From left to right, Eliana S. Rivero, Vanessa Garcia, Ana Menéndez, Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés, Jennine Capó Crucet, Chantel Acevedo, and Iraida H. López at CRI's Eleventh Conference on Cuban and Cuban-American Studies, February 2017.
We're happy to announce that The State University of New York (SUNY) Press has accepted for publication a new book by coeditors Iraida H. López and Eliana S. Rivero. Let's Hear Their Voices: Cuban-American Writers of the Second Generation is an anthology comprising the poetry, prose fiction, essay, and theater works of writers such as Richard Blanco, Ana Menéndez, Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés, Adrian Castro, Robert Arellano, Chantel Acevedo, Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas, Vanessa Garcia, Derek Palacio, and Gabriela Garcia. A unique collection of authors never assembled before, these ABCs (American-Born Cubans) or "AmeriCubans" reflect in their works younger than usual concerns about their life as Latinxs in the United States.
Using a generational framework as an organizing tool, the collection also draws from other configurations, such as the inscription of immigrant—as opposed to exile—sensibility in the literature. While the works do not eschew political references or historical allusions, their themes speak of familial ties and consequential memories cultivated within a variety of cultural milieus. As well as forming a heterogeneous group, the writers in this anthology also highlight the active participation of women in the Cuban-American literary scene. "The writing is impressive, strong, and compelling," in addition to "phenomenal," remarked one of the readers who evaluated the manuscript, while a second reader noted that the introduction, written by López, is "very strong in its treatment of Cuban-American literature vis-à-vis language use, memory, geography matters, and the historical and conceptual dynamics of exile versus diaspora." They praised the collection for its potential as "a fantastic resource for Introduction to Latinx Literature courses."
Dr. Iraida H. López is Professor of Spanish and Latino/a and Latin American Studies at Ramapo College of New Jersey. She is the author of Impossible Returns: Narratives of the Cuban Diaspora (2015) and La autobiografía hispana contemporánea en los Estados Unidos (2001). Her essays on literature and linguistics have appeared in edited volumes devoted to Cuban-American and Latino/a literature, as well as in professional journals in the United States and abroad. She has received awards from the Latin American Studies Association's Latino Studies Section and the Asociación Internacional de Literatura y Cultura Femeninas Hispánicas.
Dr. Eliana S. Rivero is Professor Emerita in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Arizona in Tucson, where she taught Latin American and U.S. Latino/Latina literatures and cultures. She was also adjunct Professor of Women's Studies and Latin American Studies at her institution. She has authored or coedited six scholarly books, among them Discursos desde la diáspora (2005), and has published over 100 articles, chapters in books, review essays, notes, bibliographies, and collection entries, on topics ranging from Caribbean authors to Mexican colonial nuns. She has generously endowed an FIU scholarship in her name to support graduate student research in Cuba, with an emphasis in the humanities.