D. Navarro, Alessandro Fornazzari
Jul 1, 2001
Nepantla: Views from South
In the midst of public things: that is where intellectuals are called upon to carry out their roles in their respective countries. But, as the authors of the Prince Claus Fund document The Role of the Intellectual (2000, 3) state, “in a number of respects the role of intellectuals differs from country to country,” and the “material, cultural and political constraints” that they experience “differ from situation to situation.” These differences must be taken into account if we are to avoid falling into illicit extrapolations, unfounded generalizations, and ethnocentrisms. Hence, as the document adds, “there is a need to understand the role of intellectuals in these contexts and to discuss key dilemmas.” The following observations and reflections attempt to contribute to the understanding of the role of the artistic intelligentsia in the public sphere in revolutionary Cuba, that is, in the last forty years of my country’s history. This text deals with a long and complex period of Cuban culture that is still awaitingmonographs of historical synthesis, andwhichwouldbe impossible to present and analyze meticulously within this article’s narrow framework. This is the reason for its sketchy nature and for the minimal exemplification of the following historical background.