Book Launch: "Policing Black Lives"

March 01, 2018

Robyn Maynard

Thursday, March 1, 6:00PM–9:00PM, Room 1900, SFU Harbour Centre

Hosted by Black Lives Matter, No One Is Illegal, Carnegie African Descent Group, and Alliance Against Displacement.

Co-sponsored by SFU's Institute for the Humanities, Amnesty International, Battered Women's Support Services, BC Civil Liberties Association, Capilano Women and Gender Studies Department, Capilano English Department, Capilano Liberal Studies Program, Carceral Cultures, Council of Canadians, Gallery Gachet, Killjoy, Pivot Legal Society, SFU Libraries, Simon Fraser Public Interest Research Group, Streams of Justice, and UBC Social Justice Center.

Launch of Robyn Maynard's Policing Black Lives

"This book should be read not only by those who have a specific interest in Canadian histories and social justice movements but by anyone interested in the abolitionist and revolutionary potential of the Black Lives Matters movement more broadly." – Angela Davis

Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present is a comprehensive account of nearly four hundred years of state-sanctioned surveillance, criminalization and punishment of Black life in Canada. While highlighting the ubiquity of Black resistance, Policing Black Lives traces the still-living legacy of slavery across multiple institutions, shedding light on the social and historical forces behind Black poverty and unemployment, racial profiling, police violence, disproportionate incarceration, immigration detention and deportation, exploitative migrant labour practices, disproportionate child removal and the school-to-prison pipeline.

About the Author

Robyn Maynard is a Black feminist author, grassroots community organizer and independent scholar based in Montréal. She has been a part of movements against racial profiling and police violence for over a decade and has an extensive background in community work doing harm-reduction outreach.

Territorial Acknowledgement

Cecilia Point is a member of the Musqueam Nation and a land defender, sovereigntist and political activist who stood for 200 plus days protecting her nation’s ancestral burial site from development in 2012. She has taken part in countless political actions advocating for human rights, the environment and cultural preservation of her nation. 

Other Guests

A speaker from Black Lives Matter-Vancouver. BLM-Vancouver supports the organizing work of Black folks and allies in undoing systemic racialized violence. We centre the voices of Black folks as well as other folks of colour and hope to lift up those who are queer, women, trans, differently abled, poor or otherwise marginalized. We remain firmly committed to undoing systemic racialized violence.

Jillian Christmas serves as Artistic Director of Versəs Festival of Words. Jillian is an enthusiastic organizer and activist in the Canadian arts community, her focus being to increase anti-oppression initiatives in spoken word.

Khari Wendell McClelland is a diversely talented and ever-evolving artist, with reviewers lauding his performances as a clever mix of soul and gospel. Khari’s songwriting crosses genres and generations, joyfully invoking the spirit of his ancestors who straddled the US-Canadian border in efforts to escape slavery and discrimination.

Lama Mugabo is a Community Organizer at the Carnegie Community Action Project and member of Our Homes Cain’t Wait coalition, advocating for housing, social justice and poverty alleviation in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. He serves on the Hogan’s Alley Working Group, an initiative to promote the revitalization of Hogan’s Alley, the Black community destroyed by Vancouver’s urban renewal policy in 1972.

Ruby Smith Diaz has found her passion working as a youth facilitator, personal trainer, video editor and multi-disciplinary artist. She uses art and popular education as tools for activism, empowerment, and community building.


Free event.
Childcare on-site.
There will be ASL interpretation.
Venue is wheelchair accessible:
All genders washrooms on ground level.
Scent-reduced space: