The Special Period: The Return Of The Cuban Middle Ages / 14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez

14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 6 August 2016 — She split the plate into two meager rations. “Mommy, you’re not going to eat?” asked one of the daughters voraciously swallowing the mashed banana without oil, free of protein and with hardly any salt. The image of this skimpy dinner in the summer of 1993 is recalled by Maria … Continue reading “The Special Period: The Return Of The Cuban Middle Ages / 14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez”

A Lighter Version of Cuba’s Special Period / Iván García

Iván García, 23 July 2016 — It was announced on Friday, July 8 that Cuba had experienced an economic recession in the first half of this year and that there would be cutbacks in fuel consumption. If the country had a stock exchange or a convertible national currency, their fall would have been dramatic. It was … Continue reading “A Lighter Version of Cuba’s Special Period / Iván García”

Is This the Second Phase of Cuba’s Special Period? / Iván García

Joel, a fifty-five-year-old engineer, remembers the summer of 1994 when, after finishing his day job, he came home to roast two or three pounds of peanuts. After packaging them in paper cones fashioned from the pages of school textbooks, he went out to sell them on the street and make a little extra money. As … Continue reading “Is This the Second Phase of Cuba’s Special Period? / Iván García”

Fear Grows of a Possible Return to the Special Period / 14ymedio, Zunilda Mata

14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 4 July 2016 – Along with high temperatures, summer has begun in Cuba with cuts in electricity consumption in state facilities, a gasoline shortage in the capital’s gas stations, and a fear of the return of the Special Period. According to sources consulted by 14ymedio, authorities have informed Communist Party militants … Continue reading “Fear Grows of a Possible Return to the Special Period / 14ymedio, Zunilda Mata”

Nostalgia for “The Special Period”? / 14ymedio

14ymedio, JOSÉ GABRIEL BARRENECHEA, Havana, 31 July 2104 — I knew about nostalgia for the colonial era, the Republican era and even for the “marvelous” eighties, what I never could imagine was that anyone could be nostalgic for the Special Period. But everything is possible on this island and if you don’t believe me, then read … Continue reading “Nostalgia for “The Special Period”? / 14ymedio”

Karl Poort’s Photos of Havana in the Depths of “The Special Period”

In 1994, when he visited Havana, Karel Poort from the Netherlands took these photos that he has shared with Cuba Material.They are photos of Old Havana and Central Havana before dollarization. All the buildings and establishments in them were later restored and reconstructed to house hard currency trade. Before this time, three decades of socialist … Continue reading “Karl Poort’s Photos of Havana in the Depths of “The Special Period””

The Special Period Returns

If we Cubans thought that our hardships and shortages of all kinds had hit bottom, forget it. It is the twentieth anniversary of the most severe and extensive economic crisis that the island suffered in all its history. Those were hard years. Very hard. It is still fresh in my memory. Blackouts of up to … Continue reading “The Special Period Returns”

Love in the Time of the Special Period

Julia Romero, a 20-year-old university student, will never forget the day she lost her virginity. Forget the fairy tale of a magical night, surrounded by a pleasant environment. “My first night of love was terrible. It was in the middle of spring, we left a mediocre disco and had sex in a pitch-black park, surrounded … Continue reading “Love in the Time of the Special Period”

Costa Rica Expands the Special Category of Asylum for Cubans

14ymedio, Havana, 22 July 2021 – On Tuesday, the Costa Rican government expanded the scope of the special category of asylum for Cubans, Venezuelans and Nicaraguans, which it began to implement in mid-November of last year. In order to protect those who are denied refuge and “are in a vulnerable condition,” the General Directorate of Migration and Foreigners (DGME) extended … Continue reading “Costa Rica Expands the Special Category of Asylum for Cubans”

Who Has The Right to Tell a Country’s Stories? All Its Citizens / Periodismo de Barrio

Periodismo de Barrio, 16 October 2016 – On 11 October 2016, six members of our Periodismo de Barrio (Neighborhood Journalism) team and two collaborators were arrested in the town of Baracoa, Guantanamo province. We were not arrested for smiling. Nor we were arrested for taking a photo in the state café at the viewpoint from El Gobernadora … Continue reading “Who Has The Right to Tell a Country’s Stories? All Its Citizens / Periodismo de Barrio”

STORIES OF THE THOUSAND AND ONE PERIOD, Part One / Mario Barroso

By K. Barth When we thought we had it all resolved and the Bolshevik godfather would guarantee life for ever and ever, the beginning of the end came. The old and apparently well-formed USSR fell apart; that happens with giants with feet of clay. I remember well the day I internalized the collapse of European … Continue reading “STORIES OF THE THOUSAND AND ONE PERIOD, Part One / Mario Barroso”

Cubans. Period. / Jeovany J. Vega

I confess that when I found myself referenced as an “alternative” voice, lacking previous reviews and bordering on misunderstood, I manned the battle stations against Elaine Diaz’s blog “La polémica digital” — The Digital Controversy. But when I noticed the objective and conciliatory tone in her post “Blogger, period,” I quickly took off the helmets … Continue reading “Cubans. Period. / Jeovany J. Vega”

Cuba is Not a Country For the Elderly, Especially if They are Black / Iván García

Being old in Cuba is a problem. Check this, if a young family have to work miracles to bring three meals a day to the table, buy clothing for their children and try to make money from who knows where to repair their shack, you can imagine how hard can be for an elder. It … Continue reading “Cuba is Not a Country For the Elderly, Especially if They are Black / Iván García”

At 140 Pesos a Bunch, the Price of Carrots on the Streets of Havana Has Doubled in One Year

14ymedio, Natalia López Moya, Havana, March 30, 2024 — On Saturday morning a man leaned over a mountain of carrots placed on Valle Street, near Trillo Park in Central Havana. At 140 pesos a bunch, the price was slightly lower than what the city’s private vendors were charging but far from the 70 pesos that … Continue reading “At 140 Pesos a Bunch, the Price of Carrots on the Streets of Havana Has Doubled in One Year”

Cuban Choreographer Lizt Alfonso: I Have Dedicated Myself To Dance ‘With Soul, Heart and Life’

EFE (via 14ymedio), Havana, 25 March 2024 — With a tour of Europe included, the director of the Cuban dance company Lizt Alfonso faces 2024 full of energy and projects, despite the difficult situation in which her country is immersed, or precisely because of it. In an interview with EFE, the dancer and choreographer explains … Continue reading “Cuban Choreographer Lizt Alfonso: I Have Dedicated Myself To Dance ‘With Soul, Heart and Life’”