Quito Swan’s forthcoming book Pasifika Black: Oceania, Anti-colonialism, and the African World (NYU Press, March 2022) beautifully encompasses the type of internationalist solidarity our 39th issue The Ocean… From the Black Atlantic to the Sea of Islands would like to convey. As such, this interview about the struggles of liberation in Melanesia (in particular West Papua, Kanaky, and Vanuatu) constitutes a cornerstone of the issue, for which we are deeply grateful to Quito.
Hailing from the island of Bermuda, Quito Swan is Professor of African American and African Diaspora Studies at Indiana University Bloomington. An award-winning historian of Black internationalism, he is the author of Pauulu’s Diaspora: Black Internationalism and Environmental Justice (University Press of Florida, 2020), Black Power in Bermuda: The Struggle for Decolonization (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), and Pasifika Black: Oceania, Anticolonialism, and the African World (New York University Press, 2022). Pauulu’s Diaspora was awarded the African American Intellectual History Association’s (AAIHS) 2021 Pauli Murray Book Prize and a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) 2021 Fellowship Book Award Prize.