Yesterday I finally saw “Queen of Katwe,” a motion picture about an African girl who becomes a chess champion. I was struck by the power surrounding the word “city” as her instructor shared stories of how he felt alongside seemingly better chess players who resided in urban spaces.
I was reminded again of the importance of taking seriously the energy surrounding cities alongside our attention to another kind of energy that permeates rural spaces. Such an idea was in view as I watched Phiona, the little girl from Uganda navigate the world around her. If you have not seen this movie, see it. If you are a University of Alabama graduate student, look for this film in the list of texts to which my “Gender, Race and Urban Space” class will turn in the Spring 2017 semester. The syllabus can be found here.