Guest Editor: Vanessa K. Valdés

PALARA (Publication of Afro-Latin American Research Association) is a multi-disciplinary journal that publishes research and creativity relevant to diaspora studies in the Americas. The editors of the journal, Dr. Sonja Watson and Dr. Dorothy Mosby, invite you to send your abstracts to this special issue on Afro-Latin American and Afro-Latinx Cinema, edited by Dr. Vanessa Valdés. Valdés is an Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at The City College of New York – CUNY. Her research interests include comparative studies of the literatures of the Americas, particularly Afro-Hispanic, African-American, Spanish Caribbean, and U.S. Latina/o Literatures. She currently serves as Book Review Editor of s/x salon, an online literary salon on Caribbean literature and culture. Her articles and reviews have appeared in such journals as Hispania, Chasqui, MELUS Journal, CLA Journal, Callaloo, PALARA, Review: Literature and Arts of the Americas, LSE Review of Books, and Wadabagei. She is the editor of The Future Is Now: A New Look at African Diaspora Studies (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012) and Let Spirit Speak! Cultural Journeys through the African Diaspora (SUNY Press, 2012). She is the author of Oshun’s Daughters: The Search for Womanhood in the Americas (SUNY Press 2014) and Diasporic Blackness: The Life and Times of Arturo Alfonso Schomburg (SUNY Press 2017). She is the series editor of the Afro-Latinx Futures Series from SUNY Press.

2019 marks the fifth year of the United Nations’ International Decade for People of African descent; to this end, we invite essays that examine Afro-Latin American and Afro-Latinx cinema. The twenty-first century alone has seen a slow proliferation of films that not only aim to recover lost and marginalized histories but also to explore Black subjectivities. We endeavor for this issue to serve as an evaluation of the representation of peoples of African descent as well their participation behind the camera. While a great deal of scholarship has been written about the Cuban and Brazilian film industries for their inclusion of Black actresses, actors, and story lines, we greatly encourage essays about films (long-form, short-form all genres) produced and filmed in other countries of the Americas, particularly those of the Circum-Caribbean, the Pacific Coast, and the Southern Cone. Afro-Latin American and Afro-Latinx film has not yet received ample scholarly attention; we intend for this issue to bring much-needed consideration of this mode of cultural production.

Here we present a select filmography that may be subjects of essays: Bus 174 (2002, Brazil); Madame Satã (2002, Brazil); Las manos de dios (2005, Peru); A Dios Momo (2005, Uruguay); El Cimarrón (2007, Puerto Rico); La Playa D.C. (2012, Colombia); Tango negro (2013, France-Argentina); Pelo malo (2013, Venezuela); Dólares de arena (2013, Dominican Republic); O dia de Jerusa (2013, Brazil); Manos sucias (2014, Colombia); Ventos de Agosto (2014, Brazil); Los inocentes (2015, Argentina)

We will also consider examinations of the films of Sara Gómez; Gloria Rolando; Raoul Peck; Carlos Diegues, among others.



  • Abstracts of 250 words due November 1, 2018
  • Invitations for full-length essays will be sent by December 1, 2018
  • Essays of 18-25 pages, as per Author Guidelines, due April 1, 2019
  • Revisions due July 1, 2019


Please send all abstracts to Dr. Vanessa Valdés at

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