CUBAN VISIONS PROGRAM 1:
Racial Inequity and Class in a Changing Cuba
WHEN: January 24, 7:00 PM
Canción de Barrio (Song of the Street) / Directed by Alejandro Ramírez Anderson / 80 min. / 2016 / Feature Documentary / Spanish with English subtitles
In 2010, famed Cuban musician Silvio Rodriguez started an ongoing tour through the poorest neighborhoods of Havana. Song of the Street explores a largely invisible and silenced Cuba, the complexity of which is revealed through the voices of the film's participants.
POST-SCREENING DISCUSSION: Americas Media Initiative (AMI) Director Alexandra Halkin will moderate a discussion with Cuban journalist, Monica Rivero, who wrote the companion photo book, Por todo espacio, por este tiempo (For all space, for this time with Silvio Rodríguez in neighborhoods of Havana) released with Song of the Street and Afro-Cuban scholar, Professor Odette Casamayor, Associate Professor of Latin American and Caribbean Cultural Studies at the University of Connecticut. Professor Casamyor is currently working on a new book, On Being Blacks: Challenging the Hegemonic Knowledge Through Racial Self-Identification Processes in Contemporary Cuban Cultural Production.
About the Panelists:
Mónica Rivero is a Cuban journalist. She has been working as editorial director of OnCuba News (https://oncubanews.com/) for the last two years. Mónica graduated from the University of Havana’s School of Communication in 2012. In the six years she has been working as a professional journalist, she has worked as a reporter and editor on articles about cultural and social issues in Cuba. In 2011, she began a series of reports about Silvio Rodríguez's music tour through poor neighborhoods in and around Havana. From this experience came her book Por todo espacio, por este tiempo (For all space, for this time with Silvio Rodríguez in neighborhoods of Havana (2014). For all Space attempts to map out a socio-economic landscape of these neighborhoods. Mónica also worked on the documentary, Canción de barrio (Song of the Street) which documents some of the concerts Silvio Rodriguez did on his on-going tour. In OnCuba News she has been part of a collective learning process facing the challenges of doing journalism in Cuba. Mónica has participated in international journalism conferences in Europe and Latin America. Since 2017 she has been a teacher at the Late School, a freelance journalism networking workshop.
Cuban-born writer and scholar Odette Casamayor-Cisneros is Associate Professor of Latin American and Caribbean Cultures at the University of Connecticut-Storrs. She graduated from the School of Journalism (B.A.) at the University of Havana in 1995, and earned a Ph.D. in Arts and Literatures at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, in 2002. Her first book of essays, Utopia, distopía e ingravidez: reconfiguraciones cosmológicas en la narrativa postsoviética cubana (Utopia, Dystopia and Ethical Weightlessness: Cosmological Reconfigurations in post-Soviet Cuban Fiction), published by Iberoamericana-Vervuert in 2013, examines, through the lens of literary production, the existential void experienced by Cubans after the collapse of the Socialist Bloc in the 1990s. Prof. Casamayor is currently writing a new book, On Being Blacks: Challenging the Hegemonic Knowledge Through Racial Self-Identification Processes in Contemporary Cuban Cultural Production. A first article on this topic, “Negros de papel. Algunas apariciones del negro en la narrativa cubana después de 1959”, received the 2003 “Juan Rulfo” International Essay Award in Paris. She is also the recipient of the 2009 “José Juan Arrom” National Prize of Literary Essay by the Union of Cuban Writers (UNEAC). As a writer of fiction, Casamayor has published the collection of stories Una casa en los Catskills (1st edition, La Secta de los Perros, 2012, and 2nd edition, Letras Cubanas, 2016).