Course meets MW 1:50 – 2:45 in Mahar 111
Havana, the capital of Cuba, is the largest city in the Caribbean, and reflects its centuries’ – old heritage. Today in Havana one can have a history lesson in architecture, from baroque Spanish, to U.S. neo-Gothic and modern architecture, and Soviet functionalist architecture. The streets are full of Hyundais, Toyotas, Ladas, and still a few ’57 Chevys and Pontiacs.
Control of Havana and Cuba has been fought over for centuries. Initially a Spanish colony that faced attacks from and eventually briefly ruled by the British, Cuba’s fight for meaningful independence spanned almost one hundred years (1868 – 1959).
This course provides an examination and analysis of Havana and its role in global politics. We begin with a brief review of Cuba’s fight for independence, transference from Spain to the United States, and the Cuban Revolution. We will look at how other countries have influenced Havana, and also Havana’s influence on other countries. The main focus of the course will be on Havana since the fall of Soviet Union, with an emphasis on policy and social innovations—the hip-hop movement, civil society, organic farms in the city, and the increasing privatization of the economy.
Students have the option of registering for either GLS 100 or POL 300, but should be aware that POL 300 requires a research paper.
Sweig, Julia E. (2009) Cuba: What Everyone Needs to Know Oxford University Press
“How to Travel in a Socialist Country” – on Angel reserves
Miller, Tom (2008) Trading with the Enemy: A Yankee Travels Through Castro’s Cuba Basic Books