Naila Keleta-Mae, Assistant Professor with Theatre and Performance, has a busy summer ahead of her. Naila has begun researching black girlhood, performances of black girlhood, and what we can learn from it – as opposed to black womanhood, which Naila has traditionally researched. In addition, Naila is also researching black female playwrights in Canada – why so many of them typically self-produce their work, regardless of the fact of how successful they have been in the past and what that says about the Canadian theatre scene in general. Furthermore, Naila has been thinking of black woman in media, particularly in podcasts and how they contribute to feminist theory and feminist work.
Naila integrates all of her work and research with her teachings, in which she calls a pedagogy of justice - a teaching philosophy that centres around justice. She includes course materials from voices and perspectives that are historically, and continue to be unrepresented. In the Fall, Naila will be teaching a course called Black and Free (ARTS XXX) – the many ways in which black people have continued to be free, despite living in North America that’s deep in centuries of anti-racism, and still how black people have been able to be black and free.
Naila considers herself an advocate for social justice – in which social justice is defined by those who have been oppressed, not those who are in positions of power. She believes that her research and artwork, is not a passion - but a vocation.