Reframing the Art of the Interview with Poet & Novelist Canisia Lubrin

For this episode of Reframeables, we had the opportunity to speak with award-winning poet and novelist Canisia Lubrin about her new book Code Noir. After the interview, she sent the Reframeables duo an email, calling us both badass and tender, which is probably the best compliment we’ve ever been given — so there’s that. For context about her book, in 1685 France’s King Louis XIV passed a decree consisting of 59 articles meant to govern not only chattel slavery but Black subjecthood throughout France and its colonies. The document was called “le code noir.” Lubrin’s novel is written around and against these articles. In our interview, we talked about so many things: identity, and why Canisia isn’t interested in it; green underwear, and why this writer’s words make us hot (literally); poetry as something that originates in the body, not the mind. Our reframing takeaway? The art of the interview isn’t achieved in a straight line — or maybe we reframed the art of conversation as a whole. Either way, we had a blast.

Canisia Lubrin is a writer, critic, professor, poet, and editor. Originally from St. Lucia, she now lives in Whitby, Ontario. Her books include Voodoo Hypothesis, The Dyzgraphxst, and Code Noir. Canisia is currently poetry editor at McClelland & Stewart, and has taught at Humber College, University of Toronto, and University of Guelph.

Code Noir
A Conversation with Canisia Lubrin
by Rosie Long Decter for Vallum Mag
Follow Canisia on Instagram