The Trans Sounds Of Black Freedom
Dates/Times: February 16 (1-6pm) and February 17 (9am-5pm)
Location: In Person – Union Theological Seminary
Instructor: Michael Roberson
Registration Deadline: February 2, 2024
This course will explore the history of the House | Ballroom community as a Black Trans-Womanist theological discourse, a freedom movement, and its spiritual formation responses to race, class, sexuality, and gender oppression. It will further examine the community’s ability to use the art of performance as a hermeneutics of the body, and situate its history in mobilizing as a resistance to these oppressions and place it in conversation with other historical struggles
Michael Roberson is a public health practitioner, advocate, activist, artist, curator, and leader within the LGBTQ community. He is the co-creator of the nation’s only Black Gay Research group and National Black Gay Men’s Advocacy Coalition, as well as an Adjunct Professor at The New School University/Lang College NYC, and Union Theological Seminary NYC. He is an international art and politics consultant and a member of the international sound art collective entitled “Ultra-red.” Michael scholar in residence for the Center for Race, Religion, and Economic Democracy, as well as recent TED Media Resident, where he performed a global TED talk about the underground Black/Latinx House/ball ballroom community, entitled “The enduring legacy of ballroom” (https://www.ted.com/talks/michael_roberson_the_enduring_legacy_of_ballroom) For Black History Month 2021, Michael co-authored an article in Time Magazine titled “Why Voguing and the Ballroom Scene Matter Now More than Ever.” (https://time.com/5941822/ballroom-voguing-queer-black-culture-renaissance/) Michael also serves as a cultural consultant for the Pose FX television show. Additionally, he is a public health advisor and community engagement specialist for the NYC COVID-19 contract tracing initiative.