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Cuban Literature in the Age of Black Insurrection: Manzano, Plácido and Afro-Latino Religion

Registration not required, but encouraged. Please register for the event here.

Matthew Pettway is joined in conversation with panel members from the the Instituto Interdisplinario y Muticultural from the Universidad de Puerto Rico, Recinto Rio Piedras on his most recent book, Cuban Literature in the Age of Black Insurrection: Manzano, Plácido, and Afro-Latino Religion. From the perspective of literary archaeology, the author discusses fascinating interpretations on two towering figures in nineteenth century Cuban Literature: Juan Francisco Manzano and Plácido. Joining this discussion is Mayra Santos-Febres, María Elba Torres Muñoz, and Félix Joaquín Rivera Rodríguez.

Dr. Matthew Pettway is Assistant Professor of Spanish at the University of South  Alabama, where he is associated with the Africana Studies Program. He teaches  Afro-Latin American, Caribbean, and Spanish literatures. He was a Visiting  Scholar in the LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies Collections at the  University of Texas in Austin in 2014. And, in 2013, the University of Kansas  named him the Langston Hughes Visiting Professor. At Kansas he offered  a graduate seminar on blacks in Cuban literature and delivered a public lec ture on his research. Moreover, the U.S. Department of Education awarded  him the Foreign Language Area Studies Fellowship (FLAS) to study Brazilian  Portuguese in Salvador da Bahia in summer 2005. 

Dr. Mayra Santos-Febres was born in Carolina, PR. Poet, Fiction writer, and essayist her books of poetry include El orden escapado (Order Escaped), Tercer Mundo (Third World), and Boat People. She is an essayist and fiction writer, as well. As a short story writer she has won the Letras de Oro prize (USA, 1994), for her collection Pez de vidrio (Glass Fish), and in 2000, Grijalbo Mondadori in Spain published her first novel, Sirena Selena vestida de pena, which has been translated into English as Sirena Silena. Her other fiction titles include Cualquier miércoles soy tuya (Any Wednesday, I'm Yours) and Nuestra Señora de la Noche (Our Lady of the Night).

Dr. María Elba Torres Muñoz has dedicated herself to cataloging, documenting, and researching the rich history and experiences of Afrodecendientes in Puerto Rico. She is a professor and Director of the Multicultural and Interdisciplinary Institute of the UPRRP. In August of 2020 she was invited to join the board of directors of the Museo De Arte Contemporaneo.

Dr. Félix Joaquín Rivera Rodríguez is a member of the Coordinating Committee of the Second Congress of Afro-descendants in Puerto Rico since 2019. He has also been the curator of “Pasiencia. Exhibition of Hot Peinillas" in 2018, a moderator in the seminars: Second Congress of Afro-descendants in Puerto Rico, and published the monograph, “Manuel Ramos Otero, metamorphosis and Santeria in‘ Blank and staccato page ’” for the Puerto Rican Punishment class in April of 2020. He was sponsored by The Andrew Mellon Foundation through a grant for the creation of the Afro-descendant Perspectives on Interiority course in the minor studies on Afro-descendants and Raciality of the General Studies Baccalaureate.

Order a copy of Cuban Literature in the Age of Black Insurrection: Manzano, Plácido, and Afro-Latino Religion from the Ivy Bookshop.

This conversation will be in Spanish.

Wednesday, October 13 at 7:00pm

Virtual Event
Event Type

Writers LIVE!, Virtual Event, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Age Group

Adults, Seniors

Compass Category

Writers LIVE at the Library

Event Publisher

Tracy Dimond - for Adults

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