Glissant in Poétique de la relation talks about the mestizo as the one who confounds categories, disturbs whiteness. That’s not how they’re constructed in Spanish America, they’re a nation-building category. But it does seem to be how Cecilia works in Cecilia Valdés. Is this further evidence of that novel being written in the United States and furthermore, under a French-Caribbean influence? Did Villaverde read Mercier, L’Habitation Saint-Ybars, or were these two novels co-generated in some way?
The things of the Atlantic keep reappearing, like the repeating island; I’ve called them cane cultures. There is so much to think about.