Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

An Attempt to Prove That 3,000 People Can Change the World

Academic journal article Pennsylvania Literary Journal

An Attempt to Prove That 3,000 People Can Change the World

Article excerpt

An Attempt to Prove that 3,000 People Can Change the World Dalia Antonia Muller. Cuban Emigres and Independence in the Nineteenth-Century Gulf World. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, May 1, 2017. ISBN: 978-1-4696-3198-1. $29.95. 324pp. 6.125X9.25". 4 illustrations.

This book is about the Cuban exile community in Mexico, which began during Cuba's fight for independence from Spain. They did not stop there, but spread a Cuban diaspora across the Gulf of Mexico. This is not only a book about the lives of emigres, but rather about their spread of revolutionary ideas across the region. Finally, the book documents how the return of these migrants later changed Cuba in turn.

It is a Cuban history from its early roots and across the period in question. Statistics on what the occupations of applicants for migration and the like are detailed to explain that they were doctors, journalists, professors, photographers and other professionals, with only a few working-class tailors and sailors. There is an exploration of what democracy truly means, as well as a discussion of the military techniques and ideologies employed in the wars that touched the immigrants' lives. Tensions between Cuba and the rest of South America and Caribbean cultures are explained as a struggle between conservativism and liberalism, or between radicals and insiders. …

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