The “Miami-Cuban” (and Other Hyphenated Americans) in the World-System

By Vanessa Garcia.

Published by The Diversity Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Social scientist and world-systems analyst Immanuel Wallerstein believes that 1968 was a watershed moment, a year that marked the beginning of the end of the current world-system, and perhaps the beginning of the end of capitalism. He also points out that it is now, at this very moment, at the beginning of the 21st century, that we are feeling what he calls the turbulent results of the dismantling of such a system, bringing Chaos Theory into the picture.
A short version of Chaos first: Chaos Theory is the idea in science and math that even within a seemingly predictable system, there can be tiny, miniscule initial differences, that when inputted can in fact make that predictable system unpredictable. In other words—small differences, inserted at the right moment, can affect the entire system in question in a way that makes it impossible to gage a long-term conclusion.
I am going to argue that the fact that a certain generation of Cuban-Americans, my parent’s generation (teens at the time), did not participate in the American counter-culture, alongside their fellow students, made a very big ripple in the long run; the “long wave.” A glitch in the general movement that was occurring in 1968, which had enormous repercussions. A slight lack of continuity, on a seemingly small scale, which may, however, have had, and is still having, a much larger (perhaps even “chaotic”), world-wide effect.

Keywords: Cuban-American, Hyphenated-Americans, 1968, Immanuel Wallerstein, The World-System

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp.23-30. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 786.503KB).

Vanessa Garcia

Writer, PhD Candidate, University of California, Irvine, Miami, Fl, USA

Garcia writes for various publications including The Miami Herald, MondoExplorer.com, and The Art Basel Magazine, along with numerous other journals, magazines, newspapers, and online media. In 2008, she was one of four Literature Finalists, worldwide, in the Rolex Mentor & Protege Arts Initiative. She has also won a scholarship to the NY State Summer Writers Institute; a Vermont Studio Center fellowship; received the Voices at the River Residency at the Arkansas Repertory Theatre in Little Rock, earned her BA from Columbia University, Barnard college (summa cum laude/Phi Beta Kappa) and her MFA in creative writing from the University of Miami (as a James Michner Fellow). She is currently working on her Ph.D at the University of California, Irvine, where she is a Schaeffer Fellow. She has taught at Johns Hopkins University’s CTY program; the University of Miami; Miami Dade Community College; and numerous other institutions. Garcia is also the founder of The Krane, an arts company based out of Miami and Los Angeles, which works to spread the power of theatre to underdeveloped areas and homeless communities. Garcia has a novel which is currently being shopped and is at work on various theatre, screen, and literary endeavors.

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