This symposium explores the historical relationship of the Dominican Republic and Haiti and their diasporas, with a particular emphasis on migration, race, and the visual arts. Composed of visual artists, community members, performers, and scholars, the event addresses the past and present relationship of Haiti and the Dominican Republic from an anthropological, literary, and art historical perspective. Scholars and artists will explore the revision of Hispañola’s flawed historical narrative, which constructed Euro-Centric racial hierarchies in the early 20th century in the Dominican Republic.
The symposium will be composed of two panels, an art performance, and a discussion about the performance. The first panel explores sites of encounter between peoples of African descent in Hispañola, which challenge the stereotype of the country’s ‘denial’ of blackness. The second panel argues that contemporary U.S.-based Dominican and Haitian artists oftentimes look to the 19th century history of exchange between both countries in order to reflect on the similarities, and not differences, at the root of each culture. To conclude the symposium, a multi-media performance will be presented by Dominican American artist Charo Oquet, and will be followed by a conversation between the artist and Tashima Thomas, PhD candidate at Rutgers University. The symposium will be followed by a reception in the Art History lounge.
The symposium is convened by Abigail Lapin, Ph.D. Candidate in Art History, CUNY Graduate Center.
Participants include Charo Oquet, Diógenes Abréu, Edouard Duval-Carrié, Edward J. Sullivan, Herman Bennett, Jean-Marie Thédoat, Judy Sund, Scherezade Garcia, Tashima Thomas, and Vladimir Cybil Charlier.
Cosponsored by the Institute for Research on the African Diaspora in the Americas and the Caribbean (IRADAC), The Center for the Humanities, Advanced Research Collaborative (ARC), the PhD Program in Art History, the Dominican Studies Group, and the Doctoral Students’ Council.