Most conventional readings of the Cuban Revolution have seemed mesmerised by the personality and role of Fidel Castro, often missing a deeper political understanding of the Revolution's underlying structures, bases of popular loyalty and ethos of participation.
In this ground-breaking work, Antoni Kapcia focuses instead on a wider cast of characters. Along with the more obvious, albeit often misunderstood, contributions from Che Guevara and Raul Castro, Kapcia looks at the many others who, over the decades, have been involved in decision-making and have often made a significant difference. He interprets their various roles within a wider process of nation-building, demonstrating that Cuba has undergone an unusual, if not unique, process of change.
Essential reading for anyone interested in Cuba's history and its future.
Antoni Kapcia is professor of Latin American history at the University of Nottingham, where he also directs the Centre for Research on Cuba. Since 1975, he has published extensively on aspects of modern and contemporary Cuban history, focusing especially on political and cultural history and on the questions of ideology and national identity. His books include Cuba: Island of Dreams (2000), Havana: The Making of Cuban Culture (2005), Cuba in Revolution (2008) and (in conjunction with Par Kumaraswami) Literary Culture in Cuba: Revolution, Nation-Building and the Book (2012).
Introduction: The problem with 'Fidel-centrism' 1. The core leadership: the familiar triumvirate 2. The formation of 'the vanguard': 1953-58 3. Taking stock and finding direction: 1959-62 4. The years of 'revolutionary' flux: 1963-75 5. The stable years: systems, institutions and bureaucrats: 1975-86 6. The return of fluidity: 1986 to the present 7. Inclusion and exclusion: 'within' and 'against' the Revolution 8. Inclusion and collectivity: a revolutionary corporatism?