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La FloridaFive Hundred Years of Hispanic Presence$
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Viviana Díaz Balsera and Rachel A. May

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813060118

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813060118.001.0001

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Performing Diasporas, or Cubanidad Meets Jim Crow

Performing Diasporas, or Cubanidad Meets Jim Crow

Miami in a Period of Demographic Transition before the Cuban Revolution

Chapter:
(p.209) 9 Performing Diasporas, or Cubanidad Meets Jim Crow
Source:
La Florida
Author(s):

Darién J. Davis

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813060118.003.0012

This chapter discusses the transculturation, or transfer, of Cuban cultural and musical practices across national boundaries from Cuba to the United States during the racially charged era of Jim Crow. It outlines the African and Afro-Cuban roots of popular Cuban culture and highlights the tensions and contradictions involved in the transfer of those cultural practices during a time of enforced racial segregation in Florida and elsewhere. Floridians and other North Americans celebrated Afro-Cuban practices and welcomed Cuban performers from various racial backgrounds. Afro-Cuban culture was apparent in the instruments, dances and language or Cuban performers. Nonetheless while both Afro-Cubans and white Cubans helped promote Afro-Cuban culture in the United States, white Cubans such as Desi Arnaz, who also prejudices, reaped disproportionate economic and social benefits because of US racial codes.

Keywords:   Afro-Cuban practices, popular Cuban culture, racial segregation, Jim Crow

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