Dr Jason Allen-Paisant

Dr Jason Allen-Paisant


I am a Lecturer in Caribbean Poetry and Decolonial Thought, with joint appointments in the School of English and the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies. I am also currently the Director of the Institute for Colonial and Postcolonial Studies, having taken over from Professor Graham Huggan in September 2020.

My academic research is on cultural memory in the African diaspora, and I combine, and move between, disciplinary and methodological approaches (theatre studies, performance studies, poetics, literary criticism). My creative writing (poetry, memoir, critical life writing) addresses issues of time, race, class, and the environmental conditions underpinning Black identity. My creative writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Granta, PN ReviewCallalooCarcanet’s New Poetries Series VIII, among other places

I graduated from the University of Oxford in 2015 with a DPhil in Medieval and Modern Languages and joined the University of Leeds in 2016 as a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow. At Leeds, I serve as board member of LUCAS (Leeds University Centre for African Studies) and as member of the Leeds University Poetry Centre. I also serve on the editorial board of Callaloo: Journal of African Diaspora Arts and Letters.

In September 2018, as part of my Leverhulme Fellowship at the University of Leeds, I convened a three-day international and interdisciplinary conference called ‘Memory and Performance in African-Atlantic Futures’.

Research interests


Appearing soon

Thinking with Trees. Forthcoming from Carcanet Press, 2021.

"Animist time and the white Anthropocene." Forthcoming in "Animism in a Planetary Frame", special issue of New Formations, guest edited by Sam Durrant and Philip Dickinson.

"Dante in Caribbean Poetics: Power, Language, Race." In Elena Lombardi, Manuele Gragnolati, and Francesca Southerden (eds.), The Oxford Handbook on Dante. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020.

"Towards a National Theatre." In Raphael Dalleo and Curdella Forbes (eds.), Caribbean Literature in Transition, Vol 2. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020.

Performing futures in the African diaspora: Time, ritual, ceremony. Forthcoming special issue of Parallax.


Creative Writing

Thinking with Trees, full-length book of poems from Carcanet Press in 2021.

‘A Sound from the Throat of God’, on The Verb, BBC Radio 3

Walking with the Word “Tree”’ and other poems in PN Review

’Un-Dad Elegy’, in Callaloo

Poems forthcoming in Granta

Poems in The Poetry Review.

Poems forthcoming in Carcanet’s New Poetries VIII



The Writing of Aimé Césaire, Free Thinking, BBC Radio 3

Dante in Caribbean Poetry, Podcast of the Leeds Centre for Dante Studies

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • Doctor of Philosophy (University of Oxford)
  • MPhil (University of the West Indies)
  • BA (University of the West Indies)

Professional memberships

  • Memory Studies Association
  • Society for Caribbean Studies
  • American Comparative Literature Association

Research groups and institutes

  • French