The Existence of the Mixed Race Damnés is an interdisciplinary and intersectional study of the mixed-race subject in the Americas and the rise of oppositional consciousness with a consideration of not only race, but also colonialism. Daphne V. Taylor-Garcia examines the construction of race, gender, and class in coming to an oppositional consciousness as a Spanish colonial subject in the Americas. Spanning the early foundations of knowledge production about colonial/racial subjects and connecting to contemporary debates on Latinxs and racialization, the book takes up the terms through which first-person perceptions of precarity and class, mixed-race existence, and gendered power relations are constructed. The Existence of the Mixed Race Damnés ends with a response to the current scepticism towards organizing as people of color through a decolonial redefinition of the damnés that centers a critique of anti-black racism and colonial relations.
Introduction / 1. The Spatiality of the Damnés / 2. Visible Race and the Legacy of the Sistema de Castas / 3. The Semiotics of Gender in Colonial/Renaissance Knowledge Production / 4. Taking Action as the Damnés / Conclusion / Bibliography / Index
This book is an important interdisciplinary study of the mixed-race subject in the Americas. It draws inspiration from Fanon to Vest and examines widely; from the politics of low-income housing projects, to visual and narrative foundational discourses on colonial subjects, to the lived legacy of these semiotic structures. The writing is bracing, seeking continually to further the decolonial project by stressing the transnational.
This is a major contribution to the development of decolonial thought. Taylor-Garcia shows that mixing is not a triumph of moral anti-racism, as it is sometimes portrayed, but the result of forced collisions and migrations. Given this, decolonial projects must begin to operate more fully as relational projects that connect multiple domains. Brilliant.
Daphne V. Taylor-Garcia is an Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, San Diego.