By Alejandro de la Fuente
After thirty years of anticolonial fight opposed to Spain and 4 years of army profession via the us, Cuba officially grew to become an autonomous republic in 1902. The nationalist coalition that fought for Cuba's freedom, a circulation during which blacks and mulattoes have been good represented, had expected an egalitarian and inclusive country--a state 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, executive regulations, and diverse different types of social and political mobilization in republican and postrevolutionary Cuba, Alejandro de los angeles Fuente explores the possibilities and obstacles that Afro-Cubans skilled in such components as activity entry, schooling, and political illustration. tough assumptions of either underlying racism and racial democracy, he contends that racism and antiracism coexisted inside of Cuban nationalism and, in flip, Cuban society. This coexistence has persevered to today, regardless of major efforts via the innovative govt to enhance the lot of the bad and construct a kingdom that used to be really for all.
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Additional info for A Nation for All: Race, Inequality, and Politics in Twentieth-Century Cuba (Envisioning Cuba)
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.
And because racial barriers hardened along with the desirability and prestige ascribed to professional jobs—the higher and better-paid an occupa14 : introduction tion, the whiter—the black middle class became the most visible target of racial discrimination. In response, Afro-Cuban professionals created their own exclusive societies and fought against exclusion from the closed social spaces of the white bourgeoisie. In turn, race was only one of many factors a√ecting the lives of the black and mulatto manual workers.
As in the 1930s, the combination of these racist ideologies with an environment of scarce economic resources stimulates openly discriminatory practices and leads to growing racial tensions. ∑∂ Adding to these tensions is the possibility that in a not-too-distant future the largely white CubanAmerican community might regain some inﬂuence in Cuba’s economic, social, and political a√airs. After all, it is not by chance that in the anecdote that opened this introduction, the black ex-maid’s question was posed to a white visitor from Miami.