The Cuban revolution attempted to make equality in every sphere the basic operating principle of society. Equality among the sexes, it postulated, would resolve the "woman issue" once and for all. Sex and Revolution: Women in Socialist Cuba
is the first book-length examination of revolutionary Cuba's attempt to conceptualize, prioritize, and implement sexual equality, offering an assessment of the successes, failures, and dilemmas of that process. In the wake of the revolution, which crushed both Cuban capitalism and Catholic power, a host of redistributive policies helped make Cuba one of the most egalitarian societies in the world. The history of the Cuban revolution provides rich detail regarding the interplay among gender, power, ideology, and culture. Certain revolutionary efforts to transform women's lives were extraordinarily successful, while others fell short of expectations. This book reviews the range of revolutionary strategies encompassed in structures, policies, and laws to address sexual inequality and difference. Ideal for courses in Latin American studies and women's studies, it offers insights into the implications of the way power is organized and managed, and analyzes the limitations of state policies in promoting and managing social and cultural transformations as significant as those regarding relations between the sexes.
About the Author(s)
Lois M. Smith, Department of Sociology, University of Texas, Austin, United States, and Alfred Padula, Chair of History Department, University of Southern Maine