Matanzas : The Cuba Nobody Knows

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2011-10-09
  • Publisher: University of Florida Press
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Matanzas--the name means literally "slaughters"--is the Cuban city nearest the United States. Known at the heyday of the nineteenth-century sugar boom as the "Athens of Cuba," it is renowned for its art, its music, and its rich African heritage. It is also the place where Latin American baseball began. Yet most Americans have never heard of it. Miguel Bretos's fascinating history of his hometown remedies this oversight. Though he came to the United States as a Pedro Pan child and has lived all over the world, his family is still closely tied to the city where they lived for generations. After forty years he returned to his homeland "with the longing of an exile, the anticipation of a child, the curiosity of a visitor, the resentment of a victim, and--hopefully--the objectivity of a scholar." Bretos unfolds the Matanzas story from the aboriginal Tainos to the coming of revolution with solid research, wit, clarity, and the kind of vivid detail that can come only from an insider. But he also deftly inserts Matanzas into a larger picture. More than local history, this original work is Cuban history from a local perspective.

Author Biography

Mrguel A. Bretos is retired as senior scholar from the Smithsonian Institution's National Portrait Gallery and is the author of four books, including Cuba and Honda. An Exploration of a Historical Connection, 1593-1991.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrationsp. xi
Prefacep. xiii
One Last Vueltap. 1
The Bay of Slaughtersp. 11
Governor Manzaneda's Castlep. 26
Green Tobacco and a Clever Marquisp. 37
Coffee Cup and Sugar Bowlp. 49
The Year of the Lashp. 70
Tyre of the Western Seasp. 87
Athens of Cubap. 101
Disguises and Holy Spacesp. 120
The Tyranny of Nearnessp. 135
Las Alturas de Simpsonp. 152
Forget the Maine!p. 168
The City Sleepsp. 189
Nightmares and Cold Sweatsp. 204
Kilowatts and Revolutionp. 218
Deus ex Machine Gunp. 232
Nero's Cheerp. 146
Return to the City of Riversp. 259
Notesp. 269
Bibliographyp. 289
Indexp. 305
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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