On 3/3/20, Hunter hosted this program.
Roosevelt House welcomed Yarimar Bonilla to discuss her new book, Aftershocks of Disaster: Puerto Rico Before and After the Storm (co-edited with Marisol LeBrón).
Aftershocks of Disaster compiles the narratives of Puerto Rican journalists, poets, artists, and community leaders to show how Puerto Ricans come to terms with not just the impact of Maria, but also the larger, deeper traumas produced by the island’s socio-political history. Ms. Bonilla will be in conversation with Frances Robles, a Florida-based national and international correspondent for the New York Times, whose work investigating fatalities after Hurricane Maria inspired the government to hire specialists to determine the true death count.
Yarimar Bonilla is a professor in the Department of Africana, Puerto Rican, and Latino Studies at Hunter College and in the PhD Program in Anthropology at the CUNY Graduate Center. Bonilla’s current research—for which she was named a 2018-2020 Carnegie Fellow—examines the politics of recovery in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria and the forms of political and social trauma that the storm revealed.
Frances Robles covers breaking news and does investigative reporting about corruption, human rights, law enforcement, and social justice from places as diverse as Florida, Nicaragua, and Puerto Rico. Prior to joining the Times in 2013, she spent 19 years at the Miami Herald, covering Cuba and doing stints as bureau chief in both Nicaragua and Colombia. She was a member of two Pulitzer Prize-winning teams and was a finalist for two more. A native New Yorker, she graduated from New York University and was a John S. Knight Fellow at Stanford University in 2004-2005.
Welcoming remarks from Hunter College President Jennifer Raab, Commissioner for the New York City Department for the Aging Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez, and CUNY Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez.
Watch the program below.