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Grant number: FT-62086-14

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Blair DeWitt Woodard
University of Portland (Portland, OR 97203-5798)

Visual Culture and U.S.-Cuban Relations, 1945-2010

My book examines the visual diplomacy between Cuba and the United States over the last fifty years. I argue that images produced in Cuba and the U.S. were "active agents" that reflected and shaped an evolving transnational relationship. Images celebrating metaphorical connections, produced before the 1959 revolution, fortified linkages between the nations; whereas after the revolution, adversarial imagery splintered the bonds between the countries. This relationship was characterized not only by state-to-state diplomacy, economic exchange, and military intervention, but also by the dissemination of official and popular images that reinforced everyday understandings of the foreign relation. While traditional diplomatic history tells the official story, visual culture provides for a better understanding of how the U.S. and Cuban publics perceived this relationship through metaphors of family, gender, race, and class not visible in the textual record alone.

Project fields:
Cultural History; Diplomatic History; Latin American History

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2014 – 8/31/2014