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Caribbean Literary and Visual Cultures

While tourist boards and hotel companies promote the Caribbean as a paradise of “sun, sex, and gold,” what lies beyond this imaginary? This seminar explores literature and visual arts in the English-speaking Caribbean through the lenses of labor and gender and sexuality. In “Work and ‘Wuk’,” we will begin by examining narratives written by enslaved African women in the Caribbean. Then, we will turn to short stories, mixed-media works, and other literary and visual works by Caribbean women and gender and sexual minorities that represent major historical events: labor migration from Asia to the Caribbean, working-class movements, decolonization, and migration of Caribbean peoples to North America and Great Britain. Throughout, we will gain an understanding of how these Caribbean writers and artists have developed homegrown ways of seeing the region.