Synopses & Reviews
Since Columbus arrived in 1492 and called Cuba “the most beautiful country that human eyes have ever seen,” few places on earth have evoked such passion. The thirty-one writers in Cuba in Mind offer ample proof of the fascinations that have lured generations of travelers.
In this richly varied anthology of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, we hear from such famous visitors as Anthony Trollope, Langston Hughes, Ernest Hemingway, and Graham Greene. Poets and journalists offer their responses, from Allen Ginsberg and Jayne Cortez to Alma Guillermoprieto and Robert Stone; and novelists weigh in with such fictional portrayals as Elmore Leonard’s Cuba Libre and Pico Iyer’s Cuba and the Night. Cuban exiles, immigrants, and their offspring provide their unique perspective, from Cristina García’s essay “Simple Life” to excerpts from Oscar Hijuelos’s novel The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love and from Carlos Eire’s memoir Waiting for Snow in Havana. Embracing salsa and santeria, politics and baseball, the island’s sparkling beaches and the teeming Havana streets, Cuba in Mind captures the vibrancy, the contradictions, the heat and the humor of Cuba as shown by some of the best writers in the English language.
Thomas Barbour • José Barreiro • Ruth Behar • William Cullen Bryant • Jayne Cortez • Stephen Crane • Andrei Codrescu • Eleanor Early • Carlos Eire • Kimi Eisele • Cristina García • Allen Ginsberg • Graham Greene • Alma Guillermoprieto • Elizabeth Hanly • Ernest Hemingway • Consuelo Hermer • Oscar Hijuelos • Langston Hughes • Pico Iyer • Elmore Leonard • Rosa Lowinger • Marjorie May • Tom Miller • Holly Morris • Ricardo Pau-Llosa • Robert Stone • Jim Shepard • Isadora Tattlin • Anthony Trollope • Walter D. Wilcox
Poems, stories, and nonfiction pieces celebrating the complex entity that is Cuba. Contributions include work by Hemingway, Graham Greene, Allen Ginsberg, Pico Eyer, Oscar Hijuelos and even Anthony Trollope.
About the Author
While teaching in the English Department at Hunter College of the City University of New York, Maria Finn Domìnguez designed and taught a writing course for CUNY students at Casa de las Americas in Havana, Cuba. She works as a freelance writer and has written for, among many others, the New York Times, Audubon Magazine, and the Anchorage Daily News, and she has been a commentator for Alaska Public Radio. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and has published literary work in magazines such as The Chicago Review, New Letters, and Exquisite Corpse. She has lived and worked in Alaska, Guatemala, and Spain, and traveled extensively throughout Latin America. She and her husband, Rafael Dominguez, met in Havana, Cuba. They now live in Brooklyn, New York.
Table of Contents
from The West Indies and the Spanish Main
William Cullen Bryant
“Letter XLVIII” from Letters of a Traveller
Walter D. Wilcox
“Among the Mahogany Forests of Cuba”
from Ports of the Sun
Consuelo Hermer and Marjorie May
from Havana Mañana: A Guide to Cuba and the Cubans
“Havana Then and Now”
from Looking for History: Dispatches from Latin America
from Ay, Cuba!
“The Flesh, the Bones, and the Beating Heart”
Expatriates, Real and Imagined
from Cuba Libre
“The Clan of No-Name”
from Our Man in Havana
from “The Great Blue River”
“Batting Against Castro”
from Cuba Diaries: An American Housewife in Havana
“Visita” and “In 1985 I Met Nicolás Guillén”
from an interview with Allen Young in Gay Sunshine
“Santería: An Alternative Pulse”
from Cuba and the Night
from Trading with the Enemy: A Yankee Travels Through Castros Cuba
from A Naturalist in Cuba
Exiles, Immigrants, and Their Offspring
from The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love
“In the Absence of Love”
“Trece” from Waiting for Snow in Havana: Confessions of a Cuban Boy
from The Indian Chronicles