Diaspora in Recent Film from the Spanish Caribbean
A Two-Day Virtual Symposium: March 28-29, 2023
Cuban Heritage Collection and Emilio Bacardí Moreau Chair in Cuba and Cuban-American Studies, University of Miami
Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute, Tulane University
Atlanta Global Studies Center, The Georgia Institute of Technology and Georgia State University
Identity is not as transparent or unproblematic as we think. Perhaps instead of thinking of identity as an already accomplished fact, which the new cultural practices then represent, we should think, instead, of identity as a “production,” within, not outside, representation.
In his influential 1996 essay “Cultural Identity and Diaspora,” Jamaican-born theorist Stuart Hall described the power of “a new cinema of the Caribbean” to reflect, refract, and enact new conceptions of identity among citizens of the region and their diasporas around the world. In the years since, migration has solidified its centrality as “a constant motif in Caribbean history,” to quote Hall’s words elsewhere. This has reinforced the need for filmmakers to continue engaging diaspora, migration, and exile as not only cornerstones of the region’s past and present, but also sites from which to convene new publics, preserve cultural memory, and imagine alternate futures.
Bringing together film scholars, curators, and filmmakers, this symposium applies Hall’s questions about the relationship between cinema and representation to recent cinematic production from the Spanish Caribbean and its global diasporas. How, we ask, are contemporary filmmakers from Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico—whether on their respective islands or residing abroad—contending with diaspora as subject of their work, as site of production, and/or as intended audience? What platforms are they leveraging, or creating, to do so? In asking these questions, we follow Hall’s call to understand film “not as a second-order mirror held up to reflect what already exists, but as that form of representation which is able to constitute us as new kinds of subjects.”
NOTE: This symposium will be presented in both English and Spanish.
Symposium Schedule (EST)
DAY ONE – TUESDAY, MARCH 28, 2023
Diasporic Representations: Past, Present, and Future | Representaciones de la diáspora: Pasado, presente y futuro
Engaging Diaspora Audiences: New Platforms | Participación de audiencias diaspóricas: Nuevas plataformas
DAY TWO – WEDNESDAY, MARCH 29, 2023
Diasporic Filmmaking Today: A Conversation with Filmmakers of the Region | Cine Diaspórico Hoy : Una conversación con cineastas de la región (Presented in Spanish)