Earlier last month, Cubans Americans held their breath as U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson contemplated what would become of Title III of the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act. Eventually passing the responsibility off to Thomas Shannon, the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, it was decided that the measure would be suspended another six months, to the dismay of thousands who believed the Trump administration would upend the long disputed bill (Torres 2018).
My article on Cuban writer and filmmaker Jesús Díaz (1941-2002) is part of a broader research project on cultural policy, participation and censorship in Cuba.1 I raise two questions. First, what is the role of cultural agents in the production of both stability and change in Cuba, and concomitantly, what does the regime do to coopt actors and control the production of politico-cultural forms? Second, when and how do writers and artists actually push for more ‘space’ and deploy their expressive powers in a way that challenges the statu quo?
In Havana, Cubans have a saying: When something goes wrong; when food takes a long time to come out at a restaurant; when all the taxis passing by are full; when someone trips over a bump in the sidewalk—they say, “Es el bloqueo.” This transla
In the beginning of June, the Cuba Domadores went up against the British Lionhearts for the final match of the World Series of Boxing (WSB). The Domadores (or “Ringmasters”) beat their opposition 9-1, with the Lionhearts only earning one consolation point. A few months afterwards the Cuban boxing team went on to dominate at the Summer 2016 Olympics, earning a boxing medal count that was double the US’s and second only to Uzbekistan’s.
“Brother Obama,” wrote Fidel Castro in a public letter to the American president, “we don’t need the empire to gift us anything.” The article was published on the 28
The Gran Teatro de La Habana Alicia Alonso, the newly remodeled theater which houses the Ballet Nacional de Cuba, is a striking building both inside and out.