Sam Tecle is an Assistant Professor in the department of Sociology at Ryerson University. His work focuses on Black and Diaspora Studies, Urban Studies, and Sociology of Education. His forthcoming work: Black Grammars: On Difference and Belonging focuses on the experiences and perspectives relating to blackness and Black identification of East African Diasporas across the UK, Canada and the US. He has held graduate student fellowships at both Harvard (2016) and Northwestern University (2014) in their respective African & African American Studies Departments. A former middle school teacher, Sam is a community advocate who has worked on a number of community projects concerned with the wellbeing, social lives, schooling experiences and educational outcomes of Black students.
Title: “Map at 20: Belonging.”
Abstract: Belonging’ is an often utilized term in how we make sense of social life. It is also a concept that is often mobilized in the social sciences as well as by Blakc and other marginalized peoples calls for change and justice in institutions steeped and founded in whiteness. Though rarely overtly defined, ‘belonging’ whether to community, collective, organization, institution or nation is an important if not vexing concept. In this short paper, I provide reflections on what Map teaches us about how we might problematize ‘belonging’ and what futurity it holds as a concept (for thought) and practice (for being) for Black people in a world not of (or for) their making.