Compelled by the situation in Cuba, since then-Presidents Barack Obama and Raúl Castro announced their mutual intentions to reactivate the relationship between the United States and Cuba, faculty from the Department of Literatures, Cultures & Languages created a Cuban Studies Group. The group utilizes its expertise in the service of the UConn community by providing advice and consultations on cultural matters.

Undergraduate courses:

The following courses frequently offer a strong “Cuba” component when taught by Professor Loss. It is recommended you contact Loss beforehand if Cuba is your interest.

  • Spanish 3207 Women’s Studies in Spanish
  • Spanish 3214 Topics in Hispanic Cultures
  • Spanish 3250 (online) Film in Spain and Latin America
  • Span 3251 Latin American Film
  • Span 3254 Special Topics in Latin American National Cinemas
  • Spanish 3260 Studies in Spanish-American Literature
  • Span 3265 Literature of Puerto Rico and the Spanish Caribbean

Graduate courses:

Topics may vary, contact Professor Loss prior to taking course to confirm “Cuba” is part of the content.

  • Span 6402 Studies in Spanish-American Literature
  • Span 6405 Special Topics in Twentieth-Century Spanish-American Literature and Cultural Production
  • Span 6416 Theoretical Debates and the Hispanic Tradition

Faculty Lead

Jacqueline Loss
Professor of Spanish
Phone: +1 (860) 486-2529


Cuban Bricolage: The Artists’ Books of Ediciones Vigia

Start Date: March 2016


UConn - Dr. Odette Casamayor-Cisneros (Literatures, Cultures, and Languages) and Ms. Marisol Ramos (Library)

Dr. Casamayor-Cisneros and Ms. Ramos co-curated an exhibit in UConn’s Homer Babbidge Library entitled, “Cuban Bricolage: The Artists’ Books of Ediciones Vigia” that opened in March 2016.  UConn Libraries’ Archives and Special Collections owns forty two of these beautiful handcrafted books published by Ediciones Vigia, a unique artist’s collaborative press in Cuba.


Academic Year 2020-2021

Academic Year 2017-2018

November 9, 2017 -  Juan Carlos Alom Film Workshop Screening

Cuban filmmaker and photographer, Juan Carlos Alom, conducted a workshop which taught students to use and be inspired by antique 16-mm cameras. The students presented their short films which embraced Alom's instructions to "Shoot Freely, Express yourself." Sponsored by the University of Connecticut: School of Fine Arts; Robert H. Gray Memorial Lecture; Greenhouse Studios; Literatures, Cultures & Languages; El Instituto: Plank Lecture Series; Humanities Institute; Global Affairs; Dodd Center; Human Rights Institute; Connecting with the Arts; and Center for the Study of Popular Music.

October 17 - December 10, 2017 - Cuban Analogs: Photography by Juan Carlos Alom

UConn's Jorgensen Gallery displayed photographs by Cuban filmmaker and photographer, Juan Carlos Alom.  Themes such as Afro-Cuban religion, youth, and longitude are reflected in Alom's work. Sponsored by:  School of Fine Arts; Robert H. Gray Memorial Lecture; Greenhouse Studios; Literatures, Cultures & Languages; El Instituto: Plank Lecture Series; Humanities Institute; Global Affairs; Dodd Center; Human Rights Institute; Connecting with the Arts; and Center for the Study of Popular Music.

Academic Year 2016-2017

April 20, 2017 -  John N Plank Cuban Lecture Seires 

Roberto Zurbano: activist and Cultural Studies scholar; Duo Obsesión: hip-hop artists and activists; Gloria Rolando: activist and filmmaker; Shawn Salvant: UConn-English and Africana Studies; Jeffrey Ogbar: UConn-History and Center for the Study of Popular Music; and Kelly Walters: Visiting Asst Prof of Art and Art History partake in a roundtable discussion "National Configurations and Comparative Racial Consciousness: A Conversation between Cuban and U.S. Scholars." Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by El Instituto: Institute of Latina/o, Caribbean, and Latin American Studies (El Instituto).

April 18, 2017 - Film Screening: Severo Secreto

Film screening of a documentary highlighting the life of Severo Sarduy who has been acclaimed as one of the most daring and unique Cuban Writers of the 20th century.  Screening followed by Q&A with filmmaker Oneyda González and documentarian Gustavo Pérez. Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by El Instituto and Schneider Fund.

November 3, 2016 - A Book Reading with Yoss

Book reading and discussion with Yoss, Cuban writer and author of Super Extra Grande, at UConn Barnes & Noble (Storrs Center). Co-organized by Odette Casamayor and Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by Cuban Working Group.

October 24, 2016 - Creative Writing Workshop on Manipulation of Spanish Language within Fictional Writing

Lecture and writing workshop on the manipulation of the Spanish language within fictional writing, with Cuban poet Raúl Aguiar at UConn’s Puerto Rican/Latin American Cultural Center (PRLACC). Organized by Jacqueline Loss.

Academic Year 2015-2016

April 21, 2016 - Cuban Film in Transition

Lecture and film screening with Cuban director and writer, Juan Carlos Cremata, at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center. Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by the Department of Literatures, Cultures, and Languages (LCL) and  Scheider Fund.

March - May, 2016 - Ediciones Vigía’s Rare Artist Books Exhibition

The Exhibition at the Homer Babbidge Library displayed UConn's impressive collection of rare artistic books published in Matanzas, Cuba, by worldwide renowned Ediciones Vigía. Organized and curated by Odette Casamayor-Cisneros and Marisol Ramos. A Reception was held on April 18, 2016, during which Ramos answered questions about the exhibition. Co-sponsored by the LCL and PRLACC.

November 17, 2015 - "Tensions and (Dis) Tensions between Cuban Film and Institutionalism"

Cuban Professor and specialist on Gender and the Cinema, Danae C Diéguez, gave a talk entitled "Tensions and (Dis) Tensions between Cuban Film and Institutionalism." Diéguez is a Professor at Instituto Superior de Arte in Cuba and has published many essays on the subject of gender representation in Cuban cinema. Organized by Jacqueline Loss.

October 6, 2015 -  "Black-and-White Pas de Deux: Spectacles of Racial Democracy and Interracial Eros in the National Ballet of Cuba"

Lecture given by Lester Tomé, professor of dance and dance theory at Smith College, in which the participation of black dancers in ballet was examine both in Cuba and globally. Organized by Odette Casamayor.  Sponsored by PRLACC.

Academic Year 2014-2015

January 29, 2015 - Cuba Teach-In 

Editor-in-Chief of Cuba Counterpoints, anthropologist, and  professor Ariana Hernandez-Reguant was a discussant at Cuba Teach-In.  The Cuba Teach-In was a round-table conversation in which the recent changes in Cuba-US diplomatic relations and their impact on the two countries, scholarly investigations, and student exchanges were discussed. Organized by Jacqueline Loss and held at PRLACC. Sponsored by El Instituto.

October 07, 2014 -  "Cuba and Contemporary Global Cultural Production"

Cuban writer and scholar Victor Fowler gave a talk entitled: "Cuba and Contemporary Global Cultural Production". Fowler has published 10 volumes of poetry and 5 essays which reflect the complexities faced by Cubans post-revolution. Organized by Odette Casamayor. Hosted by PRLACC.

Academic Year 2013-2014

November 21, 2013 - "Rite and Multidisciplinary Representation: Crossing Languages in Caribbean Culture" 

Yana Elsa Brugal is a Cuban researcher, theater scholar, critic, and teacher. Brugal  presented a talk entitled "Rite and Multidisciplinary Representation: Crossing Languages in Caribbean Culture," at PRLACC as well as lead a workshop in Spanish in a LCL class. Organized by Jacqueline Loss.

Academic Year 2012-2013

April 10, 2013 - A Conversation with Writer Charlie Vázquez

Cuban-Puerto Rican writer, artist, musician, and LGBTQ activist Charlie Vázquez discussed his numerous projects and publications. Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Hosted by PRLACC.

March 14, 2013 - Film Screening and Workshop by Afro-Cuban Filmmaker Ricardo Bacallao 

Film screening, workshop, and discussion with Afro-Cuban filmmaker Ricardo Bacallao. Bacallao has made several documentaries on the topics of race, immigration, Santeria, and madness in the arts. Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by PRLACC.

December 4, 2012 - Book Discussion with Afro-Cuban Author Roberto Zurbano 

Afro-Cuban activist and scholar Roberto Zurbano discussed his book projects: The Invisible Triangle of Twentieth Century Cuba:  Literature, Race and Nation and Outside the Club: A Map of the Nation of Hip Hop in Cuba. Organized by Odette Casamayor.

October 15, 2012 - "Vengo a Ofrecer mi Corazón"

Cuban writer Anna Lidia Vega Serova  lead a conversation titled "Vengo a Ofrecer mi Corazón" and taught two writing workshops- one in a Women's Writing class and the other in a Spanish Conversation Class at LCL. Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Hosted by PRLACC and LCL.

Academic Year 2010-2011

October 24, 2011 - "Cuban Film and the Burden of Revolutionary Representation"

Cuban film professor Maria Caridad Cumaná presented a talk entitled "Cuban Film and the Burden of Revolutionary Representation." Organized by Odette Casamayor and hosted by PRLACC.

April 28, 2011 - "La Rusa Roxana Rojo" and "Bananification of a 'Russian' Woman in the Caribbean " 

Writer, performance artist and LGBTQ activist Pedro Manuel González Reinoso performed "La Rusa Roxana Rojo" at PRLACC. "La Rusa Roxana Rojo" is a drag performance which explores the complex feelings Cubans have with the former USSR and is performed in Spanish, English, and Russian. Pedro Manuel González Reinoso also gave a talk entitled "Bananification of a 'Russian' Woman in the Caribbean." Organized by Jacqueline Loss. Sponsored by Spanish Multimedia Language Center (MLC), PRLACC, Latino and Latin American Studies, Rainbow Center, and Women's Studies Program.

Spring 2011 - Creative writing workshop with Cuban Writers and Translator 

Cuban writers and translators Reina María Rodríguez led a creative writing workshop for LCL. Reina María Rodríguez was also a nominee for the UConn’s Research Foundation Guest Professorship Competition. Sponsored by LCL, Sociology and Women's Study. Organized by Jacqueline Loss, Manisha Desai, and Odette Casamayor. Reina María Rodríguez  led the following workshops and lectures:

  • April 28: "Los manuscritos no arden I," literary conversations between Russian and Cuban Writers in the work of Reina María Rodríguez, conducted in Spanish.
  • April 25: "Drapeados magníficos," the Neobaroque in Latin America and the Caribbean, conducted in Spanish.
  • April 21: "Taller literario," an informal creative writing workshop led by both Reina María Rodríguez and Jorge Miralles who is a publisher, writer, and translator.
  • April 18: "Tres Generaciones"/ "Three Generations," a lecture on alternative literary and cultural projects in Cuba from the 1980s to the present. This lecture was supratitled in English.

Academic Year 2008-2009

April 23, 2009 - "Becoming Post-Cuban" 

Cuban artist and writer Coco Fusco was the keynote speaker for symposium "New Perspective on Race, Politics, and Cultural Agency." Fusco was also a lecturer for the Luis B. Eyzaguirre Lecture Series and presented her lecture "Becoming Post-Cuban."  Organized by Jacqueline Loss, Odette Casamayor, and Melina Pappademos. Sponsored by: Puerto Rican and Latino Studies, Institute for African American Studies, Latino and Latin American Studies, MLC, History, and Research Foundation.

Academic Year 2007-2008

September 20, 2007 - "Regla de Ocha"

Cuban photographer and investigator, Héctor Delgado Pérez gave a talk at LCL entitled "Regla de Ocha." Sponsored by LCL and organized by Jacquline Loss.

February 5-9, 2007 - "Cuba-USSR and the Post-Soviet Experience" Conference

Emory University professor of Spanish and Portugese, José Quiroga, professor of Spanish and Portugese at Emory University and author of “Cuban Palimpsests and Tropics of Desire: Interventions from Queer Latino America" was the Eyzaguirre Guest Lecturer and Keynote Speaker for “Cuba-USSR and the Post-Soviet Experience” conference. Professor Quiroga gave a talk entitled "Cuban Cocktails."

This international conference was co-sponsored by many units at UConn, along with an external grant from the Trust for Mutual Understanding, with support from the Cervantes Institute, The Joseph A. Unanue Latino Institute at Seton Hall University, Brown University Center for Latin American Studies, Hispanic Studies at Trinity College, Lewis and Clark College, University of Aberdeen (UK) and Latin American Studies Concentration at College of the Holy Cross. Organized by Jacqueline Loss and José Manuel Prieto, with principal events at UConn, the Cervantes Institute and McNally-Robinson Booksellers.

Conference participants included:

Carlos Alberto Aguilera (Cuban writer)
Rolando Sánchez Mejías (Cuban Writer)
Aurora Jácome (Cuban Blogger/Architect)
Odette Casamayor-Cisneros (UConn)
Nadya Bakuradze (Arts promoter in Russia with events in Cuba)
Juan Carlos Betancourt (Cuban writer & independent curator)
Mervyn Bain (University of Aberdeen, UK)
Omar Godínez Lazo (Cuban visual artist)
Suki John (Choreographer &Dance Journalist)
Esther Whitfield (Brown University)
Jorge Ferrer (Cuban writer and translator)
Verónica Pérez Konina (Cuban writer)
Gertrudis Rivalta (Cuban visual artist)
Isabel Álvarez-Borland (Holy Cross)
Guillermo Irizarry (UConn)
Ernesto Menéndez-Conde (Duke University)
Juan Carlos Toledano (Lewis and Clark College)
Tonel (Cuban visual artist and writer)
Alejandro Aguilar (Cuban writer)
Robin Greeley (UConn)
Anke Finger (UConn)
Ariana Hernandez-Reguant (UC San Diego)
Melina Pappademos (UConn)
Nikola Petkovic (writer; University of Rijeka)
Christopher Larkosh (UConn)
Carlos Alberto Aguilera (Cuban writer)
Esther Allen (Seton Hall University)
Anke Birkenmaier (Columbia University)
Rafael Rojas (Cuban scholar, Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas and Princeton University)
Vladimir Alexander Smith-Mesa (Cuban essayist & Cataloguer-Russian, Baltic & General Collections, University College London)