New Book—”Caribbean Migrations: The Legacies of Colonialism”

Caribbean Migrations: The Legacies of Colonialism (Bucknell University Press, 2020) by Anke Birkenmaier is a now available. Leah Rosenberg (University of Florida) writes, “Profoundly interdisciplinary and nearly Pan-Caribbean in scope, Caribbean Migrations transforms our understanding of how migration has shaped the Caribbean and how Caribbean migration has shaped the United States. The analysis of Caribbean people on the move, asserting political power across digital platforms and through art, explodes the long-held notion that Caribbean migration is the story of flight from poverty to a better life in the United States and breaks down the boundary between Caribbean and American Studies.”

Descriptions: With mass migration changing the configuration of societies worldwide, we can look to the Caribbean to reflect on the long-standing, entangled relations between countries and areas as uneven in size and influence as the United States, Cuba, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, and Jamaica. More so than other world regions, the Caribbean has been characterized as an always already colonial region. It has long been a key area for empires warring over influence spheres in the new world, and where migration waves from Africa, Europe, and Asia accompanied every political transformation over the last five centuries. In Caribbean Migrations, an interdisciplinary group of humanities and social science scholars study migration from a long-term perspective, analyzing the Caribbean’s “unincorporated subjects” from a legal, historical, and cultural standpoint, and exploring how despite often fractured public spheres, Caribbean intellectuals, artists, filmmakers, and writers have been resourceful at showcasing migration as the hallmark of our modern age.

Contributions by Anke BirkenmaierCarlos Vargas-RamosEdward ChamberlainJorge DuanyJossianna Arroyo-MartinezVivian HalloranYolanda Martinez-San MiguelDaylet DomínguezDevyn Spence BensonIraida H. LópezRafael RojasJane BryceRebecca DirksenKendy VérilusKiran C. JayaramApril J. MayesEmily A. MaguireAlejandro Portes.

Anke Birkenmaier is a professor of Latin American literature and culture at Indiana University, Bloomington, and the former director of its Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. She is the author of The Specter of Races: Latin American Anthropology and Literature Between the Wars, and co-editor of Havana Beyond the Ruins: Cultural Mappings after 1989

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