From Havana to Baltimore

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Film, Storytelling

 

The Black and Cuba roadshow continues Sunday June 4, 2017 in Baltimore at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum 2pm 803 Pratt Street. Join this caring and vibrant community for what’s sure to be a lively dialogue after the film. If you can’t make it Sunday, Black and Cuba is also available on DVD and on demand at iTunes, Amazon and Google Play.

"Black and Cuba" Now Streaming on Vimeo on Demand

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Activists, Artists, Black Resistance Screening List, Field Notes, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars, Students, Teachers
The Harlem Chorus, narrators of Black and Cuba, following the Black studies tradition
                            The Harlem Chorus, narrators of Black and Cuba

The award-winning documentary Black and Cuba is now available for streaming.  The film follows street smart students who are outcast at their elite university, band together and adventure to Cuba, whose population is 60% Black.  Black and Cuba’s release comes on the heels of President Obama’s announcement that the US will thaw relations with Cuba and ease travel restrictions to the island.  See the film and see Cuba for yourself.  This weekend only, the filmmakers are offering a limited number of 10% discounts to subscribers in order to express their gratitude for your support.  Go to Vimeo on Demand and use the promo code SHAKUR15. 

Juan Almeida, a Cuban Revolutionary

Posted on 2 CommentsPosted in Activists, Scholars, Students, Teachers, Uncategorized

fidel-almeida-580x4281

The stylized monochromatic features of Argentinian Ernesto “Che” Guevara have become the face of the Cuban revolution. It’s a face you will find on clothing, murals, lunch boxes, and never more than a mile from any college campus. As a mascot Guevara has become a fashionable and easy way for the world to simplify and often dismiss Cuba’s politics and much of her modern history. It is romantic to imagine Che and Fidel Castro storming down from the mountainside waging a two-man war on capitalism and oppression but it is not the truth. Countless Cubans died and fought for the nation that they have today and premier among them was Juan Almeida Bosque.

Bosque was born in Havana on February 17th, 1927, into a world of poverty and racism. His desire to succeed and improve economic and social plight lead him to study law at the University of Havana where he met fellow classmate Fidel Castro in 1952 and became an active member of what we would come to know as the Cuban Revolution.  A year later Almeida was arrested with Fidel and his brother Raúl  for participating in an assault on the Moncada Barracks in Santiago de Cuba. They were all granted amnesty in 1955 and exiled to Mexico.

(more…)

It’s A Wrap

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Black Resistance Screening List, Uncategorized
Black Panther Party member Assata Shakur and July 26th Movement member Che Guevara
Black Panther Party member Assata Shakur and July 26th Movement member Che Guevara

Progressive Pupil is happy to announce that thanks to your support the feature-length documentary Black and Cuba is complete! The production team has incorporated community feedback from work-in-progress screenings over the past few months in San Juan, East Harlem, San Diego, Greenwich Village and other locations. We’re currently working on bringing Black and Cuba to a film festival near you. To keep in touch with the film’s progress, like its Facebook page, follow us on twitter and subscribe to this blog.

Juan Almeida, a Cuban Revolutionary

Posted on 3 CommentsPosted in Activists, Scholars, Students, Teachers

fidel-almeida-580x4281

The stylized monochromatic features of Argentinian Ernesto “Che” Guevara have become the face of the Cuban revolution. It’s a face you will find on clothing, murals, lunchboxes, and never more than a mile from any college campus. As a mascot Guevara has become a fashionable and easy way for the world to simplify and often dismiss Cuba’s politics and much of her modern history. It is romantic to imagine Che and Fidel Castro storming down from the mountainside waging a two-man war on capitalism and oppression but it is not the truth. Countless Cubans died and fought for the nation that they have today and premier among them was Juan Almeida Bosque.

Bosque was born in Havana on February 17th, 1927, into a world of poverty and racism. His desire to succeed and improve economic and social plight lead him to study law at the University of Havana where he met fellow classmate Fidel Castro in 1952 and became an active member of what we would come to know as the Cuban Revolution.  A year later Almeida was arrested with Fidel and his brother Raúl  for participating in an assault on the Moncada Barracks in Santiago de Cuba. They were all granted amnesty in 1955 and exiled to Mexico.

(more…)

The First Cuban Revolution

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Activists, Allies, Prisoners
Fidel Castro outlines his “26th of July Movement” before the Rotary Club of Havana.
Fidel Castro outlines his July 26th Movement before the Rotary Club of Havana. Photo courtesy of The Rotarian, 1959.

Condemn me, it does not matter. History will absolve me.”-Fidel Castro, from his four-hour trial defense speech following capture at the start of the Cuban Revolution.

This month marks the 60th anniversary of the beginning of the Cuban Revolution, and it is an apt time to reflect on this pivotal moment in history. Fidel Castro, a young lawyer, was appalled by the misery of the Cuban people under the rule of U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista. Castro petitioned the Cuban courts to oust Batista, accusing him of corruption and tyranny. When legal means proved unsuccessful, Castro decided to take up arms and overthrow the government. Fidel and Argentine revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara led the July 26th Movement as a vanguard organization intent on toppling the Batista regime. The Movement’s name originated from a failed attack on an army facility, named the Moncada Barracks, in the city of Santiago de Cuba on July 26, 1953. Many of the revolutionaries were captured or killed in the battle. Shortly after the July 26th siege, Fidel Castro and his brother Raul were seized by Batista’s forces and put on a highly politicized trial. The men were convicted and sentenced to fifteen and thirteen years in prison, respectively. In 1955, growing political pressure forced the Batista government to free all political prisoners in Cuba. The Castro brothers joined other exiles in Mexico, regrouping and receiving training from Alberto Bayo, a leader of Republican forces in the Spanish Civil War. In that same year, Fidel met Guevara, who agreed to join the July 26th Movement as one of its leaders.

(more…)