Black Latinidades

When Language Broke Open

When Language Broke Open collects the creative offerings of forty-four queer and trans Black writers of Latin American descent who use poetry, prose, and visual art to illustrate Blackness as a geopolitical experience that is always changing. Telling stories of Black Latinidades, this anthology centers the multifaceted realities of the LGBTQ community.By exploring themes of memory, care, and futurity, these contributions expand understandings of Blackness in Latin America, the Caribbean, and their U.S.-based diasporas. The volume offers up three central questions: How do queer and/or trans Black writers of Latin American descent address memory? What are the textures of caring, being cared for, and accepting care as Black queer and/or trans people of Latin American descent? And how do queer and trans embodiments help us understand and/or question the past and the present, and construct a Black, queer, and trans future?

The works collected in this anthology encompass a multitude of genres including poetry, autobiography, short stories, diaries, visual art, and a graphic memoir and feature the voices of established writers alongside emerging voices. Together, the contributors challenge everything we think we know about gender, sexuality, race, and what it means to experience a livable life.

“When Language Broke Open will be a trailblazing anthology that multiple communities, generations, and scholar-activists will greatly benefit from. Alan Pelaez Lopez’s methodological insight in centering the lived, embodied experiences of Black Latinx queer and trans folks conjures a public and intimate space to gather multiple forms of knowledge production into one collection.” –Paul Joseph López Oro, Smith College

“This anthology is a beautiful and powerful collection that brings readers into the textures, scents, and feels of Black queer and trans Latinx Americas across multiple geographies. The writers herein capture the tension, disappointment, and displacement of queer diasporas, while at the same time guiding us into how we hold spaces of care and reconciliation. The work’s beauty is that it is relatable, intersectional, and an homage to ancestral lineages and divine knowledges.” – Omaris Z. Zamora, Rutgers University

“The contributors to this anthology span Latin American and Caribbean countries and territories and their diasporas: Brazil to Borikén, Liberia to Hispanic USA. Their essays interrogate conformist binaries (out vs. closet, nostalgic past vs. survived present, homeland vs. diaspora) and rebels against the confinements of ethnicities, genders, and nationalities.” – Sam Dapanas, Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide