Let Spirit Speak!: Cultural Journey Through the African Diaspora

SUNY Press
Free sample

In this unique and groundbreaking collection, writers, critics, historians, and poets celebrate the cultural contributions of members of the African diaspora in the Western Hemisphere. Beginning with the cries and prayers of Gina Athena Ulysse to the Haitian loa Erzulie in the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti, each writer in the collection engages in the recovering of the past, highlighting that which has been buried in the history of time. The contributors look at a wide range of artistic productions, from poetry and fiction, to art, music, and film, and martial arts produced in Cuba, Columbia, Brazil, Haiti, and the United States. Haitian Creole, Spanish, and English are brought together, giving the reader a vivid sense of the multiplicity of voices in the African diaspora. Rather than concentrate on the dispersion of peoples of African descent, this collection focuses instead on the multiple sites of origins in the Americas, as diasporic legacies are found throughout the continent.
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About the author

Vanessa K. Valdés is Assistant Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at City College, the City University of New York.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Published on
May 30, 2012
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Pages
161
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ISBN
9781438442198
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Black Studies (Global)
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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 Examines the life of Arturo Alfonso Schomburg through the lens of both Blackness and latinidad.
A Black Puerto Rican–born scholar, Arturo Alfonso Schomburg (1874–1938) was a well-known collector and archivist whose personal library was the basis of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at the New York Public Library. He was an autodidact who matched wits with university-educated men and women, as well as a prominent Freemason, a writer, and an institution-builder.

While he spent much of his life in New York City, Schomburg was intimately involved in the cause of Cuban and Puerto Rican independence. In the aftermath of the Spanish-Cuban-American War of 1898, he would go on to cofound the Negro Society for Historical Research and lead the American Negro Academy, all the while collecting and assembling books, prints, pamphlets, articles, and other ephemera produced by Black men and women from across the Americas and Europe. His curated library collection at the New York Public Library emphasized the presence of African peoples and their descendants throughout the Americas and would serve as an indispensable resource for the luminaries of the Harlem Renaissance, including Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. By offering a sustained look at the life of one of the most important figures of early twentieth-century New York City, this first book-length examination of Schomburg’s life suggests new ways of understanding the intersections of both Blackness and latinidad.
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