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Palgrave Studies in Theatre and Performance History

Performing Race and Erasure

Cuba, Haiti, and US Culture, 1898–1940

Authors: Riley, Shannon Rose

  • Provides a unique exploration of the effect of US cultural hegemony on Cuban and Haitian culture
  • Elaborates on the role of two often marginalized nations in the formation of American racial identities
  • Takes an interdisciplinary approach to analysis, citing examples from a range of primary sources
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  • ISBN 978-1-137-59211-8
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  • ISBN 978-1-137-59210-1
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About this book

In this book, Shannon Rose Riley provides a critically rich investigation of representations of Cuba and Haiti in US culture in order to analyze their significance not only to the emergence of empire but especially to the reconfiguration of US racial structures along increasingly biracial lines. Based on impressive research and with extensive analysis of various textual and performance forms including a largely unique set of skits, plays, songs, cultural performances and other popular amusements, Riley shows that Cuba and Haiti were particularly meaningful to the ways that people in the US re-imagined themselves as black or white and that racial positions were renegotiated through what she calls acts of palimpsest: marking and unmarking, racing and erasing difference. Riley’s book demands a reassessment of the importance of the occupations of Cuba and Haiti to US culture, challenging conventional understandings of performance, empire, and race at the turn of the twentieth century. 

About the authors

Shannon Rose Riley is an interdisciplinary artist and scholar. She is Associate Professor, Chair of the Department of Humanities, and Coordinator of the Creative Arts Program at San José State University, USA, and is co-editor, with Lynette Hunter, of Mapping Landscapes for Performance as Research: Scholarly Acts and Creative Cartographies (2009).   

Reviews

“Riley’s sophisticated study expands and challenges our knowledge of race, empire, and nation. She shows that the U.S. did not just export racial ideas and practices to the Caribbean islands it occupied and attempted to control. Race at home was also remade in ruling, fearing, and imagining Cuba and Haiti. Seeing music and performance more generally as sites of empire’s memory and forgetting Performing Race and Erasure brilliantly shows that a hardening sense that race could be reduced to black and white took shape outside the U.S. as well as inside.” (David Roediger, Foundation Distinguished Professor of International & Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Kansas, USA)

Table of contents (8 chapters)

  • Cuba, Haiti, and the USA: Performing Race, Nation, and Empire, 1898–1940

    Riley, Shannon Rose

    Pages 1-34

  • Imperial Scripts and Vaudeville Skits: Faulty Memory and the Power of Performance

    Riley, Shannon Rose

    Pages 35-57

  • Patriotic Performance Culture and Whiteness: The Trope of Old Glory in Cuba

    Riley, Shannon Rose

    Pages 59-100

  • Re-Racing the Nation: From Cuba—A Drama of Freedom to the Cultural Performance of Negro History Week

    Riley, Shannon Rose

    Pages 101-140

  • Military Occupation in Haiti: Staging Pan-Whiteness in a World of Color

    Riley, Shannon Rose

    Pages 141-172

Buy this book

eBook n/a
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59211-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover n/a
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59210-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Performing Race and Erasure
Book Subtitle
Cuba, Haiti, and US Culture, 1898–1940
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies in Theatre and Performance History
Copyright
2016
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-1-137-59211-8
DOI
10.1057/978-1-137-59211-8
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-137-59210-1
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIII, 273
Number of Illustrations and Tables
6 b/w illustrations
Topics