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Cubans in Angola
South-South Cooperation and Transfer of Knowledge, 1976–1991
Christine Hatzky

Africa and the Diaspora: History, Politics, Culture
Thomas Spear, Neil Kodesh, Tejumola Olaniyan, Michael G. Schatzberg, and James H. Sweet, Series Editors

Winner, LASA Luciano Tomassini Latin American International Relations Book Award, 2016

“No one else has, or perhaps even indeed could have, opened up this field with the skill, originality, and success that Christine Hatzky has achieved. The term tour de force comes to mind.”
—David Birmingham, author of Trade and Conflict in Angola

Angola, a former Portuguese colony in southern central Africa, gained independence in 1975 and almost immediately plunged into more than two decades of conflict and crisis. Fidel Castro sent Cuban military troops to Angola in support of the Movimento Popular de Libertação de Angola (MPLA), leading to its ascension to power despite facing threats both international and domestic. What is less known, and what Cubans in Angola brings to light, is the significant role Cubans played in the transformation of civil society in Angola during these years. Offering not just military support but also political, medical, administrative, and technical expertise as well as educational assistance, the Cuban presence in Angola is a unique example of transatlantic cooperation between two formerly colonized nations in the global South.


Author. Photo credit, Name

Christine Hatzky is a professor at the Leibniz Universität Hannover. She is a historian specializing in postcolonial Latin America and the Caribbean as well as Lusophone Africa, especially Angola. Cubans in Angola is a translation of her German-language Kubaner in Angola, revised and updated for an English-speaking audience.





“Offers a spectacular diversity of sources from Cuban, Angolan, Portuguese, US, and other archives, as well as the author’s 127 careful oral histories, which she employs to discuss the affective responses of participants in the aid programs. In sum, this book is an excellent account of the ways Cubans and Angolans appropriated the channels of the Cold War for their own interests’a particularly timely read given the recent resurgence of Cuban-Angolan exchange.”

“Hatzky convincingly argues that Cuba and Angola were not mere pawns in a proxy war between the Cold War superpowers, but that both countries worked as independent actors with their own specific interests in a relationship of equal partnership. . . . Well written and excellently translated.”
American Historical Review

“Among a great many points of profound interest to the reader, Hatzky demonstrates that the most important global impact of the Cuban revolution starts as a traditional ‘export of revolution’ and ends with international solidarity becoming a professionalized commodity that Cuba is able to export.”
—Michael Zeuske, University of Cologne

“Christine Hatzky challenges conventional wisdom about the underpinnings of Cuban ‘internationalism’ and how it has evolved over the years. There is no other comparable work.”
—Susan Eckstein, author of The Immigrant Divide: How Cuban Americans Changed the U.S. and Their Homeland



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February 2015
LC: 2014013807 DT
404 pp.   6 x 9
10 b/w illus.  

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Paper $39.95 s
ISBN 978-0-299-30104-0
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