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Fresa y Chocolate, 1994

Paladar used as set for Tomás Gutiérrez Alea's 1994 film, Fresa y Chocolate [Strawberry and Chocolate]

Events - Talks

To Defend the Revolution Is to Defend Culture

Book Launch

02 Sep 2015

Free, Cafe Bar
A book launch and discussion with author Rebecca Gordon Nesbitt and professor Antoni Kapcia.
To Defend the Revolution Is to Defend Culture: The Cultural Policy of the Cuban Revolution takes its title from a slogan — devised by Cuban artists and writers at a meeting held in October 1960 and adopted by the First National Congress of Writers and Artists the following August — which harnessed the work of creative intellectuals to the pursuit of social justice that inspired the Revolution. Departing from popular top-down conceptions of Cuban policy-formation, To Defend the Revolution explores the contribution of Cuba’s artists and writers to the policy and praxis of the Revolution. Join author Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt in a discussion around the uniquely Cuban response to culture under socialism, which inevitably touches upon the relationship between art and ideology, engagement and autonomy, form and content.
Since the mid-1990s, Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt has been engaging with the internal dynamics of the cultural field. In 1998, she cofounded salon3, a polyvalent arts organisation in London. Two years later, she took up a post as a curator at the Nordic Institute for Contemporary Art in Helsinki, with a responsibility for stimulating art exhibitions, publications and events throughout the Nordic region and, latterly, the UK and Ireland. Since then, she has dedicated herself to exploring the politico-economic conditions underwriting artistic practice, which eventually took her to Cuba in search of new ways of thinking about culture. Rebecca has enjoyed research residencies at the University of Edinburgh, Stroom, The Centre for Art and Architecture in The Hague, the Centre for Contemporary Art Derry~Londonderry, and Manchester Metropolitan University. Her writing has been extensively published in anthologies, monographs, catalogues and journals.
Antoni Kapcia is Professor of Latin American History, Faculty of Arts at University of Nottingham. His research and publications focus on modern Cuba, with an emphasis on political radicalism in the 1920s to 50s and the roots of the post 1955 Revolution. He is the author of the books Cuba in Revolution.: A History since the Fifties (2008: Reaktion Books) and Leadership in the Cuban Revolution: The Unseen Story (2014: Zed Books/Fernwood Publishing) and is currently working with Dr Par Kumaraswami (University of Manchester) on a study of the annual Feria del Libro.


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