Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 10-2016


10.5354 / 0719-4862.2016.43544


This article examines the poetry of Cuban writer Cristina Ayala emphasizing the political value of her use of a rhetoric of heroism, a discursive device that masks her demands for recognition of women’s rights and those of Afro-Cubans. The analysis of her poetry suggests that the symbolic manipulation of the “hero” and the representation of “colored” women as intellectuals and “heroes” expressed her desire to intervene in the public arena. By positioning herself within a political discourse that reconstructed slavery’s past, she narrated the revolutionary vicissitudes and created a utopian vision of the future for the Afro-Cuban community. Ayala expresses the emergence of a gender and racial consciousness that challenged discrimination. Finally, this article proposes the relevance of her poetry in Latin American studies, Gender studies and Diaspora studies in Latin America.


This is the Publisher’s PDF of the following article made available by Meridional: Revista Chilena de Estudios Latinoamericanos © 2016. Heroísmo y conciencia racial en la obra de la poeta afro-cubana Cristina Ayala. Meridional: Revista chilena de Estudios Latinoamericanos. 7 179-202. DOI: 10.5354 / 0719-4862.2016.43544



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