Faculty Emeriti

Lourdes Martinez-Echazabal
  • Title
    • Professor
  • Division Social Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Latin American & Latino Studies
    • Merrill College
  • Affiliations Languages and Applied Linguistics, Film and Digital Media Department, Dolores Huerta Research Center for the Americas
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Fax
  • Office Location
    • Remote work location, #0
  • Mail Stop Merrill College
  • Mailing Address
    • 1156 High Street
    • Santa Cruz California 95064

Summary of Expertise

Latin American Literature and Cultural Studies; Cuban Literature, film and other forms of Cultural Expressions; Afro-Latin American literatures, cultures and societies; Race, Gender and Sexuality in Latin American Literature and Cinema; Brazil, Queer Cinema in Latin America.

Research Interests

Cuba; Brazil; Afro-Latin America; Queer Expressions of Gender and Sexuality in Latin American Cinema; Cinema and Social Change in Cuba; Nation and Narration; Translations, the Circulation of Knowledges, and the Constitution of "fields" of inquiry.

Biography, Education and Training

Born and raised on the island of Cuba, I came to the United States in 1970. I received a Master`s degree in History (nineteenth century African and Caribbean histories) in 1980, and a Ph.D. in Latin American literature in 1984, from the University of California San Diego . I am a Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz .

My broad area of specialization is twentieth-century Caribbean and Latin American literatures and cultural studies. Central to my research on Caribbean and Latin American writings and other forms of cultural expressions are issues of national, racial, cultural, and gender identity formation (and transformations) in an area broadly termed "Afroamérica." I am particularly interested in the symbolic and textual processes that condition the formation of these identities, and in the shifting functions of one category to another - for example, the "racialization" of local (or "regional") cultures, the "gendering" of national or ethnic identities; and the ethnicization of political contests.

The major unifying concern of most of my research and publications has been an on-going analysis of the complexities of the ideologeme known in Latin America as mestizaje. I am the author of Para una semiótica de la mulatez (1990), and of numerous articles relating to the topic of race in Latin American writings (including Brazil and the Spanish Speaking Caribbean), and of African Latin American literatures and cultures.

I have been the recipient of numerous awards, amongst them a Rockefeller Fellowship, a Social Sciences Research Council award, a National Endowment for the Humanities summer fellowship. Last but not least, I was a Fulbright Senior Lecturer/Researcher at the University of the Andes , in Bogotá , Colombia .

For the past fifteen years, I have been working primarily on Cuban literature and and film. To that effect, I compiled and edited a special issue of Afro Hispanic Review dedicated to the late writer Manuel Granados, and I am working on a manuscript that brings together various pieces on Post-Revolutionary Cuban cultural expressions at the intersection of art, race and revolution. I founded and coordinated the Cuba in Americas and Transatlantic Contexts research unit, a research unit sponsored by the Institute for Humanities at UC Santa Cruz, and, with Raúl Fernández (UCI), founded the UC-Cuba Academic Initiative, a University of California Multi-Campus Research Program.

Honors, Awards and Grants

- UCOP: UC-Cuba Academic Initiative Multicampus Research Program (co-founder with Professor Raul Fernandez, UCI), UCOP, 2007 - 2011.
- IHR Faculty Research Fellowship: Institute for Humanities Research Fellowship, 2005 - 2006.
- Fulbright Award: Fulbright Award, Fulbright Senior Lecture/Research Award, Bogotá, Colombia (Fall 1998)
- Yearly Endowment from the Brazilian Government ($20K) to start and support the offering of instruction in Portuguese at UCSC, 1997 - 2004.
- Social Science Research Council grant for advanced research in Brazil, 1994 - 1995.
- Rockefeller Resident Fellowship at the Centro Interdisciplinar de Estudos Contemporáneos of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (March-August), 1993 - 1994.
- National Endowment for the Humanities: NEH-Sponsored Summer Institute in Brazil: "The Encounter of Cultures in Brazil," 1992 - 1993.

Selected Publications

  • Para una semiótica de la mulatez. Madrid: Editorial Porrúa Turanzas, 1990.
  • Special Issue of Afro Hispanic Review 22, dedicated to the late "Afro-Cuban" writer Manuel Granados. Spring 2005.
  • "'Sara es mucha Sara'." Afro Hispanic Review 33.1 (2014): 235 - 260.
  • -- "Descolonizando el mito del negro en Adire y el tiempo roto, de Manuel Granados," Afro-Hispanic Review 22.1:22-30.
  • -- "Hibridismo no Atlántico negro: O caso de Chombo." Revista de Estudos Afro-Asiáticos. Rio de Janeiro: Centro de Estudos Afro-Asiáticos, 35:81-96.
  • Reprinted in Travessia 38 (1999):125-143.
  • -- "Mestizaje and the Discourse of National/Cultural Identity in Latin America, 1845-1959." Latin American Perspectives, Vol. 25.3: 21-42.
  • -- "Hybridity and Diasporization in the 'Black Atlantic': The Case of Chombo." Publications of the Afro-Latin American Research Association, 1.1: 117-129. Reprinted in CLRC Research and News
  • Update 8 (1997):6 and 19.
  • -- "The Politics of Afro-Cuban Religion in Contemporary Cuban Cinema." Afro Hispanic Review, 20.3-4: 16-22.
  • "The 1960s Revisited: Art, Race and Revolution at the Cuban Crossroad." Writing the Afro-Hispanic: Essays on Africa and Africans in the Spanish Caribbean. London: Adonis & Abbey Publishers Ltd, 2012. 97-123.
  • "Mestizaje in Latin America." The Creolization Reader. London: Routledge, 2010. 257 - 265.
  • --. "'Martí y las razas': A Re-Evaluation." Re-Reading José Martí. One Hundred Years Later. Ed. Julio Rodríguez Luis. Albany: State University of New York Press, 115-127.
  • -- "O culturalismo dos años trenta no Brasil: dislocamento retórico ou mudança conceitual?" Maio, M.C., and Santo, R.V. (eds), Raça, Ciência, e Sociedade, Rio de Janeiro: FIOCRUZ/CCBB.

Teaching Interests

-- LTMO 125D, Cinema and Social Change in Cuba
-- LTMO 125J: Cinema and Subjectivity. Queer Cinema in Latin America
-- LTSP 131H: Queer Latin American Culture
-- LTSP 134H: Afro-Hispanic Literature and Culture
-- LTSP 117: Literature of the Spanish-Speaking Caribbean
-- LTSP 134P: Narratives of the Cuban Diaspora
-- LTSP 131A: Topics on Cuban Literature and Cultural Studies: the 1960: the Literature and Culture of the Early Revolutionary Period; Cuba: the Literature and Culture of Late Socialism, 1989 - 2012.
-- LTSP 231A: Topics on Cuban Literature and Cultural Studies: Black Interventions in 20th Century Cuba; the 1960: the Literature and Culture of the Early Revolutionary Period; Cuba: the Literature and Culture of Late Socialism, 1989 - Present. The Cuban Novel.