Marzia Milazzo received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, with a Doctoral Emphasis in Global & International Studies, from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and her M.A. in English and Spanish, along with a Secondary Education Teaching degree, from the University of Freiburg, Germany. Her research is broadly concerned with the relation between the poetics and the politics of racial disavowal across national borders and literary traditions. Her teaching and study areas, in no particular order, include contemporary African American, Afro-Latin American, Chicana/o, Latina/o, Inter-American, and South African literatures; Black radical thought, critical race theory, postcolonial theory, sociology of race relations; antiracist, feminist, and Indigenous epistemologies.
She is currently completing a book entitled Colorblind Tools: Narrating Racial Power in the Americas and South Africa, which examines the rhetorical contours of colorblindness and its implications for literary imaginaries, antiracist politics, and the production of knowledge in a transnational context. Taking Panamanian, U.S. American, and South African literary and scholarly productions as primary case studies, the book considers colorblindness as a discourse and ideology, as well as a metaphor for the global attempt to invisibilize “the colorline,—the relation of the darker races to the lighter races of men in Asia and Africa, in America and the islands of the sea” that W.E.B. DuBois in The Souls of Black Folk (1903) identified as the “problem of the twentieth century.” While the colorline persists, colorblindness represents a crucial obstacle to its removal in the twenty-first century. Challenging established theories of racial formation that posit a fundamental shift in racial dynamics and hegemonic discourse since the formal demise of racial dictatorships, Colorblind Tools reveals overlaps and continuities between colonial, overt white supremacist, and colorblindness discourses as well as unforeseen affinities between colonial and decolonial imaginaries. In the process, it shows that colorblindness has far-reaching implications across historical, national, linguistic, literary, disciplinary and racial boundaries.