Cuba: Race, inequality and revolution
Complete text of Chapter Three, excerpted from
Cuba: Revolution in Motion
By ISAAC SANEY
While privileged strata have emerged as part of an incipient stratification, the inequality in Cuba does not approach the levels experienced elsewhere in the South, particularly in Latin America. Nevertheless, it is, by its very nature, a potent challenge to the egalitarian paradigm that has defined the Revolution, threatening to erode the material foundations upon which stand the spirit and practices of social solidarity, collectivism and socialist consciousness. While the process of the quantitative and qualitative material transformation of Cuban society had achieved tremendous progress and success during the first three decades of the Revolution, it was perforce incomplete. Thirty years is too short a time to overcome five centuries of slavery, colonialism and neo-colonialism, not to mention the impending crisis of the 1990s. The collapse of the U.S.S.R. and the Eastern Bloc, the ensuing economic crisis, the strengthening of the U.S. economic embargo and a resurgent imperialism in the mode of neoliberal globalism exerted tremendous pressures on the island. Indeed, the economic crash was spectacular, framing Cuba's entry into the Special Period.
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