Life on the Hyphen by Gustavo Perez Firmat
The Cuban-American Way

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Synopsis

From Desi Arnaz and "I Love Lucy" to Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine, Cuban-Americans have conga'd and mambo'd their way into the heart of popular culture in the United States. This engaging book, which mixes the author's own story with his reflections as a trained observer, explores how both famous and ordinary members of the "1.5 Generation" (Cubans who came to United States as children or adolescents) have lived "life on the hyphen," neither fully Cuban nor fully American, but a fertile hybrid of both. Ranging widely from music to movies to television to literature, Gustavo Perez Firmat chronicles what it means to be Cuban in America. He offers an in-depth look at Cuban-Americans who have become icons of popular and literary culture, including Desi Arnaz, Oscar Hijuelos (whose The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love won the Pulitzer Prize and became a major motion picture), musician Perez Prado, poet Jose Kozer, and crossover pop stars Gloria Estefan and Jon Secada.
 

About Gustavo Perez Firmat

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A poet, fiction writer, and scholar, Gustavo PA[a括rez Firmat is the author of many books of literary and cultural criticism, among them Tongue Ties, Cincuenta lecciones de exilio y desexilio, My Own Private Cuba, and Life on the Hyphen. He has also written a best-selling memoir, Next Year in Cuba; a novel, Anything But Love; and several collections of poetry, including Bilingual Blues (also published by Bilingual Press). In 1997 Newsweek listed him among "100 Americans to watch for the 21st century" and Hispanic Business Magazine selected him as one of the "100 most influential Hispanics." He is currently the David Feinson Professor of Humanities at Columbia University.
 
Published January 1, 1994 by University of Texas Press. 231 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Life on the Hyphen

Publishers Weekly

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From Desi Arnaz, arguably still the most famous Cuban to hit U.S. shores, to current pop star Gloria Estefan, Cuban Americans have had to balance life within two cultures, one representing their past,

Jan 03 1994 | Read Full Review of Life on the Hyphen: The Cuban...

Publishers Weekly

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From Desi Arnaz, arguably still the most famous Cuban to hit U.S. shores, to current pop star Gloria Estefan, Cuban Americans have had to balance life within two cultures, one representing their past, one their present and future.

| Read Full Review of Life on the Hyphen: The Cuban...

Project MUSE

Pérez Firmat is also acutely aware that his view of things Cuban-American may not please some of the academic establishment, namely those who see the acting out of cultures primarily in oppositional terms.

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