Hey everyone! Thank you to everyone who has been following along for the last few months as I’ve prepared to head back to Cuba. (And if you haven’t been and have no idea what I’m talking about, more info about the trip with Witness for Peace is here!). When I return, I’ll be doing my best to share images, observations, and reflections with all of you. I want to “bring you along for the ride,” and although I can’t share updates while I’m there (since I won’t have internet), I have a couple posts scheduled to share while I’m gone.
So if you’re reading this between 9/14 to 9/24/14….I’m IN Cuba! Here are a few short films and articles for anyone who might like to dip their toes in and get to know Cuba a bit before I return.
This documentary by the BBC is a great place to start if you don’t know much about Cuba. Even if you do know about Cuba’s history, there are some really interesting stories about where Cuba is today.
- Why NPR’s David Greene Thinks All Americans Should Visit Cuba Now–an interesting interview with a journalist who traveled to Cuba in June of 2014.
I love this quote, and it’s quite how I feel about traveling to Cuba as well: “I wanted to be really humble and realistic about it and say that none of us were Cuba experts. We were going to take in a place and bring it home as best we could. It’s an incredibly murky and complicated place—and we’re very new to it, so we had open minds and tried to be listeners.”
- Tourism Money Flows Into Cuba, Bringing Economic Hopes And Fears–one of the stories from Greene’s trip (above). Short, interesting, and personal.
- Cuba: Where toilet paper can be rarer than partridge–an interesting look at some of the challenges Cubans face.
- It’s Time For The U.S. To End Its Senseless Embargo Of Cuba–an opinion piece regarding the embargo. It’s certainly strongly worded, and you’re free to disagree, but I think the author makes some really good points about moving forward in our relations with Cuba.
“The cost of the embargo to the United States is high in both dollar and moral terms, but it is higher for the Cuban people, who are cut off from the supposed champion of liberty in their hemisphere because of an antiquated Cold War dispute. The progress being made in Cuba could be accelerated with the help of American charitable relief, business innovation, and tourism.”
- Losing his Cuban home shaped a Nat Geo mapmaker’s life–a fascinating story about a Cuban immigrant making connections with his homeland.
Viewfinder – Latin America: Cuba Calling–Change is slowly coming to Cuba. For one remote community and on one woman’s front porch, it is just a phone call away.”
A short and really interesting documentary about life and change in rural Cuba.
UNICEF: Mother- and child-friendly hospitals in Cuba–With a history of poverty and political strife, Cubans have experienced much deprivation over the years. But access to basic services, such as healthcare, is available to all especially children whose first right is to the best start in life.
Fidel Castro – The Untold Story–Whether dismissed as a relic or revered as a savior, all agree that Fidel Castro, nearing 44 years as the leader of Cuba, is one of the most influential and controversial figures of our time. Rarely are Americans given a chance to see inside the world of this socialist leader. The new documentary film FIDEL by Estela Bravo offers a unique opportunity to view the man through exclusive interviews with Castro himself, historians, public figures and close friends, with rare footage from the Cuban State archives.
A really interesting look at the life of Fidel Castro. Though this film certainly has a positive bias, I found it really interesting to explore a bit more about how Cubans (some or many, depending on who you ask) have viewed him over the years.
I hope to also find some resources on faith in Cuba, so I welcome any suggestions! If you check out any of the above, I’d love to hear your thoughts!