Reflections on Race, Gender, and Culture in Cuba
Edited By Venessa Ann Brown and Menah Pratt-Clarke
A Promising Reality: Reflections on Race, Gender, and Culture in Cuba is a compilation of the reflections of a group of chief diversity officers, faculty, and educators from the United States about Cuba. As part of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education delegation to Cuba in July, 2015, A Promising Reality represents a collection of voices, experiences, and perspectives about issues of race, gender, cultural identity, and the African experience in Cuba. Key themes explored include Cuban culture, the Cuban Revolution, politics, economics, education, equity, and social change. Utilizing narrative inquiry, some of the reflections are comparative with the United States, and some reflections focus exclusively on Cuba. The book takes readers on a journey of thought-provoking stories that reflect the excitement, uncertainty, complexity, and promising possibilities on the cusp of changing diplomatic, political, economic, and social relationships between the United States and Cuba. A Promising Reality seeks to broaden the perspectives of its readers regarding US-Cuban relations. This book is ideal for courses on international relations, international studies, international affairs, comparative cultures, political science, education, politics, sociology, history, race, gender, and social justice. It is a must-read for anyone traveling to Cuba as part of study-abroad, professional development, or personal adventure.
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- New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2018. XX, 138 pp., 10 color ill.
- About the author(s)/editor(s)
- About the book
- Advance Praise for A Promising Reality
- This eBook can be cited
- Table of Contents
- Foreword (Benjamin D. Reese, Jr.)
- Venessa Ann Brown
- Menah Pratt-Clarke
- 1. Introduction (Venessa Ann Brown / Menah Pratt-Clarke)
- 2. An Overview of Race, Class, and Culture in Cuba (Venessa Ann Brown / Sarah Walker-Leard)
- A Brief History of Relations Between Cuba and the United States
- Race in Cuba
- Gender in Cuba
- Culture in Cuba
- Cuba Trip
- 3. International Cultural Exchanges as Professional Development Opportunities for Diversity Professionals (Archie W. Ervin)
- 4. Cuba and Connections to Childhood (Venessa Ann Brown)
- Cuba: The Chance of a Lifetime
- My Story
- 5. Transformation, Empowerment, and the Cuban Revolution: Reflections on Gender, Race, and Culture (Menah Pratt-Clarke)
- Creating the Context: Transformation and Empowerment of Women in Cuba
- Creating the Context: The Literacy Campaign and Empowerment
- Reflections on Race, Gender, Culture, and Revolutions
- 6. Two Sides to Every Story: Lessons in Life from Cuba (Howard J. Ross)
- A Travelogue from Cuba: July 10–18, 2015
- 7. Two Wings of the Same Bird: Reflections of a Puerto Rican in Cuba (Diana Ariza)
- ¿Quien Soy Yo? [Who am I?] Puertorriqueña Hasta la Muerte [Puerto Rican Until Death]
- El Encuentro [The Encounter]—People to People
- Cuba Linda [Beautiful Cuba]—Here I Come!
- Returning Home: [El Descubrimiento] “The Discovery”
- Cuba Sigue Siendo Hermosa y Libre Como Puerto Rico [Cuba Continues Being as Beautiful and Free as Puerto Rico]
- 8. Finding Home in Cuba (Na’im Madyun)
- 9. Missing in Plain Sight: The Complicated Story of Race in Cuba Today (Yvette M. Alex-Assensoh)
- Preparation for the Cuba Visit
- Arrival in Cuba: “Cuba, Here I Come!”
- The Introduction of Blackness in Cuba
- Communism, Religion, and Race
- 10. Dear Ché (Christine Clark)
- 11. The New Cuba: Factors Supporting the Cultivation of Resilience (Sadie Burton-Goss)
- Havana: Latin American Getaway for the Rich, Famous, and Infamous
- This Far by Faiths
- US Embargo and the Literacy Movement
- Tiny Nation, Multinational Contributions
- The “Special Period” and a Healthier Nation
- The Denial of Race, Racism, or Colorism in Cuban Society
- Women: Challenges and Expectations for Exchange
- Potential Risk Factors
- Potential Protective Factors
- Final Reflections
- 12. A Promising Reality (Menah Pratt-Clarke / Venessa Ann Brown)
- 13. Postscript: A Story of Resilience (How I Came to the USA) (Jorge-Felix Morfa)
- Series index
13. Postscript: A Story of Resilience (How I Came to the USA) (Jorge-Felix Morfa)
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13. Postscript: A Story of Resilience (How I Came to the USA)
Editor’s [Menah Pratt-Clarke] Note:
A few days before the book was due for submission to the publisher, I was speaking at the Franklin County NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet in Rocky Mount, Virginia. I was sharing that I was working on this book and thinking about Cuba and issues of race and national identity. After the program, a man approached me. He said that his name was Jorge and that he wanted to introduce himself to me since he was from Cuba. He introduced me to his wife and his daughter. His daughter was a Girl Scout and had participated with other Girl Scouts as part of the color guard for the banquet, which was why he was at the program. She showed me her many badges and he was very proud of her.
Jorge and I had a wonderful conversation. He shared that he had come to America by raft; had learned English on his own; and had written his story about his experience about 10 years ago on a yellow legal pad. I told him I would be glad to include it in the book as a story about determination, resilience, perseverance, survival, and faith. I shared that his experience was representative in many ways of the key themes of the book and represented the power of the Cuban people....
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