1 Franco Montalto, with Patrick Gurian, Michael Piasecki, and Mimi Sheller, ‘‘Sup-
porting Haitian Infrastructure Reconstruction Decisions with Local Knowledge,’’
April 2010–March 2011, nsf-rapid Award no. 1032184.
2 In the case of oral histories, there are questions about who controls the production
of such narratives in terms of staging, recording, translating, framing, and intro-
ducing interviews and getting them published. When non-elitist historiography of
the region turned toward methods such as oral history, life histories, autobiogra-
phy, and testimonial, they sought to foreground questions of agency in the creation
of history and memory, arguing in favor of attention to verbal and nonverbal forms
of popular culture and symbolic expression, with an admonition to listen to their
polyvocality and silences (Isaacman 1993). This approach drew on forms of life
history and self-narration as an ethnographic method (see, e.g., the seminal life
history of a Puerto Rican sugar worker in Mintz 1960) but more recently has also
been influenced by feminist methodologies (Brereton 1995; Chamberlain 1995).
3 This study is marked by my particular subjectivities as a Jewish American but
Quaker-educated Philadelphian; a heterosexual but queer-friendly unmarried
mother; a color-conscious but white-privileged global minority; a return migrant
from the foreign shores of England; and what some Jamaicans perceptively called a
‘‘brown whitey.’’
4 See the irn website at and discussion in sx salon, issue
6 (August 2011), available online at
2011/08/ (accessed 12 September 2011).
1. history from the bottom(s) up
1 For very valuable histories of Caribbean emancipation that nevertheless sidestep
sexuality studies, see, e.g., Cooper et al. 2000; Dubois 2004a, 2004b; Hall 1992,
2002; Holt 1992; R. Scott 1985, 2005.
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