Paul Joseph López Oro

Assistant Professor of Africana Studies

Headshot of Paul López Oro

Contact & Office Hours

Spring 2022
Wednesdays 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. or by appointment via Zoom

Wright Hall 236



Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin

M.A., Northwestern University

M.A., The University of New Mexico

B.A., St. John’s University


Paul Joseph López Oro teaches courses on Black Latin American and U.S. Black Latinx social movements, Black diaspora theories and ethnographies, and Black feminisms/queer theory. His research interests include Black politics in Latin America, the Caribbean and U.S. AfroLatinidades, Black Latinx LGBTQ movements and performances, and Black transnationalism. He is working on his first book manuscript, Hemispheric Black Indigeneity: The Queer Politics of Self-Making Garifuna New York, is a transdisciplinary study analyzing oral histories, performances, social media, film, literary texts and visual cultures to unearth the political, intellectual, cultural and spiritual genealogies of Garifuna women and subaltern geographies of Garifuna LGBTQ+ folks at the forefront of Garifuna transnational movements in New York City. Hemispheric Black Indigeneity offers new ways to approach questions on the multiple ways in which Garifuna New Yorkers of Central American descent queerly negotiate, perform, contradict and articulate their Black, Indigenous and Latinx subjectivities.

López Oro received his doctorate in African and African diaspora studies from the University of Texas at Austin, his master’s degree in African American studies from Northwestern University, his master’s degree in Latin American studies from the University of New Mexico and his bachelor’s degree in history from St. John’s University. He has taught Black studies and Latinx studies courses at The University of Texas at Austin; Hunter College, The City University of New York; University of Virginia; and John Jay College of Criminal Justice, The City University of New York.

His research has been generously funded by the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program, Tinker Foundation Field Research Grant, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Interdisciplinary Cluster Fellowship in Latin American & Caribbean Studies, and the John L. Warfield Center for African and African American Studies. He was awarded a 2017–2018 Dissertation Fellowship in the Department of Mexican American and Latino Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and a 2018-2020 Predoctoral Fellowship at the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African American and African Studies at the University of Virginia.

Selected Publications

López Oro, Paul Joseph. "Black Caribs/Garifuna: Maroon Geographies of Indigenous Blackness," Small Axe: A Caribbean Journal of Criticism, Vol. 25, No. 3, Issue 66 (November 2021): pp. 134-146.

López Oro, Paul Joseph. "A Love Letter to Indigenous Blackness," NACLA: Report on the Americas, Vol. 53, Issue 3 (November 2021), Special Issue on Blackness and Indigeneity, pp: 248-254.

López Oro, Paul Joseph. "Garifunizando Ambas Américas: Hemispheric Entanglements of Blackness/Indigeneity/AfroLatinidad," Postmodern Culture: Journal of Interdisciplinary Thought on Contemporary Cultures, Vol. 31, No. 1 (September 2021), Special Issue on Troubling the Grounds: Global Configurations of Blackness, Nativism, & Indigeneity, pp. 1-29.

López Oro, Paul Joseph. “Refashioning Afro-Latinidad: Garifuna New Yorkers in Diaspora,” in Critical Diálogos in Latina and Latino Studies, edited by Ana Y. Ramos-Zayas and Mérida M. Rúa. (New York: New York University Press, 2021).

López Oro, Paul Joseph. “Digitizing Ancestral Memory: Garifuna Settlement Day in the Americas and in Cyberspace,” in Indigenous Interfaces: Spaces, Technology, and Social Networks in Mexico and Central America, edited by Jennifer Carolina Gómez Menjívar and Gloria Elizabeth Chacón. Pp: 165-179. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2019).

López Oro, Paul Joseph. “Ni de aquí, ni de allá: Garifuna Subjectivities and the Politics of Diasporic Belonging,” in Afro-Latin@s in Movement: Critical Approaches to Blackness and Transnationalism in the Americas, Edited by Petra R. Rivera-Rideau, Jennifer A. Jones, and Tianna S. Paschel. Pp: 61-83. (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016).

Lopez Oro, Paul Joseph. “Colon, Mirtha” (Honduras) and “Ramos, Tomas Vicente” (Belize), in Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Biography. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Franklin K. Knight, Editors in Chief. Pp: 192-194 and 251-253. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016).

López Oro, Paul Joseph. “Negotiating Blackness: West Indians and Afro-Hispanics in Panama” a review of Sonja Stephenson Watson’s The Politics of Race in Panama: Afro-Hispanic and West Indian Literary Discourses of ContentionSmall Axe Salon, 19 (June 2015).

López Oro, Paul Joseph. “Preliminary Findings: ENLACE de Mujeres Negras de Honduras (ENMUNEH) Garifuna Women and their Community-Based NGO in Tela, Honduras”. LIMON, Vol. 24, Issue 1 (September 2008, University of New Mexico).


Dr. Michele Reid-Vazquez’s Dialogues in AfroLatinidad: “Centering Garifuna in the African Diaspora” (May 4, 2022).

Alexandria Miller’s Strictly Facts: A Guide to Caribbean History and Culture and Paul Joseph López Oro, “The History of the Garifuna: Indigenous Legacies of the Caribbean” (February 23, 2022).

G. Cristina Mora, Laura Gomez, and Paul Joseph López Oro, “Fewer Latinos Identified as White on 2020 Census,” (September 22, 2021).

Paul Joseph López Oro and Karma R. Chávez, “What’s wrong with signs that say ‘Latinxs for Black Lives?’” (July 16, 2020).

Featured Article
Silvia Foster-Frau and Rachel Hatzipanagos, “Somos Latinos,” The Washington Post, (October 7, 2021).

Rachel Hatzipanagos, “Some Afro-Latinos say the phrase “Latinos for Black Lives” makes no sense," (August 28, 2020).

Recorded Zoom Event
Paul Joseph López Oro, “Refashioning AfroLatinidad: Garifuna New Yorkers in Diaspora,” New Directions in Afro-Latinx Studies Series, Center for Africana Studies, University of Pennsylvania, (November 17, 2021).


2018-2020 Pre-doctoral Fellow at the Carter G. Woodson Institute for African and African American Studies, University of Virginia

2021-2022 Miriam Jiménez Román Fellow at The LatinX Project in New York University’s Department of Social & Cultural Analysis

2022-2023 Visiting Scholar Fellow at the Institute of American Cultures and Chicano Studies Research Center at the University of California, Los Angeles