By Alejandro de la Fuente
After thirty years of anticolonial fight opposed to Spain and 4 years of army career by means of the us, Cuba officially grew to become an self sustaining republic in 1902. The nationalist coalition that fought for Cuba's freedom, a stream within which blacks and mulattoes have been good represented, had anticipated an egalitarian and inclusive country--a country for all, as Jos? Mart? defined it. yet did the Cuban republic, and later the Cuban revolution, reside as much as those expectancies? Tracing the formation and reformulation of nationalist ideologies, govt guidelines, and varied types of social and political mobilization in republican and postrevolutionary Cuba, Alejandro de los angeles Fuente explores the possibilities and boundaries that Afro-Cubans skilled in such parts as task entry, schooling, and political illustration. hard assumptions of either underlying racism and racial democracy, he contends that racism and antiracism coexisted inside Cuban nationalism and, in flip, Cuban society. This coexistence has continued to at the present time, regardless of major efforts via the innovative executive to enhance the lot of the negative and construct a state that was once actually for all.
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Extra resources for A Nation for All: Race, Inequality, and Politics in Twentieth-Century Cuba (Envisioning Cuba)
Slavery . . ’’ The solution, thus, rested with blacks themselves. As white intellectual Jorge Mañach wrote, ‘‘[The solution] can’t be other than a constant e√ort at improvement. . ’’≤≠ Blacks’ social subordination was this way presented as a black problem— not a social one. White participation in their subordination was reduced to a ‘‘cultural’’ issue, a problem of innate ‘‘ethnic instincts’’ and ‘‘aesthetic’’ per30 : the first republic ceptions, a ‘‘psychological mechanism’’ that time itself would correct through ‘‘indirect’’ and ‘‘gradual’’ means, never through open confrontation.
Individually and collectively, Afro-Cubans had emerged from the war with a public presence and prestige they did not enjoy before the struggle began. ’’∂∂ racial order or racial democracy? : 35 The conﬁdence and determination that Afro-Cuban soldiers had acquired during the war are well exempliﬁed in an anecdote concerning their interaction with American soldiers. This case, recalled by Montejo, took place in Cienfuegos in 1899, when a number of mambises (members of the Liberation Army) attacked some American soldiers because of their disrespectful manner toward Cuban women.
White veterans who entered politics were reluctant to debate questions of race, but they frequently opposed measures that resulted in the blatant exclusion of blacks. The republic with all and for all was a misrepresentation of reality, but as with any other dominant ideology it a√ected reality itself, creating in the process unexpected limitations as well as opportunities for social and political action. ∂≤ Although the explicit purpose of the novel is to denounce the persistence of racism under the republic, several of Masdeu’s white characters defend the need to treat blacks and whites as equals and frame this need in the language of the nationalist ideology.
A Nation for All: Race, Inequality, and Politics in Twentieth-Century Cuba (Envisioning Cuba) by Alejandro de la Fuente