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Rumba: Dance and Social Change in Contemporary Cuba
 (Blacks in the Diaspora)

by Yvonne Daniel

Yvonne Daniels spent considerable time in Matanzas, working with los Muñequitos and others, in order to research this book.

"This study interprets the intricate complexion of dance in Cuban society, focusing on the dynamic cultural phenomenon known as rumba, in particular. In introducing her topic, Daniel displays as vigorous a tempo as the energized movement of the dance itself. Overall, her inquiry probes the origins of rumba then proceeds to analyze the capacity of this distinctive dance to influence all levels of social interactions. It is intriguing to note that Daniel follows in the tradition of other anthropologists who have focused on dance as a method of comprehending a culture and have been dancers themselves. The professional form of rumba as well as traditional and public forms are examined here with respect to the excitement generated by and the transformative potential of this dance."

Reviews

" . . . a stunning, thoroughly investigative look at Cuba's national dance. Daniel's work takes us into the institution of Rumba, revealing its complex richness, history and function in contemporary Cuban society."  - Katrina Hazzard-Donald

"Daniel's sensitive and compassionate ethnographic account combines acute description with thoughtful interpretation. . . . Rumba will make for stimulating reading."  - Sally Ness

"The professional form of rumba as well as traditional and public forms are examined here with respect to the excitement generated by and the transformative potential of this dance."  - Booklist

"Anthropologist/dancer Yvonne Daniel discusses the unique role of the rumba in Cuban life and culture in this readable, exceptionally well-documented study based on her own extensive experience as an observer and participant in the life of the rumberos." - Dance International

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