Publication Date



Open access

Embargo Period


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)


Modern Languages and Literatures (Arts and Sciences)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

George Yúdice

Second Committee Member

Lillian Manzor

Third Committee Member

B. Christine Arce

Fourth Committee Member

Susan Thomas


The dissertation surveys the impact of the 1990s crisis in the de-construction of the revolutionary and exile imaginary in Cuban literature and music respectively, by less politically visible agents and cultural spaces within and outside the island. By conducting close readings of novels written during and about the crisis, a series of thematic coordinates that delineate a post-Soviet literary moment are identified. The analysis of the negotiation of narratives of identity and practices of music production documents a relatively unexplored transnational network of music collaborations among singers, songwriters and academically trained musicians that massively migrated at the time. The study argues that in light of the nineties’ crisis, new Transnational and Alternative narrative spaces emerged, resulting in creative “in-between” spaces that reflect the emergence of a post-national and/or post-socialist aesthetic condition. It identifies generational connections between musicians and writers that propose plural narrative approaches to Cubanness. The dissertation encourages a critical multidisciplinary scholarly conversation about the sustained process of transnationalization of Cuban cultural production in particular since the turn of the 21-century.


Cuban literature; Cuban music; Transnationalism; Post-Soviet Narratives; the Transnational Cuban Alternative Music Scene (TCAMS); Cultural Studies