Constructing Vernacular Culture In The Trans-Caribbean

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Overview

In this volume, the editors and authors strive to understand the evolving Trans-Caribbean as a discontinuous, displacing, and displaced transnational space. The Trans-Caribbean is therefore understood as a space suspended in a double dialectic, which opposes both the hegemonic metropolitan space inhabited, as well as the romanticized, yet colonialized, "inner plantation" (Kamau Brathwaite), whose transcendence via migration perpetually turns out to be an illusion.

The construction of cultural products in the Trans-Caribbean-understood as a collection of social and new migratory practices-both reflects and contests postcolonial metropolitan hegemonies. Following Arjun Appadurai's distinction, these homogenizing and heterogenizing countertrends in Trans-Caribbean spaces can be observed through cultural transactions manifesting themselves as ethnoscapes, mediascapes, technoscapes, financescapes, cityscapes, ideoscapes, etc.

For the purposes of this book, the editors invited anthropologists, sociologists, political scientists, linguists, liberal arts and gender studies specialists, as well as cultural and literary historians, to begin drawing some of the diasporic trajectories on the huge canvas of cultural production throughout the Trans-Caribbean. Constructing Vernacular Culture in the Trans-Caribbean will find its audience among scholars in cultural studies, migration, literary theory, and cultural criticism who have a special interest in Caribbean and Latin American studies, as well as among students and scholars of migration and postcolonialism and postmodernity in general.

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Editorial Reviews

New West Indian Guide
All of the authors advance the idea of a trans-Caribbean as an effective way of discussing new movements, migrations, and hybridities.... I would highly recommend the book as a reader in courses focusing on Caribbean studies and the Caribbean and/or African disapora.
— Kimberly Eison Simmons, 2010
H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online
The collection provides rich material to fuel ongoing discussions about the interaction between national and transnational aspects of Caribbean culture. Its breadth is a clear strength, with the cross-disciplinary nature of the contributions offering a refreshingly broad approach.
New West Indian Guide - Kimberly Eison Simmons
All of the authors advance the idea of a trans-Caribbean as an effective way of discussing new movements, migrations, and hybridities.... I would highly recommend the book as a reader in courses focusing on Caribbean studies and the Caribbean and/or African disapora.
Dwaine Plaza
Holger Henke and Karl-Heinz Magister have done a masterful job in bringing together the intellectual energies of fifteen scholars grappling with the process of identity formation, transnationalism, and hybridity within Caribbean disporas in locations like New York, Toronto, and London.
Anthropological Quarterly
This volume is an excellent addition to the literature on Caribbean and trans-nationalism. Its pluri-disciplinary approach bridges several academic fields and provides provocative reflections on the interweaving of varied trans-national cultural practices. Its well-written essays are grounded in cogent sociological and literary analyses as well as rich ethnographic data from various trans-Caribbean locations.
H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online
The collection provides rich material to fuel ongoing discussions about the interaction between national and transnational aspects of Caribbean culture. Its breadth is a clear strength, with the cross-disciplinary nature of the contributions offering a refreshingly broad approach.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Holger W. Henke is assistant professor of political science at Metropolitan College of New York and editor of Crossing Over: Comparing Recent Migration in the United States and Europe (Lexington 2005). Karl-Heinz Magister is a researcher at the Center for Literary Studies in Berlin.

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Table of Contents


Foreword   Anton Allahar     ix
Acknowledgments     xiii
Introduction: Constructing Vernacular Culture in the Trans-Caribbean   Holger Henke   Karl-Heinz Magister     xv
(Re-)Creating Homes in the Vernacular
Premigration Legacies and Transnational Identities: Afro-Surinamese and Indo-Surinamese in the Netherlands   Mies van Niekerk     3
The Many Voices of Caribbean Culture in New York City   Bettina E. Schmidt     23
Family Reunion Rituals of African-Caribbean Transnational Families: Instilling a Historical and Diasporic Consciousness   Constance R. Sutton     43
Performing Identities
Dancing around Dancehall: Popular Music and Pentecostal Identity in Transnational Jamaica and Haiti   Melvin L. Butler     63
Rituals, Journeys, and Modernity: Caribbean Spiritual Baptists in New York   Maarit Forde     101
Performing "Difference": Gossip in Olive Senior's Short Stories   Carol Bailey     123
"This Is My Vibes": Legitimizing Vernacular Expressions in Caribana   Lyndon Phillip     139
Writing Self, Other, and (Trans-)Nation in the Trans-Caribbean
Patrick Chamoiseau's Seascapes and the Trans-Caribbean Imaginary   Wendy Knepper     155
"A Local Habitation and a Name": Travelers, Migrants, Nomads of "Caribbean New York"in Colin Channer's Waiting in Vain   Karl-Heinz Magister     177
Playing Both Home and Away: National and Transnational Identities in the Work of Bruce St. John   Elaine Savory     219
The Amerindian Transnational Experience in Pauline Melville's The Ventriloquist's Tale   Tanya Shields     267
Readings from Aqui y Alla: Music, Commercialism, and the Latino-Caribbean Transnational Imaginary   Raphael Dalleo     299
The (Trans-)Nation (Dis-)Embodied
Like Sugar in Coffee: Third Wave Feminism and the Caribbean   Patricia Mohammed     321
Work That Body: Sexual Citizenship and Embodied Freedom   Mimi Sheller     345
Caribbean Cyberculture: Towards an Understanding of Gender, Sexuality, and Identity within the Digital Culture Matrix   Curwen Best     377
Index     399
Contributors     403
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