La Mulata: Cuba’s National Symbol

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, Media Archive, Papers/Presentations, Social Science, Women on 2009-12-29 23:57Z by Steven

La Mulata: Cuba’s National Symbol

Focus Anthropology: A Publication of Undergraduate Research
Issue IV: 2004-2005
20 pages

Tamara Kneese
Kenyon College

This essay provides a discourse analysis of la mulata as an ambivalent symbol of Cuban national identity. In many ways, la mulata is representative of Cuba’s sexual, racial, and economic hierarchies. On the one hand, la mulata is a living emblem of Cuba’s histories with imperialism and slavery, mirroring Cuba’s exploitation by white male foreigners. On the other hand, la mulata is portrayed as a manifestation of Cuba’s tenacity and diversity, particularly during the Special Period when jineteras, who were often characterized as mulatas, drew tourists and capital to Cuba.

Table of Contents

Sugar, Sex, and Marriage
U.S. Tourism, Part I
U.S. Tourism Part II –The Special Period
Images of the Mulata in Brazil and in Cuban-American Consciousness

Read the entire article here.

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