Donation of Books from the Alejo Carpentier Foundation

(Haga ‘clic’ aquí para la versión en español.)

We are excited to announce a donation of books we’ve received in the Harold F. Johnson Library from the Alejo Carpentier Foundation in Havana, Cuba, by way of the Global Education Office here at Hampshire College.

The books by Alejo Carpentier that will be available soon at Hampshire College Library include some of the author’s most famous works, primarily in the original Spanish (we had many of the English translations already). You’ll find historical fiction, such as El Reino de Este Mundo (‘The Kingdom of this World’), about the Haitian Revolution, and El Arpa y la Sombra (‘The Harp and the Shadow’), centering on the arrival of Columbus in the Caribbean.

You’ll also find nonfiction works, such as La Música en Cuba (Music in Cuba), a work of ethnomusicology placing emphasis on African influences within Cuban music and culture; or Crónicas I/II and Crónicas Caribeñas (Caribbean Chronicles), collections of chronicles published in magazines and newspapers (a chronicle is a unique form of literary journalism popular in Latin America).

Most of the books in this collection will circulate, but a few of the more fragile books will be placed in the special collections for library-only reading on request. If you have questions about the contents of this collection and how to access it, or if you are interested in having your class use these materials, please don’t hesitate to contact Robin Potter Nolasco at

Here are some archival photographs of Alejo Carpentier and his world, courtesy of the Alejo Carpentier Foundation:

Some details about the Alejo Carpentier Foundation, from the GEO Website:

“The Alejo Carpentier Foundation is a non-profit, non-governmental cultural organization, created in 1983 to promote and preserve the intellectual and literary legacy of Cuban novelist, journalist, and musicologist Alejo Carpentier….The foundation has two venues: the main office in Vedado, in the former home of Alejo Carpentier and his spouse, devoted to research, publishing, and the preservation of Carpentier’s papers and legacy, and a second one in Old Havana primarily used for expositions, cultural activities, and meetings.

Hampshire College’s connection to this institution allows students to receive independent tutoring and project supervision from Cuba’s most prominent intellectuals and artists, while the tuition fees generated go directly to helping the Foundation restore Carpentier’s personal library, publish books, grant scholarships to Cuban researchers and supply its offices with better equipment to facilitate its ongoing work.”



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