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Cuban Race Relations

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Cuban Race Relations

I. Introduction- Retracing a History of Racial Scorn in Cuban Society:

The study of race relations in contemporary Cuba indelibly requires an understanding of the dynamic history of race relations in this ethnically pervasive island of the Caribbean. Cuban society, due to its historical antecedents of European colonialism and American imperialism, has traditionally experienced anguished and even tumultuous race relations. Racial disharmony has plagued Cuban society ever since the advent of the Colonial institution of the plantation system. Thus, in order to acquire some understanding of Cuba’s dynamic race relations one must study and investigate the evolution of racial tensions and the quintessential impact that the revolution of 1959 had on Cuba’s social structure.

II. The Impact of Spanish Colonialism in Cuba: Legitimizing Racial Schism-

The specter of colonial repression, imposed by the institutions of slavery and the plantation system, has incessantly haunted Cuban society, culture, politics, and ideology. The legacies of slavery and the plantation system imposed a structural and systematic practice of racial discrimination against Afro-Cubans, which suppressed any ambition for the pursuit of liberty and equality. Despite Cuba’s abolition of slavery in 1886 and its winning of independence in 1902, Afro-Cubans remained destitute, marginalized, and in the periphery of political autonomy within Cuban society. Thus, the origins of Cuba’s disdainful race relations emerge during the Spanish colonial tenure in Cuba.

The era of Spanish colonial rule in Cuba can be characterized by many institutions, such as slavery and the plantation system, which presupposed a notion of ra...

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...n and Mesa-Lago, Carmelo. Revolutionary Change in Cuba. Ed. Carmelo

Mesa-Lago. (University of Pittsburgh Press: New York.1971), 347.

11. .de la Fuente, Alejandro. "Race, National Discourse, and Politics in Cuba." (Latin

American Perspectives v25 (1998) : p. 43-70.), 55.

12. .Amaro, Nelson and Mesa-Lago, Carmelo. Revolutionary Change in Cuba. Ed. Carmelo

Mesa-Lago. (University of Pittsburgh Press: New York.1971), 348.

13. .de la Fuente, Alejandro. "Race, National Discourse, and Politics in Cuba." (Latin

American Perspectives v25 (1998) : p. 43-70.), 55.

14. .Ibid

15. .Ibid

16. .Ibid

17. .Knight, Franklin. The Caribbean: the Genesis of a Fragmented Nationalism. (Oxford

University Press: New York. 1990), 307.

18. .Information taken from the "Afro Cuba Web Page:"

http://www.afrocubaweb.com/afrocVoice.htm
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