Nationalizing Blackness: Afrocubanismo and Artistic Revolution in Havana, 1920–1940 (Pitt Latin American Series) (Paperback)
Nationalizing Blackness uses the music of the 1920s and 1930s to examine Cuban society as it begins to embrace Afrocuban culture. Moore examines the public debate over “degenerate Africanisms” associated with comparas or carnival bands; similar controversies associated with son music; the history of blackface theater shows; the rise of afrocubanismo in the context of anti-imperialist nationalism and revolution against Gerardo Machado; the history of cabaret rumba; an overview of poetry, painting, and music inspired by Afrocuban street culture; and reactions of the black Cuban middle classes to afrocubanismo. He has collected numerous illustrations of early twentieth-century performers in Havana, many included in this book.
Nationalizing Blackness represents one of the first politicized studies of twentieth-century culture in Cuba. It demonstrates how music can function as the center of racial and cultural conflict during the formation of a national identity.
--Cristobal Diaz, Fundacion Musicalia, Puerto Rico