Hosted by Multicultural Affairs, this week-long series honors the life, work, and teachings of Audre Lorde LS'60 and takes place annually during her birthday week. Programs and activities invite students to reflect on her writings and words as well as to engage with and apply her philosophies as actualized ways of being in community with each other.
Year round, students can learn more about Audre Lorde by visiting the Audre Lorde Community Space in 505 Lerner, participating in Multicultural Affairs programs and dialogues inspired by her texts, and take courses that bring her work into the classroom.
Audre Lorde Week 2023: February 13-18
Community Reflections & Social Media Campaign
Multicultural Affairs invites the Columbia College and Columbia Engineering community to reflect on Lorde's words:
Without community there is no liberation, only the most vulnerable and temporary armistice between an individual and her oppression. But community must not mean a shedding of our differences, nor the pathetic pretense that these differences do not exist. [Excerpt from ”The Master's Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master's House”]
Each day during Audre Lorde Week, Multicultural Affairs will highlight a student response through a social media campaign reflecting on these questions: What does “community” mean to you at Columbia? How do you envision “liberation” for yourself or for your community at Columbia?
Monday, February 13: Love + Community
6:00–7:30 p.m. | Audre Lorde Community Space, 505 Lerner
"I want to live the rest of my life, however long or short, with as much sweetness as I can decently manage, loving all the people I love, and doing as much as I can of the work I still have to do." -Audre Lorde LS'60
This workshop will explore Audre Lorde's work on love and community. Participants will engage in crafting that will allow messages of radical love to be shared with the campus community.
Wednesday, February 15: Audre Lorde’s Legacies in Place
Audre Lorde’s legacies in place: Embodying erotic potentials of placemaking through Black queer Riis Beach
7:00–8:30 p.m. | Intercultural Resource Center, 552 W 114th Street | Register
Guided by Black geographic politics of embodiment and sense of place, this workshop draws on contemporary feelings of Black queer possibility at Riis Beach, Audre Lorde’s embodiment of Riis’s “sun and sand” in Zami, and searches for traces of Riis’s sands sticking to other pages of her writing. We will situate Riis within the material history of Black queer knowledge production, collectively embody “begin[ning] to live from within outward” (“Uses of the Erotic”), and connect to contemporary organizing efforts.
Facilitated by Jah Elyse Sayers, a Black, mixed-race, and trans masculine researcher, organizer, and artist who is studying the way that queer and trans people make and maintain their place in neighborhoods and public areas.
Friday, February 17: Audre Lorde's Birthday Party and Reflection
12:00–1:30 p.m. | Audre Lorde Community Space, 505 Lerner
Honoring Audre Lorde's birthday, which is on February 18, FLI@Columbia invites you to celebrate her life and legacy while engaging in reflective activities.
Saturday, February 18: Audre Lorde's Birthday/ Tour de Bookstore (NYC Outings)
12:00–4:00 p.m. | Register for: Washington Heights Tour or Downtown Tour
Join Multicultural Affairs for one of two staff-guided tours of local bookstores that center social justice education, liberatory texts, and underrepresented stories. One tours Lower Manhattan, and one tours Washington Heights. Learn about their history and how they impact their local communities.
Metrocards will be provided. Limited space; open to Columbia College and Columbia Engineering undergraduate students.