Rina Cáceres holds the Chair in African and Caribbean Studies (Cátedra de Estudios de Africa y el Caribe) at the University of Costa Rica and is a specialist on the history of African descendant populations in Central America and the Caribbean.
She serves as Representative on CONARE, the Rector’s National Committee on the University, the National Commission of Afro-Descent Studies of the Ministry of Public Education in Costa Rica, and the UNESCO “Slave Route” Project.
She is the author of Negros, mulatos, esclavos y libertos en la Costa Rica del siglo XVII (2000) and editor of Rutas de la esclavitud en Africa y América Latina (2001) and co-editor of Haiti Revolucion emancipación (2008). She edited, From Oblivion to Memory. History of Afro-Descendant People in Central America during the Colonial Period, which is collection of materials for teachers in five volumes (2008-2010). She has been awarded the Costa Rican National Prize, Aquileo Echeverria (History), and the Ricardo Caillet-Bois (History) from the Pan American Institute of Geography and History of the Organization of American States for her studies on Afro-Descendent people in Costa Rica.
Del olvido a la memoria
Del olvido a la memoria – Oblivion to Memory. History of Afro-Descendant People in Central America includes four volumes and a teaching supplement aimed at teachers in primary and secondary schools throughout Central America. She has held over 400 workshops for teachers under the auspices of UNESCO that advocate the inclusion of the history of Afro descendants in the curriculum in all schools. Copies of the collection were presented to participants.
Cátedra de Estudios de Africa y el Caribe
The Chair in African and Caribbean Studies mounts a program of research and outreach aimed to promote a better understanding of the contributions of people of African descent in the history and culture of Costa Rica through research, the identification of historic sites, and support for cultural and community creativity. The Program of the Chair has published several books, organized conferences and workshops throughout Central America, has supported cultural activities on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, and served in an advocacy role in policy discussions with various government ministries in Costa Rica and other countries in Central America.
The Meaning of Blackness
These bi-annual symposia highlight diversity and the problems of racism, discrimination, access to citizenship, and the contributions of African descendants to the formation of contemporary societies. They are organized under the auspices of Cátedra de Estudios de Africa y el Caribe and the Harriet Tubman Institute. The proceedings are being published by the University of Costa Rica Press.