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Sara Johnson - UC San Diego. San Diego, CA, US

Sara Johnson Sara Johnson

Associate Professor of Literature | UC San Diego


Sara Johnson focuses on literature, theory and history of the Hispanophone, Francophone and Anglophone Caribbean and its diasporas.



Sara Johnson Publication Sara Johnson Publication Sara Johnson Publication






Associate Professor of Literature of the Americas, Sara Johnson received their Ph.D. in comparative literature from Stanford University and their B.A. from Yale University in comparative literature and African American studies.

Johnson is currently working on a book documenting the work of Moreau de Saint-Méry, a late 18th century Caribbean intellectual. They have performed extensive research abroad, living in Senegal, Cuba, Haiti and Martinique. Recent fellowships include those from the Ford Foundation, the University of California President’s Postdoctoral Program, the Library Company of Philadelphia, the Hellman Fund, the UC Consortium for Black Studies, and the American Council of Learned Societies.

Johnson's book "The Fear of French Negroes: Transcolonial Collaboration in the Revolutionary Americas" (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2012) is an inter-disciplinary study that explores how people responded to the collapse and reconsolidation of colonial life in the aftermath of the Haitian Revolution (1791-1845). The book traces expressions of transcolonial black politics, both aesthetic and experiential, in places including Hispaniola, Louisiana, Jamaica, and Cuba. It was published as part of the Modern Language initiative, a partnership between the Modern Language Association, the Mellon Foundation, and several university presses.

Johnson is the co-editor of "Kaiso! Writings By and About Katherine Dunham" (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, Studies in Dance History Series, 2006) and "Una ventana a Cuba y los Estudios cubanos" (San Juan: Ediciones Callejon, Spring 2010). "Kaiso!" was named one of the top 10 arts books of 2006.

Johnson’s research and teaching areas include literature, theory and history of the Hispanophone, Francophone and Anglophone Caribbean and its diasporas; hemispheric American literature and cultural studies; the Age of Revolution in the extended Americas; and music and dance of the African Diaspora.

Areas of Expertise (6)


Hemispheric Studies

Caribbean Literature

Francophone Literature

African Diaspora

Cultural Studies

Accomplishments (3)

American Council of Learned Societies Fellow, University of Cambridge


Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award Winner


Hellman Fellowship


Education (2)

Stanford University: Ph.D., Comparative Literature

Yale University: B.A., Comparative Literature and African American Studies

Affiliations (3)

  • Affiliated Faculty in The Center for Iberian & Latin American Studies
  • Affiliated Faculty for Department of Ethnic Studies
  • Affiliated Faculty in Critical Gender Studies

Languages (2)

  • English
  • Spanish

Articles (5)

“He Was a Lion and He Would Destroy Much”: A Practical and Speculative School of Revolutionary Politics

Small Axe: A Caribbean Journal of Criticism

Sara Johnson

Forthcoming, 2019

“Your Mother Gave Birth to a Pig”: Power, Abuse, and Planter Linguistics in Baudry des Lozière’s Vocabulaire Congo

Early American Studies

Sara Johnson


Moreau de Saint-Méry: Itinerant Bibliophile

Library and Information History

Sara Johnson


Never Put your Feet where your Eyes Cain't See: A Meditation on Deepness

South: A Scholarly Journal

Sara Johsnon


Page to Praxis: Bringing Diaspora Literacy to Life

Theatre Survey

Sara Johnson


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