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Cane, Corn & Gully by Safiya Kamaria Kinshasa
PBS Choice Winter 2022

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Cane, Corn & Gully is a genealogical and autobiographical collection which unites dance and poetry to observe, question and ruminate on what it means to adopt, perform, and pass down the notion of black West Indian femininity. Using labanotation and rhythm to analyse movement from Caribbean dances to movements carried out in everyday rituals, Kinshasa uses these motifs as a form of cartography for the poems.

Cane, Corn & Gully interrogates survival, sexual exploitation, race, gender, and class and invests in a unique discourse on the violence inflicted on the black female body (historically and presently). It explores the meaning of movement in oppressive ideological structures and serves to vindicate the rebellious acts of black women past, present and yet to come.

 

Safiya Kamaria Kinshasa is a British born Barbadian raised poet, dancer and choreographer. Her interdisciplinary art, braids dance and poetry on the page and stage. Safiya is currently a PhD student in Cultural Studies at the University of Leeds. Safiya is an Obsidian Foundation fellow and an Apples & Snakes/Jerwood Arts Poetry in Performance recipient. In 2020 Safiya won the Culture Recordings New Voice in Poetry Prize and was shortlisted for the Out-Spoken Page Poetry Prize and Creative Future Writer’s Award. In 2022 she was awarded third place in The London Magazine Poetry Prize. Safiya is also a national and international spoken word champion.

Her work has appeared in a variety of journals including The Caribbean Writer, Poetry Review, Poetry London, and Wasafiri. Cane, Corn & Gully is Safiya’s first poetry collection.

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