Playing Dead with Steve Wehmeyer

Steve Wehmeyer’s article “Playing Dead: New Orleans’ Northside Skull and Bone Gang,” which explores the Haitian roots of subaltern African-American carnival traditions and their function as responses to collective crisis, is being published in an edited volume accompanying a landmark museum exhibit opening this weekend in Los Angeles.  In Extremis: Death and Life in 21st Century Haitian Art examines the ways contemporary Haitian and Haitian-American “visual artists have responded to a tumultuous 21st century, an era punctuated by political upheaval, a cataclysmic earthquake, devastating hurricanes, epidemics, and continuing instability.”

Wehmeyer will be attending the exhibit opening along with other contributors and curators, including Donald J. Cosentino (UCLA), Patrick Polk (UCLA)  Katherine Smith (Brown University), and Leah Gordon (UK).  He wishes to ensure his colleagues at Champlain that he’s not going merely to take part in the rum tasting.

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