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January

The Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE), with the support of FIU's Cuban Research Institute, will hold its conference on Cuba's economy in a broad sense, including legal, sectoral, and social aspects of economic development, or Cuba's exodus and the Cuban diaspora and its economic and social relationship to the island.

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El Nuevo Herald's Mario Pentón quotes CRI Director Jorge Duany: "Everything seems to indicate that the Trump administration's immigration policies have reduced the number of Cubans trying to enter the United States without authorization if we compare it with the last two years of [former president] Barack Obama."

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CRI in the News: The Current Situation in Cuba Discourages Having a Dignified Old Age

Diario de Cuba interviews CRI Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta regarding the results of a recent National Survey on the Aging of the Population in Cuba.

The Cuban Research Institute, the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center, and the FIU Libraries are pleased to request applications from scholars and graduate students for the spring and early summer 2020. The Díaz-Ayala Library Travel Grants provide the opportunity to conduct research in the special collections and archives related to Cuba and Cuban Americans at the FIU Libraries.

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Dr. Frank Luca, Chief Librarian at The Wolfsonian-FIU, has published a very informative blog post about how Cuba's capital city became a mecca for U.S. tourists during the first half of the 20th century. The blog post is profusely illustrated with materials from the Vicki Gold Levi Collection.

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Weak economic growth, aggravated by the ongoing crisis in Venezuela and a flurry of U.S. sanctions, “continues driving a considerable amount of Cuban citizens abroad, especially to South Florida,” said Jorge Duany, director of the Cuban Research Institute at Florida International University.

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Congratulations to Jennifer Cearns on the publication of her new article in the Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology. Jennifer conducted her ethnographic fieldwork for this essay while a Visiting Scholar at CRI.

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February

"The Daily Signal" interviews CRI Associate Director Sebastián Arcos about his experiences as a political dissident in Cuba during the 1980s and early 1990s.

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Uruguay, a small country in South America known as "The Switzerland of America," is seeking immigrants to revert the population aging that is threatening its economy. Tens of thousands of Cubans and Venezuelans fleeing the crisis in their countries have made a second home in Uruguay.

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Dr. Jorge Duany has been invited to serve on the oral examination committee for Jennifer Cearns' doctoral dissertation in anthropology, "'The Mula Ring': Material Flows of Circulation through the Cuban World."

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Barry University News announces the presentation of the book, "Identity and Postnationalism in Cuban Culture," as part of CRI's public events held in collaboration with Books & Books in Coral Gables.

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March

Orlando González Esteva interviews Dr. Evelyn Hu-Dehart, from Brown University, about Chinese migration to Cuba in the 19th century.

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Applications for the Díaz-Ayala Library Travel Grants are due March 16. These grants allow scholars and graduate students to consult the FIU Libraries' extensive resources on Cuba and its diaspora.

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April

Dr. Marie Laure Geoffray will conduct research on the development of transnational ties between the Cuban-American community and former Central European dissidents, as well as Latin American and European democracy and human rights activists.

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The Cuban Research Institute, CasaCuba, and the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center are pleased to cosponsor a new series of commissioned analyses of Cuban politics, economy, culture, and society, together with policy recommendations.

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Join Dr. Carmelo Mesa-Lago's lecture, organized by Harvard University's Cuba Studies Program in collaboration with CRI, the Cuban Heritage Collection at the University of Miami Libraries, and the Cuba Program of the Institute of Latin American Studies at Columbia University.

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"The date of departure from Cuba—before and after 1980—served as a watershed within the émigré community, as a symbol of social status. Those wounds between Cubans have not healed entirely," said Jorge Duany, Director of FIU's Cuban Research Institute.

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According to CRI Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta, "the precarious living conditions of many homes, multigenerational coexistence, added to the stress of the loss of income, situations of poverty, the excessive concerns, among others, have an impact on the increase in abuse and domestic violence" in Cuba.

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Cuba has exported medical services to 14 countries affected by the coronavirus pandemic, including Italy, Spain, and Andorra, while the United States warns that the receiving countries should put an end to Cuba's labor abuses against its international health workers.

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May

Alberto Sosa Cabanas, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Modern Languages, successfully defended his dissertation on the representation of blacks in Cuban literary and artistic discourse from 1880 to 1933.

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The University of Florida Press has approved an advance contract for an anthology proposed by Drs. Carmen Haydée Rivera Vega and Jorge Duany, based on the 2019 CRI Conference on Cuban and Cuban-American Studies.

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Congratulations to Professor Jorge L. Esquirol, a faculty member of the FIU College of Law, who has been elected to the Board of Directors of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE) for 2020–2022.

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Due to the health crisis, the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE) decided to cancel its August 13–15, 2020 Conference at FIU. However, ASCE is planning to do a virtual event around those dates, as well as to hold a regular conference at FIU in January 4–6, 2021.

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The online journal, "Foro Cubano," published by the Sergio Arboleda University in Bogotá, Colombia, is seeking contributions on any aspect of the social, economic, political, and cultural situation of Cuba.

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June

The distinguished Cuban music collector Cristóbal Díaz Ayala has shared a selection of the soundtrack of his life, from childhood to the present day, including memories of his native land and his adopted country, Puerto Rico.

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The Cuban Cultural Center of New York will recognize Dr. Carmelo-Mesa Lago, a member of the CRI Community Advisory Board, for his contributions to the fields of Cuban and Latin American Studies.

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In 2018, Cuba's Communist Party proposed a new Constitution recognizing same-sex marriage. FIU Law Professor José Gabilondo's article examines how the proposal triggered important public debates between advocates of religious liberty and opponents of discrimination against sexual minorities.

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A Univisión article quotes CRI Director Jorge Duany about the unequal treatment suffered by Latinos, especially those of dark skin color, in U.S. society.

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FIU History Professor Mike Bustamante writes about how Cuban Americans are likely to vote in the 2020 U.S. presidential elections.

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CRI Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta analyzes the main characteristics of the latest wave of the Cuban exodus since the mid-1990s.

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Dr. Sherry Johnson, Professor of History and Faculty Associate of the Cuban Research Institute, will give the keynote address at the 47th Annual Meeting of the Southeastern American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (SEASEC). The meeting will take place on February 18–20, 2021 in Ft. Myers, Florida.

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July

Join the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE) for its first Virtual Conference on August 13-15, 2020.

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El Nuevo Herald profiles the life and work of the Cuban-American artist Humberto Calzada, a member of the CRI Community Advisory Board.

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Apropos the premiere of a new documentary on Operation Pedro Pan, the Brazilian newspaper "O Globo" interviews CRI Director Jorge Duany about the historical context for the relocation of more than 14,000 unaccompanied Cuban minors to the United States between 1960 and 1962.

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The digital journal, "Foro Cubano," published in Bogotá, Colombia, has gathered a series of essays on social, economic, and political indicators in Cuba, including contributions by CRI Director Jorge Duany and Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta.

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FIU sociolinguist and CRI Faculty Affiliate Phillip Carter led new research that shows Miami English is its own unique dialect. Dr. Carter defines this dialect as a variety of English with subtle structural influence from Spanish, mostly spoken by native English speakers who are second-, third-, or fourth-generation Latinos.

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We're happy to share the news that Maite Morales, a Ph.D. candidate in history, has successfully defended her dissertation on "The Cuban Revolution’s Emotive Regime: A Decade to Remember, 1968–1978."

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In the second part of her analysis, CRI Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta delves into the opinions of Cubans arriving in Miami since 1995.

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August

Professor Matthew Mirow has authored a paper on the constitutionalist and jurist Félix Varela y Morales, a notable Cuban intellectual of the 19th century.

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Drs. Asher Milbauer and James Sutton have edited the anthology, "Exile in Global Literature and Culture: Homes Found and Lost," including contributions by Cuban-American authors Uva de Aragón, Gustavo Pérez Firmat, Ana Menéndez, and Richard Blanco, and an interview with Humberto Calzada. The book will be virtually presented at Books & Books on September 17.

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Santa Fe College has invited CRI Director Dr. Jorge Duany to give a virtual lecture on the critical role of Latino voters in the state in the next presidential elections. Follow the link to attend this free and public online event.

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A group of experts assess the potential impact of the presidential elections between Donald Trump and Joe Biden on U.S.-Cuba relations.

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September

The conservative Miami-born judge and FIU graduate is one of president Donald Trump's possible choices to replace liberal justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died last week.

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The shadows of Cuban leader Fidel Castro and the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico are looming large over Latino voters in Florida as they decide whether to back President Donald Trump or his Democratic challenger Joe Biden in the November elections.

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Jorge Duany, director of the Cuban Research Institute at Florida International University, said it is no shock that Trump is winning the majority of Cuban American voters, but it is significant that he is running up the score on Biden in Miami. "What is noticeable is that the actual numbers of Cuban American voters that Trump has increased," Duany said.

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Congratulations to Philippe Létrilliart, former member of the CRI Community Advisory Board, on the publication of his new book, "Americana 1987-2017"! The book deals in part with the role of the Catholic Church in Cuba. Mr. Létrilliart is currently serving as the French Ambassador to Nicaragua.

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The Cuban Research Institute is pleased to announce that this year's recipient is Arasay Vázquez Díaz, who is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Curatorial Practice at FIU.

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October

According to "Foreign Policy," young Cuban Americans have turned the internet into a political battlefield in this must-win swing state, but the Cuban American vote is even more pro-Trump now than in 2016. CRI Director Jorge Duany comments on why many young Cuban Americans intend to vote for the president's reelection in November.

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According to the "South Florida Sun-Sentinel," Democrats are trying to mobilize Puerto Ricans to outmuscle Republican Cubans at the voting booth and help Joe Biden beat Donald Trump in November.

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We're saddened to share the news that Dr. Martínez, Professor Emeritus of Art History and CRI Faculty Affiliate, has died. He will be remembered for his numerous contributions to the study, preservation, and exhibition of Cuban and Cuban-American art, as well as for his teaching and service to the FIU community.

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CRI Director Jorge Duany talks to Manuel Frau-Ramos, founding editor of "El Sol Latino" in Holyoke, Massachusetts. The main topic of this issue of "Podcast 413" is the critical role of Cuban and Puerto Rican voters in the upcoming presidential election.

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The Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE) will hold its 30th meeting on January 4–6, 2021. The virtual meeting will focus on Cuba's current economic problems and the Cuban government's announced responses.

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A majority of Cuban Americans support President Donald Trump and plan to vote for him in November, according to the latest FIU Cuba Poll. "Cubans remain a majority Republican ethnic group and like the majority of Republicans throughout the country, they are supportive of President Trump and his administration’s approach to governing," said Guillermo Grenier, the principal investigator on the project.

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In an op ed article, CRI Visiting Scholar Elaine Acosta asks the question: what can be done to help older Cubans live a more dignified life on the island?

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FIU Magazine renders a moving tribute to CRI Affiliate Faculty Juan A. Martínez for a lifetime of teaching, researching, and exhibiting Cuban and Cuban-American art.

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November

Jorge Duany, Director of the Cuban Research Institute at FIU, says, "Given the fact that tourism has practically collapsed, this as a result of the pandemic, the remittances have become the most important... It is estimated that about half of all money that goes to Cuba goes through these informal channels. It is likely this form of transfer will increase in the immediate future."

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According to FIU Professor Guillermo Grenier, "neither the Cuban government, nor the military, nor large enterprises will suffer the interruption of U.S. funds, but rather the true victim is the Cuban people."

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We're happy to share the program of our virtual Classically Cuban Concert with Enrique Chía. The program features some of the best-known and most beloved boleros, guajiras, habaneras, and criollas from Cuba's musical repertoire.

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CRI Director Jorge Duany and History Professor Michael Bustamante will lecture as part of the series on "The Greater Caribbean: A Space for Political and Cultural Interlocution, 19th and 20th Centuries," sponsored by the Spanish National Research Council in Madrid. The seminar will be held on Friday, January 22, 2021, at 11:00 AM (Miami time).

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According to Jorge Duany, the head of the Cuban Research Institute at Florida International University, President-elect Joe Biden won't insist on lifting the embargo. Instead, Duany predicted, his objective will be to "empower" the Cuban people and promote democracy on the island.

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The Miami New Times interviews two FIU faculty members—Guillermo Grenier and Kathryn De Palo-Gould—to explain why Donald Trump did so well in one of Florida's Democratic strongholds, particularly among Cuban Americans.

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The Miami New Times interviewed Dr. Guillermo J. Grenier, head of the FIU Cuba Poll released last month. "Cuban Americans are a voting bloc that Republicans can rely on," Grenier told the New Times. "Fifty-three percent of Cubans are Republican, and [the] independents vote like Republican."

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BBC News reviews how Florida was the master key to the 2000 presidential elections and examines the role of the Cuban-American community after the Elián González affair. The possibility of a tight and contested election in 2020 raises the specter of a repeat scenario in Florida.

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December

Yarimis Méndez Pupo is currently writing her dissertation on the labor market incorporation of Cubans who migrated to Florida between 2000 and 2017.

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In a volume edited by Anke Birkenmaier, an interdisciplinary group of humanities and social science scholars study migration from a long-term perspective, analyzing the Caribbean’s “unincorporated subjects” from a legal, historical, and cultural standpoint, and exploring how despite often fractured public spheres, Caribbean intellectuals, artists, filmmakers, and writers have been resourceful at showcasing migration as the hallmark of our modern age.

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"In Black and White: What Afro-Cubans Want You to Know" is a thought-provoking short video produced by Company Jones Creative, LLC and Ibis Valdés Consulting, LLC. It features interviews with several young Cubans of color about their experiences with racial discrimination in the United States as well as on the island.

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Jack Vertovec, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies, has just published a journal article on Cuban entrepreneurship, based on recent ethnographic fieldwork in Havana. Jack received the Eliana Rivero Scholarship from the Cuban Research Institute in 2018.

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Cuban migrants in Suriname and other South American countries are trying to reach the United States to apply for political asylum, but the U.S. government has made it very difficult for them to receive that status.

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The 16th Classically Cuban Concert featured the renowned Cuban-American pianist Enrique Chía, who performed some of the best-known and most beloved boleros and other songs from Cuba's musical repertoire.

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The Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE) will be holding its next virtual conference on January 4–6, 2021. The main conference theme is "Caught in 'a Perfect Storm': Are Havana's Responses Sufficient?" Attached is the tentative program.

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