Arts & Culture
Hanif Abdurraqib: A Little Devil in America
- 11:30 pm
25 March 2021
Online | £7.50
‘Abdurraqib’s writing is an antidote to the arched eyebrow of most music journalism. He writes as if music matters. For him, it is a metaphor for human suffering, for race and class, for what it is to be American’ – Nikesh Shukla
Poet and cultural critic Hanif Abdurraqib introduces his new book of essays on Black performance in this broadcast event.
The kaleidoscopic A Little Devil in America explores a field that ranges from tap dancing to punk, backing singers to TV hopefuls, through sport, sitcoms, fashion and space travel.
Filled with sharp insight, humour and heart, the book is infused with the lyricism and rhythm of the musicians Abdurraqib loves.
It weaves a unique and intimate history of Black performance in which culture, politics and lived experience collide.
This collection of original essays takes readers from mid-century Paris to the moon, via dive bars, Broadway, and a cramped basement bar in Columbus, Ohio.
Abdurraqib reveals the layers of resonance in both Black and white culture offered by moments like Beyoncé’s Superbowl show or a game of spades.
He explores the politics of American empire, and his own personal history of grief and love.
A Little Devil in America is a celebration of Black performance as it has unfolded and endured to shape individual lives and entire cultures.
Hanif Abdurraqib is a New York Times bestselling poet, essayist, and cultural critic from Columbus, Ohio.
This event is pre-recorded exclusively for the Southbank Centre.
This online event runs from the 25th March 2021 to 1st April 2021.
Register to attend here
The book ‘A Little Devil in America’ will be released 30th March 2021. You can pre-order it here
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Header image of Hanif Abdurraqib courtesy of BEOTIS