Territories of the Soul: Queered Belonging in the Black Diaspora (2015)


Nadia Ellis


Drawing on the work of Jose Muñoz, Territories of the Soul connects queerness’ utopian potential with diasporic aesthetics. Ellis locates these phenomena in the works of C.L.R. James, the testy encounter between George Lamming and James Baldwin at the 1956 Congress of Negro Artists and Writers in Paris, the elusiveness of the queer diasporic subject in Andrew Salkey’s novel Escape to an Autumn Pavement, and the trope of spirit possession in Nathaniel Mackey’s writing and Burning Spear’s reggae. Ellis’ use of queer and affect theory shows how geographies claim diasporic subjects in ways that nationalist or masculinist tropes can never fully capture.



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