Tues 29 June 2021
In this final event of the series exploring the making of Decolonising the Arts Curriculum: Perspectives on Higher Education zine1 and its impact, Frantz Fanon’s seminal publication ‘Black Skins, White Masks’ was discussed by panellists Dr Amita Nijhawan, Jheni Arboine, Rotimi Akinsete, Anita Waithira Israel and Dr Gurnam Singh, followed by a Q&A facilitated by Rahul Patel.
Read more about our speakers and watch their sessions below.
DR AMITA NIJHAWAN – AEM Academic Projects Lead
Amita Nijhawan is Academic Projects Lead in the AEM team. She works across UAL colleges on decolonizing pedagogy and academic writing, specifically on enhancing student agency and collaborations between staff and students. Her academic background is in dance studies and she brings explorations of body, self and identity into her work. Amita is a creative writer and creative writing lecturer. Her short stories have been published in Wasafiri, Brand, Sand Berlin, the Berkeley Fiction Review, Aesthetica and others. Her academic writing on performativity and nomadic subjectivity can be found in journals like New Theatre Quarterly and Media/Culture. She has been writer-in-residence at University College London and Plymouth University and she is a British Council mentor for the Write Beyond Borders project.
JHENI ARBOINE – Educational Developer: Academic Enhancement, AEM Lead at Chelsea, Camberwell and Wimbledon (CCW)
Jheni Arboine is a Senior Lecturer and Educational Developer: Academic Enhancement. She has a BA and MA in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art and is currently studying for the MA in Academic Practice. Jheni’s research projects include decolonising research methodologies and research methods through a semiotic lens. She is an abstract geometric painter and concrete poet, and works as the AEM Lead at Chelsea, Camberwell and Wimbledon (CCW), co-leading on the Decolonising Pedagogy and Curriculum strand. Jheni is Chair of the newly formed CCW Anti-racist Action Group, and one of the winners of the UAL/SU Diverse and Inclusive Education Award 2021. Jheni’s contribution to the zines includes ‘Painting, A Decolonising Act’ (zine2, p41).
ROTIMI AKINSETE – Associate Dean of Students (Wellbeing and Inclusion)
Rotimi Akinsete is UAL Associate Dean of Students. He is also creator of community-based projects like Black Men on the Couch, a unique program that aids in self-reflection, discovery and personal growth for black and minority men. Rotimi is currently a member of: Executive Committee member Association of Student Services Managers in Higher Education (AMOSSHE), British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), Psychotherapists and Counsellors for Social Responsibility (PCSR), Black African and Asian Therapists Network (BAATN) – Leadership Team and International Association of Relational Psychoanalytical Psychotherapists (IARPP). Rotimi is author of This Book Can Help: The Men’s Headspace Manual (Michael O’Mara Books, May 2019).
ANITA WAITHIRA ISRAEL – Student and former Education Officer, Arts Student Union (2018-2020)
Anita Waithira Israel is an artist and photographer. She studied Photojournalism at London College of Communication (LCC), and was prompted to run for Education Officer at Arts Students’ Union in 2018 by her own educational experience as a black student. Reducing racism and ensuring equality for black and brown students lay at the core of her work, which included collaborating on the production of zine2. Anita’s contribution to the zines includes ‘Don’t Forget to Celebrate’ (zine2, p2) and ‘Quotes from UAL Students & Staff from the UAL Attainment Gap Report, Arts SU 2019’ (zine2, p27).
DR GURNAM SINGH – Visiting Fellow in Race and Education
Gurnam Singh is a UK based ‘academic activist journalist’. He is Visiting Fellow in Race and Education at the University of Arts, London. He has a background in political activism and professional social work. He has published 4 books and 40 book chapters and peer-review journal articles, delivered numerous conference papers and regularly contributes to podcasts, blogs and media interviews. He has worked as a consultant with several HE bodies, such as the HEFCE, UUK, OfS, HEA, LFHE, Advanced HE, and universities. He presents a weekly live show the Akaal Channel SKY770 called the 1 Show which focusses on social and community related issues. Gurnam’s contributions to the zines include ‘What is Decolonisation Really About?’ (zine1, p1) and ‘Decolonisation and Insurgent Pedagogy’ (zine2, p31).