Rachel Price (B.A., Yale; Ph.D., Duke U.), works on Latin American, circum-Atlantic and particularly Cuban literature and culture. Her essays have examined a range of topics, including media, slavery, poetics, environmental humanities, and visual art. She is currently working on a book-length study of media during the height of slavery and anti-slavery insurgency in nineteenth-century Cuba.
The Object of the Atlantic: Concrete Aesthetics in Cuba, Brazil and Spain 1868-1968 (Northwestern University Press, 2014) tracks a shift away from concerns with sovereignty to an interest in things in Iberian Atlantic literature and art. The book reveals how Cuban, Brazilian, and Spanish concrete aesthetics—art and writing concerned with materiality, including the mid-century movements of concrete poetry and neoconcrete art—drew on both global forms of constructivism and on Atlantic histories of slavery, empire, and media technologies. Analyzing Jose Marti’s notebooks, Joaquim de Sousandrade’s poetry, Ramiro de Maeztu’s essays on things and on slavery, 1920s Cuban literature on economic restructuring, Ferreira Gullar’s theory of the “non-object,” and neoconcrete art, among other works, the book shows how a turn to objects—and from these to new media networks—was rooted in the very philosophies of history that helped form the Atlantic world itself.
Planet/Cuba: Art, Culture, and the Future of the Island (Verso Books, 2015) examines contemporary Cuban art and literature in light of current pressures on both the island and the globe, highlighting a twenty-first century body of work concerned with planetary crises: climate change, accelerating capitalism, pervasive surveillance, deindustrialization. These works of art warn of or work against a dark future, in the context of a history marked by fading and contested memories of collective constructions of society, art, and life itself—fleeting, compromised, usurped, or never realized.
In 2018 Price co-edited with Ángel Loureiro El populismo por venir? A partir de un debate en Princeton (Guillermo Escolar).
Before coming to Princeton she taught at Brown University and Stonybrook University, after working at the Social Science Research Council’s Program on Latin America and Working Group on Cuba, and at the Consejo Regional Indígena del Cauca in Popayán, Colombia.
Professor Price is affiliated with the Program in Media and Modernity, the Princeton Environmental Institute, and the Program in Latin American Studies, and is on the executive committee for the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in the Humanities. She was a core member of the 2012–2015 PIIRS Research Community on Empire.
Getting Locked up to Get Free in Colonial Cuba, special issue on “Slavery, Mobility, and Networks in Nineteenth-Century Cuba,” Atlantic Studies, 2021.
Energy and Abstraction in the Work of Dolores Soldevilla Revista Hispánica Moderna, special issue on Rethinking Latin American Art, ed. Graciela Montaldo and Alex Alberro, 2019.
“Sandú Darié and the Afterlives of Abstraction in Cuba,” in On the Horizon: Contemporary Cuban Art from the Jorge M. Pérez Collection, Pérez Art Museum/Prestel Publishing, 2019.
“Hurricane Over the Expanded Field,” Modernism/Modernity Field Notes, 2019.
“Waldemar Cordeiro and the ‘Algorithmic Infrastructure of an Image,’” The Matter of Photography in the Americas, ed. Natalia Brizuela and Jodi Roberts, Stanford UP, 2018.
“Skins and Archives,” Art x Cuba. Contemporary Perspectives since 1989, ed. Andreas Beitin, Ludwig Forum, Wienand, 2018.
Books to be Looked At, Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, special dossier on contemporary Cuban literature, 2017.