Care Work

with Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha and Cyree Jarelle Johnson

Thursday, October 18, 2018 7:00pm
Asian American Writers' Workshop
112 W 27t St Suite 600
NY, NY 10001

Media Gallery

Join us for a book launch and conversation for Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, and disability justice poetics conversation with Leah and Cyree Jarelle Johnson.

What the hell is disability justice? How do collective care, disability justice and sick and disabled Black and brown femmes save the world and each other during this time of apocalypse—or do we? What are the histories and present day struggles and triumphs of disabled Black and brown queers in our movements and communities? Come discuss these and other provocative questions with writer, cultural worker and performer Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha and poet and essayist Cyree Jarelle Johnson, and celebrate the launch of this long-awaited, beautiful new book.


In Care Work (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2018), Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha outlines what it means to create spaces by and for sick and disabled queer people of colour, and creative "collective access"—access not as a chore but as a collective responsibility and pleasure —in our communities and political movements. Care Work is a mapping of access as radical love, a celebration of the work that sick and disabled queer/people of colour are doing to find each other and to build power and community, and a toolkit for everyone who wants to build radically resilient, sustainable communities of liberation where no one is left behind.

Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha is a queer disabled femme writer, organizer, performance artist and educator of Burgher/Tamil Sri Lankan and Irish/Roma ascent. They are the author of Dirty River: A Queer Femme of Color Dreaming Her Way Home (short-listed for the Lambda and Publishing Triangle Awards, ALA Above the Rainbow List), Bodymap (short listed for the Publishing Triangle Award), Love Cake (Lambda Literary Award winner), and Consensual Genocide, and co-editor of The Revolution Starts At Home: Confronting Intimate Violence in Activist Communities. Their next two books, Tonguebreaker and Exploring Transformative Justice: A Reader (co-edited with Ejeris Dixon) are forthcoming in 2019. A lead artist with Sins Invalid, her writing has been widely published, with recent work in PBS Newshour,'s Poetry and the Body folio, The Deaf Poets Society, Bitch, Self, TruthOut and The Body is Not an Apology. She is a VONA Fellow and holds an MFA from Mills College. She is also a rust belt poet, a Sri Lankan with a white mom, a femme over 40, a grassroots intellectual, a survivor who is hard to kill.

Cyrée Jarelle Johnson is a poet and writer from Piscataway, NJ. SLINGSHOT, their first book of poetry, will be published by Nightboat Books in 2019. Find them on social media at @cyreejarelle or at


*The space is wheelchair accessible. Direct elevator from ground floor to 6th floor.
*Bathroom access: Bathrooms are WC accessible and for all genders
*Fragrance free: We ask that folks come fragrance free so that everyone can attend. Please leave off cologne, perfume and lots of essential oils. Thank you for being in solidarity with each other!
*If you all have any other specific questions about accessibility, please email Tiffany Le at with any questions on reserving priority seating.

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