Today’s conversation is with iki azaid funes, a Venezuelan migrant and anti-racist activist currently seeking international protection in Spain. She’s a survivor of Covid-19, and her experience fighting Covid-19 and the regime of white supremacy in Europe offers important insights to help us all understand how people like iki, and many in our communities, so often fall outside the bounds of what is considered human and thus protection, solidarity and citizenship. She describes her experience in Europe so far as existing within a plantation reloaded and says that the notion of human rights is a fiction reserved for white people. She suggests the pandemic we’re living through now began with the voyage of Christopher Columbus in 1492, pushes back against assumptions of the inherent radicality of Black trans bodies and says that pursuing love and pleasure is an essential part of her resistance. Throughout this conversation, iki and I speak in both English and Spanish, a testament to our communities’ on-going commitment to communicate across borders, language and experience.
This conversation forms part of a special series funded by the European Cultural Foundation to explore queer Black solidarity across Europe during the Covid-19 crisis.
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