Havana is Cuba’s soul: a mix of Third World, First World, and Other World. Spanning a decade of visits as a teacher, researcher, and friend, Karen Dubinsky looks past political slogans and tourist postcards to the streets, neighbourhoods, and personalities of a complicated and contradictory city. Affectionate, humorous vignettes illustrate how Havana’s residents—old Communist ladies, their sceptical offspring, underground vendors, entrepreneurial landlords, and poverty-stricken professors—go about their daily lives. This book is a compendium of conversations with Cuban people rather than politicians.
As Cuba undergoes dramatic change, there is much to appreciate and learn from in the unlikely world Cubans have collectively built for themselves.
Karen Dubinsky started visiting Cuba in 1978, and has lived in Havana intermittently since 2004. She is a professor in the Department of Global Development Studies at Queen’s University and co-teaches a course in Havana for Queen’s students. She is the author of The Second Greatest Disappointment: Honeymooning and Tourism at Niagara Falls.
We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $153 million to bring the arts to Canadians thought out the country. Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil a investi 153 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.