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Soviet Realms of Memory in Contemporary Cuban Culture

A talk by Jacqueline Loss from the University of Connecticut.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010
4:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Rolfe 4302
(Lydeen Library)
Los Angeles, CA 90095

During the December 2000 visit of Vladimir Putin to Cuba -- the first Russian president to visit the island since the Soviet disintegration, a Cuban on the streets told reporters what she thought about the "Russian" presence, 'Nothing remained, we don't dance like Russians, we don't eat like Russians, and we don't even drink vodka.' This presentation demonstrates that while the Soviet bloc no longer exists as Cuba's political ally, it has left significant and complex remnants within the island's contemporary cultural production. Drawing on interviews with Cuban artists, functionaries, and intellectuals, cinematographic and bibliographic archives from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, as well as theory on postmodernism, postcolonialism, and post-Soviet culture, this presentation illustrates that Cuba is in the unusual position of remembering its own interactions with the Soviet Union at the same time that Cuba's politic and social order is perceived by some as a relic of the Cold War.

Jacqueline Loss (PhD, 2000, Comparative Literature, University of Texas-Austin) teaches Latin American and Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies. Her book Cosmopolitanisms and Latin America: Against the Destiny of Place was published by Palgrave in 2005. She is the co-editor of an anthology of Cuban short stories to be published by Northwestern University Press and she collaborated on a collection of literature from Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Sudan, Syria, Libya, and Cuba. Among the writers she has translated into English are Cubans Víctor Fowler Calzada, Ernesto René Rodríguez, and Jorge Miralles. Her critical essays have appeared in Nepantla:Views from South, Miradas (Escuela Internacional de Cine y Televisión de San Antonio de los Baños), Chasqui, Latino and Latina Writers, Mandorla, and New Centennial Review, among other publications. She is currently preparing a manuscript whose working title is “Cultural Memory: Cuba and the Soviet Bloc.”


Cost : Free an open to the public

Jorge Marturano

Download file: sovietrealmsflyer.pdf

Sponsor(s): Latin American Institute, LAI Working Group on Caribbean Studies, The UCLA Mellon Faculty Seminar on Caribbean Cultural History.

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