ChickenBones: A Journal

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In order to construct a response to injustice and oppression, I have taught classes combining liberationist perspectives with postmodern analysis. Upon the tension created by these diverse narratives, I have constructed an approach to religious studies from the periphery providing a unique outlook to the normative discourse, a view I believe enhances traditional curricula.

 

 

 

 Books on Cuba

The Autobiography of a Slave  /  Bridges to Cuba/Puentes a CubaSanteria from Africa to the New World: The Dead Sell Memories

Fidel Castro and the Quest for a Revolutionary Culture in Cuba  /   Reyita: The Life of a Black Cuban Woman in the Twentieth Century  

 

Singular Like a Bird: The Art of Nancy Morejon   / Caliban and Other Essays   /   The Pride of Havana: A History of Cuban Baseball

 

 Santeria Aesthetics in Contemporary Latin America Art   / Culture and Customs of Cuba  /  Man-making Words; Selected Poems of Nicholas Guillen

 

 Afro-Cuban Voices: On Race and Identity on Contemporary Cuba   / Afro-Cuba: An Anthology of Cuban Writing on Race, Politics, and Culture 

 

 Nicolas Guillen: Popular Poet of the Caribbean   /    Selected Poetry by Nancy Morejon  /  Cuba: After the Revolution 

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The Quest for the Cuban Christ

A Historical Search

By Miguel A. De La Torre

 

The Quest for the Cuban Christ  /  Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals / Ajiaco Christianity

 

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Table of Contents

 

List of Figures     ix

Foreword by Stephen W. Angell and Anthony B.Penn     xi

Preface     xiii

Part I. A Historical Quest     

1. The Conquistador Christ     3

2. The Marti Christ     26

3. The Black Cuban Christ     45

4. The Female Christian Christ     65

5. Three Christs for the Twentieth Century     84

Part II. A Present-Day Quest

6. The Ajiaco Christ     117

Notes     171

Bibliography     179

Index     189

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Dr. De la Torre is a Cuban, a professor of religion at Hope college, with specialization in Christian Social Ethics, Theologies of Liberation and Postmodern/Postcolonial Studies. He is the author of a seminal article on the denial of racism in Cuba entitled, "Masking Hispanic Racism: A Cuban Case Study": "I am a recovering racist, a product of two race-constructed societies. Exilic Cubans see themselves as white and the Island's inhabitants as mostly black." 

"A major issue which will arise in a post-Castro Cuba is intra-Cuban race relations, an issue mostly ignored because of the myth proclaiming Cubans as non-racists. I propose to debunk this myth. Any serious discourse on intra-Cuban reconciliation must unmask the hidden tension existing between seemingly white Exilic Cuba and black Resident Cuba." 

For the rest of this fascinating article, see http://www.hope.edu/delatorre/articles/jhlt.html

Philosophy of Pedagogy

My educational development has been significantly influenced by Paulo Freire's work, Pedagogy of the Oppressed, which, doubting the existence of an objective, neutral educational system, finds its students lead toward either domestication or liberation. All too often, the educational system serves to normalize existing power structures contributing to maintaining a "culture of silence." Our advance consumer-society rapidly dehumanizes individuals into Objects who concur with the rationality of the present system. The role of the educator, as I see it, is to facilitate the student's consummation of their ontological vocation in becoming a Subject. My task as a professor is to cultivate the student's ability to find their own voice by creating an environment in where individual and collective consciousness-raising can occur.

In order to construct a response to injustice and oppression, I have taught classes combining liberationist perspectives with postmodern analysis. Upon the tension created by these diverse narratives, I have constructed an approach to religious studies from the periphery providing a unique outlook to the normative discourse, a view I believe enhances traditional curricula. Because individuals enter the educational system with a lifetime of experiences and knowledge, courses can be designed to bring their suppositions into conversation with postmodern and liberationist paradigms. Students partake in forming a learning environment by leading segments of the discourse and participating in projects to encourage the interweaving of scholastic rigor with their personal backgrounds.

As both my curriculum vitae and corporate résumé indicate, I posses practical and academic knowledge in public policy and economics, specializing in how the socio-political culture normalizes the oppression of the Other. My controversial approach to marginalized theologies (specifically Latino/a) moves beyond what Edward Said terms "the rhetoric of blame" by concentrating upon intra-ethnic structures of oppressions. A review of the articles I have published, the papers I have presented and the courses I have taught demonstrate and are consistent with my focus in analyzing race, class, and gender oppression.

 

Publications:

Doing Christian Ethics from the Margins. Orbis Press, forthcoming in 2004.

Handbook of U.S. Theologies of Liberation. Chalice Press, forthcoming in 2004.

Santería: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., forthcoming in 2003.

La Lucha for Cuba: Religion and Politics on the Streets of Miami. University of California Press, forthcoming in 2003.

The Quest for the Cultural Cuban Christ: A Historical Search. University Press of Florida, forthcoming, in Fall 2002.

Reading the Bible from the Margins. Orbis Press, forthcoming in May, 2002.

Introduction to Hispanic Theology: Latino/a Perspectives, co-authored with Edwin Aponte, Orbis Press, 2001.

Ajiaco Christianity: Toward an Exilic Cuban Ethic of Reconciliation, Ph.D. diss., Temple University, 1999.

Dr. Miguel A. De La Torre / Hope College / Religion Dept.

Holland, MI 49422 / 616-395-7756 / www.hope.edu/delatorre/

 

*   *   *   *   *

Dr. De la Torre is a Cuban, a professor of religion at Hope college, with specialization in Christian Social Ethics, Theologies of Liberation and Postmodern/Postcolonial Studies. He is the author of a seminal article on the denial of racism in Cuba entitled, "Masking Hispanic Racism: A Cuban Case Study": "I am a recovering racist, a product of two race-constructed societies. Exilic Cubans see themselves as white and the Island's inhabitants as mostly black." 

"A major issue which will arise in a post-Castro Cuba is intra-Cuban race relations, an issue mostly ignored because of the myth proclaiming Cubans as non-racists. I propose to debunk this myth. Any serious discourse on intra-Cuban reconciliation must unmask the hidden tension existing between seemingly white Exilic Cuba and black Resident Cuba." 

For the rest of this fascinating article, see http://www.hope.edu/delatorre/articles/jhlt.html

Philosophy of Pedagogy

My educational development has been significantly influenced by Paulo Freire's work, Pedagogy of the Oppressed, which, doubting the existence of an objective, neutral educational system, finds its students lead toward either domestication or liberation. All too often, the educational system serves to normalize existing power structures contributing to maintaining a "culture of silence." Our advance consumer-society rapidly dehumanizes individuals into Objects who concur with the rationality of the present system. The role of the educator, as I see it, is to facilitate the student's consummation of their ontological vocation in becoming a Subject. My task as a professor is to cultivate the student's ability to find their own voice by creating an environment in where individual and collective consciousness-raising can occur.

In order to construct a response to injustice and oppression, I have taught classes combining liberationist perspectives with postmodern analysis. Upon the tension created by these diverse narratives, I have constructed an approach to religious studies from the periphery providing a unique outlook to the normative discourse, a view I believe enhances traditional curricula. Because individuals enter the educational system with a lifetime of experiences and knowledge, courses can be designed to bring their suppositions into conversation with postmodern and liberationist paradigms. Students partake in forming a learning environment by leading segments of the discourse and participating in projects to encourage the interweaving of scholastic rigor with their personal backgrounds.

As both my curriculum vitae and corporate résumé indicate, I posses practical and academic knowledge in public policy and economics, specializing in how the socio-political culture normalizes the oppression of the Other. My controversial approach to marginalized theologies (specifically Latino/a) moves beyond what Edward Said terms "the rhetoric of blame" by concentrating upon intra-ethnic structures of oppressions. A review of the articles I have published, the papers I have presented and the courses I have taught demonstrate and are consistent with my focus in analyzing race, class, and gender oppression.

 

Publications:

Doing Christian Ethics from the Margins. Orbis Press, forthcoming in 2004.

Handbook of U.S. Theologies of Liberation. Chalice Press, forthcoming in 2004.

Santería: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., forthcoming in 2003.

La Lucha for Cuba: Religion and Politics on the Streets of Miami. University of California Press, forthcoming in 2003.

The Quest for the Cultural Cuban Christ: A Historical Search. University Press of Florida, forthcoming, in Fall 2002.

Reading the Bible from the Margins. Orbis Press, forthcoming in May, 2002.

Introduction to Hispanic Theology: Latino/a Perspectives, co-authored with Edwin Aponte, Orbis Press, 2001.

Ajiaco Christianity: Toward an Exilic Cuban Ethic of Reconciliation, Ph.D. diss., Temple University, 1999.

Dr. Miguel A. De La Torre / Hope College / Religion Dept.

Holland, MI 49422 / 616-395-7756 / www.hope.edu/delatorre/

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

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#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

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#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.” We learn how the spread of malaria, the potato, tobacco, guano, rubber plants, and sugar cane have disrupted and convulsed the planet and will continue to do so until we are finally living on one integrated or at least close-to-integrated Earth. Whether or not the human instigators of all this remarkable change will survive the process they helped to initiate more than five hundred years ago remains, Mann suggests in this monumental and revelatory book, an open question.

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The Persistence of the Color Line

Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency

By Randall Kennedy

Among the best things about The Persistence of the Color Line is watching Mr. Kennedy hash through the positions about Mr. Obama staked out by black commentators on the left and right, from Stanley Crouch and Cornel West to Juan Williams and Tavis Smiley. He can be pointed. Noting the way Mr. Smiley consistently “voiced skepticism regarding whether blacks should back Obama” . . .

The finest chapter in The Persistence of the Color Line is so resonant, and so personal, it could nearly be the basis for a book of its own. That chapter is titled “Reverend Wright and My Father: Reflections on Blacks and Patriotism.”  Recalling some of the criticisms of America’s past made by Mr. Obama’s former pastor, Mr. Kennedy writes with feeling about his own father, who put each of his three of his children through Princeton but who “never forgave American society for its racist mistreatment of him and those whom he most loved.”  His father distrusted the police, who had frequently called him “boy,” and rejected patriotism. Mr. Kennedy’s father “relished Muhammad Ali’s quip that the Vietcong had never called him ‘nigger.’ ” The author places his father, and Mr. Wright, in sympathetic historical light.

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        

Enjoy!

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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update 12 March 2012

 

 

 

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Related files: The Quest for the Cuban Christ  Table of Contents  Foreword   Santeria The Beliefs and Rituals  Ajiaco Christianity  Fidel My Early Years  Fidel Bio  Reminiscences of the Cuban Revolutionary War 

Jimmy Carter on Cuban-American Relations  Cuba Photo-Exhibit    Herbert Rogers on Cuba  Cuban BookList  Nicohola Guillen      Pedro Pérez Sarduy