Teaching the Canon and Cannon Formation as Incarnation and Conjure: Dr. Katie Geneva Cannon as Womanist Mentor and Muse

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Stacey M. Floyd-Thomas

Abstract

Written by her first doctoral student, this essay is a tribute to the legacy and lessons of Dr. Katie Geneva Cannon (1950-2018), the progenitor of womanist ethics. The author embraces Cannon’s signature womanist embodied pedagogy, which takes embodiment as a Black woman seriously and serves as a paradigm for those who purposefully and poignantly live intersecting roles of race, gender, and class. Through both a personal account of the grief experienced by the passing of her mentor and a critical reflection on lessons learned by Cannon’s legacy, the author exposes the daunting challenges faced by womanist scholars as they navigate the front line of the classroom and the frequently death-dealing and dismissive terrain of higher education. See companion contributions to this Forum written by Edwin David Aponte, Miguel A. De La Torre, Stacey M. Floyd-Thomas, Karen K. Seat, and Angela D. Sims.

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