Fidel Castro Reader

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An outstanding new anthology of one of history’s greatest orators

Here, at last, is a comprehensive anthology presenting the voice of one of history’s greatest orators, Fidel Castro. Love him or hate him, there is no denying he is a “master of the spoken word,” as Gabriel García Márquez has described him.

Emerging in the 1960s as a leading voice in support of Third World anticolonial struggles and continuing to play a role in the antiglobalization movement of today, Fidel Castro remains an articulate and penetrating—if controversial—political thinker and leader, who has outlasted ten hostile US presidents.

His direct, forthright approach, his incredible grasp of diverse economic, historical, and cultural topics, and his idealism stand in stark contrast against the spin and superficiality of most political leaders.

Covering five decades of Fidel’s speeches, this selection begins with his famous courtroom defense (“History will Absolve Me”), and also includes his speech on learning of Che Guevara’s death in Bolivia, his analysis of the collapse of the Soviet Union, and his response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. With his declining health and the emergence of new leaders such as Hugo Chávez in Venezuela and Evo Morales in Bolivia, this book sheds light not just on Castro’s mighty role in Latin America’s immediate past, but also on his legacy for the future.

The Fidel Castro Reader includes a chronology of the Cuban Revolution, an extensive glossary and index as well as 24 pages of photos. As the first anthology of Castro’s speeches to be published in English since the 1960s, this is an essential resource for both scholars and general readers.

“Fidel’s devotion to the word is almost magical.” — Gabriel García Márquez

“Fidel is the leader of one of the smallest countries in the world, but he has helped to shape the destinies of millions of people across the globe.”
Angela Davis

“Fidel Castro is a man of the masses… The Cuban revolution has been a source of inspiration to all freedom-loving people.”
Nelson Mandela

“Fidel’s is a singing and dancing intellect.”
Alice Walker

“The editors] have done an admirable, even heroic, job of editing and excerpting this reader [which] serves a purpose for both historians and politicos.”  —Foreword magazine

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781920888886
  • Publisher: Ocean Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2007
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 524
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Fidel Castro led a guerrilla movement in Cuba that overthrew the Batista dictatorship in 1959. Since then, the Cuban president has been the nemesis of ten U.S. administrations. He stepped down in 2007 but has regularly expressed his views on world events and political personalities in his famous "reflections." David Deutschmann has edited numerous titles on Cuba, notably "The Che Guevara Reader" and "The Fidel Castro Reader."

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Table of Contents

Fidel Castro Biographical Note     ix
Editors' Preface     xi
Chronology     1
Foreword: Fidel's Virtues by Felipe Perez Roque     29
History Will Absolve Me
Santiago de Cuba, October 16, 1953     45
On the Triumph of the Revolution
Cespedes Park, Santiago de Cuba, January 2, 1959     107
Camp Columbia, Havana, January 8, 1959     133
At the United Nations General Assembly
New York, September 26, 1960     137
The Bay of Pigs Invasion and the Proclamation of the Socialist Character of the Revolution
Colon Cemetery, Havana, April 16, 1961     189
May Day, Havana, May 1, 1961     194
Words to Intellectuals
Havana, June 30, 1961     213
Manifesto for the Liberation of me Americas: "The Second Declaration of Havana"
Havana, February 4, 1962     241
The October Missile Crisis
The Five Points of Dignity, October 28, 1962     269
On the Missile Crisis, November 1, 1962     270
Formation of the Cuban Communist Party and Che's Farewell Letter
Chaplin Theater, Havana, October 3, 1965     275
On the Latin American Revolution
Havana, August 10, 1967     293
The Death of Che Guevara
Revolution Plaza, Havana, October 18, 1967     315
One Hundred Years of Struggle for Cuban Independence
La DemajaguaMonument, Manzanillo, October 10, 1968     327
Revolution and Counterrevolution in Allende's Chile
National Stadium, Santiago de Chile, December 2, 1971     359
On behalf of the Movement of Nonaligned Countries
UN General Assembly, New York, October 12, 1979     387
Rectifying the Errors of the Cuban Revolution
Karl Marx Theater, Havana, April 19, 1986     417
Cuban Internationalism and the Collapse of the Socialist Bloc
Havana, December 7, 1989     431
Return of Che Guevara's Remains to Cuba
Santa Clara, Cuba, October 17, 1997     443
Inauguration of President Chavez in Venezuela: "The Battle of Ideas"
University of Venezuela, Caracas, February 3, 1999     447
Response to the US Declaration of the "War against Terrorism"
Havana, September 22, 2001     477
Assessing Half a Century of the Cuban Revolution
Revolution Plaza, Havana, May 1, 2003     483
In Answer to the Empire: Letters to President George W. Bush
Proclamation by an Adversary of the US Government, May 14, 2004     499
Second Epistle, June 21, 2004     504
Epilogue: Fidel Castro on the Cuban Revolution After Fidel     511
Further Reading     519
Index     521
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