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Caribbean & African Literature


Crossing the Line

Candace Ward

Crossing the Line examines a group of early nineteenth-century novels by white creoles, writers whose identities and perspectives were shaped by their experiences in Britain’s Caribbean colonies. Colonial subjects residing in the West Indian colonies "beyond the line," these writers were perceived... More


Staging Creolization

Emily Sahakian

In Staging Creolization, Emily Sahakian examines seven plays by Ina Césaire, Maryse Condé, Gerty Dambury, and Simone Schwarz-Bart that premiered in the French Caribbean or in France in the 1980s and 1990s and soon thereafter traveled to the United States. Sahakian argues that these late-twentieth-... More


A Cultural History of Underdevelopment

John Patrick Leary

A Cultural History of Underdevelopment explores the changing place of Latin America in U.S. culture from the mid-nineteenth century to the recent U.S.-Cuba détente. In doing so, it uncovers the complex ways in which Americans have imagined the global geography of poverty and progress, as the... More


American Imperialism's Undead

Raphael Dalleo

As modern Caribbean politics and literature emerged in the first half of the twentieth century, Haiti, as the region's first independent state, stood as a source of inspiration for imagining decolonization and rooting regional identity in Africanness. Yet at precisely the same moment that... More


In Search of Annie Drew

Daryl Cumber Dance

There is perhaps no other person who has been so often and obsessively featured in any writer’s canon as Jamaica Kincaid’s mother, Annie Drew. In this provocative new book, Daryl Dance argues that everything Kincaid has written, regardless of its apparent theme, actually relates to Kincaid’s... More


The Specter of Races

Anke Birkenmaier

Arguing that race has been the specter that has haunted many of the discussions about Latin American regional and national cultures today, Anke Birkenmaier shows how theories of race and culture in Latin America evolved dramatically in the period between the two world wars. In response to the rise... More


Performance and Personhood in Caribbean Literature

Jeannine Murray-Román

Focusing on the literary representation of performance practices in anglophone, francophone, and hispanophone Caribbean literature, Jeannine Murray-Román shows how a shared regional aesthetic emerges from the descriptions of music, dance, and oral storytelling events. Because the historical... More


The Leopard Boy

Daniel Picouly. Translated by Jeanne Garane. Afterword by Jeanne M. Garane

October 15, 1793: the eve of Marie-Antoinette’s execution. The Reign of Terror has descended upon revolutionary France, and thousands are beheaded daily under the guillotine. Edmond Coffin and Jonathan Gravedigger, two former soldiers now employed in disposing of the dead, are hired to search the... More


Memory at Bay

Evelyne Trouillot. Translated by Paul Curtis Daw. Afterword by Jason Herbeck

Winner of the prestigious Prix Carbet--an award won by such distinguished authors as Maryse Condé, Jamaica Kincaid, and Raphaël Confiant-- Memory at Bay is now available in an English translation that brings to life this powerful novel by one of Haiti’s most vital authors, Évelyne Trouillot.... More


Tropical Apocalypse

Martin Munro

In Tropical Apocalypse, Martin Munro argues that since the earliest days of European colonization, Caribbean—and especially Haitian—history has been shaped by apocalyptic events so that the region has, in effect, been living for centuries in an end time without end. By engaging with the... More


Arabic as a Secret Song

Leïla Sebbar. Translated by Skyler Artes. Afterword by Mildred Mortimer

The celebrated and highly versatile writer Leïla Sebbar was born in French colonial Algeria but has lived nearly her entire adult life in France, where she is recognized as a major voice on the penetrating effects of colonialism in contemporary society. The dramatic contrast between her past and... More


Market Aesthetics

Elena Machado Sáez

In Market Aesthetics, Elena Machado Sáez explores the popularity of Caribbean diasporic writing within an interdisciplinary, comparative, and pan-ethnic framework. She contests established readings of authors such as Junot Díaz, Julia Alvarez, Edwidge Danticat, and Robert Antoni while showcasing... More


Eric Williams and the Anticolonial Tradition

Maurice St. Pierre

A leader in the social movement that achieved Trinidad and Tobago’s independence from Britain in 1962, Eric Williams (1911–1981) served as its first prime minister. Although much has been written about Williams as a historian and a politician, Maurice St. Pierre is the first to offer a full-length... More


The Pan American Imagination

Stephen M. Park

In the history of the early twentieth-century Americas, visions of hemispheric unity flourished, and the notion of a transnational American identity was embraced by artists, intellectuals, and government institutions. In The Pan American Imagination, Stephen Park explores the work of several Pan... More


Journeys of the Slave Narrative in the Early Americas

Edited by Nicole N. Aljoe and Ian Finseth

Focusing on slave narratives from the Atlantic world of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, this interdisciplinary collection of essays suggests the importance—even the necessity—of looking beyond the iconic and ubiquitous works of Olaudah Equiano, Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Jacobs... More


The Other Side of the Sea

Louis-Philippe Dalembert. Translated by Robert H. McCormick Jr.. Foreword by Edwidge Danticat

The Other Side of the Sea, the first novel by this major Haitian author to be translated into English, is riveted on the other shore--whether it is the ancestral Africa that still haunts Haitians, the America to which so many have emigrated, or even that final shore, the uncertain afterlife... More


Locating the Destitute

Stanka Radović

While postcolonial discourse in the Caribbean has drawn attention to colonialism’s impact on space and spatial hierarchy, Stanka Radović asks both how ordinary people as "users" of space have been excluded from active and autonomous participation in shaping their daily spatial reality and how they... More


The Fury and Cries of Women

Angèle Rawiri. Translated by Sara Hanaburgh. Afterword by Cheryl Toman

Gabon’s first female novelist, Angèle Rawiri probed deeper into the issues that writers a generation before her—Mariama Bâ and Aminata Sow Fall—had begun to address. Translated by Sara Hanaburgh, this third novel of the three Rawiri published is considered the richest of her fictional prose. It... More


Bodies and Bones

Tanya L. Shields

In Bodies and Bones, Tanya Shields argues that a repeated engagement with the Caribbean’s iconic and historic touchstones offers a new sense of (inter)national belonging that brings an alternative and dynamic vision to the gendered legacy of brutality against black bodies, flesh, and bone. Using a... More


Far from My Father

Véronique Tadjo. Translated by Amy Baram Reid. Afterword by Amy Baram Reid

"To attain some sort of universal value," Véronique Tadjo has said, "a piece of work has to go deep into the particular in order to reveal our shared humanity." In Far from My Father, the latest novel from this internationally acclaimed author, a woman returns to the Côte d'Ivoire after her father’... More


Sounding the Break

Jason Frydman

The idea of "world literature" has served as a crucial though underappreciated interlocutor for African diasporic writers, informing their involvement in processes of circulation, translation, and revision that have been identified as the hallmarks of the contemporary era of world literature. Yet... More


The Haitian Revolution in the Literary Imagination

Philip James Kaisary

The Haitian Revolution (1791–1804) reshaped the debates about slavery and freedom throughout the Atlantic world, accelerated the abolitionist movement, precipitated rebellions in neighboring territories, and intensified both repression and antislavery sentiment. The story of the birth of the world’... More


The Cross-Dressed Caribbean

Edited by Maria Cristina Fumagalli, Bénédicte Ledent, and Roberto del Valle Alcalá

Studies of sexuality in Caribbean culture are on the rise, focusing mainly on homosexuality and homophobia or on regional manifestations of normative and nonnormative sexualities. The Cross-Dressed Caribbean extends this exploration by using the trope of transvestism not only to analyze texts and... More


The Poetics of Ethnography in Martinican Narratives

Christina Kullberg

Drawing on narratives from Martinique by Aimé Césaire, Édouard Glissant, Ina Césaire, and Patrick Chamoiseau, among others, Christina Kullberg shows how these writers turn to ethnography—even as they critique it—as an exploration and expression of the self. They acknowledge its tradition as a... More


Disturbers of the Peace

Kelly Baker Josephs

Exploring the prevalence of madness in Caribbean texts written in English in the mid-twentieth century, Kelly Baker Josephs focuses on celebrated writers such as Jean Rhys, V. S. Naipaul, and Derek Walcott as well as on understudied writers such as Sylvia Wynter and Erna Brodber. Because mad... More


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