Author Archives: Yogita Goyal

About Yogita Goyal

Yogita Goyal is associate professor of English and African American studies at the University of California–Los Angeles, editor of the journal Contemporary Literature, and vice president of the Association for the Study of Arts of the Present (ASAP). She is the author of Romance, Diaspora, and Black Atlantic Literature (Cambridge University Press, 2010), guest editor of a special issue of Research in African Literatures (Fall 2014), and editor of the Cambridge Companion to Transnational American Literature (Cambridge University Press, 2017). She is currently writing a book on the revival of the slave narrative as a new world literary genre in contemporary literature, titled Runaway Genres: Global Afterlives of Slavery.

The Logic of Analogy: Slavery and the Contemporary Refugee

In literary studies, questions of race, power, and terror raised by the mention of the Zong atrocity have long been familiar. While the facts of the case are well known—in 1781, a captain of a British slave ship chose to throw 133 slaves overboard so that he could claim them as insurance losses—the afterlife of Zong far exceeds its eighteenth-century abolitionist frame of moral outrage, legal maneuver, and humanitarian activism. Following in and amplifying J. M. W. Turner’s footsteps (whose 1840 painting Slave Ship galvanized Continue reading → Continue reading →