Ruth Behar

Ruth Behar

orphan=March 2008
citations missing=March 2008

Ruth Behar (born 1956 in Havana, Cuba) is a Jewish Cuban American anthropologist, poet, and writer who teaches at the University of Michigan.

After receiving her B.A. from Wesleyan University in 1977, she studied cultural anthropology at Princeton University. Her dissertation (1983), based on her first fieldwork in northern Spain, became the basis for her first book. In 1988 she became the first Latina woman to be awarded a MacArthur fellowship "genius grant." She is a noted feminist, and her personal life experiences as a Jewish Cuban-American woman are frequently an important part of her writing. Her second book, "Translated Woman" (1993), was based on ten years of fieldwork in a rural town in Mexico. Her controversial book "The Vulnerable Observer: Anthropology That Breaks Your Heart" examines the role that the personal can play in ethnographic writing. Since 1991 her research and writing have largely focused on her native country, Cuba, which she left at the age of four. Her research on the dwindling yet vibrant Jewish community in Cuba is the focus of her film "Adio Kerida" (2002), which featured camerawork and editing by her son Gabriel Frye-Behar. Jewish Cuba is also the topic of her latest book, "An Island Called Home: Returning to Jewish Cuba" (2007).

elected bibliography


*"The Presence of the Past in a Spanish Village: Santa María del Monte" (1986)
*"Translated Woman: Crossing the Border with Esperanza's Story" (1993)
*"Bridges to Cuba / Puentes a Cuba" (editor, 1995)
*"Women Writing Culture" (co-editor, 1995)
*"The Vulnerable Observer: Anthropology That Breaks Your Heart" (1996)
*"An Island Called Home: Returning to Jewish Cuba" (2007)


*"Adio Kerida(Goodbye Dear Love): A Cuban-American Woman's Search for Sephardic Memories" (2002)

External links

* [ Personal Website]
* [ "Adio Kerida: A Cuban Sephardic Journey" Official Website]
* [ Website for Gabriel Frye-Behar]

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