Cuba's Struggle For Independence

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Cuba the “ever faithful isle”, to the oldest colonial power and on once strongest empire on Earth. Cuba was loyal to Spain to prevent the inevitable uprising of the people. "Peace and slavery prevailed over insurrection and emancipation.” pg.2 Ada Ferrer presents the atmosphere of a war that lasted 30 years only to end virtually back to the beginning under a new master. (U.S. Occupation) The struggle for independence was embedded in a deep vision of nationalism. Where race took a back seat to the unity of Cubans. "Revolutionary rhetoric made racial slavery and racial divisions concomitant with Spanish colonialism.” pg.3 This war was to unite the rise of the first race less nation. Ferrer writes with purpose of detailing through a series of Archival documents from Cuba, Spain, and the United States. The highly underappreciated, Cuban struggle for independence, for a multiracial republic.

Ferrer uses documents from all the major players of this war from both sides. To the highest ranking general to the lowest ranking black foot soldier. Political leaders and political/Civil rights activists. A detailed account of these events is well documented using a multitude of Primary sources from the speeches and personal diaries of those involved. Ferrer makes "The revolution that the world forgot" pg.6 a memorable series of events. Her contributions to the revolution are important in understanding the race politics that plagued that time period. As W.E.B. Du Bois would famously say "The problem of the twentieth century is the problem of the color line.” Race is brought to the forefront of this book. The problems raised the arguments of what would happen if we win? These "problem people" have risen to positions of tremendous influence. Thes...

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...ionary ideology. I have learned many things regarding the relationship between blacks and whites during this struggle but a disregard of other minority immigrant groups represents a trend in Latin American and United States history. There is a history for everybody in nearly if not if not all the countries on this earth. If their role was a minor one, then that constitutes only a few pages at least of dedication to their contributions towards the independence or loyalty to Spain. Ferrer's Insurgent Cuba is an excellent contribution to the history of Cuba, She could have added a few more chapters to cover the missing elements including the role of government in Madrid towards the emancipation of slaves and the consensus of whites reaction to the rhetoric of Marti and other revolutionaries. Nonetheless this is an insightful study I will reference in the years to come.

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