Cuba in Transition
Travel Dates: December 7 – 21, 2013
Credits: 8 undergraduate or 5 graduate
Courses meet once a week during fall term prior to the international travel dates.
Cuba is changing. Since President Raul Castro initiated public debate about the nation’s economic and social future in 2008, the Cuban government has endorsed a series of reforms allowing Cuba to engage in the global market economy without abandoning its commitment to health care, education, and culture. Castro has said that he is willing to tolerate a certain amount of social inequality as long as Cuba can continue to honor its communitarian values.
What might these trade-offs look like and what do these economic reforms mean for Cuba’s eleven million people? In this two-week field course, we will use a lens of race, class, and gender to examine sustainability efforts related to food and agriculture, housing, and health care in Cuba today. Throughout the course, we will be asking: How is access to these three sectors changing as Cuba transitions, and how are Cubans adapting to these changes? We will also examine the role of popular education in Cuba’s advances in sustainability in these three areas. Popular education during this current period may prove critical in shaping Cuba’s transition and keeping issues of equity at the forefront.
Field experiences will be conducted in partnership with three Cuban NGO’s—the Neighborhood Transformation Workshops, the Martin Luther King Center, and the Antonio Nunez y Jimenez Foundation. In addition, students and faculty participants will organize and teach a two-day workshop on equity and sustainability alongside faculty and students of the University of Havana’s San Geronimo campus in Old Havana. We will present our experiences from the US and interact with Cubans as they reflect on changes occurring in their own society.
To learn more about this program, attend an informational session with the faculty:
- May 6th, 2013 from 4:00 to 5:00 PM in CUPA lounge, URBN 710
Students will enroll in Cuba in Transition at either the graduate or undergraduate level in USP 410/510 or SOC 410/510
Relevant Academic Disciplines
African Studies, Anthropology, Architecture, Black Studies, Chicano/Latino Studies, Community Development, Community Health, Culture, Economics, Environmental Sciences, Geography, Globalization, Health Studies, International Studies, Latin American Studies, Liberal Arts, Most Majors, Religious Studies, Social Science, Sociology, Sustainability, Sustainable Urban Development, Urban Studies and Planning
• Intermediate Spanish highly recommended
• Junior standing at the time of application
• GPA: 3.00 and above
Language Skill: 2 yrs HS or 1 yr college Spanish recommended, but not required