New Faculty / Janelle Rodriques

Submitted by Henry J Laufenberg on
Dr. Janelle Rodriques

The University of Washington English Department warmly welcomes Dr. Janelle Rodriques to our faculty.  Professor Rodriques joins us from Auburn University as Assistant Professor of contemporary anglocreole Caribbean and Black diasporic literary fiction.  She holds a PhD in English from Newcastle University, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, which she was awarded in 2016.

Dr. Rodriques’ first monograph, Narratives of Obeah in West Indian Literature: Moving Through the Margins, was published by Routledge in 2019. In it, she explores representations of Obeah – a term used to describe various African-derived, syncretic religious practices, across a range of prose fictions published by Caribbean-born authors in the twentieth century. In her book, Dr. Rodriques argues that these narratives employ Obeah as a marker of the Black ‘folk’ aesthetics that are now constitutive of West Indian literary and cultural production, and that Obeah is an ‘unruly’ narrative subject that not only subverts but signifies a lasting ‘Afro-folk’ sensibility within colonial and ‘postcolonial’ writing of the West Indies.

Dr. Rodriques has published articles about contemporary Caribbean fiction in the Journal of West Indian Literature, Caribbean Quarterly and Cultural Dynamics.  She is currently working on her second book, Waiting, Watching, Warning: Un/Human Being in Caribbean Literature, which explores what she calls a ‘quarrel with humanity’ in Caribbean letters as a matter of mourning of social death – an articulation of a tricky (or ‘trickified’) extra-human mode of subjectivity.

Dr. Rodriques currently serves as Vice Chair of the Society for Caribbean Studies, of which she has been a member since 2012.

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