Yarimar Bonilla, "The Coloniality of Disaster"
Tuesday, September 29, 2020, 7 - 8:30pm
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As part of the Fall 2020 Intra-Disciplinary Seminar, Yarimar Bonilla, a leading voice on questions of Caribbean and Latinx politics, will be in conversation with artist, scholar, and School of Art guest associate professor Coco Fusco.
In her recent article, “The Coloniality of Disaster: Race, Empire, and the Temporal Logics of Emergency in Puerto Rico, USA,” Yarimar Bonilla uses the case of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico to discuss the coloniality of disaster, exploring how catastrophic events like hurricanes, earthquakes, but also other forms political and economic crisis deepen the fault lines of long-existing racial and colonial histories. She argues that disaster capitalism needs to be understood as a form of racio-colonial capitalism and that this in turn requires us to question our understandings of both “resilience” and “recovery."
Yarimar Bonilla is professor in the Department of Africana, Puerto Rican and Latino Studies at Hunter College and in the Ph.D. Program in anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Bonilla teaches and writes about questions of sovereignty, citizenship, and race across the Americas. She has tracked these issues across a broad range of sites and practices including: anti-colonial labor activism in the French Caribbean, the role of digital protest in the Black Lives Matter movement, the politics of the Trump presidency, and her current research on the political and social aftermath of hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.
The IDS public lecture series is part of the Robert Lehman Visiting Artist Program at The Cooper Union. We are grateful for major funding from the Robert Lehman Foundation. The IDS public lecture series is also made possible by generous support from the Open Society Foundations.