Rivers
Institute for Contemporary
Art & Thought

Yto Barrada: Ways to Baffle the Wind is now open to the public at MASS MoCA. Join us in the galleries!

  • Below we share some of the publications that have shaped our thinking this season…

  • Aciman, André. False Papers: Essays on Exile and Memory. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2000.

  • Aldama, Arturo J. and Frederick Luis Aldama, eds. Decolonizing Latinx Masculinities. Tucson: The University of Arizona Press, 2020.

  • Als, Hilton. “Ralph Ellison’s Territories.” The New Yorker, April 30, 2007. Link to article.

  • Alvarez, C.J. Border Land, Border Water: A History of Construction on the US-Mexico Divide. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2019.

  • American Academy in Berlin. “Sanford Biggers: Moon Medicin.” Video, 1:11:57. April 11, 2016. Link to video.

  • antipodeonline. “Geographies of Racial Capitalism with Ruth Wilson Gilmore - An Antipode Foundation Film.” Video, 16:18. June 1, 2020. Link to video.

  • Anzaldúa, Gloria. Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza. San Francisco: Aunt Lute, 1987.

  • Appiah, Kwame Anthony. Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2006.

  • Baptiste, Bala James. Race and Radio: Pioneering Black Broadcasters in New Orleans. Jackson, MS: University Press of Mississippi, 2019.

  • Barnes, Bruce Sunpie and Rachel Breunlin. Talk That Music Talk: Passing on the Brass Band Music in New Orleans The Traditional Way. New Orleans: University of New Orleans Center for the Book, 2014.

  • Bartz, Gary. “I’ve Known Rivers.” From I’ve Known Rivers and Other Bodies. Fantasy, Inc., 1973. Link to video.

  • Beardsley, John, William Arnett, Paul Arnett, and Jane Livingston. Gee’s Bend: The Women and Their Quilts. Atlanta: Tinwood Books in association with The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2002.

  • Bervin, Jen. River, 2018. Silver foil-stamped cloth sequins, metallic thread, silver mulberry paper, mull, Tyvek. 230 curvilinear ft. Link to project.

  • Browne, Simone. Dark Matters: On the Surveillance of Blackness. Durham: Duke University Press, 2015.

  • Burgos, Jenzia. The Black Music History Library. Accessed Aug 19, 2020. Link to library.

  • Bush, Tori and Richard Goodman. The Gulf South: An Anthology of Environmental Writing. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2021.

  • Campanella, Richard. Geographies of New Orleans: Urban Fabrics Before the Storm. Lafayette, LA: Center for Louisiana Studies, 2006.

  • Carruth, Allison. “A Brief History of Public Art and the L.A. River.” KCET ArtBound, March 19, 2014.

  • Cunningham, Vinson. “The Playful, Political Art of Sanford Biggers.” The New Yorker, January 8, 2018. Link to article.

  • de la Torre, Mónica. “Equivalences.” From Repetition Nineteen. New York: Nightboat Books, 2020.

  • Di Martino, Rä. The Day He Swims Thru Marrakech. Milan: Humboldt Books, 2016.

  • Di Palma, Vittoria and Alexander Robinson. “Willful Waters: Los Angeles and Its River Have Long Been Enmeshed in an Epic Struggle for Control.” Places Journal, May 2018. Link to article.

  • Dobard, Raymond G. and Jacqueline Tobin. Hidden in Plain View: A Secret Story of Quilts and the Underground Railroad. New York: Doubleday, 1999.

  • Edelson, S. Max. The New Map of Empire: How Britain Imagined America before Independence. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2017.

  • Edwards, Brent Hayes. Epistrophies: Jazz and the Literary Imagination. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2017.

  • Edwards, Brent Hayes. “The Uses of Diaspora.” Social Text 19, no. 1 (20 March 2001): 45-73. Link to article.

  • Eglash, Ron. African Fractals: Modern Computing and Indigenous Design. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1999.

  • Fanon, Frantz. Black Skin, White Masks. Translated by Richard Philcox. New York: Grove Press, 2008.

  • Fisk, Harold. “The Alluvial Valley of the Lower Mississippi River.” 1944. Radical Cartography. Accessed August 6, 2020. Link to site.

  • Flaherty, George F. and Andrea Giunta. “Latin American Networks: Synchronicities, Contacts and Divergences.” Artelogie 15 (2020): 4-11. Link to article.

  • Freire, Paulo. Pedagogy of the Oppressed. Translated by Myra Bergman Ramos. New York: Herder and Herder, 1970.

  • Gates, Henry Louis, Jr. The Signifying Monkey: A Theory of Afro-American Literary Criticism. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988.

  • Gateward, Frances K. and John Jennings. The Blacker the Ink: Constructions of Black Identity in Comics and Sequential Art. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2015.

  • Glissant, Édouard. Poetics of Relation. Translated by Betsy Wing. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 1997.

  • The Graduate Center, CUNY. “The Black Atlantic @ 20.” Video, 1:20:34. October 24, 2013. Link to video.

  • Gundaker, Grey and Judith McWillie. No Space Hidden: The Spirit of African American Yard Work. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press, 2005.

  • Hanger, Kimberly S. Bounded Lives, Bounded Places: Free Black Society in Colonial New Orleans, 1769–1803. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1997.

  • Harley, John Brian. The New Nature of Maps: Essays in the History of Cartography. Baltimore, MD and London: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.

  • Hartman, Saidiya V. Lose Your Mother: A Journey Along the Atlantic Slave Route. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2007.

  • Hearne, Ted. Katrina Ballads. Musical Score. New York: Good Child Music, 2008. Link to audio.

  • hooks, bell. “Choosing the Margin as a Space of Radical Openness.” In Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics. Boston: South End Press, 1990.

  • Hsu, Hua. “The Critic Who Convinced Me That Criticism Could Be Art.” The New Yorker, September 21, 2016. Link to article.

  • Jackson, Danielle A. “You Can’t Go Home Again.” Review of The Yellow House, by Sarah M. Broom. Bookforum, December/January 2020. Link to review.

  • Johnson, Walter. River of Dark Dreams: Slavery and Empire in the Cotton Kingdom. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2013.

  • Jones, Kellie. South of Pico: African American Artists in Los Angeles in the 1960s and 1970s. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2017. Link to site.

  • Kelley, Robin D.G. Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination. Boston: Beacon, 2002.

  • Kelman, Ari. A River and Its City: The Nature of Landscape in New Orleans. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2003.

  • Lubrin, Canisia, Voodoo Hypothesis: Poems. Hamilton, Ontario: Buckrider Books, 2017.

  • Lyster, Rosa. “Where Water Used to Be.” London Review of Books, April 2, 2020. Link to diary.

  • McPhee, John. The Control of Nature. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1989.

  • Metabolic Studio. “Bending the River.” Accessed August 6, 2020. Link to site.

  • Meyer, Richard. Outlaw Representation: Censorship and Homosexuality in Twentieth-Century American Art. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.

  • Michie, Troy. “New and Recent Work.” The Paris Review, Fall 2020. Link to article.

  • Miller, Paul D. (aka DJ Spooky that Subliminal Kid). Rhythm Science. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2004.

  • Monoskop. “Decolonial Aesthetics.” Last modified June 9, 2020. Link to article.

  • Moran, Jason and Matana Roberts. Loop. Issue 1. “Coin Coin Recollections.” Accessed September 1, 2020. Link to article.

  • Mugge, Robert, dir. Sun Ra: A Joyful Noise. New York: Rhapsody Films, 1980. Link to film.

  • Mullen, Harryette. Sleeping with the Dictionary. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2002.

  • Mullen, Harryette interviewed by Kyle G. Dargan. “Everything We Can Imagine.” Callaloo 30, no. 4 (October 2007): 1014–1016.

  • Muñoz, José Esteban. The Sense of Brown: Ethnicity, Affect, and Performance. Durham: Duke University Press, 2020.

  • Music Maker Relief Foundation. “Leyla McCalla: ‘Lonely House.’” Video, 03:24. August 4, 2011. Link to video.

  • Nelson, Maggie. The Argonauts. Minneapolis: Graywolf Press, 2015.

  • Noriega, Chon. “Your Art Disgusts Me: Early Asco 1971-75.” East of Borneo, November 18, 2010. Link to article.

  • Okeowo, Alexis. “How Saidiya Hartman Retells the History of Black Life.” The New Yorker, October 19, 2020. Link to article.

  • Owens, Craig. “The Allegorical Impulse: Toward a Theory of Postmodernism.” October 12 (Spring 1980): 67-86. Link to text.

  • Pérez, Emma. Gulf Dreams. San Francisco: Aunt Lute, 1996.

  • Poetry Reading Live. “Langston Hughes Reads ‘The Negro Speaks of Rivers.’” Video, 02:25. October 9, 2013. Link to video.

  • Puar, Jasbir K. “‘I would rather be a cyborg than a goddess’: Becoming-Intersectional in Assemblage Theory.” philoSOPHIA 2, no. 1 (2012): 49-66.

  • Ramírez, Catherine S. The Woman in the Zoot Suit: Gender, Nationalism, and the Cultural Politics of Memory. Durham: Duke University Press, 2009.

  • Rayuwish. “John Biggers, African American Artist (1924–2001).” Video, 05:11. September 12, 2013. Link to video.

  • Roberts, Brian Russell. Borderwaters: Amid the Archipelagic States of America. Durham: Duke University Press, 2021.

  • Sakakeeney, Matt. “Mardi Gras Indians.” 64 Parishes, accessed August 6, 2020.
    Link to article.

  • Salami, Minna. “Exousiance: What Rivers Teach Us About Power.” Emerge, January 6, 2020. Link to article.

  • Saunders, Frances Stonor. The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters. New York: The New Press, 1999.

  • Schulz, Kathryn. “The Perilous Lure of the Underground Railroad.” The New Yorker, August 15, 2016. Link to article.

  • Schwartz, A. Brad. Broadcast Hysteria: Orson Welles’s War of the Worlds and the Art of Fake News. New York: Hill and Wang, 2015.

  • Scott, Rebecca J. “‘Stubborn and Disposed to Stand Their Ground’: Black Militia, Sugar Workers, and the Dynamics of Collective Action in the Louisiana Sugar Bowl, 1863–87.” In From Slavery to Emancipation in the Atlantic World, edited by Sylvia Frey and Betty Wood, 103–126. London and Portland, OR: Frank Cass, 1999.

  • Socarides, Alexandra. “The Poems (We Think) We Know: ‘The Negro Speaks of Rivers’ by Langston Hughes.” Los Angeles Review of Books, August 1, 2013. Link to article.

  • Soja, Edward W. Thirdspace: Journeys to Los Angeles and Other Real-and-Imagined Places. Cambridge, MA and Oxford: Blackwell, 1996.

  • Spillers, Hortense. “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book.” Diacritics 17, no. 2 (1987): 65-81. Link to PDF.

  • Stephens, Michelle Ann. Skin Acts: Race, Psychoanalysis, and the Black Male Performer. Durham: Duke University Press, 2014.

  • Still, William with an introduction by Ta-Nehisi Coates. The Underground Railroad Records. New York: Modern Library, 2019.

  • Straßburger, Lena. “How to kill with a smile—how to smile about a kill: violent clowns as double incongruity.” Comedy Studies 11, no. 1 (April 2020): 25–35.

  • Sun Ra Music Channel (Official). “Sun Ra Speaks—Berkeley Lecture Pt 4.” Video, 12:06. June 23, 2014. Link to video.

  • Tanaka, Kimiaki. An Illustrated History of the Mandala: From Its Genesis to the Kālacakratantra. Somerville, MA: Wisdom Publications, 2018.

  • Tate, Greg. Flyboy in the Buttermilk: Essays on Contemporary America. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1992.

  • Theisen, Olive Jensen. Walls That Speak: The Murals of John Thomas Biggers. Denton, TX: University of North Texas Press, 2010.

  • Thompson, Krista A. An Eye for the Tropics: Tourism, Photography, and Framing the Caribbean Picturesque. Durham: Duke University Press, 2007.

  • Vidal, Cécile, ed. Louisiana: Crossroads of the Atlantic World. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014.

  • Wahlman, Maude Southwell, Museum of American Folk Art. Signs and Symbols: African Images in African-American Quilts. New York: Studio Books with the Museum of American Folk Art, 1993.

  • Weiss, Allen S. Phantasmic Radio. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1995.

  • Wilford, John Noble. The Mapmakers. New York: Knopf, 1981.

  • Wilkerson, Isabel. The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration. New York: Vintage Books, 2010.

  • Williams, Kandis, ed. Reader on the Chitlin Circuit. Los Angeles: Cassandra Press. Link to publication.

  • Wilson, Gaby. “WFH is Not the Work of Homemaking: How to Understand an American Quilt.” SSENSE, July 28, 2020. Link to article.

  • Wood, Denis. Everything Sings: Maps for a Narrative Atlas. Los Angeles: Siglio Press, 2010.