Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Cuba

The native Amerindian population of Cuba began to decline after European arrival on the island in 1492 and following its development as a Spanish colony during the next several centuries. Large numbers of African slaves were imported to work the coffee and sugar plantations, and Havana became the launching point for the annual treasure fleets bound for Spain from Mexico and Peru. Spanish rule eventually provoked an independence movement and occasional rebellions that were harshly suppressed. US intervention during the Spanish-American War in 1898 assisted the Cubans in overthrowing Spanish rule. The Treaty of Paris established Cuban independence from the US in 1902 after which the island experienced a string of governments mostly dominated by the military and corrupt politicians. Fidel Castro led a rebel army to victory in 1959; his iron rule held the subsequent regime together for nearly five decades. He stepped down as president in February 2008 in favor of his younger brother Raúl Castro. Cuba’s Communist revolution, with Soviet support, was exported throughout Latin America and Africa during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. The country faced a severe economic downturn in 1990 following the withdrawal of former Soviet subsidies worth $4 billion to $6 billion annually. Cuba portrays its difficulties as the result of the US embargo in place since 1961. Illicit migration to the US – using homemade rafts, alien smugglers, air flights, or via the southwest border – is a continuing problem. The US Coast Guard intercepted 2,656 individuals attempting to cross the Straits of Florida in fiscal year 2007.

CIA World Factbook: Cuba
Photo by M.A. Candidate Heriberto Cabada, Stone Center for Latin American Studies

Cuba + People View All
Arachu Castro
Senior Associate Research Fellow - Samuel Z. Stone Chair of Public Health in Latin America
Marilyn Miller
Associate Professor and Chair - Spanish & Portuguese
Oliver Houck
Professor - Law

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Upcoming Events

Latin American Graduate Oraganization (LAGO) 2018 Conference

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The Latin American Graduate Organization will be hosting its 2018 Latin American Studies Conference titled Thinking of the Future: Expanding the possible in the Americas (Pensando en el porvenir: Expandiendo lo posible en las Américas) February 23 – 25, 2018, at Tulane University, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

This year, the conference topic is meant to challenge academics and activists to move beyond critiques and recommendations of how to address modern days issues, and instead articulate a vision of and for the future.

The LAGO Conference welcomes all disciplines and all approaches, as long as the project attempts to grapple with the idea of building something better. This is a Latin American Studies Conference, but creative writers, journalists, artists, performers, organizers, lawyers and healthcare providers as well as graduate students and other academics are welcome. Proposals are accepted in Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, and English.

Please contact lago.tulane@gmail.com with questions. For more information, visit the official conference website.

Lecture: Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas (1977, 1980, 1982)

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Please join us for a work-in-progress talk titled “Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas (1977, 1980, 1982): Contradicciones y resignificaciones en el campo conceptual de las negritudes y su impacto en la creación y la crítica literaria y artística,” by Silvia Valero, 2017-2018 Richard E. Greenleaf Fellow at the Latin American Library. The talk will be in Spanish and all will be invited for refreshments afterwards. Abstracts for the lecture in both Spanish and English below.

Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas (1977, 1980, 1982): contradicciones y resignificaciones en el campo conceptual de las negritudes y su impacto en la creación y la crítica literaria y artística

Los Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas, realizados en 1977 (Colombia), 1980 (Panamá) y 1982 (Brasil), fueron los primeros grandes intentos internacionales en América Latina por reunir académicos, intelectuales y escritores de diferentes lugares del mundo, con el objetivo de reflexionar y debatir acerca del aporte realizado por los pueblos de ascendencia africana a la historia y la cultura. Considerando que los organizadores fueron todos hombres de letras negros, me pregunto si, en el período de influencia de los Congresos, es posible establecer una retórica hegemónica en las letras en torno a conceptos claves como negritud, estéticas negras, afrodiáspora y panafricanismos similar a lo que ocurrió en los últimos 20 años con el movimiento afrodescendiente en América Latina.

Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas (1977, 1980, 1982): Contradictions and Resignifications in the Conceptual Field of Blackness and Its Impact on Creation and Literary and Artistic Criticism

The Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas, held in 1977 (Colombia), 1980 (Panama) and 1982 (Brazil), were the first major international attempts in Latin America to bring together academics, intellectuals and writers from different parts of the world, with the objective of reflecting and debating about the contribution made by people of African descent to history and culture. Considering that the organizers were all Black men of letters, I aim to explore if, in the period of influence of the Congresses, a hegemonic rhetoric was developed around key concepts such as Negritude, Black aesthetics, Pan-Africanisms, and Afro-Diaspora, similar to what occurred in the last 20 years with the Afro-descendant movement in Latin America.

Tulane Culture Workshop with Pamela Neumann: "The Social Construction of Women's Ambivalence in Nicaragua"

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Join Pamela Neumann as she hosts a workshop on her paper, “The Social Construction of Women’s Ambivalence in Nicaragua.”

A workshop is different from a lecture series, where the audience passively listens to an oral presentation. In a workshop discussion, participants have read the article and the presenter gives only a brief introduction. Participants and presenter then “workshop” the piece, providing critical feedback with the goal of helping the author rethink, rework, and polish their research. E-mail dlagomar@tulane.edu for a copy of this paper. This workgroup is funded by a Lavin-Bernick grant.

Professor Fridman to present research from his recently published book, Freedom from Work

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Daniel Fridman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at University of Texas, Austin. Professor Fridman will present research from his recently published Freedom from Work: Embracing Financial Self-Help in the United States and Argentina (Stanford University Press, 2016). Freedom from Work analyzes how people in the US and Argentina are taught to think about themselves as economic actors today. The author follows groups of fans of financial success best-sellers and associated practices, like seminars, and even a board game. Fridman uses ethnographic methods and in-depth interviews to unpack the core ideas and practices of financial self-help, which exhorts readers to endure a tough self-exploration and self-transformation in order to achieve “financial freedom.”

This talk is in partnership with the Tulane Altman Program, and the Tulane Department of Sociology. For more information please contact Professor Camilo Leslie at cleslie1@tulane.edu or check out the flyer for the event here.

Bate Papo! Practice your Portuguese and enjoy some Brazilian treats: cajuzinho

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Bate Papo! Stop by PJs on Willow to try a classic Brazilian treat (cajuzinho) and to take a quick break before getting back into your routine. This event is sponsored by TULASO and the Stone Center for Latin American Studies. Admission is free. All levels welcome. For more information, please contact Megwen at mloveles@tulane.edu.

Lecture by Kent Eaton: Territory and Ideology in Latin America

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Join Dr. Kent Eaton from the Political Science Department at University of California at Santa Cruz as he gives a lecture titled: “Territory and Ideology in Latin America.” This talk will examine territorial conflicts in Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru over economic policy during the commodity boom in the early 21st century. Please RSVP to cipr@tulane.edu.

For more information, please check out the flyer here.