Popular and academic representations of the free mulatta concubine repeatedly depict women of mixed black African and white racial descent as defined by their sexual attachment to white men, and thus they offer evidence of the means to and dimensions of their freedom within Atlantic slave societies. In The Mulatta Concubine: Terror, Intimacy, Freedom, and Desire in the Black Transatlantic
(University of Georgia Press, 2016), Lisa Ze Winters traces the echo of the free mulatta concubine across the physical and imaginative landscapes of three Atlantic sites: Gorée Island, New Orleans, and Saint Domingue (Haiti). Ze Winters contends that the uniformity of these representations conceals the figure’s centrality to the practices and production of diaspora, while engaging with issues of gender, theorized race and freedom, and identity.
Lisa Ze Winters
is an associate professor of African American Studies and English at Wayne State University, where she teaches African American literature, African diaspora studies, and Black Feminist thought.
Tyler Yank is a senior doctoral candidate in History at McGill University (Montreal, Canada). Her work explores bonded women and British Empire in the western Indian Ocean World.