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Caribbean Journal of Education

High Time to Break Up the Boys’ Club: The Gendered Politics of Spoken Word and Open Mic Spaces in Trinidad and Tobago

The increased visibility of spoken word in media, public campaigns, and literary festivals demands critical attention to the social organisation of the art form, movement, and space. This paper explores the gendered politics of spoken word and open mic spaces in Trinidad and Tobago since 2000. Based on semi-structured interviews with spoken word poets and open mic organisers, this article discusses the unequal gender power relations between male and female spoken word poets in open mic events. I argue that unredressed gender stereotypes and male privilege contextually marginalise female spoken word poets and maintain the posture of “power” for male spoken word poets and organisers in the movement.

Publication Date: 
Wednesday, 11 August 2021
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