ONTO donates two publications to the CUNY DSI Library

ONTO Pub/1 edition and the third ONTO Pub /3 edition are now available at the library.

Professor Sarah Aponte would like to thank Julianny Ariza for donating two copies of the Dominican art publication ONTO to our library through artist Joiri Minaya, collaborator of ONTO publications. The donation consists of the ONTO Pub / 1 edition and the third ONTO Pub / 2 edition. We recommend checking out their website to learn more about this publication produced by Dominican artists on the current art scene in the Dominican Republic and other related issues here:

Jhensen Ortiz, Librarian

Rehousing of ¡AHORA! Magazine Collection

The CUNY Dominican Studies Institute Library has just completed the reorganization and rehousing of the ¡AHORA! magazine collection. ¡AHORA! magazine was founded by Dominican journalist and lawyer Rafael Molina Morillo on January 15, 1962, and was considered a  progressive media outlet for its support of freedom of expression and human rights in the country. The magazine ran until 2004, and the library has been able to preserve a few original issues from 1969 until 1978. While the collection is incomplete, the rehousing has made it possible to protect these issues for many years to come, and it was a collaborative effort that we attempted within the library. 
With the assistance of library assistant Matthew Santana and intern Jorge Vasquez, a Queens College graduate student, enrolled in the Library Science, and History, dual degree program, we were able to complete the project.
It was a team effort, and I am so proud of the library staff for getting it done so quickly. They look great, and we look forward to sharing this resource with future researchers.
Jhensen Ortiz

Visita de historiadores dominicanos


El Profesor Anthony Stevens-Acevedo y la Profesora Sarah Aponte, Director Auxiliar y Encargada de la Biblioteca del CUNY DSI respectivamente, agradecen al Dr. Marcos Charles (izquierda en la fotografía) por coordinar la visita de los historiadores dominicanos José C. Novas, (segundo desde la izquierda), Luis Alvarez López (tercero desde la izquierda) y Ramón Emilio Espínola (derecha) a nuestra Biblioteca, donde donaron numerosas publicaciones de su autoría y compartieron ideas para futuras colaboraciones.

 Los historiadores donaron las siguientes publicaciones para que formen parte de nuestra colección:

 Luis Alvarez-López

-          Secuestro de bienes de rebeldes: estado y sociedad en la uìltima dominacioìn espanÞola, 1863-1865

-          Dieciséis conclusiones fundamentales sobre la anexión y la guerra de la restauración (1861-1865)

-          Cinco ensayos sobre el Caribe hispano en el siglo XIX : República Dominicana, Cuba y Puerto Rico 1861-1898

-          Dominican Republic and the Beginning of a Revolutionary Cycle in the Spanish Caribbean

-          Guerras de liberación en el Caribe hispano, 1863-1878

 Ramón Emilio Espínola

-          La participación dominicana en las guerras por la independencia de Cuba

-          Remembranzas: crónicas de la Ocupación 1916-1924, la era de los Estados Unidos.

-          Dominicanas ejemplare: estudio histórico-biográfico y breve análisis del machismo en la historia

-          Trujillo: causas e implicaciones que dieron origen a la dictadura

-          Trujillo y sus relaciones con los gobernantes haitianos

-          Trujillo, anécdotas y cosas de un dictador

-          Mujeres extraordinarias de la patria puertorriqueña

-          Compendio histórico-biográfico de extranjeros que participaron en la formación de la nación dominicana

 José C. Novas

-          El presidente Cáceres: fábula del progreso, el orden y la paz

-          La batuta de Alejandrito: perfil biográfico del general Alejandro Woss y Gil, 1856-1932

-          Twice the diplomat: Frederick Douglass's assignments to the island of Santo Domingo

-          Los gavilleros: la lucha nacionalista contra la ocupación, 1916-1924

-          Balaguer, Trujillo y el beso de Judas

-          Trujillo: La emboscada final: muerte y funeral del generalísimo


William Parra

Research Assistant

Después de Trujillo/After Trujillo



On February 16th, I attended the screening of Después de Trujillo at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Claudia Calirman, Associate Professor of Art History, invited co-directors Lisa Blackmore and Jorge Domínguez Dubuc to screen and discuss the new documentary on dictatorship, space, and memory with her students. The documentary opened a space to discuss the legacy of the Trujillo dictatorship through the monuments, memory gardens, and contemporary ruins. A range of Dominican voices from historians and architects to activists and torture victim’s talk about the rise of Trujillo in the wake of the destruction of Hurricane San Zenón in 1930 as Trujillo came to power and consolidated his power through the modern architecture and the testimonies of resistance leading up to his demise in 1961.

The students engaged with the filmmakers by asking questions concerning represented voices in the film, national identity, and the role of Dominican and foreign artists or architects in shaping the vision of modernity. Also, they discussed the remnants of the dictatorship both physical and emotional for the many families still coping with their traumatic experience lived during the regime. The many institutions and public memorials like the Museo Memorial de la Resistencia Dominicana, Casa Museo Hermanas Mirabal, Monumento Héroes del 30 de Mayo, and Monumento a Los Héroes de Constanza, Maimón y Estero Hondo still exercise this past and challenge the politics of memory after Trujillo.

Furthermore, the impact from rescuing memory and development of Truth Commissions in Latin America the last few years situates the film in an unusual context of confronting historical impunity. The voicing of modernity enforced during the Trujillo dictatorship and the ghosts, which live on through monuments, gardens, and contemporary ruins are defining the complex issues with memory within Dominican society today.

We currently do not own a copy of the film, but we highly recommend this documentary to the public, students, and scholars with interest in the Trujillo era (1930-1961), Historical/Cultural Memory, Modernism, and the history of urban development in the Dominican Republic. Also, check out the co-director’s blog to learn more about the film where they share the process of making the film from beginning to end.

Jhensen Ortiz

Assistant Librarian

Prof. Sophie Maríñez shares her work with us

Professor Sarah Aponte would like to thank BMCC Professor Sophie Maríñez for taking the time to share her academic work with us at the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute Library.


Prof. Sophie Maríñez has made available via her profile on the academic social networking site her poems "Carnival Day in Santo Domingo," "Sentencia del Infierno," and a French translation of one of Frank Baez's poems "La Marilyn Monroe de Santo Domingo." She has also translated into French "Comrade, Bliss ain't playing" written by Josefina Báez in 2012. We encourage students, researchers, and the general public to check out her profile and tell her we sent you!

Assistant Librarian

Jhensen Ortiz

Aurora Arias y Emoticons!


Como bibliotecaria en el CUNY Dominican Studies Institute, es un gran privilegio tener la oportunidad de conocer a grandes escritores  dominicanos que nos visitan y donan sus publicaciones.

Fue un verdadero placer conocer y compartir con la escritora Aurora Arias durante su cálida visita. Felices de que nos donara la última edición de Emoticons publicada por el sello editorial argentino Corregidor con un excelente prólogo escrito por Gabriela Tineo.

Gracias a la Prof. Sharina Maillo-Pozo por hacer posible este hermoso encuentro.

Commemorating the historical significance of Dominican resistance to oppression

Below please find our pick of bibliographical references available to the general public at our library about the 1965 Revolution in the Dominican Republic. The selected list has been compiled in honor of those who fought and lost their lives fifty-one years ago on April 28, 1965 in the capital city of Santo Domingo when fighting against the American troops that invaded and interrupted a pivotal moment in the country's history.

Accion dominicana 1965

Meza Nieto, José. Acción dominicana: 1965 ¿Intervención o cooperación? Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University, Center for Strategic Studies, 1966. Print.

This source is a foreign policy report published by the Center for Strategic Studies at Georgetown University. The report provides insight into the minds of foreign policy experts and analysts inside and outside of the Beltway who were trying to make sense of the crisis in Santo Domingo.

Historia Grafica la guerra de abril

Despradel, Fidelio. Historia gráfica de la revolución de abril. Santo Domingo, República Dominicana: Editora Nuevo Rumbo, 1975. Print.

This seminal book is a coveted publication about the 1965 Revolution and the subsequent U.S. military intervention that took place in the Dominican Republic.

The author, a theorist and leading member of the 14th of June Movement (1J4), as well as the renegade son of a prominent government official during the Trujillo dictatorship, creates a valuable visual resource that sheds light onto the events that led to the military coup that overthrew Bosch’s government and the counter-coup that aimed to bring him back to power.

Also, the book highlights the various political groups that came together during that period, the composition of the Comandos Populares (civilian military units), and the role of artists and intellectuals, women, Haitian immigrants, exiled Dominicans, and foreigners who participated in the struggle against the U.S military troops and their local allies.


Fortunato, René. Una primavera para el mundo: La revolución constitucionalista de 1965. Santo Domingo, República Dominicana: Amigo del Hogar, 2015. Print

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Revolution, acclaimed Dominican film director René Fortunato published a collection of 650 unedited photographs.The book includes a chronology of national and international daily events from April 24 to September 3, 1965.


Cordero, Margarita. Mujeres de abril. Santo Domingo, República Dominicana: CIPAF, 1985. Print.

This book is a collection of testimonies from women who fought in the 1965 Revolution. In these interviews, Margarita Cordero, a renowned journalist, focuses on the daily lives of some of the women who participated in the revolution, and highlights their concrete experience amidst of war, their training in combat at Academia Militar 24 de Abril and how women’s presence and involvement diversified the social discourse of the time and the history of the revolution.


Núñez Fernández, José Antonio. La guerra de locutores Abril 1965. Santo Domingo, República Dominicana: Biblioteca Nacional Pedro Henríquez Ureña, 2009. Print.

An examination of the lives and experiences of radio commentators who were in favor of safeguarding the constitution of the Dominican Republic that recognized only democratically elected governments. These radio commentators waged a campaign against the 1965 U.S. occupation based on the unconstitutionality of the act. Furthermore, this book highlights the much larger collective role of many individuals in Dominican society who used whatever means at their disposal to fight against the U.S. occupation.

To have access to the larger and rich collection of resources about the 1965 Revolution in the Dominican Republic, please visit The CUNY Dominican Studies Institute’s library.  

Jhensen Ortiz

Assistant Librarian

The iconic Listín USA newspaper is now available to researchers on microfilm

LAMP (Latin American Materials Project)/Center for Research Libraries (CRL) has microfilmed a collection of Listín USA issues for the period of April 1992 - September 1992. There are some missing issues from June 24-30, 1992.


Listín USA was the leading weekly newspaper covering the daily life of Dominicans in New York City in the early 1990s, a key period in the development of Dominican communities in the city. The newspaper highlights the growth, challenges, tensions, contributions and accomplishments of one of the largest immigrant groups in the North Eastern U.S.


This microfilm project has preserved some important issues of Listín USA, allowing students, researchers, and the general public to explore events like the elections of the first Dominicans to the New York City Council and the New York State Assembly; the activities of businesses, community associations and cultural institutions led by Dominicans; the mobilization of Dominican public school parents, as well as the 1992 Washington Heights riots.
LAMP’s microfilming project to preserve these issues of Listín USA used the collection housed at the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute Library donated by Dominican journalist José Alduey Sierra. Prof. Sarah Aponte, Chief Librarian at CUNY DSI, proposed the project at the 2015 Annual Conference of SALALM (Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials) and worked closely with Judy Alspach, Area Studies Program Manager at CRL in bringing the initiative to completion. Prof. Aponte wants to acknowledge Program Manager Alspach for her assistance and communication during the process.

We invite you to peruse through these issues of Listín USA to study an important part of the history of New York City’s vibrant Dominican community.

Jhensen Ortiz

Assistant Librarian 

(Re)Framing Raza: Digital Dissertation is now made available



A few weeks ago, we were fortunate to be visited by our friend and recent PhD graduate Dr. Eva Michelle Wheeler. About a year ago, she presented part of her dissertation research at the Fifth Biennial Dominican Studies Association Conference in Naugatuck Valley Community College to scholars and students. It was our first introduction to her perspective employing linguistics in analyzing Dominican race and skin color descriptors. Her inventive study examines the intersection of language and race in the Dominican Republic utilizing what she describes as “a mixed methods approach for the examination of race that first analyzes how meaning is constructed for each term (in lieu of translation), and then empirically tests hypotheses regarding physical and social information via photo description questionnaires.”

In the same spirit, the CUNY Dominican Studies Library will like to share her complete dissertation to students and scholars through her personal website. Her dissertation is titled (Re)Framing Raza: Language as a Lens for Examining Race and Skin Color Categories in the Dominican Republic is highly recommended for students to gain a better footing on the Dominican racial setting.

Jhensen Ortiz

Assistant Librarian

Opposing the Dominican Architectural Past and Present

Prof. Sarah Aponte would like to thank Architect Sachi Hoshikawa and PhD candidate Jennifer A. Báez for their recent donation related to Dominican architecture and the 1955 Dominican Republic’s Peace and Confraternity of the Free World Fair during the Trujillo regime.

Báez, Jennifer. “Constructing the Nation at the 1955 Ciudad Trujillo World’s Fair.” Athanor XXXII (2014): 93-101. (Athanor is a magazine published by the museum of fine arts and art history department of Florida State University) 

Download Baez_Constructing the Nation (1)

Architecture in the path of the sun004

Arquitectura en el trayecto del sol: entendiendo la modernidad dominicana/ Architecture in the path of the sun: Understanding Dominican Modernity. Santo Domingo, República Dominicana: Fundación Laboratorio de Arquitectura Dominicana, 2014. Print.

Few published articles and books compile in such a chronological way the ideology, history, and aesthetics of modernity in the Dominican Republic. The book was published as a complimentary piece to the Venice Biennale exhibit in 2014, one of the premier cultural events in the world displaying new art trends. This volume contains a compilation of texts and images to give readers a comprehensive idea of the rise of the particularities of Modern Architecture in the Dominican Republic. It provides a concrete analysis using a “historical synchronic frame” in others words a sense of the evolution of Dominican architecture; while attempting to deconstruct the notion of modernity within specific ideological and political contexts. The periods of Dominican architecture evolution are broken down into the following sections: the beginning of the twentieth century, the Trujillo dictatorship, the governments of Joaquín Balaguer and the recent years. In addition, many students and professionals in architecture will find this book particularly useful for its thoughts and reflections on ethics and aesthetics that are embedded in the new language of design in the Dominican Republic at different political circumstances.

Arquitectura en el trayecto del sol acknowledges the inherent identification of the “Peace and Confraternity of the Free World Fair,” where Dictator Rafael Trujillo celebrated his 25 years of power, as a sort of zenith of the construction of Dominican modernity. The article “Constructing the Nation at the 1955 Ciudad Trujillo World’s Fair.” implicitly talks about this as well, this construction of the nation and the fair as a medium for the dictatorship’s power and presence. The article mentions how the fair shaped the idea of the nation and defining modernity in the structure of hierarchical relationship between the city and the colonial quarters. While Báez’s article focuses on how the conception of a Dominican nation was cultivated during the Free World Fair and simultaneously carving a distinct cultural and spatial geography in relation to Haiti, I believe there are interesting parallels in both the article and the book. The fair was the channel for this discourse on Modernity at a very critical time in the Dominican Republic because of the anti-communist rhetoric in the Western hemisphere. The Trujillo regime needed to promote modernity and progress, in its own terms, but also attempted to align State ideology with Cold War discourse.

Furthermore, the article discusses the role of la zona colonia (colonial quarters) as a model of our architectural heritage, but it also gave spectators a contrast of past and present. I recommend this article if you want to understand how the fair forged this perception of the Dominican nation within the international panorama, but also in its relationship to Haiti. The book will give you more information and contributes critically to the discussion on the fair in the chapter “Modernity and Power” by Gustavo Luis Moré.

On another note, if you happen to be in New York, do not miss Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980, an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. Commemorating and celebrating the 60th anniversary of “Latin American Architecture since 1945,” a landmark survey of modern architecture in Latin America. Now the Museum returns to the region to offer a complex overview of the positions, debates, and architectural creativity from Mexico and Cuba to the Southern Cone between 1955 and the early 1980s. The show is on view until July 19, 2015.

Sachi Hoshikawa, an architect and real estate advisor who holds a Master in Design Studies in Real Estate Finance and Development from Harvard University, is the collaborator and executive producer of Laboratorio de Arquitectura Dominicana (LAD) a non-profit organization based in the Dominican Republic and New York City.

I highly recommend that architectural students specifically take advantage of the above discussed resources and the exhibit. The resources also serve those that may be studying history, political science, and art history. There are many photographs of the beautiful architecture over the years in the Dominican Republic so for those doing photography don’t be shy, come and visit the library.

Jhensen Ortiz
Assistant Librarian