Black and Indigenous Witchcraft as Decolonial Praxis

This panel will discuss convergences in how Black and Indigenous ways of knowing are employed in medicinal and religious practices that threaten to dismantle the colonial regimes of knowledge that have defined these practices as witchcraft, in order to denigrate and eradicate them.

Norell Martinez will present a discussion of Bruja Feminism, which will explore the interrelation of witchcraft and revolt among the enslaved and dispossessed in varying regional locales, and the reclamation of the Bruja as a decolonial figure today.

Icaro Ferraz Vidal Jr. will share his investigation of the relationships between contemporary Brazilian artistic production and traditional Afro-Amerindian rituals and practices that challenge "colonial epistemicide".


Norell Martinez, "Bruja Feminism: Revolutionary Healers vs. the Ruling Class"

Dr. Norell Martínez is a Xicana from the San Diego/Tijuana border region. She is Assistant Professor in the department of English at San Diego City College. Her research centers on the witch-hunts in the Americas, revolutionary healers, and the resurgence of the bruja (witch) in the streets and in cultural production to defy patriarchy and capitalism.

Icaro Ferraz Vidal Junior, "Making Witchcraft Visible: What Does It Make with Art Images?"

Icaro Ferraz Vidal Junior holds a PhD in History, Art History and Archeology from the Université de Perpignan Via Domitia and Università degli studi di Bergamo. He is currently assistant lecturer in the Art History Department at the Federal University of São Paulo and holds a postdoctoral internship in the Postgraduate Studies Program in Communication and Semiotics at the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo.

Norell Martinez smiling wearing a grey top and big silver earrings
Norell Martinez
Icaro Ferraz Vidal Junior standing against a red and yellow wall wearing a yellow shirt
Icaro Ferraz Vidal Junior