A Folklore for the Future:

Emily A. Maguire

in Racial Experiments in Cuban Literature and Ethnography

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780813037479
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813042329 | DOI:
A Folklore for the Future:

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This chapter outlines the challenges facing Cuba's construction of itself as a modern nation in the wake of its independence from Spain. To address Cuba's postcolonial condition (including the existence of racial others), Cuban writers borrowed freely from both ethnographic and literary conventions to create texts that could mediate the distance between Cuba's lived reality and the nation these intellectuals were engaged in reimagining. As the chapter chronicles Cuban race relations up to and following independence, it traces the representation of blackness in literature of the period. It also outlines the development of ethnography and examines the conditions that influenced the creation of a literature with an “ethnographic spirit,” designed to harness and at the same time neutralize cultural blackness on the island in order to identify Cuba as a modern nation.

Keywords: race; Cuba; ethnography; Cuban literature; blackness; nation

Chapter.  11210 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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