Front Door to Cuba

Notes on Fernando Ortíz

"It can be truthfully said of him that Cuban society and culture have been richer because of his presence."
- Concha Romero James, Pan-American Union, Division of Intellectual Cooperation, 1944

Ortíz in Revista Bimestre Cubana (1943)

"There has been much written on the subject of slavery and abolition, but these writings have generally been full of hatreds, myths, politics, speculations, and romanticism. There have also been some praiseworthy writings on Aponte, Placido, Maceo, and other great men of color who had gained national significance in the arts or in the struggles for independence. But the black man as a human being with a spirit, a history, ancestors, language, arts, positive values, and social possibilities, was ignored. Even the fact that a black man talked in public was dangerous and could only be done carefully, as if dealing with a crime or sin. It even seemed that the black man himself, and especially the mulatto, wanted to forget about himself and detest his race, so he wouldn't remember his martyrdom and frustrations.

"The black man is meritiously regaining little by little his own personality and self-esteem. HE no longer denies his race or feels shame for the surviving traditions and values of his ancestral culture. Negro and mulatto have ceased to be taboo words."

Fernando Ortíz: The Phases of Transculturation | José Martí | Juan Gualberto Gómez | Morúa Delgado

Race in Cuba
Opening | Introduction | End of Slavery | Race Fear | After the War | SUGAR | Race War | Race War Timeline | José Miguel Gómez | Morúa Delgado | Fernando Ortíz | Julián Valdés Sierra | Oriente Province | Martí on Race | Bibliography

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