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Blackness and Nationality: The Case of Ricardo Batrell and the Cuban Racial Narrative

Mark A. Sanders, Professor of English, Emory University

Friday, February 17, 2012
12:00 PM
History Conference Room
Bunche Hall 6275

The year 2012 represents a triple anniversary for the history of the people of African ancestry in Cuba. 2012 is the Bicentennial of Aponte slave and free black rebellion in Cuba. Inspired by Haitian independence Jose Antonio Aponte organized in 1812 the first major attempt at Cuban independence. 2012 is also the Centennial of the massacre of 1912. The Partido Independiente de Color (PIC) was a Cuban political party founded in 1908 by Black veterans of the Cuban War of Independence. In 1912, Cuban authorities launched a barbaric campaign against Cubans of African descent in Oriente province which resulted in several thousand Black Cubans killed. Finally,  2012 is also the Centennial of the first publication in Spanish of Batrell’s autobiography which Dr. Sanders both has translated to English and edited for the modern reader.

Mark A. Sanders if Professor of English at Emory University in Atlanta. He specializes in early twentieth-century American and African American literature and culture, more specifically, the connections between "mainstream" American modernism and the Harlem Renaissance. He is the editor and translator of A Black Soldier’s Story: The Narrative of Ricardo Batrell and the Cuban War of Independence (Minnesota, 2010). Batrell’s account of the war of Cuban independence constitutes the only direct narrative written by a black soldier who joined the army fighting the colonial regime in Cuba.

Cost : Free and Open to the Public


Download file: Blackness-and-Nationality-5n-wni.pdf

Sponsor(s): Latin American Institute, Department of History, Cuba & Caribbean Working Group, UC Irvine

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