This essay explores the interlinked discourses of memory that put slavery, indenture, colonization, and apartheid into comparison. The term connective tissue, with its connotations of organic and inorganic interweavings (fabrics, bodies and their microstructures, societies and their networks), elaborates memory that is composed through entanglement and expressed through distinctly networked technologies. These technologies include textuality’s semiotic weave (Barthes, Derrida), the nonlinearity of Glissant’s Relation, and the affective intensities, sensory experience, and inherited memory of diasporic identity, here given shape through critical memoir. Connective tissue models an approach to a comparative memory studies animated by entanglement rather than competitive hierarchization of the events of racialized historical violence.

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