This essay contends that Caribbean conceptualizations of relation, understood through the theorizing and political organizing of women of color feminists, offer decolonial possibilities that enable radical remappings of the Afro-Atlantic. The essay argues that the political and intellectual contributions of theories of relationality and decolonial feminisms by women of color should be understood as theoretical and methodological tools for approaching some of the most peripheralized Afro-diasporic works. To that end, it examines the histories and the interconnected literary imaginaries that exist across the Afro-Latinx Caribbean (Puerto Rico, Cuba, the Dominican Republic), Equatorial Guinea (the only Spanish-speaking nation-state in Sub-Saharan Africa), and their diasporic cultural productions in the United States and Spain. The essay ultimately argues that women of color and decolonial feminist discourses and ethics help us understand literary and cultural productions as insurgent practices that are central to tracking and reformulating notions of decoloniality and Afro-diasporic studies.
A Case for Relation: Mapping Afro-Latinx Caribbean and Equatoguinean Poetics
Yomaira C. Figueroa is an assistant professor of Afro-diaspora studies in the Department of English and African American and African Studies at Michigan State University, East Lansing. Her forthcoming monograph Decolonizing Diasporas: Radical Mappings of Afro-Atlantic Literature examines the textual and historical relations between diasporic Afro–Puerto Rican, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Dominican, and Equatoguinean poetics. Her published work can be found in Hypatia, the Journal of Decolonization, CENTRO Journal, and sx salon.
Yomaira C. Figueroa; A Case for Relation: Mapping Afro-Latinx Caribbean and Equatoguinean Poetics. Small Axe 1 March 2020; 24 (1 (61)): 22–35. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/07990537-8190526
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