Welcome to the CPA site!  


The principal goal of the CPA is to support the free exchange of ideas and foster an intellectual community that is 
truly representative of the diversity of voices and perspectives that is paradigmatic of, but not limited to, the Caribbean. The Caribbean is thus understood not solely as a geopolitical region, but more generally as a trope to investigate certain dimensions of the multiple undersides of modernity. Likewise, philosophy is conceived, not as an isolated academic discipline, but as rigorous theoretical reflection about fundamental problems faced by humanity. Understood in this way, Caribbean philosophy is a transdisciplinary form of interrogation informed by scholarly knowledges as well as by practices and artistic expressions that elucidate fundamental questions that emerge in contexts of  discovery, conquest, racial, gender, and sexual domination, genocide, dependency, and exploitation as well as freedom, emancipation, and decolonization. Reflection about these areas often appears in philosophical texts, but also in a plethora of other genres such as literature, music, and historical writings. The CPA invites theoretical engagements with all such questions, thematic areas, and genres with emphasis on any given discipline or field, but with a common interest in  shifting the geography of reason, by which we mean approaching the Caribbean and the  global south in general as zones of sustainable practices and knowledges.


The CPA is happy to announce that

Neil Roberts and Doug Ficek have been elected as

CPA’s President-Elect and Vice-President-Elect.  

They will begin their terms as President and Vice-President in January of 2017.

We are very excited about the new directions in
which they will take the organization. 



Shifting the Geography of Reason XIV:
Theorizing Livity, Decolonizing Freedom


 June 22-24, 2017

Deadline: JANUARY 15th, 2017

Click here for more information 



Press Release: CPA 2017 Awards

The Caribbean Philosophical Association is pleased to announce the 2017 recipients of the association’s awards for contributions to philosophical thought, literature, and last year’s best papers by beginning scholars and graduate students or independent young scholars:

Frantz Fanon Lifetime Achievement Award:

                Carole Boyce Davies

                Maureen MacGrogan

Nicolás Guillén Lifetime Achievement Award:

                Hortense Spillers

Frantz Fanon Outstanding Achievements Award:

                Eduardo Mendieta

Frantz Fanon Outstanding Book Awards:

Michael Neocosmos, Thinking Freedom in Africa.  Johannesburg, SA: Wits University Press, 2016.

Santiago Slabodsky, Decolonial Judaism: Triumphal Failures of Barbaric Thinking.  New York: PalgraveMacmillan, 2014.

Nicolás Guillén Outstanding Book Award:

Nadia V. Celis-Salgado, La rebelión de las niñas: El Caribe y la “conciencia corporal.”  Madrid, Sp: IBEROAMERICANA, 2015.

Jeremy Matthew Glick, The Black Radical Tragic: Performance, Aesthetics, and the Unfinished Haitian Revolution.  New York: NYU Press, 2016.

Anna Julia Cooper Award:  Best Paper by a Beginning Scholar from 2016 Conference

Victor Hugo Pacheco, “La colonialidad del poder, impronta, desarrollo y reformulación de un concept”

Claudia Jones Award: Best Paper by a Graduate Student from 2016 Conference

Li Beilei, “The Big World in ‘Small Places’: James W. Johnson’s Interpretation and Participation in the Reconstruction of African American Folk Culture”

The award ceremony will take place at the Caribbean Philosophical Association’s international conference, June 22nd to 24th, 2017, at the Borough of Manhattan Community College in New York City in the United States.

For detailed information on the Frantz Fanon Prize Recipients, click here.

For detailed information on the Nicolas Guillen Prize Recipients, click here.

For detailed information on the Anna Julia Cooper Award Recipients, click here. 

For detailed information on the Claudia Jones Award Recipients, click here.

CPA BOOK SERIES: Creolizing the Canon

CPA BOOK SERIES: Global Critical Caribbean Thought


This Year in the CPA

Dear Caribbean Philosophical Association Members,

It’s been a very busy summer for the organization!  After hosting an intensive six-day summer school at UCONN featuring the work of Oscar Guardiola-Rivera, Paget Henry, and Drucilla Cornell with participants from Texas A&M University, Duquesne University, Southern Illinois University, Simon’s Rock at Bard College, McMaster University (in Canada), San Jose State University, York University (in Canada), Rutgers University, University of Texas at Austin, LaGuardia Community College and UCONN, we held our annual international conference in Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo for three days of rich presentations and discussions organized around the theme of “Technologies of Liberation.” 

Each morning began with a poetry reading (by, respectively, Shereen Shaw [University of Liverpool], Devon Johnson [Philadelphia University of the Arts], Lior Levy and Sarah Cohen Shabot [University of Haifa]) and ended with a special plenary (a celebration of Enrique Dussel’s eighth decade, featuring brief commentaries by Grant Silva [Marquette University], Geo Ciccariello-Maher [Drexel University], Frederick Mills [Bowie State University], and Linda Martín Alcoff  [Hunter College & Graduate Center, CUNY] with a response from Enrique Dussel and a special existential political philosophical musical performance by Gizelxanath and Benjamin Barson; the awarding of this year’s Claudia Jones, Anna Julia Cooper, Nicolás Guillén, and Frantz Fanon awards by Lewis R. Gordon (UCONN) to Kojo Koram (Birkbeck College, University of London), Jina Fast (Westchester University), Bénédicte Boisseron (University of Montana), José Guadalupe Gandarilla Salgado (UNAM), Olúfemi Táíwò (Cornell University), and P. Mabogo More (University of Limpopo, South Africa) followed by a roundtable discussion on Fanon at 90 with this and previous year’s Fanon Prize winners, including Leonard Harris and Alejandro de Oto and the screening of a short film by and discussion with Mauricio Andrada and three of his students about the rebuilding of a local Mayan hospital practicing traditional medicine; and an exploration of possible futures followed by a breathtaking series of closing poetic philosophical reflections by Garrick Cooper (New Zealand), Frieda Ekotto (Cameroon by way of Michigan), and Isaac Esau Carrillo Can (Mexico). 

In between were a plenary organized by Oakland community organizer, April Glaser, featuring innovative work in Mexico undertaken by Anna Jover Segura (with Comunicadoras Populares por la Autonomía, Chiapas), Loreto Bravo (with the Palabra Radio Project, Oaxaca), Peter Bloom (with Rhizomatica, Oaxaca), Jaime Villarreal (with Rancho Electrónico, Mexico City) and Jacobo Nájera (with ContingenteMX and Enjambre Digital, Mexico City), a Business Meeting where we announced our plans to create a winter school in Cuba, and panels on themes ranging from pedagogies of resistance and liberation and human rights through the lens of coloniality, to state violence against indigenous women, digital epistemologies, death and the reinvention of Jim Crow, phenomenologies of the flesh, and queer decolonial engagements.  We were especially appreciative that students from Universidad de la Salle, Colombia, ANEFH, A.C. / UQROO, and the UNAM joined us to share their excellent work and of all of the wonderful encounters among participants over drinks and dinners that hopefully are only the start of longer term friendships and collaborations.  

The need to think concretely about liberation of course continues.  In case you have not seen our Caribbean Philosophical Association statement on the recent rulings in the Dominican Republic, please check our website link here and pass it on:


You can also check various updates on the association through the hashtag #CaribPhil or at our twitter address: @caribphil

Finally, we wanted to let you know long in advance that next year’s meeting will take place June 16–18 at UCONN, Storrs, with the theme “Theorizing from Small Places.”  Please keep an eye out for the Call for Papers, which we’ll begin circulating at the end of next month.  We hope that you will join us!

Un abrazo muy fuerte,

Jane Anna Gordon, President

and Rosario Torres Guevara, Vice President


The Caribbean Philosophical Association 2015 Annual Meeting
Shifting the Geography of Reason XII: 

was held in

Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, Mexico
June 18-21, 2015

Click here for more information

Click here to see the program

The Caribbean Philosophical Association held its first

Summer School at UCONN
For more information, please click here 


CPA 2015 Awards

The Caribbean Philosophical Association is pleased to announce the 2015 recipients of the association’s awards for contributions to Caribbean thought and philosophical literature. The awards will be conferred at the Caribbean Philosophical Association 12th Annual International Meeting, which will take place June 18 to 21, 2015, in Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, Mexico. For more information on the conference, click here.

The 2015 Nicolás Guillén Lifetime Achievement Award: Samuel R. Delany George Lamming. 

The 2015 Nicolás Guillén for Philosophical Literature Award: Víctor Fowler Calzada

The 2015 Nicolás Guillén Award for Outstanding Book in Philosophical Literature: Creole Renegades: Rhetoric of Betrayal and Guilt in the Caribbean Diaspora by Bénédicte Boisseron. 

The 2015 Frantz Fanon Lifetime Achievement Award: Grace Lee Bogs and P. Mabogo More.

The 2015 Frantz Fanon Award for Outstanding Book in Caribbean Thought: 
- Asedios a la totalidad. Poder y política en la modernidad desde un encare de-colonial by José Guadalupe Gandarilla Salgado
- How Colonialism Preempted Modernity in Africa by Olúfémi Táíwo. 

The 2014-2015 Anna Julia Cooper Award for Best Paper: “The Ambiguities of Privilege and Identity in the Work of Simone de Beauvoir” by Jina Fast.

The 2014-2015 Claudia Jones Award for Best Paper: Can the Subaltern Teach? Towards a New Geo-epistemic for the European Age of Crisis” by Kojo Koram. 

For more information on the Nicolás Guillén Awards, click here
For more information on the Frantz Fanon Prize, click here
For more information on the Anna Julia Cooper Award, click here.
For more information on the Claudia Jones Award, click here. 

Letter from the President, Jane Gordon

Happy New Year!

As we enter the eleventh year of the CPA’s existence, there is much to celebrate.

In a period that Doug Ficek described perfectly in Puerto Rico as one of profound practical and theoretical misanthropy or one of an excessively skeptical attitude toward transformative ideas and projects, CPA through the creative and loving labor of a small and now growing community burst onto the scene, forging a refuge, a counter, an alternative... Read more

Existentialism from a Global Perspective

The Caribbean Philosophical Association will be meeting with the Simone de Beauvoir Society and the North American Jean-Paul Sartre Society this year with the theme of shifting the geography of reason through exploring diverse lineages of existentialism. Click here to view the CFP.

The following is a non-exhaustive list of existentialists from the Global South and existentialist of color that offers a very different portrait of existential philosophy, thought, and artistic work beyond what is often taught in supposedly mainstream courses on existentialism and thus should emerge in discussions at this meeting and future research and courses in this field:

Mohammed Arkoun (19282010)
Assia Djebar

Mohammed Chaouki Zine

Charles Wm. Ephraim (1941–2011)
Paget Henry
Jamaica Kincaid

Carlos Astrada (1894–1970)
Jorgé Luis Borges (1889–1986)
Carlos Cossio (1903–1987)
Alejandro Korn (1860–1936)
Francisco Romero (1891–1962)

Sara Ahmed (also UK)
Danielle Davis

Kamau Braithwaite (and USA)
levis Headly (and USA)
George Lamming 

Raimundo de Farias Brito (1862–1917)
Nilton Campos (1898–1963)
Creusa Capalbo
Paulo Freire (1921–1997)
Abdias do Nascimento (March 14, 1914 – May 23, 2011)
Ernildo Stein 

Elias Bongmba (also USA)
Nathalie Etoke (also USA)
Achille Mbembe (also South Africa)

Enrique Molina Garmendia (1871-1964)
Jorge Millas (1917-1982)
Pablo Neruda (1904-1973) 

He Lin (1902-1995)
Liang Shuming (1893-1988)
Lu Xun / Zhou Shuren (1881-1936)
Mencius (c.372-289 BCE)
Pan Pingge (1610-1677)
Wang Ji (1498-1583)
Wang Xuefu
Wang Yangming (1472-1529) 
Xiong Shili (1885-1968) 

Gonzalo Arango Arias (1931–1976)
Fernando González Ochoa (1895 –1964)
Oscar Guardiola-Rivera (also UK)

Alejo Carpentier (1904–1980)
Nicolás Cristóbal Guillén Batista (1902-1989) 

Dominican Republic
Junot Díaz (also USA)

Abdel-Rahman Badawi (1917–2002)
Taha Husayn (

Tsenay Serequeberhan (also USA)

Jean-Paul Rocchi (also Guadeloupe) 

French Guiana 
Léon-Gontran Damas (1912–1978)

Ayikwei Armah

Simone Schwarz-Bart 

Wilson Harris (also UK)

Edwidge Danticat (also USA)
Jean-Price Mars (1876-1969) 
Jacques Roumain (1907-1944) 

Sri Aurobindo (1872 –1950)
Rabindranth Tagore (1861 –1941)

Abd al-Wahhab al-Bayati (1926 –1999)

Ali Shariati (1933–1977)

Lewis Gordon (also USA)
Claude McKay (1889-1948) 
LaRose Parris (known primarily in the USA) 

Masao Abe (1915-2006)
Nishitani Keiji (1900-1990)

Abdul JanMohamed (also USA)
Wandia Njoya
Ngugi wa Thiong'o

Layla Baalbakki
Suhayl Idris (?–2008)
Charles Malik

Aimé Césaire
Suzanne Césaire
Raphael Confiant
Frantz Fanon [also Algeria] (1925–1961)

Antonio Caso (1883–1946)
José Gaos (1900–1969)
Octavio Paz (1914–1998)
Jorge Portilla (1919–1963)
Samuel Ramos (1897–1959)
Emilio Uranga (1921–1988) 
Luis Villoro (1922– )
Leopoldo Zea (1912–2004)

New Zealand
Garrick Cooper

Chinua Achebe (1930–2013)
F. Abiola Irele (also USA)
Fela Kuti (1938–1997)

Ghassan Kanafani [also Lebanon] (1936–1972)

Augusto Salazar Bondy (1925–1974)
José Carlos Mariátegui (1894–1930) 
(See also Gloria M. Comesaña-Santalices) 

Léopold Sédar Senghor (1906–2001) 

Gloria M. Comesaña-Santalices (known primarily in Peru)
Ortega Y Gasset  (1883
Don Miguel de Unamuno (1864–1936)             

South Africa
Steven Bantu Biko (1946–1977)
Rozena Maart (also Canada)
Chabani Manganyi
P. Mabogo More

United States***
Linda Martín Alcoff (also Panama)        
Molefi Asante 
James Baldwin (1924–1987)
Robert Birt
Frederick Douglass (c. 1818–1895)
W.E.B. Du Bois (1868–1963)
Ralph Ellison (1914–1994)
Kathryn Gines
Lorraine Hansberry (1930–1965)
Langston Hughes (1902-1967)
Floyd Hayes, III
Stephen Haymes
Charles Johnson
Maulana Karenga
William R. Jones (1933–2012)
Nella Larson (1891–1964)
Monifa Love
Nelson Maldonado-Torres
Jacquelyn Martinez
Toni Morrison
Lucius T. Outlaw
J. Deotis Roberts
Howard Thurman (1899–1981)
Dwayne Tunstall
Cornel West
Richard Wright [also France]  (1908–1960)
George Yancy
Naomi Zack           

Carlos Vaz Ferreira
José Enriqué Rodó

Hien Thu Luong
Ly Chanh Trung
Nguyen Van Trung
Thich Nhat Hanh
Tran Thái Dinh (1921-2005)

All of these philosophers, social theorists, and artists were in dialogue with or explored the works of European and Euro-American existentialists such as Hazel Barnes, Simone de Beauvoir, Maurice Blanchot, Albert Camus, Jacques Derrida (depending on how Deconstruction is read), Søren Kierkegaard, Karl Jaspers, Martin Heidegger, Gabriel Marcel, Maxine Greene, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Jean-Paul Sartre.  The dialogue that will emerge from the above broader portrait should stimulate a more rich conception of existential thought for future generations.

Please also check out the list of laureates for the Caribbean Philosophical Association’s Fanon and Guillén Awards by clicking here.

Some useful recent publications reflecting a broader portrait of existential thought:

George Cotkin, Existential America.  Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003.

Yoav Di-Capua, “Arab Existentialism: An Invisible Chapter in the Intellectual History of Decolonization,” The American Historical Review 117, no. 4 (2012): 1061–1091.

Lewis R. Gordon, An Introduction to Africana Philosophy.  Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2008.

Hien Thu Luong.  “Vietnamese Existential Philosophy: A Critical Appraisal.”  Temple University Dissertation, 2009. 

Lu Qi’s lectures on Yangming at École des hautes études en sciences sociales (July 2011): http://ecoumene.blogspot.com/2011/07/wang-yangmings-philosophy-and-its-fate.html

Roberto Domingo Toledo, “Existentialism and Latin America,” in Jack Reynolds, Ashley Woodward, and Felicity Joseph (eds.), The Continuum Companion to Existentialism (London: Continuum, 2011), pp. 215–237.

* While Albert Camus and Jacques Derrida were born in Algeria, they are read primarily as French and more at the mainstream of the Western academy, which is why they’re reserved for the concluding paragraph.

** While geographically in Europe, Spain is geopolitically more part of the Global South, which is why it is included here.

*** Although the USA is geopolitically First World, the designation and ideas of the theorists and artists listed here are squarely located in the Global South. 

The Caribbean Philosophical Association 2014 ANNUAL MEETING, Shifting the Geography of Reason XI:  Diverse Lineages of Existentialism—Africana, Feminist, and Decolonial, was held at the Hyatt Regency in St. Louis, Missouri, June 19–21, 2014.

This was our first joint meeting with the following societies: 
Collegium of Black Women Philosophers
Merleau-Ponty Circle
North American Sartre Society
Roundtable of Latina Feminism
Simone de Beauvoir Society 

The meeting was phenomenal! We will soon post pictures and highlights from the meeting. 
We hope that we can continue these joint efforst in the future.  

Click here to view the program


To become a new member or renew your membership in the new members page of the Caribbean Philosophical Association hosted by the Philosophy Documentation Center, please click here.