Professor of Sociology
Global and Sociocultural Studies
Office: SIPA 301
Routledge will publish The United States and Cuba: Intimate Enemies in 2010. It is short book which, nonetheless, forced me to rethink U.S.-Cuba/Cuban-American relations among themselves and with the international community. Rethinking the Cuban experience is a crucial intellectual direction of my research. I draw liberally from history, politics, and sociology. I'm in the process of thoroughly revising The Cuban Revolution. I am expanding the connections between pre- and post-1959 Cuba, particularly regarding politics (part of the major revision) and broadening the "looking forward" perspectives. Why has the Cuban government defied all expectations of quick demise? Finally, my long-term research project is Cuba's Long Twentieth Century, 1868-2002, from the start of the first independence war to the republic's centennial. Instead of focusing primarily on the United States and sugar monoculture, I seek an understanding of how Cuban political agency at critical junctures was also determinative of the island's trajectory.
For my biweekly Miami Herald column, I do considerable reading to keep abreast on current Latin American issues.
Since AY 06/07 until the present I have taught the Senior Capstone Seminar, Societies in the World, Sociology thru Film, Sociological Theories, and two graduate seminars Sociocultural Theories B and Political Sociology. In my courses, I emphasize the importance of knowing (learning the facts) and understanding (why/how x, y or z happened). In Sociology thru Film, for example, I always have a module on the Sixties, which includes the Civil Rights movement and the Vietnam War. I require students to get some basic facts in order which the web now facilitates as there are excellent timelines online. Understanding is based on concepts, such as equality under the law and the Cold-War conflict between the two superpowers. Teaching mostly undergraduates, I have found this basic model useful and work on refining it every semester.
I am a member of the Cuban Research Institute's advisory board, chair GSS's Rules & Procedure Committee charged with producing the bylaws for our merged department, and am a member of the Graduate Committee. In this committee, I am chairing a three-person subcommittee to revise the Graduate Student Handbook. In Spring 2010, I will have a course release to work with SIPA in exploring funding opportunities. In academic years 2006-2009, I served on the Personnel Committee and chaired it the last two academic years.
By September 1, 2010, I plan to have finished the 3rd edition of The Cuban Revolution: Origins, Course, and Legacy (Oxford University Press).