E. Patrick Johnson is Carlos Montezuma Professor of Performance Studies and African American Studies at Northwestern University, the coeditor of Blacktino Queer Performance and Black Queer Studies: A Critical Anthology, and the author of Appropriating Blackness: Performance and the Politics of Authenticity, all also published by Duke University Press.
Tanya L. Saunders engages the black queer world-making among lesbians in Cuba and Brazil. Drawn from her experience as touring manager for a lesbian hip hop group, Saunders uses ethnographic methods to engage the ways in which black lesbians in the diaspora mobilize hip hop as a site of feminist activism. Beyond expanding the literature on queers in Cuba and Brazil—and women in particular—Saunders disavows the common logic that women and queers are invisible within hip hop. Indeed, she argues that these queer women actively integrate their African heritage, queerness, and artistry in a context where the explicit celebration of such imbricated identities—especially in Cuba and Brazil—is not the norm. Ultimately, Saunders believes that these women’s artistic and activist employment of hip hop offers a different understanding of subject formation in the African Diaspora.