In his forthcoming book, Jesse Hoffnung-Garskof tells the stories of a group of working class, Afro-descended, exiles from Cuba and Puerto Rico. At the end of the nineteenth century, they helped create a multi-racial movement to throw off Spanish colonialism in Cuba, predicated on the promise that in a free Cuba there would be no blacks or whites, only Cubans. Hoffnung Garskof traces the evolution of this political coalition and its promise of a nation “ for all” from the perspective of the black and brown migrants who took part in it, arguing that their experiences of mobility, and especially their experiences as settlers in Greenwich Village, were fundamental to the evolution of racial politics in Cuba and Puerto Rico. In this talk, he will discuss the digital research methods he employed in the book, taking one episode from Racial Migrations as a case study for thinking through the “entanglement” of the transnational turn and the digital turn in the contemporary practice of history.
Jesse Hoffnung-Garskof is Associate Professor of History, American Culture, and Latina/o Studies at the University of Michigan, where he teaches courses on the history of Latinas/os in the United States, Latin American popular music, and immigration. He is the author of A Tale of Two Cities: Santo Domingo and New York after 1950 (2008) and Racial Migrations: New York City and the Revolutionary Politics of the Spanish Caribbean, 1850-1910 (Under review).