Crossings: Conversations from the &

Co-convened by Dr. Qui Alexander and Dr. SA Smythe

We are in a political conjuncture mobilised by antiblackness, the legislative erasure of communities of people who are racialised as Black, Indigenous, and/or people of colour, trans, migrant, poor, disabled, and otherwise dispossessed. Crossings: Conversations from the & (“the ampersand” or “the and”) amplifies the voices, thought, and artistic interventions from those most impacted by this nexus of violence. This series will invite conversations engaging different formations of trans (e.g., transgender, transdisciplinary, translingual), as a method of carrying across time, space, land and embodiment. The esteemed speakers will foster conversations that deepen our understandings of race, gender, and other modes of identification.

The Crossings Lecture Series foregrounds trans life and thought and reflects a commitment to principles and practices of abolition, transnationalism, disability justice and other interrelated frameworks. In the spirit of “becoming with” and thinking in relation, these conversations usher in a counter to the “as a” fixed identity formation. Our hope is to nourish communities, practices, social movements, and divergent modes of thought hailed by trans liberation.

The inaugural Crossings Lecture will take place in Winter 2024, co-convened by Dr. SA Smythe (Faculty of Information) and Dr. Qui Alexander (OISE) for the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies.


Join us on February 28, 2024 for the talk “Rehearsals & Refusals: notes on trans* imagination” with Alan Pelaez Lopez (@migrantscribble). This is the inaugural lecture in our new speaker series Crossings: Conversations from the &, curated by Dr. Qui Alexander and Dr. SA Smythe. Reserve your ticket at

About The Talk
Gender and sexual diversity are categories mobilized by countries in the Global North to narrate progress, liberal democracy, and unity. However, these same countries force trans* migrants into nonconsensual performance contracts in exchange for conditional protection. Rehearsals & Refusals is a poetic and theoretical address that centers the lived experiences of Black trans* migrants who have been illegalized by Western empires. The talk attends to the way trans* migrants rehearse the performative junctions of race and gender to practice refusal and activate a radical trans*imagination. By weaving Black trans* studies and Indigenous studies, Rehearsals & Refusals proposes kinship and dreaming as methods that negate empire.

About the Speaker
Alan Pelaez Lopez (AfroZapotec) is an artist and scholar from Oaxaca, Mexico invested in the Black Indigenous imagination, trans futurities, abstraction, and opacity.

Image Credit: Jess X Snow (@jessxsnow), “I Will Never Stop Reaching For You,” 2015