James Goodwin & Nisha Ramayya

The utterly in common, or bodies of colour in the flesh

Join James and Nisha to talk about breath, erotics and flesh, about our social, poetic cosubstantiality. 

“Beginning where breath emanates and holds poetry’s ‘life-ending and life-making’ moments, when the body of colour fleshes out the constant, social, alternative presence of the ‘utterly in common’, is where you and me end, where we don’t so much come together but are already here with each other. We’re thinking about talking about the nervous tick that interrupts the spiritual/mystical, the ‘ictic tenancy’ of breath as the preservation and/of the decay of place; the sociopoetic cosubstantiality of ‘risking your life’ and ‘taking part’, love and violence, and auto-erotic-decapitation-ah! Thinking about talking about preservation and decay, preservation as decay; its ritual translation of form and substance that presumes relation, that precludes dissolution, on the basis of an a priori separation that cannot but find its end in the presumption. So we’re getting together in the flesh, performing relation and preserving its decay, staging our thinking and talking to not let each other not get lost!”- James Goodwin & Nisha Ramayya

James Goodwin is a poet and PhD student in the Department of English and Humanities at Birkbeck, University of London. His research is focused on blacksociopoetics, an approach to reading applied to a poetic, philosophical, theoretical, critical and ethical understanding of the social life of poetry.


Nisha Ramayya grew up in Glasgow and is currently based in London. Her debut collection States of the Body Produced by Love is published by Ignota Books (September 2019). She is a member of the Race & Poetry & Poetics in the UK research group and a lecturer in Creative Writing at Queen Mary University of London.


Study Session General Info


Study Sessions are informal, slightly more intimate spaces and a chance to geek out. Some might be presentations, some might be workshops; each will open out the ideas and themes in the Episode, led by people who’ve been considering them for ages. This one is about the interconnectedness of goddesses who decapitate themselves and poetry in the topological sense as a place to study bodies of colour ‘out of place’.


Image Description: Two abstract images merge. Earth coloured circles on the left. Traces of particle decay leave white spirals on a blue background.

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