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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Havana, Cuba
  • Program Terms: January Term
  • Program Sponsor: UMAIE 
  • Program Cost: January Term
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 2.0 Program Sponsor: UMAIE
Program Description:

UMAIE: Race, Gender, and Revolution in Cuba (T5423)
UMAIE_Race Gender Revoluation

Program Highlights
  • The course is directed by Dr. Cabrera and Dr. Patterson of Augustana University
  • Engage with Cuban scholars, artists, students, religious leaders, workers and other social actors while spending time in Havana and Santiago
  • Learn about the histories and experiences of discrimination in Cuba through through discussions with citizens from all backgrounds
  • Prerequisites: Four semesters of college Spanish if taking for SPAN credit; no pre-requisites if not taking for SPAN credit
  • Fulfills at St. Thomas: SPAN 397 or SOCI 251. Spanish major/minor elective; Human Diversity 
  • To view a video recording of an information session, click here. 
Academic Overview
In this class, we will experience firsthand Cuba’s vibrant culture, we will absorb the beauty of its urban and natural landscapes, and, through conversation with Cuban people, we will seek to understand the country’s historic struggles for dignity and equality. Students will have the opportunity to see a neighboring country from which we have become distant due to a history of political conflict. Our focus on race and gender places our study of Cuba on a comparative perspective. Students will uncover similarities and divergences between Cuba and the United States as countries that up to this day are dealing with histories fraught by slavery and racism but also distinguished by the vibrancy of their mixed cultural heritages. Students will also be able to compare changing formulations of gender roles, and the struggles of women as well as the LGBTQ+ to assert their rights under both capitalism and socialism. Our investigation of prejudice will extend from its roots in Colonial times to encompass the transformations that have taken place with the socialist Revolution.
Required Readings
Castillo Bueno, M.R., and Castillo D. Rubiera. Reyita: The Life of a Black Woman in the Twentieth Century. Durham: Duke UP, 2000.
Sweig, Julia. Cuba: What Everyone Needs to Know. 3rd Edition. Oxford UP, 2016.

15% Lively participation in classes and site visits
15% Presentation of individual article
15% Presentation of common reader article
15% Journals
40% Final essay (in Spanish for SPAN 397)
Program Directors
Dr. Cabrera earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of Texas at Austin. She teaches all levels of Spanish language as well as Spanish-American literature and culture. Her research focuses on representations of gender, sexuality, and race in Cuban and Cuban-American literature. She frequently takes students to Cuba for a study- abroad experience during the month of January. Her articles have been published in journals and literary magazines like Revista Iberoamericana and La Siempreviva. She has contributed chapters to three collections of criticism. Her latest one is a study of the influence of a forgotten Cuban photographer, Julio Berestein, on a fundamental figure of Cuban letters, Virgilio Pin~era, in La futuridad del naufragio. Ori´genes, estelas y derivas (Almenara, 2019). Dr. Cabrera has collaborated as an editor with Cubanabooks press, which publishes books by Cuban women in bilingual editions. She is the 2019 recipient of the Vernon and Mildred Niebuhr Faculty Excellence Award for teaching excellence. She was born and raised in Mexico City, Mexico.

Dr. Patteson holds a Ph.D. in Spanish from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and has been teaching Spanish language and Latin American cultures since 2010. His area of expertise is contemporary Latin America, with a focus on the intersections of intoxication and culture. His current research centers on narco-violence in Mexico, but this phenomenon is placed within a global and historical framework, in which theories and products of culture illuminate—and are illuminated by—the problem of psychotropy as understood by biology, psychology, history, and other disciplines. Dr. Patteson has received grants to study the Portuguese language and Brazilian culture and for fieldwork in Mexico City, and his work has appeared in Revista Canadiense de Estudios Hispa´nicos, A Contracorriente, and Letras Hispanas. Secondary interests include Central American post- war narrative.

Location and Tentative Dates
Havana, Cuba. 
Dates to be announced 
Program Cost
Cost estimate is available in the budget worksheet, linked above. Final costs will be available by October 1st. There will be a $500 deposit, due at the time of application.  

Application Procedures & Deadline 
  • Select the Apply Now button at the top to start your online application.
  • Log in using your St. Thomas username and password.
  • Complete all application materials by the application deadline. Students are encouraged to apply during the priority enrollment period, April 1-10. Applications will be accepted after April 10 for programs with space still remaining until the final application deadline of October 1.
  • Download and read Short-Term Off-Campus Policies and Procedures. You are responsible for reading, understanding and abiding by its content.
Priority Application Deadline: April 10, 2021
Final Application Deadline: October 1, 2021
Students studying abroad during J-Term are generally only eligible for additional loans to help finance their study abroad costs. Please review Financial Aid for Study Abroad. Scholarships may also be available from St. Thomas and some Other Approved Programs. Please refer to our Scholarships webpage for details and review Short-Term Off-Campus Policies and Procedures for additional financial aid information.

For more information:                                                                          
On course content, contact the Program Director: 
Dr. Pilar Cabrera, Augustana University,

On application procedures or logistical information, contact:

Office of Study Abroad | University of St. Thomas
Murray-Herrick 212 | 651.962.6450 | |

This program is currently not accepting applications.