Imagining the [Unbounded] Grounds of [Caribbean Canadian] Consciousness

Abstract

The “Introduction” to this Special Issue on “Recognition and Recovery of Caribbean Canadian Cultural Production” surveys the multiple creative directions and critical orientations of Caribbean Canadian cultural production and raises key questions about the grounds on which Caribbean Canadian cultural production is recognized, especially in Canada. The guest editors also explore the productive, but sometimes problematic, relationship between Caribbean Canadian archives and the nation, Blackness, Indigeneity, queerness, publishing, popular culture, and settler colonialism. Even so, the writers see the possibilities of communities of relations as well as political alliances between different constituencies in both Canada and the Caribbean in confronting racial capitalism and the many afterlives of colonialism. Re-conceptualizing Caribbean Canadian cultural production as an archive, rather than a field of study, allows the guest editors to recognize the importance of certain commitments and values: an investment in an ethically conscious methodology, a refusal of reductive and essentializing conceptualizations of race, gender, sexuality, as well as the modern human, and a desire to build collectivities of political alliances. The unbounded and sometimes ungrounded nature of the Caribbean Canadian inspires an openness to new ways of thinking about the politics of cultural production in Canada and beyond.
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