AAA Annual Meeting Program

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Paper Information:
Type: Paper
Paper Title: NEGOTIATING CRISIS: THE HAITIAN STATE AND NATION AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE
Author: ESPELENCIA BAPTISTE (Kalamazoo College)   
Date/Time: Sat., 4:00 PM
Co-Author(s): ESPELENCIA BAPTISTE (Kalamazoo College) 
Abstract: One of the first images that reached us following the January 12 earthquake is the image of the collapsed Haitian palace—for Haitians at home and abroad, the primary symbols of the Haitian government. What happened in Haiti in the days in the days that follow the earthquake--the US take over of the airport; the inability of the Haitian government to respond to the basic needs of its population and the absence of the police force--further highlighted the powerlessness of state in service of the nation. For state against or in failing to serve the nation, the earthquake and its aftermath did not create a new set of problem. These factors only exposed dysfunctions in the relation between the Haitian government and the Haitian population. This situation is not unique to Haiti; Katrina also exposed some of the same dysfunctions. However, while the narrative of dysfunctions Katrina exposed could be and were read through race, such a reading is not appropriate for Haiti In its reach and destruction, the earthquake did not discriminate. I will consider the different ways relations between state and nation are being negotiated in the Haitian crisis, especially in light of the peculiar history of Haitian governance. I will consider the difference ongoing ways of negotiating this relationship had for re-crafting the contours of the relationship that animated Trouillot’s view of state against nation.

Program Number: 4-0750
Session Title: HISTORY, MEMORY, GLOBALIZATION: IN HONOR OF MICHEL-ROLPH TROUILLOT
Session Sponsor: American Ethnological Society
Session Date/Time: Sat., 1:45 PM-5:30 PM
Organizer(s): RICHARD PRICE (College of William & Mary), BRACKETTE WILLIAMS (University of Arizona) 
Chair(s): RICHARD PRICE (College of William & Mary)  
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