Amnesty International: Cuban Human Rights 2008 Report
website is useful in that it is very recent. The focus is on human rights, and
can thus provide some insight into why
Cuban migrants may want to leave Cuba. However, Amnesty International has a political agenda that, though not limited
to state-politics, is nonetheless ideological
in nature. Thus, the website provides a background on Cuba, but always with the
aim of making an argument about human
rights. Though there is nothing wrong with such an aim, the website does not pretend to provide any other type of
background on Cuba.
Granma Internacional is the primary daily newspaper in Cuba. It is largely supportive of Castro’s government and provides an interesting window into Cuban life. The paper publishes domestic and international news, and frequently features the words of Fidel and Raul Castro.
Before Night Falls is the memoir of
Cuban author Reinaldo Arenas, as written after he left Cuba for the U.S. during
the 1980 mass exodus sparked by the Peruvian Embassy’s willingness to house
refugees. Arena’s account of Castro’s government offers a contrasting view of
Cuban life to those expressed in Granma
Internacional. Additionally, he writes of his life in America, and overall
has a lot to contribute to the discussion concerning the Cuban Diaspora.
This is a wonderful book
for tracking some major recent changes in Cuba– specifically in the 1990s. The
author focuses on the changes of socialism, so there is a large emphasis on the
economy. Political changes are also discussed in detail, including an excellent
overview of Cuba's foreign relations. The book does, however, discuss Cuba's
relationship with the U.S. in a rather one-sided fashion, which has led to some
critique that the author does not recognize that Cuba has also been known to
use the conflict with the U.S. strategically at some points in its history.
Also, the book has a lot of data, which can make is less accessible and harder
Bonnin, R., and C. Brown
This article focuses its attentions on family dynamics among Cuban Americans
and Cuban exiles, mainly in regard to the effect family dynamics have on
purpose in life. Though very abstract, the article paints a fascinating
portrait of Cuban Americans’ and Cuban exiles’ ability to consider themselves
able to fit in, especially as correlated with the way they relate to family.
This report, commissioned by the Congressional Research Service, provides
detailed accounts for all United States policies surrounding Cuban Migration.
Written by specialists in the field, the report shows how much federal aid was
given to Cuban migrants to aid their incorporation into the United States. It
is useful in that it can be coupled with theoretical works and ethnography to
illustrate the effects of policy on 20th century Cuban migration.
article is fascinating in that it deals specifically with the issue of
remittances in the context of Cuba. This issue is major considering the various
discourses surrounding remittances and whether or not they affect development,
and if so, how. Thus, this article is a wonderful way to ground the experiences
of Cuban migrants and development in Cuba. Though it does not necessarily
single-handedly solve the puzzle of remittances, it makes pretty clear arguments
about the various ways in which they can affect Cuba and which factors
influence this effect. Sine the article is focused so clearly on the economic
aspect, however, it has to be viewed in conjunction with other sources that
provide a better cultural or historic understanding of Cuba.
Fernández, Damián J.
This book compiles a series of essays that situate
Cuban migration and cultural production within the greater political and
economic context of the 20th century. This source is valuable as it offers
multiple scholars' perspectives and vantage points of similar issues. It
provides theory but not as much ethnography. Nevertheless, this source is a
great starting point for understanding the background theory and history of
Cuban migration flows.
Grenier, Guillermo J. and Lisandro Pérez
The Legacy of Exile discusses how Cuban migrants have transformed major U.S. metropolitan areas and exert a powerful-and controversial-impact on U.S. foreign policy. The theme of the book is that the Cuban presence has been shaped by the experience of exile. In understanding the case of the Cuban immigration to the United States, the book provides insight into the dynamics of U.S. immigration policy; the differences between immigrants and exiles; interethnic relations among newcomers and established residents; and the economic development of immigrant communities. It depicts Cuban immigration as a relatively successful adaptation of an immigrant community and can therefore help support our case study of the Twin Cities where there are a wide variety of local, well-established resources to support Cuban (and Latin American in general) immigrants and refugees.
seeks to "capture the struggles and dreams of Cuban Americans." It
includes details about the patterns of immigration, adaptation to American life
and work, cultural traditions, religious traditions, women's roles, the family,
language, and education in order to help the reader engage with the issue of
Cuban immigration. Written by a Cuban American, the book accurately and
colorfully portrays the American Cuban community, with some historical
background but little policy context.
McHugh, Kevin E., Ines M. Miyares, and Emily H. Skop
This article examines the formation of a cultural hub such as Miami and its role in both the Cuban imaginary and migration processes. It offers theoretical frameworks to study "pull" migration. A more recent publication, this article provides the context for contemporary migration to the United States. It offers demographic data but does not account for the multiple waves of Cuban migration during the Cold War era nor their effects on shaping migration processes today. Written by geographers, this article strays from political-economic and social theory but provides hard data to address migration and assimilation.
This text offers the ethnography that Cuban Studies
Since the Revolution fails to provide and contextualizes Cuban migration by
discussing United States' foreign policy from the Cold War era onwards as well
as Cuban government policy during the Castro regime. It examines the differing
modes of incorporation that Cuban migrants experienced and illustrates how one
ethnic group can arrive as both immigrants, refugees, exiles, and colonial
subjects. Written by Cuban migrants, this book is a testimony of their own
Minnesota Department of Health
This document shows that there were 146 Cuban primary
refugees in Minnesota in 2007. Of these 9 arrived in 1988, 3 in 1993, 19 in 1994, 35 in 1995, 8 in 1996, 2 in 1997, 5 in 1998, 5 in 1999, 8
in 2000, 11 in 2001, 5 in 2002, 16 in 2003, 2 in 2004, 5 in 2005, 7 in 2006, 6
Minnesota Department of Health
This document shows that there were 6 Cuban primary refugees
in Minnesota in 2007. Of these, 3 were resettled in Hennepin, 1 in Kandiyohi,
and 2 in Winona.
This annotated bibliography presents journal articles,
books, human rights reports and websites that deal with the Cuban-American
experience. Resources relating to Cuba or Cuba-US relations are omitted from
the bibliography. The annotations are very thorough. However, the bibliography
is outdated, since it was published in 1999.
Olson, James S. Olson, Judith E.
This book gives a historical overview of Cuban migration to
the United States. It delves into the origins of Cuban culture and the
Cuban-American community. It then goes through five periods of Cuban migration
to the United States. This periods are divided based on characteristics of the
Cuban American community, rather than migration trends or policy eras, although
it does give some attention to both.
This article breaks down Cuban migration to the United States into four waves, and examines the circumstances of each wave. Then the article looks at a variety of characteristics of Cubans in the United States, such as race, poverty, gender and education. Lastly, the article addresses the distinction between political refugees and economic immigrants, and explores where the Cuban migrants fit into this distinction. Overall, the article is a good starting place to understand the history of Cuban migration to the United States, as well as some demographic information about the migrants themselves. However, it does not delve into cultural traits of the migrants, nor the assimilation process.
Afro-Cuban Voices consists of 14
interviews with Afro-Cubans living in Cuba, and especially examines race and
race relations in contemporary Cuban society. The interviews prove how
crucially race factors into Cuban society, and provides an interesting
foundation from which to study how Afro-Cubans in America deal with race in
This report, commissioned by the PewHispanic Center, not only provides demographic data but also historical background and a list of references for further study. It draws conclusions of Cuban integration into American Society through polling data compiled by the American Community Survey of 2004. It's hard data is indispensable for understanding Cuban migrant assimilation in United States society.
1969 Dilemmas of a Golden Exile: Integration of Cuban Refugee Families in Milwaukee. American Sociological Review, Vol. 34, No. 4 (Aug), pp. 505-518. Published by: American Sociological Association
Although this is not a recent article, this study presents a
useful overview of the background of Cuban refugees and examines their
integration as a fundamental shift from strong psychological attachments to the
past to values and identities congruent with the new environment. Among 48
refugee families in Milwaukee, it was found that integration is strongly
influenced by relative level of present socioeconomic rewards. Even though it focuses on Milwaukee, the
observations made in this study may be similar to those in the Twin Cities due
to similarity of the places.
Portes, Alejandro, Robert L. Bach
This in-depth study of the migration process is primarily
concerned with recent Cuban and Mexican immigration into the United States. A
theoretical overview of labor migration and a historical survey of immigration
to the United States from 1890 to 1979 are first presented. In this section,
pages 84-90 provide a good overview of the history of Cuban immigration into
the US and help understand some of the economic and political factors that
created refugees. In the rest of the book, the political and socioeconomic
circumstances confronting the Mexicans and the Cubans in their home countries
prior to migration are contrasted and information is presented concerning place
of residence, social adaptation, labor market participation, and income for the
two immigrant groups. Particular attention is given to the Cuban enclave in
Miami, the economic and occupational mobility of Mexican immigrants,
immigrants' perceptions of the United States, and the social relationships of
immigrants; thus, there is no specific link to the Twin Cities. However, the
book provides some useful background information and a summary of the
theoretical and practical implications of the major trends observed in this
study. It also provides a thorough take on challenges
to integration over the six-year period during which interviews were conducted.
Smith, Wayne S.
This article is very useful
because the author is not only a professor specializing in Latin American
Studies, but has also spent a considerable amount of time in Cuba. The article
provides a very insightful historical perspective in to the politics of Cuba.
It rejects the idea that Cuba must fall into one of the various types of fates
that have come about in other communist nations, thereby providing for a new
type of analysis that is based more in the specific context of Cuba. However,
the article gives a very top-down analysis, focusing primarily on government
reforms and not the Cuban peoples' responses. Thus, there is little to no
mention of Cubans who might agree or disagree– let alone people who decide to
seek asylum in the U.S.
is accessible, and aimed at undergraduate students. It is useful in that it
attempts to give a brief overview of
all the relevant history in order to stand the current situation with Cuba. Thus, in a single book, one can read
about political, cultural, and economic factors affecting the development of Cuba, especially over
the last hundred years. However, the book has two main flaws. The first flaw is that it was originally published
in 1974, only to be updated in 1997; though
this in itself would not be a problem, the book's general argument and the
majority of the text is as it
was in the 70s. There are only two chapters that really update the book. The second major flaw is that the author
is pretty explicitly anti-Communist, thus leading to some pretty strong political statements to be
made; the overall argument is also clearly affected by this political stance.
Thomas, John F.
This article describes the historical foundation of current
US-Cuba relations and the Cuban refugees in the United States today, by giving
an overview of the first Cuban refugees migrating to the United States in the
1960s. It describes early policies of the US government toward refugees, and
major political events that contributed to the patterns of migration, but does
not discuss the demographics or culture of the refugees.
website is very useful for all types of statistics on Cuba, including economic
and political statistics, crime statistics,
etc. It even has sections regarding Cuban religion, history, and government. However, the website is
authored by a political entity which is opposed to Cuba. References to restrictions on human freedom is
frequent, and thus the website is clearly politically
Wasem, Ruth Ellen
This report summarizes US policy towards Cuban migration,
federal assistance toward Cuban migrants, current challenges and issues, and
provides an analysis of migration patterns and trends. The report gives a
comprehensive overview of the major policy points and migration trends, and is
quite readable. It gives very limited attention to factors causing emigration
from Cuba, or changes in Cuban politics.
Zeager, L. A.
This article is mostly useful in its dealings with immigration policies from Cuba and emigration policies to the United States historically. The mathematical models used are fairly difficult to follow, but the comparison between policies throughout the ages, especially as discussed in the conclusion, is useful to understanding the evolution of United States-Cuba relations.