The Library Company of Philadelphia
Thursday, June 16, 2022 5:30 pm EDT
Fireside Chat with Xine Yao
Disaffected: The Cultural Politics of Unfeeling in Nineteenth-Century America
June 16th, 2022, 5:30 p.m. ET
Virtual & Free
In Disaffected, Xine Yao explores the racial and sexual politics of unfeeling—affects that are not recognized as feeling—as a means of survival and refusal in nineteenth-century America. She positions unfeeling beyond sentimentalism’s paradigm of universal feeling. Yao traces how works by Herman Melville, Martin R. Delany, Elizabeth Stuart Phelps, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, and Sui Sin Far engaged major sociopolitical issues in ways that resisted the weaponization of white sentimentalism against the lives of people of color. In this presentation, Yao will focus on Chapter 4 “Objective Passionlessness : Black Women Doctors and Dispassionate Strategies of Uplifting Love,” which was informed by her time as a fellow and features archival material from the Library Company and Drexel.