Essays on Cuban History: Historiography and Research

By Louis A. Pérez Jr. | Go to book overview

Chapter 14
Record Collections at the Cuban National Archives: A Descriptive Survey

In April 1970 the Hispanic Foundation of the Library of Congress and Yale University, in conjunction with the Ford Foundation, sponsored in Washington, D. C., an international symposium on Cuban research materials. The Cuban revolution had attracted the attention of an international scholarly community, and quite suddenly in 1959 a new and vast corpus of literature had come into existence. By 1970 this prodigious enterprise showed no sign of coming to an end. On the contrary, it gave every indication of expanding. In 1970 the Center for International Studies at the University of Pittsburgh launched Cuban Studies Newsletter, a publication that the editors described as "designed to provide comprehensive and timely communication among those interested in Cuban studies."1 The development of Cuban study centers in Europe and the United States further served to stimulate interest in Cuba. The moment was propitious, then, for an international symposium to review the state of research collections and library holdings on Cuba. Some fifteen participants, mainly scholars with research interests in Cuba and librarians and bibliographers with specializations in the Caribbean and Latin America, presented a variety of papers dealing with various aspects of library and archival collections possessing materials on Cuba.

The publication of the proceedings later that year provided an enormously useful research guide to Cuban materials.2 The published papers assessed the scope and strength of the principal library collections, re-

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