CFP Modern Language Association (MLA), San Francisco 01/2023 "Migration and Identity in Afro Latin American Literature"

Nicole  Bonino's picture

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Call for Papers
January 5, 2023 to January 8, 2023
California, United States
Subject Fields: 
Black History / Studies, Immigration & Migration History / Studies, Latin American and Caribbean History / Studies, Literature, Race Studies

This panel invites papers (in English or Spanish) analyzing issues of migration and identity affecting Afro Latin American communities as represented in literature written in Spanish. Timeframe is open. 

To respond to this CFP, send 250-word abstracts and 150-word bios to session organizer (Nicole Boinino at Include any audiovisual equipment or accessibility needs for your presentation. If you are invited to participate in a 2023 session, you must be an MLA member by 7 April 2022. 

Deadline to submit proposals by email is March 18, 2022. 

Race and migration have a considerable weight on the development of Latin American identities. A common Americentric misconception is the idea that the world migratory flows move on a South-North axis, which means from poorer southern regions towards richer countries such as the US or Canada. Nevertheless, 36% of the total stock of world immigrants moves on a South-South axis and is composed of 82 million individuals. To date, there are more than 10 million first-generation immigrants in Latin America. A consistent part of them is constituted by refugees proceeding from Global South countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean. In addition to more recent data, it is important to remember that Latin America was the destination for 95% of the victims of the Atlantic slave trade. Today, the Black community in Latin America is represented by millions of people, some of whom consider literature as a powerful tool to register and disseminate race identity and narratives of migration. Contemporary and past migratory patterns made Latin America one of the most diverse, multifaceted, and complex containers of literature on a global scale.

The aim of this panel is to collect papers analyzing issues of migration and identity affecting Afro Latin American communities as represented in the literature produced in Spanish by Afro descendants. By being exposed to the analysis of samples of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and drama, participants will be invited to consider Latin America not only a space of deprivation and alterity, but also a place of creativity, opportunity, and popular empowerment for Afro descendants fighting to shed a light on the role of Black communities in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

Contact Info: 

Nicole Bonino, Ph.D., University of Virginia, Visiting Scholar at Columbia University 

Contact Email: