Felwine Sarr: Expanding the Geography of Knowledge
One of the great thinkers of our time, Senegal’s Felwine Sarr moves among various fields: economics, philosophy, literature, and music. From academic settings to spaces of resistance—theatres, festivals, stages, or even the Ateliers de la pensée (“Workshops of Thought”), which he founded in Dakar and Saint-Louis, he asks how to construct a living society. His works offer a poetic and political response to contemporary global issues, illuminated by the possibilities of the African continent.
Linked to Traces – Discours aux Nations Africaines
Felwine Sarr (Niodior) Guest artist
The Senegalese economist, philosopher, writer, musician and playwright Felwine Sarr questions the existing political and economic models, convinced that the African continent can be the driving force behind a planetary renewal—provided that it completes its decolonization and proposes a new project for civilization.
His numerous books include Afrotopia (Philippe Rey, 2016) and Habiter le monde (Mémoire d’encrier, 2017), and most recently Les lieux qu’habitent mes rêves (Gallimard, 2022). In 2016, he and Achille Mbembé created the Ateliers de la pensée, bringing together thinkers, writers and academics from Africa and the diaspora in Dakar and Saint-Louis to reflect upon the transformations of the contemporary world. With Bénédicte Savoy, he wrote the ground-breaking report Restituer le patrimoine africain (2018) at the request of the French Presidency. Since 2020, Felwine Sarr has taught contemporary and diasporic African philosophy at Duke University (North Carolina). In 2021, he was included in Time Magazine‘s 100 most influential people of the year.
Stéphane Martelly (Montreal) Moderator
Writer, painter and scholar Stéphane Martelly was born in Port-au-Prince. Her deeply transdisciplinary practice, which draws from theory, critical thought, and artmaking, is marked by a reflexive approach to contemporary Haitian literature, creation, literary marginality, and the limits of interpretation.
After a research-creation postdoc at the Centre for Oral History and Digital Storytelling (2015-2017), where she also served as head coordinator (2018-2019), Martelly was adjunct professor at Concordia University’s Theatre department (2017-2020), where she spearheaded a project entitled Penser et créer depuis le lieu de ce silence. Élaborations de l’œuvre absente et possible à partir des « histoires de vie » de Montréalais déplacés par la violence (Haïti-Québec).
At Éditions du Remue-Ménage, Martelly launched the collection MARTIALES, which she sees as a creative laboratory for Black women. The inaugural book in the collection, Pascale Bernardin’s Chroniques frigides de modèle vivant, was published in 2020.
Since August 2019, Martelly has been adjunct professor in the department of Arts, Languages and Literature in the Faculty of Letters and Social Sciences at Université de Sherbrooke.