193 episodes

Interviews with scholars of the Caribbean about their new books.
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New Books in Caribbean Studies Marshall Poe

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 11 Ratings

Interviews with scholars of the Caribbean about their new books.
Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/caribbean-studies

    Rachel Hynson, "Laboring for the State : Women, Family, and Work in Revolutionary Cuba, 1959-1971" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    Rachel Hynson, "Laboring for the State : Women, Family, and Work in Revolutionary Cuba, 1959-1971" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    Contrary to claims that socialism opposed the family unit, in Laboring for the State : Women, Family, and Work in Revolutionary Cuba, 1959-1971 (Cambridge University Press, 2020) Rachel Hynson argues that the revolutionary Cuban government engaged in social engineering to redefine the nuclear family and organize citizens to serve the state. 
    Drawing on Cuban newspapers and periodicals, government documents and speeches, long-overlooked laws, and oral histories, Hynson reveals that by 1961, and increasingly throughout this decade, revolutionary citizenship was earned through labor. While men were to work outside the home in state-approved jobs, women found their citizenship tied to affording the state control over their reproduction and sexual labor. 
    Through all four campaigns examined in this book - the projects to control women's reproduction, promote marriage, end prostitution, and compel men into state-sanctioned employment - Hynson shows that the state's progression toward authoritarianism and its attendant monopolization of morality were met with resistance and counter-narratives by citizens who so opposed the mandates of these campaigns that Cuban leadership has since reconfigured or effaced these programs from the Revolution's grand narrative.
    Dr. Hynson and I sat down to talk about her important book, our positionality as researchers, navigating the challenges and politics of the Cuban archives, living your values, and so much more. Enjoy!
    Rozzmery Palenzuela Vicente is a PhD Candidate in the Department of History at Florida International University. Her dissertation examines the cultural and intellectual politics surrounding black motherhood in twentieth-century Cuba.
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    • 56 min
    Cécile Fromont, "Afro-Catholic Festivals in the Americas: Performance, Representation, and the Making of Black Atlantic Tradition" (Penn State, 2019)

    Cécile Fromont, "Afro-Catholic Festivals in the Americas: Performance, Representation, and the Making of Black Atlantic Tradition" (Penn State, 2019)

    Edited by Dr. Cécile Fromont, Afro-Catholic Festivals in the Americas: Performance, Representation, and the Making of Black Atlantic Tradition (Penn State University Press, 2019), demonstrates how, from the beginning of the Atlantic slave trade, enslaved and free Africans in the Americas used Catholicism and Christian-derived celebrations as spaces for autonomous cultural expression, social organization, and political empowerment. Their appropriation of Catholic-based celebrations calls into question the long-held idea that Africans and their descendants in the diaspora either resignedly accepted Christianity or else transformed its religious rituals into syncretic objects of stealthy resistance. In cities and on plantations throughout the Americas, men and women of African birth or descent staged mock battles against heathens, elected Christian queens and kings with great pageantry, and gathered in festive rituals to express their devotion to saints. The contributors to this volume draw connections between these Afro-Catholic festivals—observed from North America to South America and the Caribbean—and their precedents in the early modern kingdom of Kongo, one of the main regions of origin of men and women enslaved in the New World.
    Dr. Cécile Fromont is Associate Professor of History of Art at Yale University.
    Other contributors to Afro-Catholic Festivals in the Americas include Jeroen Dewulf, Kevin Dawson, Miguel A. Valerio, Lisa Voigt, Junia Ferreira Furtado, Dianne M. Stewart, and Michael Iyanaga. 
    Emily Ruth Allen (@emmyru91) is a PhD candidate in Musicology at Florida State University. She is currently working on a dissertation about parade musics in Mobile, Alabama’s Carnival celebrations.
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    • 53 min
    Tim Lockley, "Military Medicine and the Making of Race: Life and Death in the West India Regiments, 1795–1874" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    Tim Lockley, "Military Medicine and the Making of Race: Life and Death in the West India Regiments, 1795–1874" (Cambridge UP, 2020)

    Military Medicine and the Making of Race: Life and Death in the West India Regiments (Cambridge University Press, 2020) by Tim Lockley demonstrates how Britain's black soldiers helped shape attitudes towards race throughout the nineteenth century. The West India Regiments were part of the British military establishment for 132 years, generating vast records with details about every one of their 100,000+ recruits which made them the best-documented group of black men in the Atlantic World. Tim Lockley shows how, in the late eighteenth century, surgeons established in medical literature that white and black bodies were radically different, forging a notion of the 'superhuman' black soldier able to undertake physical challenges far beyond white soldiers. By the late 1830s, however, military statisticians would contest these ideas and highlight the vulnerabilities of black soldiers instead. The popularity and pervasiveness of these publications spread far beyond British military or medical circles and had a significant international impact, particularly in the US, both reflecting and reinforcing changing notions about blackness.
    R. Grant Kleiser is a Ph.D. candidate in the Columbia University History Department. His dissertation researches the development of the free-port system in the eighteenth-century Caribbean, investigating the rationale for such moves towards “free trade” and the impact these policies had on subsequent philosophers, policy-makers, and revolutionaries in the Atlantic world.
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    • 53 min
    Christine Walker, "Jamaica Ladies: Female Slaveholders and the Creation of Britain's Atlantic Empire" (UNC Press, 2020)

    Christine Walker, "Jamaica Ladies: Female Slaveholders and the Creation of Britain's Atlantic Empire" (UNC Press, 2020)

    Jamaica Ladies: Female Slaveholders and the Creation of Britain's Atlantic Empire (Omohundro Institute/University of North Carolina Press, 2020) is the first systematic study of the free and freed women of European, Euro-African, and African descent who perpetuated chattel slavery and reaped its profits in the British Empire. Their actions helped transform Jamaica into the wealthiest slaveholding colony in the Anglo-Atlantic world. Starting in the 1670s, a surprisingly large and diverse group of women helped secure English control of Jamaica and, crucially, aided its developing and expanding slave labor regime by acquiring enslaved men, women, and children to protect their own tenuous claims to status and independence. 
    Female colonists employed slaveholding as a means of advancing themselves socially and financially on the island. By owning others, they wielded forms of legal, social, economic, and cultural authority not available to them in Britain. In addition, slaveholding allowed free women of African descent, who were not far removed from slavery themselves, to cultivate, perform, and cement their free status. Alongside their male counterparts, women bought, sold, stole, and punished the people they claimed as property and vociferously defended their rights to do so. As slavery's beneficiaries, these women worked to stabilize and propel this brutal labor regime from its inception.
    Christine Walker is assistant professor of history at Yale-NUS College in Singapore.
    Jerrad P. Pacatte is a doctoral candidate and School of Arts and Sciences Excellence Fellow in the Department of History at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. His research and teaching interests examine the lives, labors, and emancipation experiences of African and African American women in early America. 
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    • 1 hr 24 min
    Edgardo Meléndez, "Patria: Puerto Rican Revolutionary Exiles in Late Nineteenth-Century New York" (Centro Press, 2019)

    Edgardo Meléndez, "Patria: Puerto Rican Revolutionary Exiles in Late Nineteenth-Century New York" (Centro Press, 2019)

    Edgardo Meléndez's book Patria: Puerto Rican Revolutionaries in Nineteenth Century New York (Centro Press, 2019) examines the activities and ideals of Puerto Rican revolutionary exiles in New York City at the end of the nineteenth century. The study is centered in the writings, news reports, and announcements by and about Puerto Ricans in Patria, the official newspaper of the Cuban Revolutionary Party. Both were founded and led by the Cuban patriot José Martí. The book looks at the political, organizational and ideological ties between Cuban and Puerto Rican revolutionaries in exile, as well as the events surrounding the war of 1898. It argues that what became major underpinnings of twentieth century Puerto Rico's nationalist thought were already present in the writings of Puerto Ricans found in Patria. The newspaper also offers a glimpse into the daily life and community of Puerto Rican exiles in late nineteenth century New York City. All of the writings in Patria about Puerto Rico are presented in their full English translation. Finally, the book presents a historical overview of how the Puerto Rican exile community living in the city developed at that time.
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    • 45 min
    Adom Getachew, "Worldmaking After Empire: The Rise and Fall of Self-Determination" (Princeton UP, 2020)

    Adom Getachew, "Worldmaking After Empire: The Rise and Fall of Self-Determination" (Princeton UP, 2020)

    Adom Getachew, the Neubauer Family Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago, is the author of Worldmaking after Empire: The Rise and Fall of Self-Determination (Princeton University Press, 2019). The work has received immense praise from academics and non-specialists alike, winning a plethora of awards, including the Frantz Fanon Prize, the W.E.B. Du Bois Distinguished Book Award, and the J. David Greenstone Book Prize. Getachew renarrates the twentieth-century history of decolonization and shows that African, African American, and Caribbean anticolonial nationalists were not solely nation-builders. Responding to the experience of racialized sovereign inequality, dramatized in the book by interwar Ethiopia and Liberia, Black Atlantic thinkers and politicians challenged international racial hierarchies and articulated alternative visions of worldmaking. Seeking to create an egalitarian postimperial world, they attempted to secure a right to self-determination within the newly founded United Nations, constitute regional federations in Africa and the Caribbean, and structure a New International Economic Order. Worldmaking after Empire traces the richness and ambition of postwar efforts to reimagine the international order, uncovering a multiplicity of political projects that decolonization entailed.
    Vladislav Lilic is a doctoral candidate in Modern European History at Vanderbilt University.
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    • 46 min

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