José Martí, Mentor of the Cuban Nation

By John M. Kirk | Go to book overview

5. Moral Foundation

Essential to José Martí's new approach to political life in a liberated Cuba were the innovations that he hoped to introduce in what can be termed the human dimension of the Republic. Martí was well aware of the pressing need for sweeping political reforms in the patria, but also realized that in order for them to be successfully instituted it would be necessary from the outset to inculcate into every Cuban citizen certain moral qualities which together would result, he hoped, in a heightened moral consciousness and would eventually lead to the formation of a "new man."

Martí wanted to reshape completely the Cuban national character, injecting into his compatriots first a measure of confidence in both their own potential as well as that of the nation as a whole and then building upon this self-assurance by encouraging them to adopt a deeply patriotic and, more important, a humanitarian interest in their fellow man. Martí maintained that a new humanitarian consciousness was absolutely essential in order to complement and ultimately to guarantee the application of his revolutionary sociopolitical program. Consequently this moral foundation, so rigorously defended by Martí, offers an interesting insight into his plans for a liberated Cuba because it underlies all aspects of his political thought.

Martí was well aware, however, that the necessary first step before attempting to introduce these rather dramatic changes into Cuban society was to convince his fellow Cubans of their common ability -- united as the Cuban nation -- to fully realize their poten-

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José Martí, Mentor of the Cuban Nation
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Preface ix
  • I- Historical Analysis Of Martí Studies 1
  • 1- from Místico To Revolutionary 3
  • II- the Molding Of a Visionary It 19
  • 2- Origins of A Political Career 21
  • 3. Evolution of Sociopolitical Thought 41
  • Iii. the Envisioned Patria 63
  • 4. Political System 65
  • 5. Moral Foundation 86
  • 6. Social Structure 106
  • 7. Economic Policies 132
  • Conclusion 153
  • Chronology 157
  • Notes 163
  • Bibliography 181
  • Index 199
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