3rd Annual Free Comic Book Day at Richter


Come by the Richter Library Breezeway on Friday, May 1, from 12  – 2 p.m. and pick up a free comic! We will distribute single volumes (while supplies last) courtesy of Mac’s Comics, as well as coupons to the store. Librarians will be on site with information and samples from Richter Library’s growing Graphic Novels Collection.

Free Comic Book Day is a national event traditionally celebrated on the first Saturday in May. Mac’s Comics & Collectibles will host a Free Comic Book Day event at their store on Saturday, May 2.

UM’s Cuban Heritage Collection Celebrates the Legacy of Maestro Manuel Ochoa

by Rosa Monzon, Cuban Heritage Collection

The exhibit includes a digital component through which viewers can watch videos of performances conducted by Maestro Ochoa.

The exhibition includes a digital component through which viewers can watch videos of Ochoa’s performances.

Maestro Manuel Ochoa, a Cuban exile musician, choral and orchestra conductor, and founder of the Miami Symphony Orchestra, was the focus of a reception at the Cuban Heritage Collection (CHC), at the University of Miami’s Otto G. Richter Library. The event served as the official launch of an exhibition that includes Ochoa’s greatest works and documented memories, which are preserved and available for research at the CHC in the Manuel Ochoa Papers.

Ochoa is recognized internationally not only for his numerous contributions to classical Cuban music in the island but also his work in Spain, Austria, and the United States.

Curated by Meiyolet Mendez, librarian at the CHC, the exhibition displays photographs, letters, publications, music scores, and concert programs of Ochoa’s personal life and career. Included is a photograph from the beginning of Ochoa’s career, at the age of 17, conducting members of the Holguin Choral Society, which he created in 1942, even before he had any formal training. Another photograph shows Ochoa leading the Belen Jesuit Choir in Havana years later. Ochoa’s lesson plans and notes on working with child choir singers also are on display.

“One of the most exciting parts of working on this exhibit was the opportunity to bring to life Maestro Ochoa’s entire career,” said Mendez. “I discovered a person who was passionate about music and music education, and who loved sharing that passion with others.”

Also on display is a paper program of the Concierto Sacro, sponsored by the Cuban Catholic Artists Guild, featuring Ochoa’s Coro de Madrigalistas (Madrigal Choir), popularly noted as the best choir in Cuba, in 1956, Havana.

A driving force and inspiration in Ochoa’s life was always his family. One of the highlights of the exhibition is a photograph of his mother, Caridad Ochoa, who was a trained opera singer, plus a tear sheet from The Miami Herald with an article by David Lawrence Jr. celebrating Ochoa as well as his wife and biggest supporter, Sofia Ochoa.

“She was at his side every step of the way,” said their son, Manuel Ochoa Jr. “My father always said she made it easy for him to just stand at a podium and conduct.”

CHC recognized Sofia Ochoa (right) during the event.

Esperanza Bravo de Varona (left), former chair of the CHC, and current chair Maria Estorino recognized Sofia Ochoa (right) during the event.

Sofia’s unwavering support for her husband continued after his death, in 2006. She not only donated his collection but also contributed countless hours as a volunteer in the processing of these records.

“When my mother and I thought about how we would remember and commemorate my father, we wanted a living memorial,” said Ochoa Jr. “We wanted to share his life story so that others, especially young Cubans and Cuban-Americans would be inspired to continue his musical legacy.”

After studying and working in Cuba, Vienna, Spain, and Rome, Ochoa settled in Miami following the Cuban Revolution. On display are photographs of Ochoa’s performances in Miami, such as the first Festiva Symphony Concert at the Colonel Hotel in 1989. There is also a photograph of acclaimed Cuban pianist Zenaida Manfugás, from the same concert.

In Miami Ochoa also created the Society of Arts and Culture of Americas, but his greatest contribution to the city’s cultural development was the creation and leadership of the Miami Symphony Orchestra for more than 25 years. Multiple playbills from its concerts are displayed in the CHC’s Roberto C. Goizueta Pavilion, as well as audio and videos of performances.

Guests at the reption.

The celebration of Ochoa’s life and legacy took place at CHC’s Roberto C. Goizueta Pavilion, where the Manuel Ochoa Papers are now permanently housed and available for research.

Considered “the highlight of his tenure with the orchestra,” said Ochoa Jr., was a concert in Carnegie Hall in June of 2000, also represented in the exhibition.

“Maestro Ochoa’s legacy lives on in the Miami Symphony Orchestra he founded and in the lives that he touched through his various cultural activities,” said Maria Estorino, chair of the CHC. “But it also lives on here, in the library, where through his own papers, his life, his work, and his passion can be discovered.”

The CHC is home to thousands of books, manuscripts, photographs, and other materials that document the rich history and culture of Cuba and its diaspora. The legacy of Maestro Manuel Ochoa, as well as countless other Cubans and Cuban-Americans, “will not only be preserved here, but it will be shared with our students and with the community,” said Estorino.

“I hope the Maestro Manuel Ochoa Collection continues to inspire and educate future generations to become musicians and conductors, and keep alive the rich tradition of classical music,” Ochoa Jr. said.

The exhibition is available for viewing through the end of summer. For more information about the Cuban Heritage Collection and its events, please visit www.library.miami.edu/chc.

View more photos from the event here.

Photos by Andrew Innerarity.

The exhibit will be available at the Roberto C. Goizueta Pavilion through summer 2015.

The exhibition is on view at the Roberto C. Goizueta Pavilion through the end of the summer.

UML Celebrates the 15th Annual International Edible Book Festival

by Sarah Block, Library Communications

Screen Shot 2015-04-02 at 5.40.57 PM

Click the image to view more photos from the event.

The April Fools’ Day tradition of “eating your words” took the form of a feast Wednesday, April 1, in an event at UM’s Otto G. Richter Library that served literary entrées such as “Game of Scones,” “The Count of Monte Crispo,” and “The Com-Plate Works of William Shakespeare.” The playful spread of book-inspired creations were cooked up from across the University community taking part in the library’s celebration of the Edible Book Festival, an event established in 2000 that has sprinkled across libraries and universities worldwide.

“The Edible Book Festival celebrates the intellectually nourishing power of books in a fun and creative way,” says Kelly Miller, associate dean of Learning and Research Services at the University of Miami Libraries (UML).

Kathryn Garcia created "Love in the Time of Chlorophyll," which was inspited by Gabriel García Márquez's "Love in the Time of Cholera."

Student Kathryn Garcia created “Love in the Time of Chlorophyll,” which was inspired by Gabriel García Márquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera.

The lure for creating and then devouring edible books is strong. Hundreds participated in UML’s fifth Edible Book Day event by viewing and voting on a total of 18 entries, resulting in four winners: Wittiest, “Game of Scones” by Hunter Hewitt; Healthiest, “The Berry Hungry Caterpillar” by Cheryl Gowing; Most Edible, “Telltale Candy Heart” by Vanessa Rodriguez; and Best in Show, “Book of Flowers” by Louisa Norris.

Education and Outreach Librarian Terri Robar, who served as chair of UML’s 2015 festival, says the event has a special draw for readers of varying genres and literary interests. “It’s a way for them to use their imaginations to create something based on the literature that inspires them, and they have a lot of fun translating that into an edible form.”

Entries have only two basic requirements: they must relate to a book, and they must be edible. Hunter Hewitt, a UM student majoring in neuroscience whose take on Game of Thrones won the award for Wittiest, says figuring out the best way to make fantasy elements from the series such as dragon eggs and a wolf’s head into an actual edible form took some research. “[In coming up with “Game of Scones,”] I had no idea scones were so diverse. There were options from sweet to savory with multitudes of combinations along the way.”


Louisa Norris won Best in Show for her entry, “Book of Flowers.”

UML has distinct ties to the festival through its co-founder Beatrice Corón, whose handmade works from cut-paper are housed in Special Collections as part of the department’s growing artist’s books collection. “Artist’s books, like edible books, transcend the boundaries of traditional book forms,” says Cristina Favretto, head of Special Collections, and former chair of UM’s festival. “They engage viewers in a very active and visceral way.”

Whet your appetite on the full spread of edible books here.


After winners are announced all who are present are welcome to dig in to the books.

Join Us for “The Coevolution of Texts & Technology” by Cheryl Geisler on March 19

The Coevolution of Texts & Technology
Cheryl Geisler
Simon Fraser University

Thursday, March 19, 2015 | 1:30 p.m.
Third Floor Conference Room
Otto G. Richter Library


cherylGeisler_comp2As scholars of writing, we know the two-facedness of text. First, we know text as something contingent, an artifact that emerges out of process and circumstance, a thing with meaning and function embedded in orality and materiality. Second, we also know text as a cultural object, one that aspires to be fixed and unchanging, which claims to rise above circumstance to serve as an authoritative source. My career has been preoccupied with exploring the mechanisms and consequences of this two-facedness across the disciplines, first in academic philosophy, next in engineering design, and most recently in the context of the new technologies. I have argued that the mechanism and consequences of this two-facedness lies in understanding text as a kind of technology, one built by humans to do specific work in the world, while at the same time operating as a kind of black box into which we can pry only with some difficulty.   In the twentieth century, this work has constructed what Smith called documentary reality and it still within this framework that a great deal of what we teach about writing functions today. In the twenty-first century, however, much evidence suggests that texts are undergoing a second revolution as they are embedded in a host of new media technologies beginning with instant messaging in 1997 to Twitter (2006) and its successors. These are texts with characteristics quite distinct from those we encounter in our writing centers and classes: They have a different scope to their interaction. They bend time and space in different ways. And they do work in the world that we need to better understand.


About Cheryl Geisler
Cheryl Geisler is Professor of Interactive Arts and Technology at Simon Fraser University where she served as the inaugural Dean of the Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology. She has written extensively on the nature of texts, especially those mediated by new technologies (http://jbt.sagepub.com/content/25/3.toc). Her work focusing on the promotion of women in the academic ranks was recently published in Science (17, 2012), the flagship journal of the AAAS. She was the principal investigator on the just published Designing for User Engagement on the Web: 10 Basic Principles from Routledge (2014). A recognized expert on verbal data coding, she is the author of Analyzing Steams of Language (2004) and conducts an annual international workshop on verbal data analysis at Dartmouth College. She has received awards for her work from Computers and Composition, the Rhetoric Society of America, and the National Communication Association.


2015 Annual International Edible Book Festival at Richter Library


The University of Miami Libraries (UML) is calling for submissions to the 15th annual International Edible Book Festival. A popular event here at UM and universities worldwide, the festival celebrates the intellectually nourishing power of books in a fun and creative way—by turning them into edible art. UML’s 2015 festival will take place on April 1, 12-2:30 p.m., at the Otto G. Richter Library.


Due to popular demand, the deadline to register has been extended through Monday, March 30.


The Edible Book Festival is the dreamchild of Judith Hoffberg, a librarian and champion of artists’ books, and Beatrice Coron, a visual storyteller and book artist. (Many of Coron’s works are held in UML’s Special Collections.) Celebrated since 2000 in various parts of the world, the festival involves the creation, display, and eating of edible books. It generally falls on or around April 1, partly a nod to the April Fools’ tradition of “eating your words,” as the official website explains.

This year marks UML’s fifth celebration of the Edible Book Festival. View past entries »


Examples of past entries

Examples of past entries (from left): Bite Club, The Da Vinci Cod, The Picture of Dorito Gray, The Catcher in the Rye


9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.: Edible books entries accepted
Noon to 1:30 p.m.: Public viewing and judging
1:30 to 2 p.m.: Votes counted and prizes awarded
2 to 2:30 p.m.: Entries eaten by participants and viewers

How to Participate

ebf-judgingCategoriesAll UM students, faculty, and staff are invited to attend or participate in the festival by submitting an edible book, either as an individual or with a team. Your submission can be based on any kind of book, including a novel, diary, biography, pop-up book, comic, picture book, or artist’s book. How it’s reinvented into an edible form is completely up to you. All contest participants should register now.

The first fifty contestants will receive a commemorative UML Edible Book Festival apron when they submit their entry on April 1.



  • Entries must be edible and inspired by a book.
  • Entries should hold their shape while on display (about 2.5 hours without refrigeration).
  • Entries must be delivered to Richter Library on April 1 by 11:30 a.m. You are welcome to display your book inspiration (or cover image) alongside your entry.
  • If you believe that your entry qualifies for the “Healthiest” prize, please submit a list of ingredients on or before the festival day.


For additional questions, please email ediblebooks@miami.edu.

CHC Recommends: Freedom’s Mirror by Ada Ferrer on March 2nd

Ada Ferrer is Professor of History and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University.  She will present her new book, Freedom’s Mirror: Cuba and Haiti in the Age of Revolution (Cambridge University Press, 2014) at Books & Books in Coral Gables on Monday, March 2, 2015, at 8:00 p.m.

ferrercoverDuring the Haitian Revolution of 1791-1804, arguably the most radical revolution of the modern world, slaves and former slaves succeeded in ending slavery and establishing an independent state. Yet on the Spanish island of Cuba barely fifty miles distant, the events in Haiti helped usher in the antithesis of revolutionary emancipation. When Cuban planters and authorities saw the devastation of the neighboring colony, they rushed to fill the void left in the world market for sugar, to buttress the institutions of slavery and colonial rule, and to prevent “another Haiti” from happening in their own territory.

Freedom’s Mirror follows the reverberations of the Haitian Revolution in Cuba, where the violent entrenchment of slavery occurred at the very moment that the Haitian Revolution provided a powerful and proximate example of slaves destroying slavery. By creatively linking two stories – the story of the Haitian Revolution and that of the rise of Cuban slave society – that are usually told separately, Ada Ferrer sheds fresh light on both of these crucial moments in Caribbean and Atlantic history.

ferrerAda Ferrer’s first book, Insurgent Cuba: Race, Nation, and Revolution, 1868-1898, (which appeared in French and Spanish translation) won the 2000 Berkshire Book Prize for the best first book by a woman in any field of history. Her recent article “Haiti, Free, Soil and Atlantic Antislavery” (2012) won the John Hope Franklin Prize from the Law and Society Association and the Paul Vanderwood Prize from the Conference of Latin American History. She is the recipient of awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Social Science Research Council, and the Fulbright Commission, among others.  Freedom’s Mirror was awarded Honorable Mention in the 2015 PROSE Award for European and World History by the Association of American Publishers.


The Lure of the Caribbean

Click to watch the video.

By Peter E. Howard, UM News

Hermes Mallea spent nearly an hour showcasing the Caribbean playgrounds of the rich and famous with the pace of a speed-dating encounter that took you from Bermuda and Barbados to Jamaica and Antiqua and Cuba’s hedonistic heights.

He showed how architects spun a web of elegance and simplicity in their work through nonstop slides and photos of properties as varied as Palm Beach’s haughty Mar-a-Lago to Laurance Rockefeller’s fabled RockResorts in the U.S. Virgin Islands. There were the Victorian gingerbreads and those with European influence, and the breezy haciendas sans air conditioning or door locks.

Mallea, an alumnus of the University of Miami’s School of Architecture, came back to town Tuesday evening for a presentation at the Otto G. Richter Library co-sponsored by UM Libraries and Books & Books.

He was here to tout his new book, Escape: The Heyday of Caribbean Glamour, and open a well-designed doorway to the “American Rivera” stretching from South Florida throughout the Caribbean.


Author, alumnus, and architect Hermes Mallea visited UM Libraries to discuss his latest book.

Mallea, B.Arch. ’78, who also studied at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, is a partner in the New York City-based design firm, M(Group).

The magical allure to each of the Caribbean locales, all of which ooze with romantic pining, find their footing in the writings of magazine and gossip columnists who reported on the jet-set lifestyles of celebrities and the wealthy. Mallea also gave a special nod to the pioneers who created the resorts, and their welcoming personas that attracted the right clientele.

“An escape to the Caribbean,” Mallea pointed out, “was always associated with the romance missing in our daily lives.”

The islands, each a cultured pearl with a personality formed by its past and its want for the future, mostly evolved from isolation into major tourist haunts through the ingenuity and drive of entrepreneurs, creative visionaries, and local tourism groups. Florida pushed its legend as home to the Fountain of Youth, while Havana of the 1950s was a mecca for drinking and gambling.

Mr. Mallea signed copies of books for guests after giving his presentation.

Mr. Mallea signed copies of books for guests after giving his presentation.

Mallea, who often lectures on historic preservation, is also author of Great Houses of Havana: A Centurey of Cuban Style. He is currently designing a Caribbean home for a client in the Dominican Republic, and is drawing on what he has learned through his research for Escape.

During a brief question and answer session following his lecture, Mallea commented on how Las Vegas appeared to have filled the void for gambling created after the Cuban revolution, and how Barbados is perhaps his favorite island with its pleasing architecture and non-gated communities.

Peter Howard can be reached at 305-284-8085.