Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute

Tulane University

Latin American Library Announces 2009-2010 Greenleaf Fellows

December 8th, 2009

The Doris Stone Director of the Latin American Library, Hortensia Calvo, recently announced the Richard E. Greenleaf Fellows at the Latin American Library for 2009-2010. In this third year of the Greenleaf fellowship program at LAL, an overwhelming number of first-rate proposals from many countries and disciplines were received. For this reason, the LAL decided to award four fellowships for this coming academic year instead of the customary two or three. Below is a brief introduction of each of these scholars, the dates they will be at the Latin American Library, and a synopsis of the projects they will be developing. As always, the LAL will host an informal work-in-progress talk for each one during the course of their stay, dates to be announced. Stay tuned.

The Richard E. Greenleaf Fellows at LAL for 2009-2010 are, in order of arrival:

Denise Pahl Schaan
Dates of fellowship: January 9 – February 28

Denise Schaan is an Associate Professor of Archaeology at the Universidade Federal do Pará, in Belém, Pará, Brazil, specializing in the archaeology of the Amazon Basin. She is currently President of the Sociedade de Arqueologia Brasileira, and editor of the prestigious journal Amazônica: Revista de Antropologia. Dr. Schaan has published extensively on ancient Amazonia, particularly on the iconography of Marajoara pottery and society which flourished between 600 and 1600 AD on Marajó Island at the mouth of the Amazon River. She has also worked on gender in Ancient Amazonia. Her publications include two forthcoming monographs, Sacred Geographies of Ancient Amazonia (Left Coast Press); and Cultura Marajoara/Marajoara Culture. At the LAL, Dr. Schaan will develop a project based on her groundbreaking finds and interpretations of enormous, ancient geometric earthworks in the Western Amazon, near the Bolivian border, which have garnered international attention.

Project: Placing the Geometric Enclosures within the History and Ethnography of Western Amazonia: A Tulane Latin American Library Research Project Abstract

The objective of this library research project is to find both historical and ethnographic information on the use of geometric enclosures (popularly known as geoglyphs), which are earthworks built by Western Amazonian populations 1,000 years ago. I will research bibliographies related to the history of Western Amazonia, in particular Bolivia and Brazil, in order to determine when and how the region was first explored, which routes were used, which and where indigenous groups were located. Such information will help to fill in the gap of time between the building and occupation of the enclosures and the arrival of neo-Europeans.

Justo Miguel Flores Escalante
Dates of Fellowship: February 1 – March 7

Mtro. Flores is a doctoral student in History at Colegio de México, in Mexico City. His areas of specialization are the history of Mexico, regional and political history, particularly the nineteenth century. He is the autor of several articles and book chapters on political processes and separatism in nineteenth century Yucatán Peninsula and relations with the Mexican state during the same period.

Project: Sovereignty and Exceptionality: The Integration of Yucatán and the Creation of Campeche Within the Mexican State, 1821-1857./Soberanía y excepcionalidad: La integración de Yucatán y la creación de Campeche en el Estado Mexicano, 1821-1857.

The construction of the Mexican state began in the first half of the nineteenth century, which brought with it the uneasy integration of the provinces of New Spain. This is the underlying context of the conflictive relations between the Yucatán Peninsula and the central government of Mexico. Yucatecan historians have tended to regard the political movements of the Peninsula as separatist-independist. However, my hypothesis is that the majority of these problems were due to the concept of shared sovereignty in order to preserve internal autonomy. I therefore propose a new way of examining these relations and a novel explanation of the beginnings of the Mexican state from the perspective of the región of Yucatán.

En la primera mitad del Siglo XIX se inició la construcción del Estado Mexicano y con ello la difícil integración de las provincias novohispanas. En ese contexto se insertan las conflictivas relaciones entre Yucatán y el gobierno de México. Los movimientos políticos peninsulares han sido tachados como separatistas-independistas por la historiografía yucateca, pero sostengo la hipótesis que la mayor parte de los problemas se debieron al uso del concepto de soberanía compartida para conservar la autonomía interna y propongo una nueva forma de ver las relaciones mencionadas y una novedosa explicación sobre los comienzos del Estado Mexicano desde la región yucateca.

Alfredo Prieto
Dates of Fellowship: March 8 – May 8

Alfredo Prieto has a distinguished career in the field of communications, media and publishing, and has written widely on the perception of Cuba in the United States as reflected in literature and the social sciences. In Havana he has occupied key posts on the staff of journals such as Caminos, Cultura y Desarrollo, and Cuadernos de Nuestra América. Since 1997 he is the editor-in-chief of Revista Temas; he is also Assistant Director of Ediciones Unión, the publishing house of the Cuban Association of Artists and Writers (UNEAC), and is a regular columnist for several digital newspapers such as 7 Días (Dominican Republic) and Havana Times. He currently teaches at the University of Havana at the Center for Hemispheric and United States Studies, and is completing a Master’s degree in Literature and Sociology at the same university. Lic. Prieto has been described as arguably the most knowledgeable Cuban scholar living in Cuba specializing in the culture of the Cuban diaspora.

Project: El ojo que te ve: visiones de la isla en la literatura cubano-americana/ The Eye That Sees You: Visions of the Island in Cuban-American Literature

Este proyecto persigue indagar cómo se perciben Cuba y su cultura en la literatura cubano-americana, sobre todo de los 90 a hoy; es decir, la crisis cubana y sus imaginarios, un tema no estudiado en la producción académica nacional. Su problema principal es en qué medida en esta literatura se produce una superación de los estereotipos actuantes en la sociedad global al mirar al otro, y si “la condición cubano-americana” logra romper o no con el peso de la tradición. Continuaría así mis investigaciones sobre Cuba en la cultura norteamericana, emprendidas tanto en la Isla como en diversas instituciones académicas de los Estados Unidos.

This project explores the ways in which Cuba and its culture are perceived in Cuban-American literature, especially since 1990s to the present, that is, focusing on the Cuban crisis and its imaginaries, a topic that has not been studied by Cuban academics. The main focus is to examine the degree to which this literature supersedes common stereotypes found in global society when engaging with the Other and if the so-called “Cuban-American condition” effectively breaks with the weight of this tradition or not. My project is an extension of my ongoing research on the topic of Cuba within North American culture conducted on the island as well as in several academic institutions in the United States.

Luisa Campuzano
Dates of Fellowship: May 10 – July 10

Dr. Campuzano is one of the foremost literary scholars in Cuba today. An emeritus profesora titular from the Facultad de Artes y Letras at Universidad de La Habana, Luisa Campuzano founded and directs the Women’s Studies program at Casa de las Américas. She is also Vice-President of the Alejo Carpentier Foundation (2008), and director of the journal Revolución y cultura. Her early research centered on the Classics; in the past few decades her work has focused on Latin American cultural, literary and intellectual history of the 19th and 20th centuries and on women writers. She has written extensively on 19th century travel writers within the context of broader cultural debates at the time concerning Cuba’s future in a post-Spanish colonial era and increasing concerns over rising US influence in the hemisphere. Her books include Carpentier entonces y ahora (Editorial Letras Cubanas, 1997) and Las muchachas de La Habana no tienen temor de Dios: Escritoras cubanas (s. XVIII-XXI) (Ediciones Unión, 2004).

Project: Viajeros/as cubanos/as a Estados Unidos: siglo XIX/Nineteenth-Century Cuban Travelers to the United States.

Preparo un libro sobre textos de viajeros/as cubanos que visitaron los Estados Unidos en el siglo XIX. Conformado y analizado el corpus, y revisados los fondos de bibliotecas cubanas, necesito consultar bibliografía no localizable en Cuba: literatura de viajes a Estados Unidos producida contemporáneamente por otros viajeros/as – latinoamericanos y europeos-; prensa de la época – en particular, los muchos periódicos en español editados en Nueva Orleáns; bibliografía teórica sobre viajes y literatura de viajes; bibliografía crítica sobre libros de viajeros/as; libros de historia y de referencia, mapas, grabados y fotografías que permitan contextualizar lo que escriben los viajeros/as cubanos.

I am working on a book-length study of Cuban travelers who visited the United States in the nineteenth century. I have examined the extant corpus available in Cuban libraries, but I need to consult works that are not available in Cuba, such as contemporaneous travel narratives of other Latin American and European writers who also visited the United States; newspapers and journals of the time, particularly the Spanish-language press in New Orleans; contemporary theoretical works on travel and travel writing; critical bibliographies on travel writing; histories and reference works; as well as maps, prints and photographs that may contextualize the works of Cuban travelers.

About Richard E. Greenleaf

Until his retirement in 1998, Richard E. Greenleaf served as the France Vinton Scholes Professor of Colonial Latin American History, and as the Director of the Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane University. He also served as Chair of the Department of History. Dr. Greenleaf grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and took his Bachelors, Masters and Doctoral degrees at the University of New Mexico, where he studied under the dean of Inquisition scholars, France V. Scholes. Greenleaf’s doctoral dissertation, “Zumárraga and the Mexican Inquisition 1536-1543,” served as the basis for his many excellent publications on the history of the Holy Office of the Inquisition in Latin America.

Greenleaf has authored eleven major scholarly books, co-authored or contributed to seventeen others, and published almost four dozen articles in the field of Latin American and New Mexico history. He has been the recipient of many distinguished awards, among them the Silver Medal, the Sahagún Prize (Mexican National History Award), and the Serra Award of the Academy of American Franciscan History for Distinguished Scholarship in Colonial Latin American History. In his long and distinguished teaching career in New Mexico, Mexico City and New Orleans, Greenleaf has served as mentor to 34 doctoral students at Tulane, and countless masters and undergraduate students.