Title: “The New Woman and the Old Left: Cuba, 1959-1960.”
Abstract: Michelle Chase will present on her recently published book, Revolution within the Revolution: Women and Gender Politics in Cuba, 1952-1962 (UNC Press, December 2015). The book explores the role of women and gender in the Cuban revolution, challenging dominant accounts of women’s liberation from above by uncovering a vast but forgotten women’s mobilization in Cuba’s urban centers. In this session of the CLACS Faculty Working Group on Racisms in Comparative Perspective she will focus on the role of women affiliated with Cuba’s pre-revolutionary Communist Party, who emphasized the intersection of race, class, and gender in their demands for women’s liberation, and who were an important catalyst for organizing women in the immediate aftermath of the 1959 revolution.
Presenter: Michelle Chase is an historian of modern Latin America, specializing in twentieth-century Cuba. Her research interests include revolution and counter-revolution, the Cold War, and gender studies. She is an Assistant Professor of History at Pace University, where she teaches courses on Latin American history and world history. Her articles and book reviews have appeared in academic journals such as Cuban Studies,Journal of Latin American Studies, and Bulletin of Latin American Research, and in general-interest publications such as The Nation, Jacobin, and Boston Review.
Discussant: Angela Crumdy is a doctoral student in cultural anthropology at The Graduate Center, CUNY. She holds a B.A. (2012) in anthropology and Latin American & Caribbean Studies from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Prior to entering The Graduate Center, she served as a high school English teacher for two years in Dallas, TX. Her research interests include gender, education and critical race theory. As an undergraduate, she conducted original ethnographic work on the intersection of race and the politics of hair in Cuba. Through an extended historical trajectory, her current dissertation research examines black Cuban women educators' contributions to the Cuban education system and to overall nation building efforts beginning in the early 20th century.