Cuba before and after J11: Political, Economic, and Cultural Dimensions

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FIU Graham Center Ballrooms

11200 Southwest 8th Street

Miami, FL 33174

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Thirteenth Conference on Cuban and Cuban-American Studies

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Cuba before and after J11:

Political, Economic, and Cultural Dimensions

FIU Modesto A. Maidique Campus

Graham Center Ballrooms

Miami, Florida

February 3–4, 2022

Deadline for submission of proposals: November 15, 2021

The Cuban Research Institute (CRI) of Florida International University continues its tradition of convening scholars and other persons interested in the study of Cuba and Cuban Americans by announcing its Thirteenth Conference. We encourage the submission of panels and papers concentrating on any aspects of the main conference theme, but will consider all submissions relevant to the history, economy, politics, culture, society, and creative expression of Cuba and its diaspora. At this point, we plan to hold the conference on site, but we may have to convert it to a virtual or hybrid meeting if the public health situation requires it.

On Sunday, July 11, 2021 (J11), thousands of Cubans took to the streets to voice their discontent with the Island's government. Many demonstrators loudly chanted libertad (freedom), "down with the dictatorship," and Patria y vida (Fatherland and Life), the title of a critical rap song by Yotuel Romero, Gente de Zona, and other Cuban singers, which went viral in February 2021. They also demanded the resignation of current President Miguel Díaz-Canel, calling him insulting names. The protests started in the town of San Antonio de los Baños, near the capital of Havana, and quickly spread throughout the Island. Many young Black Cubans, both men and women, participated in these events. The protests were not called by a single opposition leader or organization, although the Cuban regime quickly detained some of the most visible dissidents. This was the first time in recent memory that economic and health complaints—such as the scarcity of food, medicine, fuel, and other basic necessities—were translated into explicit political demands for reform and even regime change.

In response to the J11 protests, the Cuban government quickly blocked access to the Internet on the Island. That same day, President Díaz-Canel held a press conference in which he called on his sympathizers to defend the Revolution in the streets, which was widely interpreted as an invitation to violence and civil war. The government mobilized its special forces brigade (the "Black Berets"), police officers, and plain-clothes agents to crush the manifestations. Hundreds of dissident leaders and demonstrators were arrested, imprisoned, and subjected to summary trials. The U.S. government supported the right to peaceful demonstration, condemned the violent repression of the protests, and sanctioned Cuban officials and organizations accused of orchestrating this repression, such as the minister of defense and the heads of the police force. The Cuban-American community staged massive street demonstrations in Miami, Washington, D.C., New York, and other cities to express solidarity with the J11 protests. Some exiles have celebrated what they hope is "the beginning of the end" of the Cuban socialist regime, while others remain skeptical of its imminent demise.

The Thirteenth Conference on Cuban and Cuban-American Studies takes the protests of July 11, 2021, as a point of departure for reflection and discussion about the past, present, and future of Cuba. Our main theme, the political, economic, and cultural dimensions of Cuba before and after J11, invites interdisciplinary approaches to the complex, heterogeneous, and multiple layers of contemporary Cuban society, especially during and after the coronavirus pandemic. Although we welcome discussions about the recent situation and the future of Cuba, we invite a thorough retrospective examination of the political, economic, and cultural causes and consequences of the J11 protests. We are especially interested in assessing the evolving relations between Cubans on and off the Island, particularly in South Florida.

Guidelines for Submitting Panel and Paper Proposals

Although we prefer panel proposals, we will attempt to group individual papers in sessions according to shared themes. Panels will ideally include four paper presenters, a chair (who may be one of the presenters), and a discussant. Panels may feature five paper presentations if they do not include a discussant. Each presentation will be limited to 20 minutes. Participants may perform two roles at the conference (chair, discussant, roundtable participant, or paper presenter), but may not present more than one paper. Submissions may be in English or Spanish.

Proposals for panels or roundtables must include a general description of the theme and one-page abstracts of each participant’s paper. The following information must be submitted for each panelist:

  • Full name
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Role in the session
  • Title of presentation
  • Postal address
  • Office, cell, and home phone numbers
  • Email address

Persons wishing to submit proposals for individual papers must present a one-page abstract and all pertinent personal data.

The deadline for submission of all paper and panel proposals is November 15, 2021. Notifications of acceptance (or refusal) will be sent out by December 1, 2021. For further information about the conference and other CRI activities, please visit our website at https://cri.fiu.edu. All submissions and requests for information should be sent to criconferen@fiu.edu. An acknowledgment of receipt will be sent.

Registration Fees and Other Conference Expenses

All participants should be registered under one of the following categories. Registration fees include two continental breakfasts, coffee breaks, a reception, and all conference materials. Please register online at https://criconference.eventbrite.com/

Pre-registration for the General Public (before January 15, 2022): $125

Onsite Registration: $150

Non-FIU Students: $35

FIU Students, Faculty, and Staff: Free of Charge

No refund will be issued for cancellations received after January 3, 2022.

Each participant will be responsible for his or her own travel and lodging expenses, as well as the conference registration fee. The registration fee for persons living in Cuba and journalists will be waived.

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Date and time

Location

FIU Graham Center Ballrooms

11200 Southwest 8th Street

Miami, FL 33174

View Map

Refund policy

Refunds up to 30 days before event

Organizer Florida International University

Organizer of Cuba before and after J11: Political, Economic, and Cultural Dimensions

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