Yarimar Bonilla & Nelson Maldonado-Torres: Aftershocks of Disaster: Book Discussion

Tue, Dec 3, 2019, 4:30 pm

Aftershocks of Disaster

The concept of "aftershocks" is used in the context of earthquakes to describe the jolts felt after the initial quake, but no disaster is a singular event. Aftershocks of Disaster examines the lasting effects of hurricane Maria, not just the effects of the wind or the rain, but delving into what followed: state failure, social abandonment, capitalization on human misery, and the collective trauma produced by the botched response.
In this event one of the book's editor, Yarimar Bonilla, and one of its contributors, Nelson Maldonado-Torres, will discuss the newly released publication and what it reveals about contemporary Puerto Rico.

César Colón-Montijo, Princeton University
Adriana Petryna, University of Pennsylvania

Arcadio Díaz-Quiñones, Princeton University

Yarimar Bonilla is Professor in the Department of Africana, Puerto Rican and Latino Studies at Hunter College and the PhD Program in Anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is the author of Non-Sovereign Futures: French Caribbean Politics in the Wake of Disenchantment (2015), co-editor of Aftershocks of Disaster: Puerto Rico Before and After the Storm. She is also Section Editor of Public Anthropologies for the journal American Anthropologist. Yarimar has written broadly about social movements, historical imaginaries, and questions of sovereignty, citizenship, and race across the Americas. In addition, she has a strong interest in the role of digital technologies within social movements and academic practice. She has theorized hashtag usage within the context of the Black Lives Matter movement and developed critical digital cartographies for Caribbean history. Her current research—for which she was named a 2018-2020 Carnegie Fellow —examines the politics of recovery in Puerto Rico after hurricane Maria and the forms of political and social trauma that the storm revealed. In addition, Yarimar is a prominent public intellectual and a leading voice on Caribbean and Latin-X politics. She writes a monthly column in the Puerto Rican newspaper El Nuevo Día titled “En Vaivén,” is a regular contributor to publications such as The Washington Post, The Nation, Jacobin, and The New Yorker, and a frequent guest on National Public Radio and news programs such as Democracy Now!  Follow her on Twitter @yarimarbonilla.

Nelson Maldonado-Torres is Professor of Latino and Caribbean Studies, and of Comparative Literature at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, where he is also Director of the Rutgers Advanced Institute in Critical Caribbean Studies. A former President of the Caribbean Philosophical Association (2008-2013), and member of the Executive Board of the Frantz Fanon Foundation, his publications include Against War: Views from the Underside of Modernity (Duke UP, 2008), and the collection of essays La descolonización y el giro decolonial [Decolonization and the decolonial turn], compiled by the Universidad de la Tierra (Chiapas, Mexico) in 2011. He has written dozens of journal articles and book chapters in decolonial thought, political theory, and the theory of religion, among other areas. He is also co-editor of the books Latin@s in the World-System: Decolonization Struggles in the U.S. 21st Century Empire (2005), and Decolonialidade e pensamento afrodiaspórico [Decoloniality and Afro-diasporic thought] (2018), as well as co-editor of the forthcoming special issues: “Frantz Fanon, Decoloniality, and the Spirit of Bandung,” in Bandung: Journal of the Global South, and “New Decolonial Perspectives in the Afro-Andalucian Caribbean,” in the Revista Brasileira do Caribe.

Co-sponsored by the Department of Spanish and Portuguese.

This event is free and open to the public. Reception to follow.

219 Burr Hall