narratives, verbal (including oral) and non-verbal, is a persuasive ‘strategy’ to effectively tell life stories. If studying celebrity biographies / autobiographies, best-selling memoirs, and other popular forms of life-writings and self-expressions carry cultural worth, then biographical elements of rising and celebrated public intellectuals, academics, critics, and activists are equally important to consider in disciplinary and interdisciplinary practices and understanding of fame. For instance, real-life first-hand accounts, such as testimonies and visual evidence, together with literary/artistic representations of gendered oppression provide meaning for progressive thinking and practice. Anecdotal accounts of famous sports personalities, actors, best-selling authors, and top models among other public figures are often useful rhetorical tools that help us to understand popular culture better. With this in mind, we need to extend popular storytelling beyond celebrity culture andpersona branding, and use it to empower social change in academia, politics, and other spheres.

The Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies (CMCS) Bridging Gaps conference series, with the support of Intellect Books, uses a reflective practice paradigm and asks an urgent question: Can we learn popular strategies and re-fashion celebrity stories into tools for public intellectualism and social transformation, in addition to studying them? What enables or disables the public to tell personal stories in studies and practices of celebrity culture? Can different forms of storytelling from the lives of rising and celebrated academics, public intellectuals, critics, and activists enable urgent social change? The conference problematizes what it means to be a popular “storyteller” and invites all academics, journalists, publicists, activists and models and guests to attend, collaborate and publish valuable and purposeful work around this key question and related topics in our conference.

The format of the conference aims at being open and inclusive of interdisciplinary academic scholars and practitioners involved in all areas of celebrity culture, fandom, fashion, and journalism.  The conference combines paper presentations, workshop panels, roundtables, slideshows, and interviews that aim to bridge gaps in celebrity activism, persona branding, and fashion education. Working papers, media productions, and personal stories will be considered for the conference.

Extended versions of selected best papers will be published in a special issue of the Journal of Applied Journalism and Media Studies (Intellect Books)


Registration includes: Your printed package for the complete conference, professional development workshop, access to reception, all-day coffee, complimentary evening drink, consideration for publication, and the CMCS $100 best paper and $100 best screen awards.


Abstract Submission Guidelines:
•    250-word abstract or workshop / roundtable / book talk proposal
•    Include a title, your name, e-mail address, and affiliation if applicable
•    Submit abstract at
      Extended deadline 
March 18, 2019
•    Notification of acceptance:
 March 31, 2019
•    Early bird deadline for hotel & conference registration:
 April 30, 2019
•    Conference reception & presentations: 
Friday, August 30 – Sunday, September 1, 2019

Celebrity Chat video Submissions Guidelines:
•    Video length should be 10-20 minutes
•    Include a title, your name, e-mail address, and affiliation if applicable
•    Submit to Celebrity Chat producer Jackie Raphael at the email 
•    Conference reception and presentations: 
August 30 –September 1, 2019
Topics include but are not limited to:

·  Celebrity

·  Fandom

·  Audience

·  Persona

·  Life Writings

·  Oral storytelling

·  Fiction

·  Fashion

·  Photography

·  Performance

·  Publicity

·  News

·  Interviews

·  Social Media

·  Film and video

·  Theory and Methods

·  Research Agenda

·  Business Models

·  Ethics and Morality

·  Human, Animal and Environmental Ethics

·  Media Literacy

·  Education and Advocacy

·  International Relations

·  Community Building and Partnerships


Conference ChairDr Samita Nandy
Conference CommitteeDr Jackie Raphael, Kiera Obbard, Sabrina Moro, and Diana Miller
Conference URL
Conference Twitter @celeb_studies #CMCS19

Special Acknowledgements:

Intellect Books @IntellectBooks

Half Price for Journal Subscription 

Print only*: £22 / $39 USD 
(Full price: £44 / $78 USD)

Please contact Turpin Distribution, quoting ‘HALF PRICE PC’:

·  +44 (0) 1767 604 951 (UK & ROW)

·  +1 860 350 0041 (US & Canada


Conference Sponsors: 
Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies
Centre for Ecological, Social & Informatics Cognitive Research


CMCE and the OISE Library presents Samar Hejazi ‘Maw6tini’
2018-09-01 8:00am – 2018-11-08 5:00pm

Location: OISE, 252 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1V6

The Centre for Media and Culture in Education at OISE and the OISE Library are very pleased to welcome artist Samar Hejazi. As a trilingual woman of Palestinian descent born in the United States and raised in diverse communities in the Middle East and Canada, Samar uses her art to question ideas surrounding identity.

The installation is intended to simulate the internal experience of the Arab diaspora in the west through the appropriation of the English language. Maw6ini includes a series of 32 embroidered “sheets” made entirely of thread, as well as soundscapes, and a video of the anthem “Mawtini,” an Arabic song by Palestinian poet Ibrahim Touqan.

The Arabic lyrics of the anthem are phonetically represented in English letters and symbols on the embroidered sheets, dissolvable fabric that appears to float in the middle of the gallery space. Included in the installation is a lexicon that explains the symbols and sounds, creating an exploratory quest for the viewer as they attempt to decipher this meaning. The video and sound piece involve an interaction between the artist and her grandmother, as the grandmother attempts to explain the song in her broken English to her granddaughter who attempts to understand it in her broken Arabic.

Maw6ini is on display on the ground floor of the OISE library from Sept 1- Nov 8, 2018.

Closing Reception- MAw6ini (Homeland) | Samar Hejazi, Bänoo Zan, Eve Haque
2018-10-31 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Location: OISE, 252 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1V6

Please join us for the closing reception of Samar Hejazi’s installation MAw6ini (Homeland) at the OISE Library. Samar will be joined by poet Bänoo Zan and Dr. Eve Haque to engage in conversations around identity, diaspora, language and home. The event is presented by the Centre for Media and Culture in Education at OISE.

 Please note that the space is wheel-chair accessible and that gender neutral washrooms are available in OISE. Light refreshments will be served.