Pregones | Spring 2020
A newsletter providing seasonal updates about CHC collections, exhibits, and events

Director's Statement

Dear Friends of the CHC,

It is my sincere hope that above all else you and your loved ones find yourselves well and safe during these unprecedented and challenging times. In moments like these, staying connected and appealing to a sense of community (albeit physically distant) can lift us and give us hope. I know that for many of you, the Cuban Heritage Collection (CHC) represents a place where we come together around our shared passion for and commitment to preserving Cuban cultural patrimony. Our mission to collect and safeguard these materials in perpetuity should give us a sense of reassurance and permanence against the general uncertainty that envelops our current situation due to COVID-19. It is in that spirit of connectedness and community that I share with you all that we accomplished last season and provide you with updates on what we have been planning for this fall. Read more >>


Goizueta Graduate Fellowship Program, New Directions in Cuban Studies Conference, and Innovating New Models of Scholarship and Community Engagement

We are extremely fortunate to count on the unwavering and continued support of The Goizueta Foundation, which plays a pivotal role in carrying out our core mission to support innovative and interdisciplinary research on Cuban Studies. This past fall, the CHC hosted ten new Fellows as part of our yearly Goizueta Graduate Fellowship Program.

In October 2019, we presented our third New Directions in Cuban Studies conference to great success! This time we explored a new model and format for the conference; seasoned scholars participated as chairs or discussants in each panel alongside their UM faculty counterparts, who served as moderators. This new approach helped spark a more dynamic exchange among presenters, discussants, and the audience—creating an opportunity for students, junior scholars, and established academics to learn from one another.

In addition, we created five broad and inclusive thematic panels: Reframing Cuban Studies; Visual Art and Performing Arts; Health, Science, and the Environment; Digital Cuba: Emerging Technologies; and Challenging Cuban Diasporas. We secured the participation of the following leading figures in these respective areas of Cuban Studies: Dr. Albert Laguna (Yale University | American Studies); Professor Rachel Weiss (School of the Art Institute of Chicago | Arts Administration and Policy); Dr. Arachu Castro (Tulane University | School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine); Dr. Katrin Hansing (Baruch College, City University of New York | Sociology and Anthropology); and Anna Cristina Pertierra (Western Sydney University | Institute for Culture and Society). Dr. Esther Whitfield of Brown University’s Department of Comparative Literature and Hispanic Studies delivered the keynote lecture titled Cuban Cultural Studies and Caribbean Borderlands. The entire program was live streamed.
The Cuban Heritage Collection of the University of Miami Libraries wishes to acknowledge The Goizueta Foundation and the Estate of Olga Casteleiro de Goizueta for recent generous gifts to the CHC in support of the following programs and initiatives:
  • The Roberto C. Goizueta Distinguished Presidential Scholar-in-Residence Program will welcome leading scholars and esteemed professionals from around the world for up to two years in residence with expertise in a wide range of subjects aligned with the scope and focus of the rich CHC’s repository of materials. The program will also be open to non-academics who are accomplished in their respective fields—including, but not limited to the visual arts, theatre, music, literature, and film.
  • The Olga and Roberto C. Goizueta Endowed Fund for Research and Acquisition will further support our existing scholarly programs such as the Goizueta Graduate Fellowship Program and the biennial New Directions in Cuban Studies conference in significant ways, as well as help grow our Collection through important acquisitions.
  • Renovation of the Goizueta Pavilion and Creation of a Research Hub. This capital project will include expanding and reconfiguring our existing footprint to better accommodate our fellows and researchers; provide dedicated areas for conferences and instructions sessions, as well as for public programs and events.
We are extremely fortunate to count on the unwavering and continued support of The Goizueta Foundation, which plays a pivotal role in carrying out our core mission to support innovative and interdisciplinary research on Cuban Studies.


We launched our 2019 fall semester with the inauguration of the exhibition Havana 500: Five Centuries of Evolving Urban Codes and Urban Form to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the founding of the city of Havana. The exhibition was guest curated by Professor Sonia Chao from the University of Miami’s School of Architecture and featured historical as well as contemporary maps, documents, rare books, journals, and other ephemera all culled from our rich collections. The highly attended opening included welcome remarks by Lisa Fish, associate dean for Collection Strategies; Elizabeth Cerejido, CHC chair; Rodolphe el-Khoury, dean of the School of Architecture; and an overview of the history and premise of the exhibition by Professor Chao.
The Miami premier of Into the Light/Hacia la luz, about the life and work of beloved Cuban artist Rafael Soriano, was the third in our highly successful film series that we launched in 2019. The program included a reception and a conversation moderated by Elizabeth Cerejido that included Elizabeth T. Goizueta (faculty, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, Boston College; and adjunct curator at the McMullen Museum of Art), Roberto S. Goizueta (Flatley Professor Emeritus of Catholic Theology, Boston College), David Schler (director and producer), and Hortensia Soriano (daughter of the late artist Rafael Soriano and president of the Rafael Soriano Foundation). The event sold-out quickly, and we received much positive feedback from the audience.

Viva el Vedado marked the fourth in the series and was part of the public programming and collaboration with the School of Architecture around Havana 500: Five Centuries of Evolving Urban Codes and Urban Form. The screening was followed by a conversation with Mary Ebrahimi, Secundino Fernandez, and Carie Penabad. A symposium featuring Sonia Chao, Jorge Rigau, Jose Gelabert-Navia, Jorge Fernández, and Rosa Lowinger (art conservator, author, and Amigos board member) was presented the following day.
A lecture by and conversation with Dr. Victor Deupi titled Art and Architecture at the Lyceum, 1929–1968 inaugurated our spring 2020 programming series. Deupi, a lecturer at the University of Miami’s School of Architecture, gave a riveting presentation about the singular role that the Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club played in the cultural life of Havana from 1929 when it first opened until 1968 when Fidel Castro closed it down. The Lyceum was designed by one of Cuba’s leading women architects, Lillian Mederos, and led by a group of progressive Cuban women. As such, Deupi’s lecture also highlighted the pioneering ways in which Cuban women promoted cultural and social interests through education, public service, art, and music in pre-revolutionary Cuba.


  • August 1, 2019: Film critic and author Alejandro Ríos, well known for his television program, La Mirada indiscreta, also contributes a weekly column in el Nuevo Herald. Please click here to read his article describing his experience visiting the CHC for the first time.
  • October 7, 2019: The CHC made it to the front page of the Sunday edition of el Nuevo Herald with a feature article by Sarah Moreno. The online version of the article also includes a video shot and produced by Pedro Portal.
  • October 17, 2019: Respected online journal Diario de Cuba also featured the CHC in a wonderfully produced video by Juan Carlos Herrera that included interviews with Elizabeth Cerejido and Gladys Gómez-Rossié about the history, mission, and future of the CHC. A portion of the video was featured on Spanish television station AmericaTV during Pedro Sevcec’s program, “A Fondo.”


CHC Chair Elizabeth Cerejido successfully defended her doctoral dissertation titled Where is Cuban Art? Artistic Production, Identity Formation, and Cultural Politics from the 1980s to the Present. Cerejido received her doctoral degree in Art History from the University of Florida, Gainesville.

CHC Archivist Amanda Moreno has been awarded a prestigious 2020–2022 Rare Book School Mellon Cultural Heritage Fellowship. The Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship for Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Heritage aims to advance multicultural collections through innovative and inclusive curatorial practice and leadership. The fellowship will provide professional development opportunities for early- to mid-career professionals currently working in a special collections library, archive, or other cultural heritage institution located in the United States.

CHC Librarian Dr. Martin Tsang was awarded a short-term fellowship from NYPL's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. The Fellowship will help further Tsang's ongoing research on an Afro-Cuban theme of healing that complements his existing work with Lydia Cabrera's archive held at the CHC.

Join us in congratulating Elizabeth, Amanda, and Martin!


of the Cuban Heritage Collection

We are pleased to announce longtime friend and supporter of the CHC, Francisco X. Santeiro, as the 2019–2021 chair of the Amigos. "Frank" as he is best known to the CHC, has been unwavering in his commitment to advancing the mission of the Cuban Heritage Collection since before its official naming in 1998; he was a founding member of the Amigos and helped process two important collections—the Lydia Cabrera Collection and the presidential papers of Gerardo Machado y Morales, 1873–1994, which Santeiro and his family donated.
In his professional life, Mr. Santeiro was the managing director of Government Affairs for FedEx Express Latin America and Caribbean Division, based in Miami, where he was responsible for government and regulatory affairs related to customs and international trade.

Santeiro has been involved with the international express industry since 1980 and represented FedEx on various industry-related boards and associations, including the Florida Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association, the Association of American Chambers of Commerce of Latin American (AACCLA), and the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce. Santeiro has served as president of the Latin American Conference of Express Companies (CLADEC) and continues to serve as director and treasurer of that organization’s Executive Board. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Florida and a Master of Business Administration degree from Florida International University. He was awarded the Bacardi Fellowship at the University of Miami and received a Master of Arts from the University of Miami’s School of International Studies. In 2011, Santeiro was awarded a Graduate Certificate in Environmental Policy and Management from the University of Florida’s School of Engineering.
The Amigos organize private events throughout the year to help raise funds in support of CHC programs. Last summer, Ramon and Nercys Cernuda hosted an evening of art viewing, music, and conversation at their home. We want to express our deep gratitude to them for their generous contribution!

It was a great opportunity for new members of our community to learn about the CHC; as a result, many joined the Amigos! Please consider joining if you haven’t done so already.



El efecto Mariel: Before, During, and After is a multi-prong program that takes an interdisciplinary approach to re-contextualizing the events that defined the Mariel boatlift of 1980, upon its 40th anniversary. Virtual panels, talks, live film streaming, oral histories, as well as exhibition and performance projects will address this historical event and period from a multitude of perspectives. This innovative and expansive approach frames Mariel not in the past, but in the present, by underscoring how the many aspects that defined it continue to be relevant today. Stay tuned as we launch the virtual portion of this program in June!
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