Sugar, Cigars, and Revolution (Hardcover)

The Making of Cuban New York

By Lisandro Perez

New York University Press, 9780814767276, 400pp.

Publication Date: July 10, 2018

List Price: 35.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

The dramatic story of the origins of the Cuban community in nineteenth-century New York.

More than one hundred years before the Cuban Revolution of 1959 sparked an exodus that created today's prominent Cuban American presence, Cubans were settling in New York City in what became largest community of Latin Americans in the nineteenth-century Northeast. This bookbrings this community to vivid life, tracing its formation and how it was shaped by both the sugar trade and the long struggle for independence from Spain. New York City's refineries bought vast quantities of raw sugar from Cuba, ultimately creating an important center of commerce for Cuban migr's as the island tumbled into the tumultuous decades that would close out the century and define Cuban nationhood and identity.

New York became the primary destination for Cuban migr's in search of an education, opportunity, wealth, to start a new life or forget an old one, to evade royal authority, plot a revolution, experience freedom, or to buy and sell goods. While many of their stories ended tragically, others were steeped in heroism and sacrifice, and still others in opportunism and mendacity. Lisandro P rez beautifully weaves together all these stories, showing the rise of a vibrant and influential community.

Historically rich and engrossing, Sugar, Cigars, and Revolution immerses the reader in the riveting drama of Cuban New York. Lisandro P rez analyzes the major forces that shaped the community, but also tells the stories of individuals and families that made up the fabric of a little-known immigrant world that represents the origins of New York City's dynamic Latino presence.