Norge Espinosa Mendoza

Poet, playwright, and cultural critic Norge Espinosa Mendoza (b. 1971, Santa Clara) holds the distinction of being the first Cuban to participate in the University of Iowa’s prestigious International Writing Program. Founder of the Jornadas de Arte Homoerótico, he is widely considered one of Cuba’s most important LGBTQ activists. His poem “Vestido de novia” was the first poem on a homoerotic theme to win the Premio de Poesía from Cuba’s state cultural magazine El Caimán Barbudo and has since become one of the most anthologized poems by poets of his generation. His books include Las breves tribulaciones (poetry), Ícaros y otras piezas míticas (theater), Cuerpos de un deseo diferente (essays on queer Cuban culture), and Escenarios que arden (criticism and essays on contemporary Cuban theater). His plays have premiered in Cuba, Puerto Rico, France, and the United States.

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