A Nation for All: Race, Inequality, and Politics in Twentieth-Century Cuba

By Alejandro de la Fuente | Go to book overview

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I began thinking about the intricacies of Cuba’s modern race relations in the early 1990s, in the peace of my Havana personal library, surrounded by precious books and by the warmth of my extended family. I finished it in Tampa, Florida, nearly ten years later. Gone is the library; also gone is the easy access to my family. But during all these years something remained: the love and support of my wife, Patricia. Academics frequently thank their spouses last in book introductions. I thank mine first and foremost. More recently, I thank her for helping me resist the advances of our three-year-old daughter, Isabel. Isa always had plans for me, admittedly better than my revising this manuscript.

It was my privilege to conduct much of this research at the University of Pittsburgh, where I had the opportunity to work with a remarkable group of scholars—Seymour Drescher, Peggy Lovell, and Carmelo Mesa-Lago among them. George Reid Andrews and Harold Sims have read and commented on countless versions of this manuscript, and I have learned in the process what academic excellence and collaboration are all about. I give special thanks to them both for their generosity and support. I am also grateful to Susan Fernandez, my colleague and friend at the University of South Florida (USF), for carefully reading the entire manuscript and for her suggestions and criticisms in questions of form and substance.

Rebecca Scott’s pioneering work on race, politics, and mobilization in Cuba has been, together with her dedication and enthusiasm, a source of inspiration. Our mutual interests have led to several collaborative efforts that have involved the participation of other scholars, such as Ada Ferrer, Orlando García Martínez, and Michael Zeuske. I must acknowledge that in this process I have always received more from them than I was able to give in exchange.

Other colleagues who read and critiqued different sections of the manuscript include the noted Colombian anthropologist Jaime Arocha, Jorge de Carvalho, Carmen Diana Deere, Laurence Glasco, Olabiyi Jay, Helen Safa, Ward Stavig, and Kevin Yelvington. In Cuba, I benefited from the comments and questions raised by Jorge Ibarra, a leading student of Cuban nationalism, culture, and society. Tomás Fernandez Robaina, a long-term collaborator and friend, shared with me his extensive knowledge of AfroCuban history and sources. It is fair to say that his support was crucial to

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A Nation for All: Race, Inequality, and Politics in Twentieth-Century Cuba
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures and Tables viii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Abbreviations xiii
  • Introduction 1
  • Part I- The First Republic 1902-1933 21
  • 1 - Racial Order or Racial Democracy? Race and the Contending Notions of Cubanidad 23
  • 2 - Electoral Politics 54
  • Part II- Inequality 1900-1950s 97
  • 3 - The Labor Market 99
  • 4 - Education and Mobility 138
  • Part III- The Second Republic 1933-1958 173
  • 5 - A New Cuba? 175
  • 6 - State and Racial Equality 210
  • Part IV- Socialism 1959-1990s 257
  • 7 - Building a Nation for All 259
  • 8 - The Special Period 317
  • Epilogue 335
  • Notes 341
  • Bibliography 415
  • Index 437
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