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Contacting Robin Moore

Reviews of Nationalizing Blackness

Robin D. Moore

Robin D. Moore  a professor of history at Temple University and the author of

Nationalizing Blackness: Afrocubanismo and Artistic Revolution in Havana, 1920-1940.

As the author describes it:

"Nationalizing Blackness uses music and dance history as a means of discussing the highly ambivalent attitudes towards Africa and African-derived culture in Cuba of the 1920s and 1930s. Specifically, it focuses on an artistic movement known as "afrocubanismo" which led to the popularity of formerly marginal genres of black, working-class music such as son and comparsa. Afrocuban artistic expression is presented as both a source of pride for most Cubans, a symbol of their unique Caribbean experience, and as a form of expression that many considered "primitive" or "backwards." The book discusses numerous subjects such as the history of the Cuban blackface theater, the history of carnival in Havana, early son bands, popular song and dance music of the 1930s, the international rumba craze, and poetry and visual art inspired by Afrocuban culture."

Nationalizing Blackness won the 1998 Gustave O. Arlt Award in the Arts for outstanding scholarly significance given by the Council of Graduate Schools.


Nationalizing Blackness: Afrocubanismo and Artistic Revolution in Havana, 1920-1940.

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Reviewer: Joe Hernandez, President, International Latin Music Hall of Fame ( from United States      October 22, 1999
An important work that sheds light and understanding of the struggles and triumphs of Afrocubans and their culture. Robin D. Moore takes you into a fascinating journey, with scholarly research and in depth analysis, of the racial experience during a period of tremendous changes and unrest in Cuba. This work is an enormous contribution to our understanding of this period between 1920 through 1940...Bravo!

Contacting Robin D. Moore


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