Yarimar Bonilla is Professor in the Department of Africana & Puerto Rican/Latino Studies at Hunter College and in the PhD Program in Anthropology at the Graduate Center. On July 1, she will assume the role of Acting Director of El Centro, the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College, the research center founded in 1973. In this episode, she talks with Vanessa Valdés, Director of the Black Studies Program and Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at City College and author of Diasporic Blackness: The Life and Times of Arturo Alfonso Schomburg and Oshun’s Daughters: The Search for Womanhood in the Americas, among others. These two educators have much in common: CVs packed with powerful and passionate scholarship, a great respect for one another, and a strong belief that their work serves students, faculty, and the larger community.
Yarimar describes her journey from a childhood in Puerto Rico to life as a scholar and professor at CUNY. She shares personal stories as well meditations on a variety of connected questions, from the position and treatment of Caribbean studies in the academy and the legacy of Haitian-American anthropologist Michel-Rolph Trouillot to the significance and aftereffects of Hurricane Maria. Yarimar has co-edited a book on Trouillot that will be published by Duke University Press this Fall.
Also mentioned in this episode:
If you want to think and hear more about Puerto Rican migration, listen to the episode featuring Cristina Pérez Jiménez and Bret Maney.
If you want to think and hear more about the field of anthropology, listen to the episode featuring Alisse Waterston and Charlotte Corden.