The Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History hosted a virtual writers' discussion series event on Oct. 12 with Terza A. Silva Lima-Neves — a Cabo Verdeanwoman, author, activist and professor at Johnson C. Smith University.
Lima-Neves is the principal editor of the book “Cabo Verdean Women Writing Remembrance, Resistance, and Revolution: Kriolas Poderozas,” in which she tells the stories of 21 Cabo Verdean women born in various places around the world. She spoke about the book during the discussion.
Kriolas is a term specifically referring to Cabo Verdean women, Lima-Neves said. She said she was careful to define this and other relevant terms at the forefront of her presentation.
Lima-Neves also defined Black feminism as the preoccupation with true liberation for all Black people. She then moved into the details of her book, naming all the authors and diving into the inspiration for her writing.
Lima-Neves said that the book was inspired by the Poderoza Conference, an international space dedicated to discussions on the experiences of Cabo Verdean women. Lima-Neves is a co-founder of the conference.
She said it is important for Cabo Verdean women to tell their own stories.
“I feel that it’s my duty as a Cabo Verdean scholar, as a Cabo Verdean citizen and proud woman to tell the different stories and to amplify the voices of those who do tell the stories from their perspectives,” Lima-Neves said.
When asked to participate in the book talk, Lima-Neves said that she was thrilled for her work to be associated with The Stone Center, crediting them for their work in the field of African-American diaspora and African cultural studies.
“For my work and my book to be affiliated with The Stone Center is a great honor and privilege,” she said.
Vice Provost for Academic and Community Engagement Joseph Jordan, who served as the director of the Stone Center from 2001 to this year, said discussions like Lima-Neves' book talk are important for authors to get their ideas out.
“These discussions are an opportunity for scholars, researchers, like Professor Lima-Neves, to share with the public," Jordan said.
According to Lima-Neves, the book has a little something for everyone and appeals to all different audiences. It covers a multitude of topics including migration and diaspora, community race, sexuality, gender and tradition.
Lima-Neves said the book aims to empower future generations of Cabo Verdean women to tell their stories and embrace their identity as Black women to their full extent. Adding Cabo Verdean women to the larger canon of work on Black diasporic women is important, Lima-Neves said, and is something that she strives to do in all her work.
Junior history major Matthew Weaver, who attended the discussion, said that he heard about the book talk through an email. Weaver said that after reading about it, the event piqued his interest.
“I like hearing about stories that we may not have heard about in school," he said. "I try to use all the University’s options for furthering my education.”
Lima-Neves said there is value in opening academic spaces to stories like hers and the authors included in "Cabo Verdean Women Writing Remembrance, Resistance, and Revolution: Kriolas Poderozas."
“These forums are so important to our understanding of each other as human beings and our desire to be more inclusive and diverse in the academic spaces and education in general,” she said.
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