profile image

El Jones

Poet Laureate

El Jones is a spoken word activist and teacher who has performed all over Canada, including at the 10th anniversary all-star edition of When Sisters Speak in Toronto. In 2012, she was sponsored by Citizenship and Heritage Canada on a reading tour of Nova Scotia with George Elliott Clarke. Her poetry is particularly committed to political causes and social justice and El has worked extensively with organizations around Halifax performing and presenting on issues of social change.

El is currently the artistic director of Word Iz Bond Spoken Word Artist Collective and can be seen performing on the third Thursday of every month at the Company House at 2202 Gottingen Street in Word Iz Bond's SPEAK! Series. She currently teaches in the African Canadian Transition Program at NSCC and in the Women's Studies program at Acadia. El Jones will serve as HRM's Poet Laureate for two years 2013-2015.
Getty Images

Until Dalhousie Understands Privilege, There Can Be No Restorative Justice

Being a dentist is not a right. If someone is not appropriate to be a professional, society is not obligated towards them in some way. I hope these men do recognize how they have damaged their classmates and their community. Until the university gets how this entire thing was about privilege -- men feeling entitled to women's bodies, men feeling insulated by their position, men counting on lack of consequence -- they cannot create the necessary changes to their structures nor recognize and mitigate harm. If they are still puzzled by why women are so angry how can they help guide healing?
12/22/2014 12:42 EST
Getty

Chris Brown: The Problem With Giving Abuse a Black Face

Since he is a tattooed, rap/R&B singer who embodies for many the "thug" lifestyle, it is easy to see Chris Brown as the face of abuse. As a threatening black man, we may feel more comfortable identifying his behaviour as dangerous than we do John Lennon's, despite his history of abuse. But the truth is that abuse happens in households of all racial, class, education and social backgrounds. I ask us to consider how much the image of Chris Brown as "thug rapper" made it easier to label him as an unrepentant abuser than other artists who are also guilty of the same crime.
07/24/2013 08:30 EDT
Getty

Hey Men, Women's Conflicts Aren't "Cat Fights"

One thing I have noticed is that men always minimize and refuse to take seriously conflict between women. When men conflict, it is understood that there can be serious political or intellectual disagreements, or that injustice did occur, or that real slights have been experienced. Conflict between women, however, is assumed to be trivial and due to "cattiness" or "jealousy" and that the women ought to just get over it and stop being silly.
07/22/2013 05:23 EDT
AP

Protecting Canada's Trayvon Martins

For those of us who are not American, George Zimmerman's acquittal may give us an added sense of helplessness. While we feel the rage and pain, the fact that the verdict is not in our justice system may leave us feeling that we have no avenue for action. Here are some things Canadians can do.
07/15/2013 12:55 EDT