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Repairing Cuba

February 17, 2020 @ 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

black and white image of the back of Fidel Castro speaking at a podium with men holding news cameras kneeling at the right side of the image
Image: Photograph by Alberto Korda, Revolution Square, January 2, 1966.

Monday Seminar:

Guillermina De Ferrari

Senior Fellow (2018-2022)

Spanish and Portuguese, UW-Madison


Contemporary Cuban art often highlights the widespread practice of repair. Fixing broken appliances and subdividing houses via DIY construction are frequent real-life responses to economic and social precarity. At the same time, these creative practices constitute political and ethical forms of engagement with crises, inequality, and an uneven access to modernity. In this talk, I will discuss specific objects and practices as a way to explore what repair says about Cuba today, as well as to reflect on how Cuban repair art contributes to a more general understanding of what it means to live in a world at risk.


Guillermina De Ferrari (Ph.D. Columbia University 2001) is professor of Spanish American and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures. She is the author of Vulnerable States: Bodies of Memory in Contemporary Caribbean Fiction (Virginia 2007), and Community and Culture in Post-Soviet Cuba (Routledge 2014). She has published many articles on Cuban and Caribbean literature, visual culture, photography, and world literature. She directed the Center for Visual Cultures (2014-2018) and curated the exhibition Apertura: Photography in Cuba Today (Chazen Museum of Art, 2015). She is co-editor with Ursula Heise (UCLA) of the Routledge Series Literature and Contemporary Thought.


February 17, 2020
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
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University Club, Room 212
432 East Campus Mall
Madison, Wisconsin 53703 United States