Brown in Cuba

Articles

Cuba: the Tourism Boom and a Shortage of Food

For many tourists traveling to Cuba for the first time, visiting the island’s famous paladares – the Cuban name for the more than 1700 private restaurants that have recently opened up to cater to their appetite – is often talked about as an absolute must. Paladares, in fact, are praised...

Pro-Tips on Traveling in Cuba

So you’re doing it – you are traveling to Cuba, the rapidly evolving 58-year-old socialist state which may soon be another place altogether. I have had the privilege of traveling to Cuba twice and have accumulated several pro tips which may help you out on your next trip. Note: this...

Andrés

The first thing I noticed about Andrés as he led me out to dance in a small café in Santa Clara, Cuba were his hands. Their heavy, rough calluses betrayed his daytime job as a car mechanic. The small hunch at his nape marks a bulge in his spine from...

The Boxer

Though Daniel Jimenez Peres has never left Cuba, he is considered a connoisseur of Puerto Rican reggaeton among his circle of friends. “You’re saying you’ve never heard Ozuna?” he exclaimed, soon after we met in Santa Clara’s Parque Vidal. “But his music is everywhere in the U.S.! It’s so easy...

A Chinese Ghost-Town

Havana’s Chinatown is a site of ghosts. Although at some point it was one of the largest Chinatowns in the Western hemisphere, today, only faded Chinese characters and kitschy decorations remain. Walking through its streets, I am struck not by what I see, but by the absence of what I...

Beauty in Cuba – A Whole New Look

A few bottles of nail polish, a padded chair against a sink, the right license, and some business savvy have landed many Cuban women their own businesses – something that would have been hard to imagine just a few years ago. In-home beauty salons have given many Cuban women an...


The Legacy of Revolution in Cuba

The Cuban Revolution is a highly visual one. Images of El Che, for example, are everywhere on the island, from market stalls to billboards and t-shirts. The power of images – especially faces ­– is something that the Castro government clearly understands and has made ample use of in its...

Santería, an Afro-Cuban Religion

On the streets of Havana and other Cuban cities and towns, it is not unusual to see a figure dressed in all white. They not only wear white outer clothing but also use white umbrellas, white wallets, white key chains, and even white-rimmed sunglasses. The all-white attire is not a...

On the Changing Place of LGBT Rights in Cuba

“This is the most inclusive place in Cuba,” says Alex, who has been working at El Mejunje (the mixture) for over twenty years. El Mejunje, which is located in the provincial city of Santa Clara, was the first bar in Cuba to fly the gay pride flag and continues to...