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A Call for Further Research: Afro-Chinese Marriages in 20th Century Cuba

In: Historical Events

Submitted By cwang91
Words 3789
Pages 16
A Call for Further Research: Afro-Chinese Marriages in 20th Century Cuba Katie Wang
UCLA
Professor Wright-Dixon

I. Introduction
Coalitions through marriage is a long understood concept. Kingdom alliances through marriages are ones that first come to mind. Often fictional portrayals of real pressures for pressures to gain resources or military alliance for a capital or imperial need involve young princes and princesses who are forced to marry. However, in a nonfictional example for this paper, Chinese indentured laborers or former indentured laborers and African slaves or former slaves married in 19th century Cuba both romantically and strategically. I argue that there needs to be further research around Afro-Chinese marriages in Cuba and a recentering on women. I had originally planned to center this paper around African slave women who married Chinese men in Cuba in the 19th century but was not able to because of the lack of literature available. However, I aim to focus on a reading against the grain for indications of women’s agency and voice in this set of literature. My personal stakes in this topic are two-fold. First, my mother’s side of my family lived in Cuba for a few decades from the late 1920s to 1960 as a part of an entrepreneurial endeavor and as refuge from persecution from the Communist Party of China. Because of my personal tie to Chinese in Cuba, I seek to uncover untold stories and hidden transcripts. Second, this paper is a part of a larger project on Chinese in Cuba in the 20th century, specifically looking at race and the transition to socialism. My specific interventions in this topic is a rereading of the secondary sources written about Afro-Chinese marriages for resistance and erasures with a feminist and diaspora lens. For this paper, I will not be using the term “Coolie” or “Coolieism” as a form of resistance to the violence

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