“Afro-Colombian Women’s Collectives as a Tool of Agency in the Montes de María Region”

  • Mesi Bakari-Walton


This study focuses on Black women’s collectives in the Montes de María regionof the Atlantic Coast of Colombia. Women serve as agents of change who improve the lives of their families and communities, as seen in the work of Vicenta Moreno Hurtado, who develops the idea that in response to trauma, Black women tell their stories as active agents of recovery and betterment. In this essay, the work of women’s collectives demonstrates the willpower to move through trauma and overcome daily and lifelong hardships. Data from interviews will link current-day practices to ancestral memories, to show how the application of women’s work and societal traditions support community survival from the period of enslavement to current times of harsh injustices. This essay will present how art functions as therapy, as a unifier, as a messenger, and as a form of income that allows Black women to accomplish their goals and dreams, and how working in unison allows Black women to become agents of change for themselves and others.