Speaker Spotlight – Dr. Zelaika Hepworth Clarke

1. How do you see yourself as a catalyst for change?

I lead by example and seek to be the change I wish to see. I am dedicated to being a catalyst of change within myself before I seek to inspire transformation and liberation of others. Specifically, I’ve focused on ways to free myself from the bondage of white cisheteropatriarchal power structures that inform mentalities surrounding sexualities. As a sexosopher, I am perpetually involved in critical thinking about sexualities as well as being actively engaged in decolonizing sexualities. While working towards my PhD in Human Sexuality, I created theories that de-pathologize certain paraphilias and gave voice to non-phallocentric narratives of “sex.” (via the “devouring vagina,” ecosex, spiritual penetration, etc). Others can see how I was able to achieve sensual liberation through my dissertation publication titled Coming to my senses: A decolonizing autoethnographic exploration of Ọ̀ṣunality. I articulated my liberating experiences through the auto-sexual-decolonization process, which utilized self-love (autosexuality) as a means of overcoming negative effects of (sexual) colonialism. I am committed to intersectional mindfulness, sexual decolonization, counter-oppressive discourses, sexual epistemic diversity, sexual rights, self-determination, freedom of expression and empowerment.